Tarsal tunnel syndrome

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[edit] Discussion of Tarsal tunnel syndrome

  • The tarsal tunnel is a fibro-osseous canal that is bounded by the flexor retinaculum superficially and the medial surfaces of the talus and calcaneus on its deep surface.
  • It contains the posterior tibial nerve, the three medial tendons (posterior tibial, flexor digitorum longus, flexor hallucis longus), and the posterior tibial artery and posterior tibial vein.


  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome is an entrapment neuropathy of the posterior tibial nerve or of its branches within the tarsal tunnel.
  • The most common symptoms are pain and paresthesias in the toes, sole, or heel.
  • The main finding at physical examination is the Tinel sign (distal paresthesias produced by percussion over the affected portion of nerve).
  • Electromyography and nerve conduction studies are useful in confirming the diagnosis.


  • Etiologies of tarsal tunnel syndrome.
    • Bone deformity after calcaneal fractures
    • Varicosities
    • Tenosynovitis of the flexor tendons
    • Tumors
    • Accessory or hypertrophied abductor hallucis muscle
    • Synovial hypertrophy


[edit] Imaging Findings for Tarsal tunnel syndrome

  • MR imaging clearly depicts the bones, soft-tissue contents, and boundaries of the tarsal tunnel as well as the different pathologic conditions responsible for tarsal tunnel syndrome.
  • MR imaging can also aid in determining whether treatment should be conservative (eg, tenosynovitis) or surgical (eg, for space-occupying lesions).

[edit] Images

Patient #1

[edit] See Also

[edit] External Links

[edit] References for Tarsal tunnel syndrome