J Korean Orthop Assoc.  2017 Aug;52(4):291-297. 10.4055/jkoa.2017.52.4.291.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea. jahn@catholic.ac.kr


Tarsal tunnel syndrome is an entrapment neuropathy of the tibial nerve and its branches within the tarsal tunnel, which usually occurs as a result of a space-occupying lesion, trauma or foot deformity. The typical symptoms are pain and paresthesia of the foot at the dermatome of involved nerve branches, and the diagnosis can be made through careful history taking and physical examination. Treatments include conservative management and surgery. Although the reported results of surgical treatment vary, surgical decompression can yield satisfactory outcomes in cases of tarsal tunnel syndrome with a space-occupying lesion.


tarsal tunnel; tibial nerve; tarsal tunnel syndrome; entrapment neuropathy

MeSH Terms

Decompression, Surgical
Foot Deformities
Physical Examination
Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome*
Tibial Nerve


  • Figure 1 (A) Coronal computed tomography image of a 40-year-old male shows a large not-united posteromedial talar process fracture. (B) Intraoperative photograph shows close relationship of the talar nonunion fragment and tibial nerve within the tarsal tunnel.

  • Figure 2 (A) Coronal magnetic resonance imaging of a 47-year-old female shows a multilocular cyst adjacent to the tibial nerve. (B) A 10-cm long curvilinear skin incision is designed over the tarsal tunnel. (C) Intraoperative photograph shows a multilocular ganglion cyst which has compressed the tibial nerve.


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