Os tibiale navicular refers to an extra bone found in the foot. An accessory bone is a bone that is not normally found in the average human, but in most cases is not considered abnormal. This condition represents a secondary ossification center (growth center) of the navicular bone. It is present from birth. The navicular bone is found on the inside part of the foot.
Just having an accessory navicular bone is not necessarily a bad thing. Not all people with these accessory bones have symptoms. Symptoms arise when the accessory navicular Why is my Achilles tendon burning? overly large or when an injury disrupts the fibrous tissue between the navicular and the accessory navicular. A very large accessory navicular can cause a bump on the instep that rubs on your shoe causing pain.
Not everyone who has an accessory navicular will develop these problems. When problems do occur, they may begin in early adolescence. The obvious indication is a painful bump on the inside of the foot, which hurts to touch, and causes problems that gradually become worse, and which are aggravated by activity, walking, etc., leading to all the problems discussed here. Pain may be worse towards the end of the day, and continue into the night. Among adults, symptomatic accessory navicular is more common in women than in men, with onset typical at 40 years of age or greater. Among symptomatic children, the mean age of onset for maels is 6 years, and for females, 4.5 years. In general, symptoms may occur between 2 and 9 years of age.
Keep in mind there are two different types of accessory navicular bones, which you can distinguish by getting a weightbearing AP X-ray of the foot. Dwight has classified type I as a small, round and discreet accessory bone just proximal to the main navicular bone. Geist described the type II accessory bone, which is closely related to the body of the navicular but separated by an irregular plate of dense fibro-cartilage.
Non Surgical Treatment
Excess weight will increase the force on the posterior tibial tendon as it inserts into the accessory navicular and will tend to precipitate or aggravate symptoms. If a patient with a symptomatic accessory navicular is overweight, then losing weight can be very helpful. Even losing 5-10lbs will decrease the amount of force going through the foot with each step by as much as 15-30lbs. This is because the foot acts like a lever serving to magnify the force absorbed by the foot with each step.
If non-surgical treatment fails to relieve the symptoms of accessory navicular syndrome, surgery may be appropriate. Surgery may involve removing the accessory bone, reshaping the area, and repairing the posterior tibial tendon to improve its function. This extra bone is not needed for normal foot function.
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