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Physical Therapy

Posted by Pauline on 5/01/00 at 19:19 (019741)

I began with my PF flair up about 2 weeks ago. Began treatment right away stretching, icing, night splints etc but these didn't give the same relief as before so I began the Physical Therapy treatment again.
After 2 weeks (3 time a week) I feel worse than when I started. All he does is massage which is not a deep one, ultra sound, and ice yet each night after treatment they seem worse.

My entire PF area is solid like a rock on the bottom of each foot. I will see my Dr on Thur this week and plan to get second opinion next week. Is it possible to dammage this tissue for good? I am beginning to doubt this Physical Therapist treatment. How long do you have to be on anti inflamatory drugs to see results. Are they all created equal? Has anyone had cortisone directly into the bottom of the foot. I remember the Dr giving me one last time so large that the bottom of my feet felt like I was walking on rockers. But it did the trick. It knocked it out and I was pain free for over 3 years.
Should I ask for this treatment again?

Can someone tell me the difference between inflammation and simple swelling? Why does one go away faster than the other?


Re: Physical Therapist

YokoS on 9/29/99 at 00:00 (011333)

Jan, how can you find Physical Therapist? From Dr's referral?
Is he/she specialized PF/heel spur?

Re: Physical Therapist

Jan R. on 9/30/99 at 00:00 (011361)

My podiatrist recommended a physical therapist but it was pretty much left up to me to find one. I went to one of our large local hospitals - outpatient physical therapy dept. They were great! I don't think they were specialist in PF, but they knew alot about it. I have heard others who have gone to a sports physical therapist. Hope this helps.

Re: Physical Therapist

Nancy T. on 9/30/99 at 00:00 (011376)

Jan: I, too, am seeing a PT. Just wondering if you have seen any results yet?

Re: Physical Therapist

john a on 10/01/99 at 00:00 (011391)

I have seen many mentions of people going to a physical therapist and having physical therapy, but little mention of what gets done to you. So, what is involved? I suppose there are many different physical therapy treatments? Do they center around PF, or the body as a whole?

Re: Physical Therapist

Nancy T. on 10/02/99 at 00:00 (011437)

John: For me it was a last resort, and I am glad that I went. My PF, it seems, comes from a lower back problem which I have had for 3 years from an auto accident, on and off. Apparently my walking was off-gait because I was compensating for a right hip which was 'jammed' in its socket, and my SI joint was out on left side. This compensating caused my PF. All of this was found by my PT. For the PF he is using ultrasound and deep message, and I am seeing dramatic results. He also has me doing stretches for the calf muscles/tendons and feet. If you find a really good one, they can be of tremendous help. My pain level is down from a 10 before seeing him, to a 1-3 now. I tried a chiropractor with zilch for results. Please give it a try!!!

Re: Physical Therapist

Jan R. on 10/04/99 at 00:00 (011485)

Nancy, I went to the PT last summer. My heel pain went away during the 4 weeks of PT! My PT first had me soak my feet in very warm water for 20 minutes. Then had me do all kinds of stretches, followed by massage and ultra sound. I also had stretches to do in the morning and at night at home as well as icing. My heel pain went away and has stayed away! BUT I still have pain elsewhere in my feet - the arches in particular. I am trying to get back to doing those stretches my PT had me do to see if it will help. Good luck with your PT!

Re: Physical Therapist

Nancy T. on 10/08/99 at 00:00 (011576)

Jan: Just noticed your post. My heel pain has decreased dramatically since seeing PT. First of all, he found out why I got PF. My right hip bone was not working as it should (from auto accident) and he corrected it. AND my left SI joint had slipped out of place, which he also corrected. He feels PF came from me compensating for all of this, which I believe to be true. I now am wearing elastic 'bands' around both arches for support, which have contributed to things getting alot better. I have ordered arch support braces mentioned back in a previous post, which I think will contribute to further healing. Maybe if you get some support for your arches it will help. Keep me posted and keep going.....!

Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

Laurie R on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015717)

Hi Salina,I have been going to PT now for abot 3 months,every theripist is different.What my pt dose is ultra sound ,that brakes up the soft tissue and he gives me a deep tissue massage and I get electodes (spelling)I think that helps with inflammation.They will also show you the right excercises and show you how to stretch.Also they put ice and sometimes heat for the inflammation. See sometimes you think that you don't have inflammation but it could be inside and you don't realize it.

I really like going to PT if nothing else I love the deep tissue massage.

I hope this has helped you a little bit. Laurie R


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

salina on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015721)

Thank you. I am a wimp, so another question is 'Does PT hurt? I remember the first time I went to get a diagnosis, and the doctor kept pressing on my arches to find out where the pain was I guess. My arches are not too swollen or painful anymore, and I really want to do everything I can to get better. My youngest child is eight mos old and she wants to practice walking around with me holding her hands and stuff, and I feel so bad that I can't do it. Sometimes she just needs to be held and walked around when she is fussy, and I can't always do it because of the pain. This has got to improve.
thanks for the advice.

Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

Laurie R on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015723)

Salina, I am why they made the word Wimp.Trust me everytime before I am going to have anything done I come to the message board and ask all kinds of Questions so PLEASE ask away thats why we all come here to help each other.

To answer your question,It some times will be unconfutable but if you have pain you need to let your theripist know and stop what your doing. Your theripist is suppose to follow your doctors orders.They have all kinds of treatment in PT and they can try different things if one thing hurts then they can try something different.

You might end up liking it,I do .I have a real good theripist I go to sports therapy.If you don't care for your theripist ask for other one.

When I first started going I was going to a big hospital and I had two theripist and I would always tell them its not working and they said we don't know whats wrong with you ,you should be cured by now ,so I would leave and be so up set,and also they were always trying to diagnose me with everything but PF so I went back to my podiatist and he said they are not suppose to be diagnosing you.And also they stopped my doctors orders in the middle of my treatment so he found me a new place to go and thats where I go now and my theripist has never diagnose me and he does everything my podiatist ordered.
Good luck it will be alright.Laurie R


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

john a on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015729)

I have just started PT and have finished my second session: 15 minutes hot whirlpool foot bath, 5 minutes of incline board stretching, 5 minutes ultrasound on each foot, manual stretching by therapist, ending with 12 minutes of pulsed electrical 'stim' delivered through electrodes while my feet were being iced.

Is it normal to feel worse when you end PT than when you begin? Because that's what happens to me. My feet may feel a little better by the next day or two, but maybe it's just the contrast of _not_ having PT. And yes, I know that after only two sessions it's probably too soon to say, but I'm not sure I can stand 5 more weeks of this!


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina / Reply

Elise M. on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015732)

Dear John,
Having had PT in the past on my shoulder post-surgically, I always walked out of the therapist office feeling worse than I did when I walked in. I felt pretty good going in and felt like I'd been hit by a truck on the way out. I sustained that for months until she got my shoulder back to it's normal state. I can suggest that you take some OTC pain med before PT and ice it when you go home. More often than not they are working areas we don't even know about and doing so more rigorously than we would. Feel better..........Elise

Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

julie p on 2/12/00 at 00:00 (015794)

I felt uncomfortable starting PT because I didn't want a stranger to have to touch my feet. I left the first day feeling less pain as I left. 1.Deep heat pads,(great!) 2.Ultrasound (doesn't hurt, have no idea if it helped) 3.Ionto phoresis ( a little burning to the ankle where the other patch was applied, but certainly tolerable - it is like having your heels jump started with little tiny jumper cables)no idea if it helped 4. Learn to stretch properly and how to do the ABC's with your toes before getting out of bed - wonderful! 5. Deep tissue massage - Fabulous! the best part and me not wanting anyone to have to touch my feet! I went two or three times a week for a month and a half and finding the time between work and the family was difficult.
The holidays and then the snow and I haven't made the time to have my last four visits. I always felt a little better when I left.

Re: Physical Therapist

YokoS on 9/29/99 at 00:00 (011333)

Jan, how can you find Physical Therapist? From Dr's referral?
Is he/she specialized PF/heel spur?

Re: Physical Therapist

Jan R. on 9/30/99 at 00:00 (011361)

My podiatrist recommended a physical therapist but it was pretty much left up to me to find one. I went to one of our large local hospitals - outpatient physical therapy dept. They were great! I don't think they were specialist in PF, but they knew alot about it. I have heard others who have gone to a sports physical therapist. Hope this helps.

Re: Physical Therapist

Nancy T. on 9/30/99 at 00:00 (011376)

Jan: I, too, am seeing a PT. Just wondering if you have seen any results yet?

Re: Physical Therapist

john a on 10/01/99 at 00:00 (011391)

I have seen many mentions of people going to a physical therapist and having physical therapy, but little mention of what gets done to you. So, what is involved? I suppose there are many different physical therapy treatments? Do they center around PF, or the body as a whole?

Re: Physical Therapist

Nancy T. on 10/02/99 at 00:00 (011437)

John: For me it was a last resort, and I am glad that I went. My PF, it seems, comes from a lower back problem which I have had for 3 years from an auto accident, on and off. Apparently my walking was off-gait because I was compensating for a right hip which was 'jammed' in its socket, and my SI joint was out on left side. This compensating caused my PF. All of this was found by my PT. For the PF he is using ultrasound and deep message, and I am seeing dramatic results. He also has me doing stretches for the calf muscles/tendons and feet. If you find a really good one, they can be of tremendous help. My pain level is down from a 10 before seeing him, to a 1-3 now. I tried a chiropractor with zilch for results. Please give it a try!!!

Re: Physical Therapist

Jan R. on 10/04/99 at 00:00 (011485)

Nancy, I went to the PT last summer. My heel pain went away during the 4 weeks of PT! My PT first had me soak my feet in very warm water for 20 minutes. Then had me do all kinds of stretches, followed by massage and ultra sound. I also had stretches to do in the morning and at night at home as well as icing. My heel pain went away and has stayed away! BUT I still have pain elsewhere in my feet - the arches in particular. I am trying to get back to doing those stretches my PT had me do to see if it will help. Good luck with your PT!

Re: Physical Therapist

Nancy T. on 10/08/99 at 00:00 (011576)

Jan: Just noticed your post. My heel pain has decreased dramatically since seeing PT. First of all, he found out why I got PF. My right hip bone was not working as it should (from auto accident) and he corrected it. AND my left SI joint had slipped out of place, which he also corrected. He feels PF came from me compensating for all of this, which I believe to be true. I now am wearing elastic 'bands' around both arches for support, which have contributed to things getting alot better. I have ordered arch support braces mentioned back in a previous post, which I think will contribute to further healing. Maybe if you get some support for your arches it will help. Keep me posted and keep going.....!

Re: Quick Fix

Bob G. on 5/02/00 at 01:04 (019760)

Geez, I don't know of any quick fix. You say 2 weeks of stretching and night splint? You may or maynot be over-stretching, icing works for some at some times, and not for others between noon and midnight, and getting results from your nightsplint in 2 weeks would sure beat Excedrin PM. You look to be in a rush for a cure. I don't know what to suggest except slow down, take a deep breath, and take a look at your attitude towards your recovery.

There will always be practicioners willing to do this or that if you want to pay for a quick fix.

Good luck!


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

Laurie R on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015717)

Hi Salina,I have been going to PT now for abot 3 months,every theripist is different.What my pt dose is ultra sound ,that brakes up the soft tissue and he gives me a deep tissue massage and I get electodes (spelling)I think that helps with inflammation.They will also show you the right excercises and show you how to stretch.Also they put ice and sometimes heat for the inflammation. See sometimes you think that you don't have inflammation but it could be inside and you don't realize it.

I really like going to PT if nothing else I love the deep tissue massage.

I hope this has helped you a little bit. Laurie R


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

salina on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015721)

Thank you. I am a wimp, so another question is 'Does PT hurt? I remember the first time I went to get a diagnosis, and the doctor kept pressing on my arches to find out where the pain was I guess. My arches are not too swollen or painful anymore, and I really want to do everything I can to get better. My youngest child is eight mos old and she wants to practice walking around with me holding her hands and stuff, and I feel so bad that I can't do it. Sometimes she just needs to be held and walked around when she is fussy, and I can't always do it because of the pain. This has got to improve.
thanks for the advice.

Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

Laurie R on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015723)

Salina, I am why they made the word Wimp.Trust me everytime before I am going to have anything done I come to the message board and ask all kinds of Questions so PLEASE ask away thats why we all come here to help each other.

To answer your question,It some times will be unconfutable but if you have pain you need to let your theripist know and stop what your doing. Your theripist is suppose to follow your doctors orders.They have all kinds of treatment in PT and they can try different things if one thing hurts then they can try something different.

You might end up liking it,I do .I have a real good theripist I go to sports therapy.If you don't care for your theripist ask for other one.

When I first started going I was going to a big hospital and I had two theripist and I would always tell them its not working and they said we don't know whats wrong with you ,you should be cured by now ,so I would leave and be so up set,and also they were always trying to diagnose me with everything but PF so I went back to my podiatist and he said they are not suppose to be diagnosing you.And also they stopped my doctors orders in the middle of my treatment so he found me a new place to go and thats where I go now and my theripist has never diagnose me and he does everything my podiatist ordered.
Good luck it will be alright.Laurie R


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

john a on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015729)

I have just started PT and have finished my second session: 15 minutes hot whirlpool foot bath, 5 minutes of incline board stretching, 5 minutes ultrasound on each foot, manual stretching by therapist, ending with 12 minutes of pulsed electrical 'stim' delivered through electrodes while my feet were being iced.

Is it normal to feel worse when you end PT than when you begin? Because that's what happens to me. My feet may feel a little better by the next day or two, but maybe it's just the contrast of _not_ having PT. And yes, I know that after only two sessions it's probably too soon to say, but I'm not sure I can stand 5 more weeks of this!


Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina / Reply

Elise M. on 2/11/00 at 00:00 (015732)

Dear John,
Having had PT in the past on my shoulder post-surgically, I always walked out of the therapist office feeling worse than I did when I walked in. I felt pretty good going in and felt like I'd been hit by a truck on the way out. I sustained that for months until she got my shoulder back to it's normal state. I can suggest that you take some OTC pain med before PT and ice it when you go home. More often than not they are working areas we don't even know about and doing so more rigorously than we would. Feel better..........Elise

Re: Physical Therapy? Re Salina

julie p on 2/12/00 at 00:00 (015794)

I felt uncomfortable starting PT because I didn't want a stranger to have to touch my feet. I left the first day feeling less pain as I left. 1.Deep heat pads,(great!) 2.Ultrasound (doesn't hurt, have no idea if it helped) 3.Ionto phoresis ( a little burning to the ankle where the other patch was applied, but certainly tolerable - it is like having your heels jump started with little tiny jumper cables)no idea if it helped 4. Learn to stretch properly and how to do the ABC's with your toes before getting out of bed - wonderful! 5. Deep tissue massage - Fabulous! the best part and me not wanting anyone to have to touch my feet! I went two or three times a week for a month and a half and finding the time between work and the family was difficult.
The holidays and then the snow and I haven't made the time to have my last four visits. I always felt a little better when I left.

Re: Quick Fix

Bob G. on 5/02/00 at 01:04 (019760)

Geez, I don't know of any quick fix. You say 2 weeks of stretching and night splint? You may or maynot be over-stretching, icing works for some at some times, and not for others between noon and midnight, and getting results from your nightsplint in 2 weeks would sure beat Excedrin PM. You look to be in a rush for a cure. I don't know what to suggest except slow down, take a deep breath, and take a look at your attitude towards your recovery.

There will always be practicioners willing to do this or that if you want to pay for a quick fix.

Good luck!