Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Posted by Helen K. on 7/20/00 at 14:44 (023624)

Hi Everyone!

I have had PF now for somewhere over a year. I have always loved to go barefoot and hated wearing shoes. In trying to alleviate the PF pain, I now have more shoes than I could ever have imagined. Of course, I can't even wear the majority of them. The pain from PF has come and gone several times since I was first diagnosed (happened in the first place because I was working out without any shoes on - BIG mistake!). The pain was fairly managable until a bad recurrence within the last week or so. The heel pain can be excruciating when I first wake up but it also has been hurting a lot even when I'm sitting at my desk (which surprised me).

HERE'S THE QUESTION: Within this last episode, I have had a lot of trouble with the back of my calf. I have a 3 block walk to work from the train each day, and during that short walk, the back of my calf hurts terribly and just feels like it is giving out. This is the first problem with the calf pain. I have been stretching out and just ordered FootFlex yesterday.

Has anyone else had this experience? If so, please post any information that could be helpful. I'm assuming that the calf pain is because I am walking differently in an attempt to lessen the pain as I walk. Any advise or suggestions/success stories would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Helen


Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Mimi in SC on 7/20/00 at 15:33 (023627)

Dear Helen, I have had PF for 15 months now. Recently my calf muscles have been very tight and painful. My
doctor gave me a Johnson & Johnson night splint. After wearing it the first night, I could tell a
difference. I wish I had it sooner. Good Luck



Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Mary J. on 7/20/00 at 16:31 (023635)

Dear Helen, I have calf pain, also. Sometimes I also have hamstring pain. I have had PF for four years, so maybe that's what happens.
Icing helps a lot. I hope that helps you, too. Mary J.

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Rock on 7/21/00 at 08:52 (023684)

1. PF pain vs Activity.

For me the worst pain is when I am walking around the office after sitting at my desk an hour or two ! I am always pain free when doing activities (swim/run/bike) and most always have less pain the following day as well. Sometimes I have weeks that are 100% pain free and then I get a flare up.

2. Pain in other areas.

I think people that suffer from PF mostly have tight soft tissue so that it is reasonable to expect other soft tissue problems. I also have AT, IT band Syndrome, and shin splints off and on. After 8 years of orthotics use, I have noticed a pattern, a few years after new orthotics, injuries get worse, then I go in to get a redo, and injuries fade. The feet change AND the orthotics break down.

Rock.


Re: Thanks for responses - UPDATE - GREAT NEWS (question re PF and calf pain)

Helen K. on 7/21/00 at 09:48 (023688)

Thanks to each of you for your help. Great news!!! I spent over two hours of various self-help things last night that I found on this board and elsewhere on the internet and I WOKE UP THIS MORNING WITHOUT ANY PAIN & NO CALF PAIN WALKING TO WORK!!!!!!! I know this might be temporary, but I'll share what I did.

1. On train home from work last night I stretched out my calf (as best I could while seated on the train). Also did that on the train ride in to work this morning and pointed/rotated my toes in a circular manner. When doing this I felt some pain/soarness on the outside of the calf and massaged that in each position that I put my toes (especially in the position that made the calf feel the most soar).
2. At home I rolled my foot on a can of beans while seated. After a while, I stood up and put more pressure on the can. I focused on the area where I felt the pain the most.
3. Used the rounded end of a plastic brush to further massage the specific area as deeply as possible.
4. Used the rounded edge of my pine coffee table to massage that area even more. This is where I deeply felt the pain, but somehow felt like it was helping.
5. I stretched out the calf by doing the stretch with your hands up against a wall and the affected foot out behind you. I did this as gently as I could, but held it firmly for about 20-30 seconds or more each time.
6. Used a hot/cold icepack from the freezer to ice the area. Again this was pretty painful. I rested the pack on the floor and put the heal area on it. Then I would take the pack of for a short time and apply it by hand. I kept going back and forth because I could only tolerate the cold for so long.
7. I was tempted to wear boots to bed to keep the foot aligned during sleep, but I passed on that. When I first woke up and before I got out of bed, I put my foot at a right angle to my lower leg and held it there for a while. I did this a few times before getting out of bed.

I am so excited about this. I only hope it lasts. As I'm typing this, I do feel some pain in the heel. I just put a bottle of water in the freezer at work and I plan to ice the area later on this afternoon, especially after a luncheon I have to walk to.

Again thanks to everyone who posts here for their insight and suggestions. I will keep you posted as to any changes or progress I encounter.

Have a great weekend!


Re: Thanks for responses - UPDATE - GREAT NEWS (question re PF and calf pain)

JudyS on 7/21/00 at 10:11 (023691)

Helen - good for you! We love that whole 'pro-active' thing! Now, a word to the wise.....don't overdue your self-treatment! You'll be tempted to, believe me, so just stay the light but steady course, 'K?

Re: Thanks for responses - UPDATE - GREAT NEWS (question re PF and calf pain)

Helen K. on 7/21/00 at 10:38 (023694)

Thanks Judy. I'll try not to overdo the self-treatment. Seems like it's gotta be hard to find the right balance. It's amazing how everything is better today :-) after a no pain morning and walk to the train. Thanks again. Helen

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Dr. Zuckerman on 7/23/00 at 01:36 (023754)

Just to be on the safe side.!!!! You need to be examined for poor circulation. Pain after walking three blocks could be what is called intermittent claudication. This is when there isn't enought blood to the calf muscle and after using the leg (walking) you get pain. I have seen this with heel pain treated the heel pain and sure enough the pain starts in the calf. Rare but real!!!

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Helen K. on 7/24/00 at 10:45 (023814)

Thanks for the information Doctor. The good news is that I have now waken up four days in a row without pain and have NOT experienced the calf pain walking to and from the train. In fact, I was able to do some dancing and walking over the weekend without pain (I made sure not to overdo it and stretched beforehand). I plan to continue the self-treatment (self-massage, icing, flexing the foot before getting out of bed, etc.). If the calf pain returns, I'll consider getting it checked out for poor circulation. Unfortunately, the thought of going to the doctor for something like this when they have the limitations of an HMO type insurance is not very appealing.

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Mimi in SC on 7/20/00 at 15:33 (023627)

Dear Helen, I have had PF for 15 months now. Recently my calf muscles have been very tight and painful. My
doctor gave me a Johnson & Johnson night splint. After wearing it the first night, I could tell a
difference. I wish I had it sooner. Good Luck



Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Mary J. on 7/20/00 at 16:31 (023635)

Dear Helen, I have calf pain, also. Sometimes I also have hamstring pain. I have had PF for four years, so maybe that's what happens.
Icing helps a lot. I hope that helps you, too. Mary J.

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Rock on 7/21/00 at 08:52 (023684)

1. PF pain vs Activity.

For me the worst pain is when I am walking around the office after sitting at my desk an hour or two ! I am always pain free when doing activities (swim/run/bike) and most always have less pain the following day as well. Sometimes I have weeks that are 100% pain free and then I get a flare up.

2. Pain in other areas.

I think people that suffer from PF mostly have tight soft tissue so that it is reasonable to expect other soft tissue problems. I also have AT, IT band Syndrome, and shin splints off and on. After 8 years of orthotics use, I have noticed a pattern, a few years after new orthotics, injuries get worse, then I go in to get a redo, and injuries fade. The feet change AND the orthotics break down.

Rock.


Re: Thanks for responses - UPDATE - GREAT NEWS (question re PF and calf pain)

Helen K. on 7/21/00 at 09:48 (023688)

Thanks to each of you for your help. Great news!!! I spent over two hours of various self-help things last night that I found on this board and elsewhere on the internet and I WOKE UP THIS MORNING WITHOUT ANY PAIN & NO CALF PAIN WALKING TO WORK!!!!!!! I know this might be temporary, but I'll share what I did.

1. On train home from work last night I stretched out my calf (as best I could while seated on the train). Also did that on the train ride in to work this morning and pointed/rotated my toes in a circular manner. When doing this I felt some pain/soarness on the outside of the calf and massaged that in each position that I put my toes (especially in the position that made the calf feel the most soar).
2. At home I rolled my foot on a can of beans while seated. After a while, I stood up and put more pressure on the can. I focused on the area where I felt the pain the most.
3. Used the rounded end of a plastic brush to further massage the specific area as deeply as possible.
4. Used the rounded edge of my pine coffee table to massage that area even more. This is where I deeply felt the pain, but somehow felt like it was helping.
5. I stretched out the calf by doing the stretch with your hands up against a wall and the affected foot out behind you. I did this as gently as I could, but held it firmly for about 20-30 seconds or more each time.
6. Used a hot/cold icepack from the freezer to ice the area. Again this was pretty painful. I rested the pack on the floor and put the heal area on it. Then I would take the pack of for a short time and apply it by hand. I kept going back and forth because I could only tolerate the cold for so long.
7. I was tempted to wear boots to bed to keep the foot aligned during sleep, but I passed on that. When I first woke up and before I got out of bed, I put my foot at a right angle to my lower leg and held it there for a while. I did this a few times before getting out of bed.

I am so excited about this. I only hope it lasts. As I'm typing this, I do feel some pain in the heel. I just put a bottle of water in the freezer at work and I plan to ice the area later on this afternoon, especially after a luncheon I have to walk to.

Again thanks to everyone who posts here for their insight and suggestions. I will keep you posted as to any changes or progress I encounter.

Have a great weekend!


Re: Thanks for responses - UPDATE - GREAT NEWS (question re PF and calf pain)

JudyS on 7/21/00 at 10:11 (023691)

Helen - good for you! We love that whole 'pro-active' thing! Now, a word to the wise.....don't overdue your self-treatment! You'll be tempted to, believe me, so just stay the light but steady course, 'K?

Re: Thanks for responses - UPDATE - GREAT NEWS (question re PF and calf pain)

Helen K. on 7/21/00 at 10:38 (023694)

Thanks Judy. I'll try not to overdo the self-treatment. Seems like it's gotta be hard to find the right balance. It's amazing how everything is better today :-) after a no pain morning and walk to the train. Thanks again. Helen

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Dr. Zuckerman on 7/23/00 at 01:36 (023754)

Just to be on the safe side.!!!! You need to be examined for poor circulation. Pain after walking three blocks could be what is called intermittent claudication. This is when there isn't enought blood to the calf muscle and after using the leg (walking) you get pain. I have seen this with heel pain treated the heel pain and sure enough the pain starts in the calf. Rare but real!!!

Re: New to message board - question re PF and calf pain - appreciate all advise

Helen K. on 7/24/00 at 10:45 (023814)

Thanks for the information Doctor. The good news is that I have now waken up four days in a row without pain and have NOT experienced the calf pain walking to and from the train. In fact, I was able to do some dancing and walking over the weekend without pain (I made sure not to overdo it and stretched beforehand). I plan to continue the self-treatment (self-massage, icing, flexing the foot before getting out of bed, etc.). If the calf pain returns, I'll consider getting it checked out for poor circulation. Unfortunately, the thought of going to the doctor for something like this when they have the limitations of an HMO type insurance is not very appealing.