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Plantar fibroma can be a massive worry if you aren’t familiar with it. Knowing what it looks like and how it will impact your life is essential to treating it appropriately.
The good news, as will be explored in this article, is that plantar fibroma and its affiliated versions is benign.
It is not caused by bacteria invading the body, and it is unlikely to transfer from you to any members of your family or roommates that you may be living with.
Take a look at some of the following in order to develop a better understanding of what plantar fibroma is, how it can be treated, and what kind of signs you need to look out for in order to tell whether or not the strange growth on your foot is affiliated with plantar fibroma’s development.
- 1 What is Plantar Fibromatosis?
- 2 Plantar Fibroma Symptoms
- 3 Plantar Fibroma Causes
- 4 Plantar Fibroma Treatment
- 5 Conclusion
What is Plantar Fibromatosis?
When it comes to understanding what plantar fibromatosis is, it’s sometimes easier to explore what plantar fibromatosis is not.
Plantar fibroma, or plantar fascial fibromatosis, is, in short, the development of a growth on the bottom of your foot. This growth is usually white in color and painless.
It’s deeper than that of a plantar’s wart, although its appearance is similar. Rather, it is the benign version of a foot growth that attaches to the tendon in the bottom of the foot, the fibrous plantar fascia.
Plantar fibroma and plantar fibromatosis are two different degrees of the same sort of issue, though the terms may and can be used interchangeably.
Plantar fibroma is the development of a singular growth on the bottom of your foot – and that singular nature is important because that singularity means that this development is not cancerous or part of a larger foot tumor.
Instead, it’s a benign growth that will not cause you any autoimmune harm.
Plantar fibromatosis will also not cause you any autoimmune harm, but it can be a more intimidating degree of plantar fibroma. Instead of a singular growth, plantar fibromatosis results in a number of growths on the bottom of your foot. Again, these growths are not supposed to be painful lumps under the skin.
Even so, the number of growths that appear on the bottom of your foot may make you believe that you have some unfortunate cysts, a swollen tendon, or something more sinister. This is not the case.
If you notice that a number of strange growths are developing slowly on the bottom of your foot, and they’re not causing you pain, then you’ve contracted plantar fibromatosis, and you’re not in danger.
Rather, you’re experiencing an unusual, extensive development of skin on your feet, and this can be treated by either home-based means or by visiting your doctor.
Plantar Fibroma Symptoms
Unfortunately, plantar fibroma symptoms are rather minimal, making it hard to catch early.
Usually, the way plantar fibroma works is that one day you have a healthy bottom of your foot, and the next day you have the beginnings of a growth. However, the fullness of the growth won’t spontaneously develop.
There are some signs that you can keep an eye out for, even if the process of development is rather abrupt.
When plantar fibroma is imminent, you’ll begin to notice particular toughness on the bottom of your foot. Usually, these spots start out small.
Plantar fibroma will start with a growth that is roughly the size of a pin. This spot won’t (or shouldn’t) be painful; rather, it’ll just be irritating when it’s in its smaller stages.
This bump on the bottom of your foot will slowly grow over time. Normally, it will not exceed one inch in diameter.
You’ll want to keep a close eye on your feet if you think you may be at risk for plantar fibromatosis. If you start seeing or feeling spots that are abnormally tough, then head to the doctor.
Difficulty Walking or Standing
If you don’t make a habit of looking at the bottom of your feet, the pain will be a better indicator.
If you find that putting on your shoes is painful or that it hurts you to walk up and down the street, you might want to a take a peek and see if you’ve developed a growth.
The growth itself is not what will be causing you the bulk of your pain. Rather, the pressure placed on it by shoes that don’t fit properly or by uncomfortable amounts of friction will irritate the growth and make an otherwise benign issue all the more irritating.
Plantar Fibroma Causes
Plantar fibroma causes have been researched, to some extent, and while those listed here have been hypothesized, it can be difficult to determine why you’ve begun to develop the condition.
The same vagueness applies to whether or not the members of your family will be likely to develop similar growths in the future.
That is not to say that the transferability of plantar fibroma is likely – the growths are not caused by bacteria, nor are they contagious. However, if you start to develop a growth, you may want to keep an eye on folks who are blood-related to you, to see whether or not they’ll experience the same problem.
Researchers Masadeh, Lyons, Terol, and Manning propose that plantar fibroma can be caused by foot trauma.
Should your feet be harmed at all, such as by the straining or tearing of a tendon, it can lead to the development of these growths – sort of as the body’s overreaction to the healing process.
These researchers, however, focus more on how you can alleviate the issue through surgery, and their best guesses on the cause of the issue are limited to this.
It has also been suggested by Joe Gonzalez that the way a person lives their life may impact their collagen growth and the development thereafter of growths on the bottom of their feet.
While Gonzalez’s presentation is somewhat lacking of a scientific method, he still highlights several different elements, including genetics, medication intake, and other illnesses that may impact plantar fibroma.
Chronic Liver Disease
It’s also speculated that folks who have Chronic Liver Disease may be at greater risk for the development of plantar fibroma.
The medications that you may need to take in order to treat high blood pressure and seizures can also disrupt the chemical balance inside your body.
Medication does this in ways that, yes, aid in treating those issues, but that may also make it more likely for you to contract growths on the bottom of your feet.
Excessive Vitamin C Intake
It’s also possible that, if you’ve been taking a number of vitamin C supplements, you may be at a greater risk for developing plantar fibroma.
It’s not entirely clear what the affiliation between the increase of vitamin C and plantar fibroma is, but a correlation has been noted by folks like the aforementioned Joe Gonzalez, and as such, your vitamin C intake may be something you want to keep an eye on.
It’s also entirely possible that you’ll be at greater risk for developing these benign growths on the bottom of your feet if your family has a history of said growths.
It’s been proposed that there is a gene in the human body that, upon mutation, can result in the over-development of tough skin on the bottom of your feet. As such, you can inherit the condition from your bloodline.
Generally speaking, though, the true cause of plantar fibroma is unknown.
Even with the aforementioned possible causes, it is still extremely difficult to predict whether or not you’ll develop the growths associated with plantar fibroma.
It is best when trying to prevent these growths, to practice good foot health and to remain as cognizant as possible when it comes to the state of your feet.
Here’s a video showing more details on plantar fibroma causes.
Plantar Fibroma Treatment
Even with its cause being somewhat unknown, plantar fibroma can be treated a number of ways. These methods can be performed in the home, or they can be sought out through the aid of legitimate medical professionals.
It’s up to you to determine which method of treatment will be best for you. However, if you notice that the growths are either developing more quickly than anticipated or have become exceptionally large, you’ll want to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
If you’re looking to treat your plantar fibroma at home, consider some of the following methods.
Icing an injury is pretty standard treatment all the way around, whether you’ve pulled a muscle or contracted an unusual bump on the arch of your foot.
In the case of plantar fibroma, repeatedly placing ice on the growth will help lessen the irritation the skin is experiencing. As such, it’s likely that the growth will reduce in size.
If your growth has reached a size that’s become painful, it’s also possible that by icing the growth, you’ll be able to numb some of the pain the friction from your shoes has brought about.
Similarly, elevating your foot for extended periods of time is likely to reduce the size of a plantar fibroma growth.
If absolutely necessary, you can also take a few non-prescription painkillers in order to treat your plantar fibroma at home.
Not only will these painkillers help with any irritation that’s arisen from your walking habits, but it’s also likely that the anti-inflammatory elements operating within these painkillers will help reduce the size of your growth.
If you’ve noticed that wearing your shoes has become especially uncomfortable, or if you’ve had repeated instances of plantar fibroma developing, then your best solution for both issues is seeking out orthopedic inserts.
These inserts, which are form-fitted to suit your foot, if prescribed by a doctor, and more generally cushioning if bought individually, can assist folks who are prone to flat-foot walking or who are over-arched.
Either way, by making your walking all the more comfortable, it’ll be easier for you to avoid contracting plantar fibroma or to prevent any existing growths from becoming painful.
If you have recently strained the tendons in the bottom of your foot or a muscle near your arch, it may be best for you to seek out physical therapy, both to treat the strain and to prevent or aid in the treatment of your plantar fibroma.
While the relationship between foot trauma and plantar fibroma still requires more research, physical therapy is one way to ensure that your foot returns to the utmost health quickly and safely.
Much like when trying to get rid of acne, a steroid injection can do much in order to reduce the size of the growth on the bottom of your foot, if not make it disappear entirely.
This shot will, of course, need to be administered by a medical professional, but it’s a positive solution that avoids you having to seek out plantar fibroma surgery.
Plantar Fibroma Surgery
Plantar fibroma surgery is an invasive and somewhat intense effort to rid yourself of the growths that have appeared on the bottom of your foot.
These surgeries require a curved cut to be made on the bottom of your foot. Then, the fat protecting the plantar fascia tendon will be altered in order for the deep growth of plantar fibroma to be removed.
After the surgery has been completed, the growth will have to be drained, a process which takes between three to five days.
It is also guaranteed that folks who go through with the surgery will have stitches upon its completion and that these stitches will be removed between two to three weeks after the surgery.
Full recovery from a plantar fibroma surgery takes up to eight weeks, and while it helps in the short term, it does leave its recipients more vulnerable to other kinds of foot conditions in the future.
Here’s a video with more examples of plantar fibroma treatment.
While it may seem frightening to find abnormal growths on the bottom of your feet, this condition isn’t deadly, nor does it pose a serious health issue overall.
Plantar fibroma can be lived with; at the most, causing you some discomfort you can look to relieve with home treatments or by procedures recommended by a doctor. At the least, it will be just a strange new part of the bottom of your foot.
Do you have any tips for treating plantar fibroma?