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Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Posted by Beverly on 4/08/01 at 14:38 (043994)

Just when I was starting to feel a little better, I had yet another setback.

Last week, I decided to reintroduce a strengthening oriented stretch I'd learned last year in PT but at the time, it had been too much for me. The seated toe raise, holding it for about five seconds each. I did a set of five, holding it for five 2x a day for several days. My back of my heel (achilles area) started feeling sore, and so I laid off that stretch.

Unfortunately, it has stayed sore and achey, even at rest. Now, all my old stretches that I was doing so well, like the towel stretches, hurt to do - at the achilles tendon area. When I do them, I can feel my achilles tendon trying to pull. I've cut them in half, but I may have to just discontinue them for awhile. I'm not sure what to do in that regard.

So, it is very discouraging. I'm doing rest, ice/heat. Blah... Blah... Blah..

I have to wait until the end of the month to see this new sports med. doc I have an appointment with.

I don't know much about achilles tendonitis. It is one thing I have not had up until now. The good thing is that I don't see any swelling.
Thanks,
Beverly

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

wendyn on 4/08/01 at 14:56 (043996)

Beverly - sorry about your achilles. I don't have any suggestions - but I do share in your frustration. My feet are doing fairly well, but I'm dealing with a shoulder injury that's going to drive me over the edge, I'm going on about week 7 or 8 and it's not getting any better. I've got varying opinions from the Doctor, massage therapist, and two trainers at the gym. It appears to be an injury to the supra spinatus/rotator cuff - possibly a frozen shoulder.

Regardless....it's really @@^^#@$#^$ing painful - wakes me up a lot at night.

Just when one part of my body starts to feel better.....

I go for acupuncture tomorrow so I'm going to discuss this with the PT. I've been told that this may take up to a year for full healing. Perfect.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Valerie S on 4/08/01 at hrmin (043997)

Hi, Beverly and Wendy.

I am so sorry to hear you are both hurting so. It's bad enough to have to deal with PF! I wish I could do something to help you feel better... Sorry I have no ideas to help you, Just wanted you to know that I feel for you.

Take it easy.

Val.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Steve P on 4/08/01 at 15:45 (043999)

Beverly --- Sorry to hear about this. I know that Dr. Z & others have commented that ESWT has been successful in the treatment of AT. In fact, if I remember correctly, ESWT has a higher success rate for AT than it does for PF (although both are very high).

If you do have AT, ESWT may be the way to go.

Steve

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Julie on 4/08/01 at 17:16 (044011)

I'm very sorry about this, Beverly. I remember my pod telling me several months ago that the same factors that predispose to PF predispose to Achilles tendonitis, so maybe it's not so surprising, as your PF has been so bad for so long. I just hope this new monster doesn't take too long to heal and go away.

For my information, could you explain what the seated toe raise is, please?

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Julie on 4/08/01 at 17:19 (044012)

Wendy, I hope it's not frozen shoulder. That is a real beast, and can take a long time to heal. I found a good explanation on a website awhile ago for a friend who has frozen shoulder - I'll see if I can locate it for you. It explained that there are three phases: the acute phase, where every movement is painful, and the healing phase, and - and oh dear, I can't remember the third. Sorry. I'll see if I can find the website again. But it did say it took a year. My commiserations.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Julie on 4/08/01 at 17:36 (044013)

Wendy, here's the url for the frozen shoulder site:

http://www.arthroscopy.com/sp04002.htm

You could also try http://www.frozenshoulder.com - this is a UK-based site

The is also a site on 'acupuncture for frozen shoulder' but I didn't get the url.

If you do a Google search on 'frozen shoulder' you'll find it near the top. Lots of others, too. Happy researching! But I still hope it's not frozen shoulder.

All the best

Julie

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Beverly on 4/08/01 at 20:22 (044026)

Thanks, guys, for all your notes of encouragement.

Yes, I'm glad to know achilles can be zapped. Since I've only had this about a week, I'm hoping I've mostly just strained it, and it will clear up. If not, I'm getting zapped this summer anyway (on the foot).

Julie, the seat toe raise was something my PT gave me last year. At the time, it hurt my foot too much to do it. As my feet are actually better, I thought, 'Let's try that bugger again.' Well, you know the rest. What you do is sit in a chair, and while seated raise up off the heel with only your toes/ball of foot on ground. Hold it for a few seconds. I find it amazing that such a simple thing pulled on my achilles tendon.

Thanks all,
Beverly

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

wendyn on 4/08/01 at 20:47 (044028)

That's funny Julie! Finally got around to doing my own internet search this afternoon and I came up with the same article you did! Great minds think (search?) alike.

Evidently it is a supra spinatus/rotator cuff injury. Everyone seems to agree on that. What they have not decided is if it has progressed or developed as far as a 'frozen shoulder'. I still have range of motion - but it is restricted. The worst part is the pain at night when I roll on it, or try to use it yank the blankets over. I've had it for about 2 months...and I don't even know what I did to set it off. About 2 weeks ago I thought it was healed and I did light weights in the gym - HUGE mistake. It hasn't been the same since. Finally saw the doctor this week because it became evident that it just isn't going to go away if I keep ignoring it. Needless to say - no weights for now, I am to lay off everything except range of motion when possible - and then increasing up to work with bands...it'll be a long time before they let me near the weights.

On the upside - I can now do 25 minutes hard cardio on a recumbent bike with no negative results. Which is good - because otherwise there would be very little left for me to do at the gym - other than visit with everyone else...

I am seeing the acupuncturist/pt tomorrow...hopefully she will have some advice!

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Laurie R on 4/08/01 at 21:16 (044034)

Hi Beverly,
My heart really goes out to you. It seems with you and I ,if it wasn't for bad luck we would not have any at all..That is a realy good sign that their is no swelling .... hang in there ..... I'm thinking about you....Laurie R

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Laurie R RE Wendyn on 4/08/01 at 21:21 (044037)

Wendy, Wendy,Wendy,
What in the world did you do ?? When I was going to PT my therapist had I think two patients with 'Frozed shoulders ' He said it is the worst pain ever. They could not even life their arms.... Are your feet doing ok?? That is the thing with us that have cronic PF or tendon problems or TTS ,if we get something else along the way it is a double whammie..... Hang in there Wendy..... I hope your shoulder get better real fast.....My very best to you.... Laurie R

Re: Seated toe raise

Julie on 4/09/01 at 04:03 (044049)

I'm surprised too, Bev, because this exercise seems to be contracting the Achilles area rather than pulling on it. Were you given it to strengthen your gastrocnemius/soleus muscles?

It makes me wonder if this was the cause of the new problem, or simply co-incidence. Long-term PF may just have finally had a knock-on effect on your Achilles.

Whatever, I hope it goes away very soon.

Re: Frozen shoulder

Julie on 4/09/01 at 04:13 (044050)

Yes, great minds indeed, Wendy.

One thing about 'frozen shoulder' (if it is that) is that it can come on weeks after whatever it was that triggered it, by which time you've forgotten whatever it was. If that makes sense. Maybe you were working out one day with heavier weights than usual, or a bit more enthusiastically than usual - or maybe you put out your hand to save yourself falling on ice, and jarred it - almost anything can do it.

It sounds as though you're in the 'freezing' stage. When you get to the 'frozen' stage, that's when treatment will begin to kick in. Roll on the 'thawing' stage. The friend I told you about is in the thawing stage now, after about a year - it really does seem to go in these recognizable stages.

I didn't look into the English site carefully, but the doctor who hosts it seems to have a magic method to treat it - might be worth investigating.

And I'm reasonably hopeful that acupuncture will help. Hope it does!

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

ellen w on 4/09/01 at 08:59 (044060)

Hi Bev,

What worked for my AT was deep massage therapy done by my PT. I tried anti-inflammatories first, and they didn't have any effect -- other than to delay my getting into physical therapy. If this is AT, my best advice is the sooner you start PT the better. Good luck,
Ellen

Re: Thanks and hello to Wendy

Beverly on 4/09/01 at 13:18 (044098)

Thanks, Laurie and Ellen,

I get a massage every week, and am having my massage therapist do deep massage on my feet, ankles, ect. That will have to do until I see my new sports medicine doc in a few weeks. I'm going to beg and plead for that PT renewal if needed. I had so much PT last year, he may balk. But since he is a new doctor, it may not matter to him. It will be his first PT script for me.

Wendy, I am so sorry to hear about your shoulder. When I get really down, it is usually because I am hurting at both ends. If one end works, this is promising! My Dad tore his rotator cuff some years ago and was pleased with the progress he made in PT. I hope that helps you. It seems like he said what helped him the most was water therapy. It was quite a few years ago; so I may be wrong.

Julie, perhaps it was a chance happening. But since it happened that same week, I tend to think it was the toe raise. But who knows?

Today, I'm going to a medical supply place and see if I can find a comfortable ankle support. Many of the ones I've tried interfere with the way my Birks fit, but I've seen pictures of supports that look more like socks. Going to take a look.
Beverly

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Dondi on 4/09/01 at 16:50 (044107)

I am so sorry to hear about your pain. However, I can relate in a major way. I have been debating on whether of not to go to the doctor for my shoulder pain, hoping it will go away . I developed my shoulder pain from PF compensation. I Sleeping on my back or stomach so my feet could hang over the end of the bed, and started (in my sleep) placing my arms above my head. Over time my arm and shoulder would go numb and I wouldn't realize this until the morning. Once I became aware I tried to change this position, but at rest I return to it every time. Beware! So folks don't try this at home. =) This is a very painful habit over time.....

Re: To everybody

wendyn on 4/09/01 at 17:43 (044115)

Thanks for all your concern!

Saw the PT/acupuncturisr today. She does not think I have a frozen shoulder (very good news) said that the actual mobility in my shoulder joint is good - it's all the muscles in my shoulder, upper back and neck that are causing the problem. I have very restricted range of motion in my neck that she also noticed - have had since October when I started working long hours but chose to ignore becaue I can't possibly deal with every little thing that comes up. Makes it very hard forme to tuck my chin toward my chest.

She adjusted several of the joints in my upper back. Did some work on my neck (trigger points) gave me a bunch of stretches and then did some needling and acupuncture on my back and shoulders.

I actually feel pretty good all things considered.

She thinks that with some effort on my part, a this should clear up fairly quickly. I am glad that I did not let it get any worse!!!!!

Re: Attention Wendy

Beverly on 4/10/01 at 00:38 (044147)

Wendy,

I have years of dealing with neck and shoulder problems. Like you, I sit at a desk. PF friendly but not so friendly on the neck and shoulders.
Two things revolutionized my work environment and made life much easier.

The first is an 'editor's desk.' It is a portable slanted/raised writing board. It fits onto of any desk. Some even fold up and can be adjusted to height/slant desired. It has a place at the top to put two 8.5x11 sheets of paper side-by-side at eye level. The writing board is slanted and this takes pressure off your neck. You are not looking down all the time. I can't even begin to tell you what a difference it made for me. I ordered my out of the Levenger's catalog. They have an online site. I have the larger one but they come in different sizes. This is $$$ investment, but for anyone who sits at a desk all day, I can't say enough good things about it. Go to Levenger.com.

Do you wear bifocals? I have not gone that direction yet. A few years left. But I'm told that bifocals make you look down all the time. Some people who are on a computer all the time invest in close up glasses just for that purpose.

The other thing that helped me were the computer stretches I learned in PT and training myself to set a timer for 45 minutes. When it goes off, I get up, walk around, and stretch a bit.

Finally, I never talk on a regular phone anymore. I always use a headset. I can't tell you what a difference that has made for my neck and shoulder.

I hope you feel better soon.
Beverly

Re: Attention Wendy

john h on 4/12/01 at 10:57 (044348)

beverly: bi-focals tend to make you lift your head up so as to read thruough the lower more powerful lens. this can cause your neck to hurt. i find that wearing a pair of cheap drug store reading glasses of the power you need works better than my expensive bi-focals for computer work and reading.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

wendyn on 4/08/01 at 14:56 (043996)

Beverly - sorry about your achilles. I don't have any suggestions - but I do share in your frustration. My feet are doing fairly well, but I'm dealing with a shoulder injury that's going to drive me over the edge, I'm going on about week 7 or 8 and it's not getting any better. I've got varying opinions from the Doctor, massage therapist, and two trainers at the gym. It appears to be an injury to the supra spinatus/rotator cuff - possibly a frozen shoulder.

Regardless....it's really @@^^#@$#^$ing painful - wakes me up a lot at night.

Just when one part of my body starts to feel better.....

I go for acupuncture tomorrow so I'm going to discuss this with the PT. I've been told that this may take up to a year for full healing. Perfect.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Valerie S on 4/08/01 at hrmin (043997)

Hi, Beverly and Wendy.

I am so sorry to hear you are both hurting so. It's bad enough to have to deal with PF! I wish I could do something to help you feel better... Sorry I have no ideas to help you, Just wanted you to know that I feel for you.

Take it easy.

Val.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Steve P on 4/08/01 at 15:45 (043999)

Beverly --- Sorry to hear about this. I know that Dr. Z & others have commented that ESWT has been successful in the treatment of AT. In fact, if I remember correctly, ESWT has a higher success rate for AT than it does for PF (although both are very high).

If you do have AT, ESWT may be the way to go.

Steve

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Julie on 4/08/01 at 17:16 (044011)

I'm very sorry about this, Beverly. I remember my pod telling me several months ago that the same factors that predispose to PF predispose to Achilles tendonitis, so maybe it's not so surprising, as your PF has been so bad for so long. I just hope this new monster doesn't take too long to heal and go away.

For my information, could you explain what the seated toe raise is, please?

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Julie on 4/08/01 at 17:19 (044012)

Wendy, I hope it's not frozen shoulder. That is a real beast, and can take a long time to heal. I found a good explanation on a website awhile ago for a friend who has frozen shoulder - I'll see if I can locate it for you. It explained that there are three phases: the acute phase, where every movement is painful, and the healing phase, and - and oh dear, I can't remember the third. Sorry. I'll see if I can find the website again. But it did say it took a year. My commiserations.

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Julie on 4/08/01 at 17:36 (044013)

Wendy, here's the url for the frozen shoulder site:

http://www.arthroscopy.com/sp04002.htm

You could also try http://www.frozenshoulder.com - this is a UK-based site

The is also a site on 'acupuncture for frozen shoulder' but I didn't get the url.

If you do a Google search on 'frozen shoulder' you'll find it near the top. Lots of others, too. Happy researching! But I still hope it's not frozen shoulder.

All the best

Julie

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Beverly on 4/08/01 at 20:22 (044026)

Thanks, guys, for all your notes of encouragement.

Yes, I'm glad to know achilles can be zapped. Since I've only had this about a week, I'm hoping I've mostly just strained it, and it will clear up. If not, I'm getting zapped this summer anyway (on the foot).

Julie, the seat toe raise was something my PT gave me last year. At the time, it hurt my foot too much to do it. As my feet are actually better, I thought, 'Let's try that bugger again.' Well, you know the rest. What you do is sit in a chair, and while seated raise up off the heel with only your toes/ball of foot on ground. Hold it for a few seconds. I find it amazing that such a simple thing pulled on my achilles tendon.

Thanks all,
Beverly

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

wendyn on 4/08/01 at 20:47 (044028)

That's funny Julie! Finally got around to doing my own internet search this afternoon and I came up with the same article you did! Great minds think (search?) alike.

Evidently it is a supra spinatus/rotator cuff injury. Everyone seems to agree on that. What they have not decided is if it has progressed or developed as far as a 'frozen shoulder'. I still have range of motion - but it is restricted. The worst part is the pain at night when I roll on it, or try to use it yank the blankets over. I've had it for about 2 months...and I don't even know what I did to set it off. About 2 weeks ago I thought it was healed and I did light weights in the gym - HUGE mistake. It hasn't been the same since. Finally saw the doctor this week because it became evident that it just isn't going to go away if I keep ignoring it. Needless to say - no weights for now, I am to lay off everything except range of motion when possible - and then increasing up to work with bands...it'll be a long time before they let me near the weights.

On the upside - I can now do 25 minutes hard cardio on a recumbent bike with no negative results. Which is good - because otherwise there would be very little left for me to do at the gym - other than visit with everyone else...

I am seeing the acupuncturist/pt tomorrow...hopefully she will have some advice!

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Laurie R on 4/08/01 at 21:16 (044034)

Hi Beverly,
My heart really goes out to you. It seems with you and I ,if it wasn't for bad luck we would not have any at all..That is a realy good sign that their is no swelling .... hang in there ..... I'm thinking about you....Laurie R

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Laurie R RE Wendyn on 4/08/01 at 21:21 (044037)

Wendy, Wendy,Wendy,
What in the world did you do ?? When I was going to PT my therapist had I think two patients with 'Frozed shoulders ' He said it is the worst pain ever. They could not even life their arms.... Are your feet doing ok?? That is the thing with us that have cronic PF or tendon problems or TTS ,if we get something else along the way it is a double whammie..... Hang in there Wendy..... I hope your shoulder get better real fast.....My very best to you.... Laurie R

Re: Seated toe raise

Julie on 4/09/01 at 04:03 (044049)

I'm surprised too, Bev, because this exercise seems to be contracting the Achilles area rather than pulling on it. Were you given it to strengthen your gastrocnemius/soleus muscles?

It makes me wonder if this was the cause of the new problem, or simply co-incidence. Long-term PF may just have finally had a knock-on effect on your Achilles.

Whatever, I hope it goes away very soon.

Re: Frozen shoulder

Julie on 4/09/01 at 04:13 (044050)

Yes, great minds indeed, Wendy.

One thing about 'frozen shoulder' (if it is that) is that it can come on weeks after whatever it was that triggered it, by which time you've forgotten whatever it was. If that makes sense. Maybe you were working out one day with heavier weights than usual, or a bit more enthusiastically than usual - or maybe you put out your hand to save yourself falling on ice, and jarred it - almost anything can do it.

It sounds as though you're in the 'freezing' stage. When you get to the 'frozen' stage, that's when treatment will begin to kick in. Roll on the 'thawing' stage. The friend I told you about is in the thawing stage now, after about a year - it really does seem to go in these recognizable stages.

I didn't look into the English site carefully, but the doctor who hosts it seems to have a magic method to treat it - might be worth investigating.

And I'm reasonably hopeful that acupuncture will help. Hope it does!

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

ellen w on 4/09/01 at 08:59 (044060)

Hi Bev,

What worked for my AT was deep massage therapy done by my PT. I tried anti-inflammatories first, and they didn't have any effect -- other than to delay my getting into physical therapy. If this is AT, my best advice is the sooner you start PT the better. Good luck,
Ellen

Re: Thanks and hello to Wendy

Beverly on 4/09/01 at 13:18 (044098)

Thanks, Laurie and Ellen,

I get a massage every week, and am having my massage therapist do deep massage on my feet, ankles, ect. That will have to do until I see my new sports medicine doc in a few weeks. I'm going to beg and plead for that PT renewal if needed. I had so much PT last year, he may balk. But since he is a new doctor, it may not matter to him. It will be his first PT script for me.

Wendy, I am so sorry to hear about your shoulder. When I get really down, it is usually because I am hurting at both ends. If one end works, this is promising! My Dad tore his rotator cuff some years ago and was pleased with the progress he made in PT. I hope that helps you. It seems like he said what helped him the most was water therapy. It was quite a few years ago; so I may be wrong.

Julie, perhaps it was a chance happening. But since it happened that same week, I tend to think it was the toe raise. But who knows?

Today, I'm going to a medical supply place and see if I can find a comfortable ankle support. Many of the ones I've tried interfere with the way my Birks fit, but I've seen pictures of supports that look more like socks. Going to take a look.
Beverly

Re: Now, I think I have achilles tendonitis too. Very discouraged.

Dondi on 4/09/01 at 16:50 (044107)

I am so sorry to hear about your pain. However, I can relate in a major way. I have been debating on whether of not to go to the doctor for my shoulder pain, hoping it will go away . I developed my shoulder pain from PF compensation. I Sleeping on my back or stomach so my feet could hang over the end of the bed, and started (in my sleep) placing my arms above my head. Over time my arm and shoulder would go numb and I wouldn't realize this until the morning. Once I became aware I tried to change this position, but at rest I return to it every time. Beware! So folks don't try this at home. =) This is a very painful habit over time.....

Re: To everybody

wendyn on 4/09/01 at 17:43 (044115)

Thanks for all your concern!

Saw the PT/acupuncturisr today. She does not think I have a frozen shoulder (very good news) said that the actual mobility in my shoulder joint is good - it's all the muscles in my shoulder, upper back and neck that are causing the problem. I have very restricted range of motion in my neck that she also noticed - have had since October when I started working long hours but chose to ignore becaue I can't possibly deal with every little thing that comes up. Makes it very hard forme to tuck my chin toward my chest.

She adjusted several of the joints in my upper back. Did some work on my neck (trigger points) gave me a bunch of stretches and then did some needling and acupuncture on my back and shoulders.

I actually feel pretty good all things considered.

She thinks that with some effort on my part, a this should clear up fairly quickly. I am glad that I did not let it get any worse!!!!!

Re: Attention Wendy

Beverly on 4/10/01 at 00:38 (044147)

Wendy,

I have years of dealing with neck and shoulder problems. Like you, I sit at a desk. PF friendly but not so friendly on the neck and shoulders.
Two things revolutionized my work environment and made life much easier.

The first is an 'editor's desk.' It is a portable slanted/raised writing board. It fits onto of any desk. Some even fold up and can be adjusted to height/slant desired. It has a place at the top to put two 8.5x11 sheets of paper side-by-side at eye level. The writing board is slanted and this takes pressure off your neck. You are not looking down all the time. I can't even begin to tell you what a difference it made for me. I ordered my out of the Levenger's catalog. They have an online site. I have the larger one but they come in different sizes. This is $$$ investment, but for anyone who sits at a desk all day, I can't say enough good things about it. Go to Levenger.com.

Do you wear bifocals? I have not gone that direction yet. A few years left. But I'm told that bifocals make you look down all the time. Some people who are on a computer all the time invest in close up glasses just for that purpose.

The other thing that helped me were the computer stretches I learned in PT and training myself to set a timer for 45 minutes. When it goes off, I get up, walk around, and stretch a bit.

Finally, I never talk on a regular phone anymore. I always use a headset. I can't tell you what a difference that has made for my neck and shoulder.

I hope you feel better soon.
Beverly

Re: Attention Wendy

john h on 4/12/01 at 10:57 (044348)

beverly: bi-focals tend to make you lift your head up so as to read thruough the lower more powerful lens. this can cause your neck to hurt. i find that wearing a pair of cheap drug store reading glasses of the power you need works better than my expensive bi-focals for computer work and reading.