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injection in heel

Posted by Sandra J on 2/20/01 at 08:27 (039439)

I've been referred to an orthopedic doctor about my achilles tendonitis. My doctor says he'll probably give me a cortizone (?) injection. Is this painful? As sore as my heel is I can't imagine having a needle stuck in it. Up to this point the only treatment I've been given is Vioxx. What should I expect now?

Re: injection in heel

Dr. Zuckerman on 2/20/01 at 12:09 (039454)

It is a no no and very dangerous to inject any steriod into the achilles Tendon. This could cause a rupture to the tendon

Re: injection in heel

sandra j on 2/20/01 at 12:13 (039455)

Then what else would they do? I don't think it was going to be injected in the tendon because my doctor warned me what a sensitive area this is. I think it was just going to be in the heel area. What other treatment could I expect? I've been on anti-inflammatory drugs for 9 months and nothing has helped.

Re: injection in heel

Ellen W on 2/20/01 at 12:28 (039458)

What worked for my achilles tendonitis was physical therapy that combined deep tissue massage with stretching and strengthening exercise.
Ellen

Re: injection in heel

sandra j on 2/20/01 at 12:35 (039459)

How long did it take you to recover?

Re: injection in heel

john a on 2/20/01 at 13:52 (039464)

This cortisone injection thread has made me wonder if there's any way to deliver cortisone in a 'bathe the area' manner instead of the pin point injection method of the standard needle, or the blood stream shotgun method of cortisone pills. I'm thinking particularly of those innoculations you got as a kid with the dime-sized 'needle' that 'injected' with high pressure and didn't seem to even break the skin. My guess is that cortisone, if delivered this way, wouldn't go deep enough to help. Anyone know better?

Re: injection in heel

Ellen W on 2/20/01 at 16:17 (039477)

My tendonitis was in my left leg. It took a good 8-9 months before I could say I was really healed. The healing time was complicated by a second diagnosis, retrocalcaneal bursitis, which my doctor initially missed, and which I'm still dealing with. I've also had patella-femoral syndrome in my right leg, which is another story altogether. When I first started therapy for the achilles tendonitis, I could not do wall stretches at all, even on my right leg, which had no problem with tendonitis, because even minimally bending my left leg caused pain. My therapist said she could feel knots running up and down my calf, and worked on a section at a time. She also gave me very gentle resistance exercises to do using an elastic band. I could do these in bed, completely non-weight bearing. A second exercise was to stand on one foot at a time, to build strength and increase stability. Other things that helped include wearing a heal lift (3/8 inches)(it changes where the pressure on your heel hits, wear them on both feet so your balance isn't off); icing (I fill a dishpan with ice and water and sit for 10 minutes or so ) followed by warm soaks. Swimming also helped.) You need to find a therapist with a good touch; if you live in or around New York City,I can give you the name of mine.

Healing time for me probably took a little longer because I didn't rest as much as I probably should have. I volunteer with NY's South Street Seaport, and spent a lot of time on my feet as crew on their museum ships over the time while I had AT.

My doctor, who is a sports medicine expert, never recommended a cortisone shot. I did take an oral course of steroids, though that was to deal with the lingering bursitis, not the tendonitis. However, I do think it helped clear up any last remaining vestiges of the tendonitis.

Hope this helps. I sympathize completely with you -- it's very frustrating to find yourself being limited by something you can't control.

Ellen

Re: injection in heel

Dr. Marlene Reid on 2/21/01 at 00:15 (039521)

Hi Sandra,

I would NOT inject the insertional area of the achilles tendon as it could waken the tendon and lead to rupture. Did he try a heel lift in your shoe or any type of immobilization??

Re: injection in heel

Dr. Zuckerman on 2/20/01 at 12:09 (039454)

It is a no no and very dangerous to inject any steriod into the achilles Tendon. This could cause a rupture to the tendon

Re: injection in heel

sandra j on 2/20/01 at 12:13 (039455)

Then what else would they do? I don't think it was going to be injected in the tendon because my doctor warned me what a sensitive area this is. I think it was just going to be in the heel area. What other treatment could I expect? I've been on anti-inflammatory drugs for 9 months and nothing has helped.

Re: injection in heel

Ellen W on 2/20/01 at 12:28 (039458)

What worked for my achilles tendonitis was physical therapy that combined deep tissue massage with stretching and strengthening exercise.
Ellen

Re: injection in heel

sandra j on 2/20/01 at 12:35 (039459)

How long did it take you to recover?

Re: injection in heel

john a on 2/20/01 at 13:52 (039464)

This cortisone injection thread has made me wonder if there's any way to deliver cortisone in a 'bathe the area' manner instead of the pin point injection method of the standard needle, or the blood stream shotgun method of cortisone pills. I'm thinking particularly of those innoculations you got as a kid with the dime-sized 'needle' that 'injected' with high pressure and didn't seem to even break the skin. My guess is that cortisone, if delivered this way, wouldn't go deep enough to help. Anyone know better?

Re: injection in heel

Ellen W on 2/20/01 at 16:17 (039477)

My tendonitis was in my left leg. It took a good 8-9 months before I could say I was really healed. The healing time was complicated by a second diagnosis, retrocalcaneal bursitis, which my doctor initially missed, and which I'm still dealing with. I've also had patella-femoral syndrome in my right leg, which is another story altogether. When I first started therapy for the achilles tendonitis, I could not do wall stretches at all, even on my right leg, which had no problem with tendonitis, because even minimally bending my left leg caused pain. My therapist said she could feel knots running up and down my calf, and worked on a section at a time. She also gave me very gentle resistance exercises to do using an elastic band. I could do these in bed, completely non-weight bearing. A second exercise was to stand on one foot at a time, to build strength and increase stability. Other things that helped include wearing a heal lift (3/8 inches)(it changes where the pressure on your heel hits, wear them on both feet so your balance isn't off); icing (I fill a dishpan with ice and water and sit for 10 minutes or so ) followed by warm soaks. Swimming also helped.) You need to find a therapist with a good touch; if you live in or around New York City,I can give you the name of mine.

Healing time for me probably took a little longer because I didn't rest as much as I probably should have. I volunteer with NY's South Street Seaport, and spent a lot of time on my feet as crew on their museum ships over the time while I had AT.

My doctor, who is a sports medicine expert, never recommended a cortisone shot. I did take an oral course of steroids, though that was to deal with the lingering bursitis, not the tendonitis. However, I do think it helped clear up any last remaining vestiges of the tendonitis.

Hope this helps. I sympathize completely with you -- it's very frustrating to find yourself being limited by something you can't control.

Ellen

Re: injection in heel

Dr. Marlene Reid on 2/21/01 at 00:15 (039521)

Hi Sandra,

I would NOT inject the insertional area of the achilles tendon as it could waken the tendon and lead to rupture. Did he try a heel lift in your shoe or any type of immobilization??