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Finding the right treatment for PF

Posted by PaulS on 9/15/00 at 09:25 (028280)

A respondent to an earlier post of mine about depression/obsession with PF suggested psychotherapy. In fact, I had already had 3 appointments with an analyst but basically all he said was: 'Wait until your foot gets better, then you will feel better and stop thinking about your foot all the time.' (!!) So allow me instead to use this board as a collective analyst to share a few reflections. At least I know I will have an audience which understands the mental as well as physical distress that PF can cause.

My reflections concern the problems of finding the appropriate treatment:

Step one is relatively easy. You just have to decide yes or no. For example, stretching - yes or no? Orthotics - yes or no? Surgery - yes or no?

If you answer yes to any of these, then step two is a little more complicated. For example, stretching: what kind of stretching, how much stretching, stretching when?

Step three even gets more complicated. For example, stretching - yes, but with what other treatments? Stretching with ice or heat, or ice AND heat, stretching with NSAIDS or not, stretching but resting or stretching plus exercise? Etc, Etc.

Once you have decided on your treatment combination in steps 1-3, you then come to step four. How long to persevere with the treatments? E.g. How long do you keep doing a particular stretch although it just seems to make things worse? How long do you stick with orthotics that are painful at first? And so on.

I'm no mathematician but I guess that the number of possible treatment variations runs into 6 figures or more. No wonder it's so difficult to know what's best, (or at the very least, what is not going to make things worse) and no wonder I look back with nostalgia to the time when I broke my arm: surgery - 12 weeks in a cast - 12 weeks rehabilitation - end of problem!

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

alan k on 9/15/00 at 10:23 (028286)

Some quick answers: don't persist with a stretch at all if it makes things worse. Worse is worse, better is better. This should be a golden rule of home therapy. We call it 'No pain, no pain.'

Sometimes in rehab with a doctor present you will work through pain (though not with pf but other conditions) but with self-therapy you should never do this. Instead, you should make the commitment to have discipline-- that is, reign yourself in-- and be patient and let persistance adn time be on your side.

Adjustment to orthotics should be done very gradually. Of course, the podiatrist should be closely monitoring and instructing you. Mine didn't, and even though I was already on this board and knew to go slowly, I still developed tts from my orthotics.

If at all possible, you should combine treatments appropriately. While this is not good for FDA trials, you should be in this for yourself. If icing helps go ahead, but not right before stretching. Do it after your stretching is over. It is good to do strengthening exercises before stretching, to warm up the muscles.

weight-bearing stretches are fine, but if you are not making progress, or are getting worse, or experience pain, then you should do non-weightbearing stretches. Non-weightbearing stretches and strengthening are good in any case as you can be very precise about exactly how much exercises or stretching you apply.

Mental attitude is a huge part in healing. Though the therapist is right that feet feeling better will make you feel better, the opposite is also the case and is in fact fundamental. You have to seek the sources of happiness from inside. If you depend on changeful, outside reality for happiness too much, you are bound to get disappointed because 'stuff' happens and will always happen. I succeded by doing two things: giving up, and not giving up. I gave up on a cure and accepted my life the way it is. There were still things to do and enjoy in life. This was my life, other people deal with wheelchairs. Giving up is very liberating and quickly leads to happiness.

The other thing I did was not give up. Without expecting anything, or hoping for anything, I neverthelss applied myself diligently (but very gently) to getting better, because there was absolutely no rational reason not to, even if I had given up.

I guess this is a contradiction but to be more clear I gave up thinking or wishing things were different in the present and tried to enjoy life just the way it is. For the future, I had no prejudice about what might be in store, and the only rational thing was to keep trying and keep the faith.

So far no one I know of here has failed to make progress eventually. Everyone needs to keep that in mind. We always love to have people come back to the board, or stay on, so that others can better see the big picture.


yours,

alan k

http://www.acutai.com


ps for stretching--

It is okay to persist if you are noticing nothing. Often it is hard to notice progress with things like stretching and strengthening, just like it is hard to notice hair growing. If you haven't seen someone for a while, you notice the difference. Usually though, if you hit the right technique you will notice a difference very soon, but then it might become invisible later, but it is still there.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

J on 9/15/00 at 20:55 (028340)

You mentioned, 'giving up on a cure and accepting your life as it is....other people have to deal with wheelchairs...'

I have a chair for the PF and it has been my greatest asset. I went to the grocery store last week for the first time in 6 months_in the chair (of course you have to bring 'a walker' to push the cart since you can't push the cart and the roll the chair)...So, I know what you mean about giving up in that sense. That and changing my life to live within my limits was the 'giving up' for me.

The problem is, those are my actions, not my thoughts. My thoughts are, 'ouch, ouch, ouch....', 'I'll never be inshape again', 'I'll never have childress since I can't bear the weight', 'I'll never find a nice new boyfriend or husband since I can't do anything fun unless he carries me everywhere.' ....and it spirals down.

People say, 'stay positive'. I don't get it. Thoughts don't turn off magically.

How long did it take you to come to this level of acceptance? I hold on for the day I can truly live in peace with this. I curse every day that I wake up wishing I could just sleep until it's over. What's the point of waking up again just to sit on the couch for another whole week-end_in pain?

Thank you for showing us downers we will someday reach a better mental state.
Thank you reminding us people do heal. That is no longer a belief I share but a thought I strain to hold on to.

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

alan k on 9/16/00 at 07:50 (028361)

I am so glad you asked those questions J, because they are right on the mark. That shows that you are already practicing what I was talking about otherwise you wouldn't have been able to identify the key problems so accurately.

I shopped in a wheelchair also at one point. My doc wouldn't prescribe a wheelchair for me when I wanted it. Since I wasn't doing foot exercises at the time, that was probably a good idea since I would have developed atrophies.

As for the mental work, it is important to take the same attitude I was describing about the feet: faith and effort, without expectation, effort directed toward achieving a beneficial and skillful (I did not say positive) mental tendency. I have been mildly depressed twice in life (post pf was #2). Both times I was like you-- I would wake up in the morning and the first thought, as soon as I realized that I was awake, was 'Oh *&%$, 18 hours to go until I can sleep again.'

You should take steps to address this. In my case I was not able to get any better with pf until I got out of the downs, and then it was a long time after that that I got relatively free of all bad thoughts.

1. Seek help for depression if possible. If not, try supplements like SAMe (I may have noticed something taking this, but I rarely notice anything from supplements), St. John's Wort, B complex, and/or drink lots of water.

2. Exercise a lot. This is very important for spirits and also feet. There are a lot of floor calisthenics one can do without stressing the feet. Don't allow the 'I can't exercise' idea to have its way, since it is a lie.

3. Distract yourself whenever you notice your mind is going down the 'wishing it were different' road. Of course it is natural to want things to be different, but not very practical because looking for satisfaction in things being different than the way they really are is, by definition, destined for failure. It sounds silly to just switch your mind to a different subject but that is what you have to do. every time you do it it is like a mental exercise, like one push-up. Often, you switch your mind for a second and it goes right back. do it again, same result. DO NOT BE FOOLED into thinking that it was, therefore, a waste. You are instead practicing and exercising your mind, like a muscle. It will build up strength, but you have to do it hundreds, thousands of times to build up the strength. You will get results from this, it is simply the law of nature.

Let me explain. The reason, as you say, that you can't just turn the thoughts off is because they are not 'yours' to turn off. They are a part of nature, like the weather, subject to the many causes and conditions that make them the way they are at any moment. This seems like a bad thing but it is a good thing, because that means you can stick in your own causes and conditions. Willfully turning your mind away from 'wishing things were different' or 'wondering whether some things in the future, which doesn't exist yet, might or might not happen' is like slowly changing the air pressure or something. It is one condition to add into the mix. It has to have an effect. Just keep on turning your thoughts away from the ones you know are of no value and benefit to you, and you will get better and better at it. You have to, because it is simply the nature of things.

Seeking help for depression and exercising a lot are just more conditioning to add to the mix, and provide a good foundation to give you extra power to continue the work with the mind (oreven to be able to hear the logic of it).

My teacher in Thailand told me it was like this-- First you grow a plant from a seed and have to water it often. You water and water it and it grows up into a fruit tree. The tree doesn't need too much care then, but it keeps giving and giving you fruit anyway.

I don't know if this is what they mean by 'staying positive.' I have always found that an unconvincing word. Things are the way that they are, but you can work hard on your own mind and then reap the fruit. The fruit is just what it is, to me, not positive or negative.

I'll take being 'all right' over 'positive' any day.


yours,

alan k

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

wendyn on 9/16/00 at 12:06 (028381)

That was a great post Alan. I always enjoy hearing your thoughts on things like this.

When you talk about not wishing things were different, or wanting to change they way they are...it reminded me of an incident when my (then fiance) husband and I were taking pre-marriage counselling.

For those of you who haven't done the math - I'm 31 and my son is 15...so I had him when I was 16. (Not by the man I later was in pre-marriage counselling with).

The counsellor asked me how I felt about having been such a young mom, and having to grow up so fast - giving up all the years of freedom that I'll never get back. I sat for a second and then honestly told her that I didn't ever see it that way. It's just the way it is - I don't know what it's like to be 16 and not be a mom...regret and loss and anger just never became a part of it. No, it wasn't easy - but I managed and he managed and that's just the way things are. She told me that a lot of people end up with resentment and bitterness because of what they lost.

It's healthier to not dwell on what could have been and what will never be. There aren't any guarantees...and there's too much that we take for granted.

Thanks for the reminder today Alan.

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

J on 9/16/00 at 12:18 (028382)

Thanks for your reply and support. It's great to come to this board blue on a Friday night (when all your walking friends are out on the town) and wake up and find your non-walking friends are still standing by online. (Get it: 'standing by'?)

That's the thing that's getting us all through this.
It's my salvation knowing I'm not the only one hanging out doing nothing waiting to heal for months on end.

RE: depression - Yes, I am doing what I can do about the depression. It's just like the PF though, trying to decide what to do. I have samples of Elavil (anit-depressants) sitting right here but am resistant to talking them. I am not a believer in meds. like that and don't want to further mess with my chemistry. Doctors are way to happy to pass these things out without doing any research on the person taking therm. And, one side effect is possible weigh gain. I need that like a hole in the head.
The vit B is fairly effective.....I wish I had someone standing over my shoulder reminding me to take it everyday...that's the tough part.

What do you know about non-foot-using exercises? I have trouble swimming...seems to agravate the feet. I did try riding my air-bike (laying on my back with my feet in the air) the other night and actually worked up a mild sweat but my neck was killing me the next day must have stained it doing that.

I surf the net looking for disabled work out videos but haven't found any. Do you have any thoughts on that?
(With all this sitting, my butt's numb and anything would help at this point.)

Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks for your support. It seems only the PF'rs understand the intricacies of this process.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/16/00 at 14:51 (028389)

There is an old saying in the bone and joint field. Better to break the bones then to injury the tendon and or ligament. We know how long it take to heal the bone but the rest well the rest takes as long as it takes.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

Beverly on 9/16/00 at 17:20 (028398)

Like you, I have searched for lowerbody exercise I can do. I am just now at the point that I think I can begin using a theraband to do lowerbody workouts. I bought the lightest weight (yellow) and an instruction book. I am also looking into a 'stretch & tone' class for seniors. I am not a senior. I am only 40, but the instructor said I would be welcome. It sounds like a mild form of exercise since it is geared to seniors. Of course, there will still be some things I can't do.
I tried biking but it made me worse. Perhaps later.
Good luck,
Beverly

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

john h on 9/16/00 at 18:59 (028406)

there have been giant leaps in understanding anxiety and depression during the last 20 years. many people suffering with these problems can be greatly helped by the proper medications since brain chemistry can bring on these conditions. zoloft and prozac can do wonders for depression. there are equally effective drugs for anxiety and one should not be afraid to seek help from a qualified professional for these problems. depression and anxiety can be devistataing. elavil may help but sometimes your doctor will have to find just the right drug and dossage to bring you out of the dumps. i lived with my uncle who was a psycharist for many years. talk thearpy can be help but sometimes you need some medication. get some help. by the way a thyroid condition can produce symptoms of anxiety. mrs Gore suffered for sometime with depression and used drug thearpy to bring her out of it.

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

alan k on 9/16/00 at 19:16 (028411)

I would try the Pilates floor exercise workout, which is a book you could order online. I don't know the acutal title though.

I do yoga adjusted for the feet, and want to get information out about that soon. I did yoga and meditation for years before pf, but went through a period where 'I can't do yoga' even though I of all people should have known that was a lie.

You should come to ur website when I find some time to the stuff up. I'll announce it. But the recommendation in the meantime would be floor calisthenics following an exercise manual.

yours,

alan k

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

PaulS on 9/17/00 at 02:25 (028442)

Thanks, Alan, for your response to my post. You have certainly given me food for thought, and what you say is far more helpful than what I heard from my therapist in terms of suggestions on what to DO rather than simply what to THINK.

A common reaction to my situation from well-meaning friends or colleagues (non-PF sufferers, naturally!) is: Well, you know it could be a lot worse, you could be a wheelchair, have lost a limb etc. (I also heard this from the therapist!) Of course I realize that my feet problems are nothing compared with the kind of problems that some other people have to deal with in their lives. I know also that there are much worse PFlers than me here on this board. But I am not sure how this kind of comparison is supposed to help. In fact it just makes me sadder to know how much other people must be suffering. And I could equally well compare myself with the many more millions of 'normal' people who don't have such a debilitating condition.

The only sensible basis of comparison I have is with me. In the course of almost 50 years of sporting life, I have had my fair share of injuries, sometimes keeping me out of action for months at a time. But in each case, there was a clarity of what treatment was necessary and a fairly constant progression from injury to healing. I never lost the optimism that I would recover. PF seems to be much more insidious - and days of apparent improvement can suddenly be followed by a setback for the most trivial or unknown reason. It is this continuous emotional rollercoaster that makes it so difficult to avoid the PF obsession. It is also the uncertainty about the correct treatment that I mentioned in my first post. (Barbara TX's PF song in the previous thread - which I hadn't read when I sent in my post - makes the same point I was making in a much more humorous way!)

Thanks again for all the responses.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

alan k on 9/15/00 at 10:23 (028286)

Some quick answers: don't persist with a stretch at all if it makes things worse. Worse is worse, better is better. This should be a golden rule of home therapy. We call it 'No pain, no pain.'

Sometimes in rehab with a doctor present you will work through pain (though not with pf but other conditions) but with self-therapy you should never do this. Instead, you should make the commitment to have discipline-- that is, reign yourself in-- and be patient and let persistance adn time be on your side.

Adjustment to orthotics should be done very gradually. Of course, the podiatrist should be closely monitoring and instructing you. Mine didn't, and even though I was already on this board and knew to go slowly, I still developed tts from my orthotics.

If at all possible, you should combine treatments appropriately. While this is not good for FDA trials, you should be in this for yourself. If icing helps go ahead, but not right before stretching. Do it after your stretching is over. It is good to do strengthening exercises before stretching, to warm up the muscles.

weight-bearing stretches are fine, but if you are not making progress, or are getting worse, or experience pain, then you should do non-weightbearing stretches. Non-weightbearing stretches and strengthening are good in any case as you can be very precise about exactly how much exercises or stretching you apply.

Mental attitude is a huge part in healing. Though the therapist is right that feet feeling better will make you feel better, the opposite is also the case and is in fact fundamental. You have to seek the sources of happiness from inside. If you depend on changeful, outside reality for happiness too much, you are bound to get disappointed because 'stuff' happens and will always happen. I succeded by doing two things: giving up, and not giving up. I gave up on a cure and accepted my life the way it is. There were still things to do and enjoy in life. This was my life, other people deal with wheelchairs. Giving up is very liberating and quickly leads to happiness.

The other thing I did was not give up. Without expecting anything, or hoping for anything, I neverthelss applied myself diligently (but very gently) to getting better, because there was absolutely no rational reason not to, even if I had given up.

I guess this is a contradiction but to be more clear I gave up thinking or wishing things were different in the present and tried to enjoy life just the way it is. For the future, I had no prejudice about what might be in store, and the only rational thing was to keep trying and keep the faith.

So far no one I know of here has failed to make progress eventually. Everyone needs to keep that in mind. We always love to have people come back to the board, or stay on, so that others can better see the big picture.


yours,

alan k

http://www.acutai.com


ps for stretching--

It is okay to persist if you are noticing nothing. Often it is hard to notice progress with things like stretching and strengthening, just like it is hard to notice hair growing. If you haven't seen someone for a while, you notice the difference. Usually though, if you hit the right technique you will notice a difference very soon, but then it might become invisible later, but it is still there.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

J on 9/15/00 at 20:55 (028340)

You mentioned, 'giving up on a cure and accepting your life as it is....other people have to deal with wheelchairs...'

I have a chair for the PF and it has been my greatest asset. I went to the grocery store last week for the first time in 6 months_in the chair (of course you have to bring 'a walker' to push the cart since you can't push the cart and the roll the chair)...So, I know what you mean about giving up in that sense. That and changing my life to live within my limits was the 'giving up' for me.

The problem is, those are my actions, not my thoughts. My thoughts are, 'ouch, ouch, ouch....', 'I'll never be inshape again', 'I'll never have childress since I can't bear the weight', 'I'll never find a nice new boyfriend or husband since I can't do anything fun unless he carries me everywhere.' ....and it spirals down.

People say, 'stay positive'. I don't get it. Thoughts don't turn off magically.

How long did it take you to come to this level of acceptance? I hold on for the day I can truly live in peace with this. I curse every day that I wake up wishing I could just sleep until it's over. What's the point of waking up again just to sit on the couch for another whole week-end_in pain?

Thank you for showing us downers we will someday reach a better mental state.
Thank you reminding us people do heal. That is no longer a belief I share but a thought I strain to hold on to.

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

alan k on 9/16/00 at 07:50 (028361)

I am so glad you asked those questions J, because they are right on the mark. That shows that you are already practicing what I was talking about otherwise you wouldn't have been able to identify the key problems so accurately.

I shopped in a wheelchair also at one point. My doc wouldn't prescribe a wheelchair for me when I wanted it. Since I wasn't doing foot exercises at the time, that was probably a good idea since I would have developed atrophies.

As for the mental work, it is important to take the same attitude I was describing about the feet: faith and effort, without expectation, effort directed toward achieving a beneficial and skillful (I did not say positive) mental tendency. I have been mildly depressed twice in life (post pf was #2). Both times I was like you-- I would wake up in the morning and the first thought, as soon as I realized that I was awake, was 'Oh *&%$, 18 hours to go until I can sleep again.'

You should take steps to address this. In my case I was not able to get any better with pf until I got out of the downs, and then it was a long time after that that I got relatively free of all bad thoughts.

1. Seek help for depression if possible. If not, try supplements like SAMe (I may have noticed something taking this, but I rarely notice anything from supplements), St. John's Wort, B complex, and/or drink lots of water.

2. Exercise a lot. This is very important for spirits and also feet. There are a lot of floor calisthenics one can do without stressing the feet. Don't allow the 'I can't exercise' idea to have its way, since it is a lie.

3. Distract yourself whenever you notice your mind is going down the 'wishing it were different' road. Of course it is natural to want things to be different, but not very practical because looking for satisfaction in things being different than the way they really are is, by definition, destined for failure. It sounds silly to just switch your mind to a different subject but that is what you have to do. every time you do it it is like a mental exercise, like one push-up. Often, you switch your mind for a second and it goes right back. do it again, same result. DO NOT BE FOOLED into thinking that it was, therefore, a waste. You are instead practicing and exercising your mind, like a muscle. It will build up strength, but you have to do it hundreds, thousands of times to build up the strength. You will get results from this, it is simply the law of nature.

Let me explain. The reason, as you say, that you can't just turn the thoughts off is because they are not 'yours' to turn off. They are a part of nature, like the weather, subject to the many causes and conditions that make them the way they are at any moment. This seems like a bad thing but it is a good thing, because that means you can stick in your own causes and conditions. Willfully turning your mind away from 'wishing things were different' or 'wondering whether some things in the future, which doesn't exist yet, might or might not happen' is like slowly changing the air pressure or something. It is one condition to add into the mix. It has to have an effect. Just keep on turning your thoughts away from the ones you know are of no value and benefit to you, and you will get better and better at it. You have to, because it is simply the nature of things.

Seeking help for depression and exercising a lot are just more conditioning to add to the mix, and provide a good foundation to give you extra power to continue the work with the mind (oreven to be able to hear the logic of it).

My teacher in Thailand told me it was like this-- First you grow a plant from a seed and have to water it often. You water and water it and it grows up into a fruit tree. The tree doesn't need too much care then, but it keeps giving and giving you fruit anyway.

I don't know if this is what they mean by 'staying positive.' I have always found that an unconvincing word. Things are the way that they are, but you can work hard on your own mind and then reap the fruit. The fruit is just what it is, to me, not positive or negative.

I'll take being 'all right' over 'positive' any day.


yours,

alan k

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

wendyn on 9/16/00 at 12:06 (028381)

That was a great post Alan. I always enjoy hearing your thoughts on things like this.

When you talk about not wishing things were different, or wanting to change they way they are...it reminded me of an incident when my (then fiance) husband and I were taking pre-marriage counselling.

For those of you who haven't done the math - I'm 31 and my son is 15...so I had him when I was 16. (Not by the man I later was in pre-marriage counselling with).

The counsellor asked me how I felt about having been such a young mom, and having to grow up so fast - giving up all the years of freedom that I'll never get back. I sat for a second and then honestly told her that I didn't ever see it that way. It's just the way it is - I don't know what it's like to be 16 and not be a mom...regret and loss and anger just never became a part of it. No, it wasn't easy - but I managed and he managed and that's just the way things are. She told me that a lot of people end up with resentment and bitterness because of what they lost.

It's healthier to not dwell on what could have been and what will never be. There aren't any guarantees...and there's too much that we take for granted.

Thanks for the reminder today Alan.

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

J on 9/16/00 at 12:18 (028382)

Thanks for your reply and support. It's great to come to this board blue on a Friday night (when all your walking friends are out on the town) and wake up and find your non-walking friends are still standing by online. (Get it: 'standing by'?)

That's the thing that's getting us all through this.
It's my salvation knowing I'm not the only one hanging out doing nothing waiting to heal for months on end.

RE: depression - Yes, I am doing what I can do about the depression. It's just like the PF though, trying to decide what to do. I have samples of Elavil (anit-depressants) sitting right here but am resistant to talking them. I am not a believer in meds. like that and don't want to further mess with my chemistry. Doctors are way to happy to pass these things out without doing any research on the person taking therm. And, one side effect is possible weigh gain. I need that like a hole in the head.
The vit B is fairly effective.....I wish I had someone standing over my shoulder reminding me to take it everyday...that's the tough part.

What do you know about non-foot-using exercises? I have trouble swimming...seems to agravate the feet. I did try riding my air-bike (laying on my back with my feet in the air) the other night and actually worked up a mild sweat but my neck was killing me the next day must have stained it doing that.

I surf the net looking for disabled work out videos but haven't found any. Do you have any thoughts on that?
(With all this sitting, my butt's numb and anything would help at this point.)

Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks for your support. It seems only the PF'rs understand the intricacies of this process.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

Dr. Zuckerman on 9/16/00 at 14:51 (028389)

There is an old saying in the bone and joint field. Better to break the bones then to injury the tendon and or ligament. We know how long it take to heal the bone but the rest well the rest takes as long as it takes.

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

Beverly on 9/16/00 at 17:20 (028398)

Like you, I have searched for lowerbody exercise I can do. I am just now at the point that I think I can begin using a theraband to do lowerbody workouts. I bought the lightest weight (yellow) and an instruction book. I am also looking into a 'stretch & tone' class for seniors. I am not a senior. I am only 40, but the instructor said I would be welcome. It sounds like a mild form of exercise since it is geared to seniors. Of course, there will still be some things I can't do.
I tried biking but it made me worse. Perhaps later.
Good luck,
Beverly

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

john h on 9/16/00 at 18:59 (028406)

there have been giant leaps in understanding anxiety and depression during the last 20 years. many people suffering with these problems can be greatly helped by the proper medications since brain chemistry can bring on these conditions. zoloft and prozac can do wonders for depression. there are equally effective drugs for anxiety and one should not be afraid to seek help from a qualified professional for these problems. depression and anxiety can be devistataing. elavil may help but sometimes your doctor will have to find just the right drug and dossage to bring you out of the dumps. i lived with my uncle who was a psycharist for many years. talk thearpy can be help but sometimes you need some medication. get some help. by the way a thyroid condition can produce symptoms of anxiety. mrs Gore suffered for sometime with depression and used drug thearpy to bring her out of it.

Re: mental cultivation and the fruits.

alan k on 9/16/00 at 19:16 (028411)

I would try the Pilates floor exercise workout, which is a book you could order online. I don't know the acutal title though.

I do yoga adjusted for the feet, and want to get information out about that soon. I did yoga and meditation for years before pf, but went through a period where 'I can't do yoga' even though I of all people should have known that was a lie.

You should come to ur website when I find some time to the stuff up. I'll announce it. But the recommendation in the meantime would be floor calisthenics following an exercise manual.

yours,

alan k

Re: Finding the right treatment for PF

PaulS on 9/17/00 at 02:25 (028442)

Thanks, Alan, for your response to my post. You have certainly given me food for thought, and what you say is far more helpful than what I heard from my therapist in terms of suggestions on what to DO rather than simply what to THINK.

A common reaction to my situation from well-meaning friends or colleagues (non-PF sufferers, naturally!) is: Well, you know it could be a lot worse, you could be a wheelchair, have lost a limb etc. (I also heard this from the therapist!) Of course I realize that my feet problems are nothing compared with the kind of problems that some other people have to deal with in their lives. I know also that there are much worse PFlers than me here on this board. But I am not sure how this kind of comparison is supposed to help. In fact it just makes me sadder to know how much other people must be suffering. And I could equally well compare myself with the many more millions of 'normal' people who don't have such a debilitating condition.

The only sensible basis of comparison I have is with me. In the course of almost 50 years of sporting life, I have had my fair share of injuries, sometimes keeping me out of action for months at a time. But in each case, there was a clarity of what treatment was necessary and a fairly constant progression from injury to healing. I never lost the optimism that I would recover. PF seems to be much more insidious - and days of apparent improvement can suddenly be followed by a setback for the most trivial or unknown reason. It is this continuous emotional rollercoaster that makes it so difficult to avoid the PF obsession. It is also the uncertainty about the correct treatment that I mentioned in my first post. (Barbara TX's PF song in the previous thread - which I hadn't read when I sent in my post - makes the same point I was making in a much more humorous way!)

Thanks again for all the responses.