This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Ledderhose disease is a type of plantar fibromatosis characterized by the growth of hard and round or flattened nodules (lumps) on the soles of the feet. It is generally seen in middle-aged and elderly people, and occurs in men about 10 times more often than in women. It typically affects both feet and progresses slowly, but not indefinitely. The nodules are often painless at first, but may cause pain when walking as they grow. People with Ledderhose disease may also have other conditions associated with the formation of excess fibrous connective tissue such as Dupuytren contracture, knuckle pads, or Peyronie disease. Repeated trauma, long-term alcohol consumption, chronic liver disease, diabetes, and epilepsy have also been reported in association with this condition. The exact cause of Ledderhose disease is not known, but heredity is thought to play a role in many cases. Treatment, if needed, may involve conservative management, steroid injections, radiotherapy, or surgery (fasciectomy and removal of the fibrous tissue). The condition has a good prognosis, although slow progression is not uncommon. Fasciectomy has been shown to reduce the rate of recurrence.
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