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How long before it's too late to turn back the pain?

Posted by Valerie S on 4/22/01 at hrmin (045361)

Hi.

I am wondering how much impact waiting for treatment has on curing PF. I have read several posts recently that seem to indicate that the earlier you get treatment, the better your chances are for recovery. I wonder how much of an impact a few months has, as far as long-term effects on pain and reversing your situation with PF.

I know that if anything is true, it's that everyone is different...
Just wondering what my chances might be, looking at a law of averages...

I worked on my feet for 3 months before seeking medical treatment. I thought it would go away... didn't know what PF was. Under my doctor's care, I continued to work on my feet all day for 3 1/2 more months, even though the pain continued to get worse and worse.

I have been off work for 5 weeks now, and fear that my pod will want me to go back to my job soon. He has been talking about strapping the cushions to my arches again (we already tried this), and I really hope that he doesn't think that I will be able to work this way. I cannot sit down at my job.

I am starting to feel like my pain might be getting better, beyond the relief that I have had from just not walking all day. I know it's too early to tell, but I might actually be getting better. I just wonder if I did too much before I finally gave my poor feet a break, if the damage is irreparable. I have PF in both feet, more prominent in the right. How long can you go and go, stressing your feet until you can't walk anymore before you won't be able to get better with reasonable means?? I have tried almost everything. Like I said, I might be getting better... I am really hoping.

I don't understand why my doc seems to want me back at work.
Just wondering... is it too late to hope?

Thanks... Val.

Re: How long before it's too late to turn back the pain?

Nancy N on 4/22/01 at 14:34 (045369)

Val--

I don't know of any specific timelines--I've had this current bout (had it first in the other foot) for just less than two years, but am finally feeling better thanks to the time I spent on Celebrex and the new orthotics I got, which are like night and day from the old ones I had (which were little more than torture devices).

I do know, though, that it is never, ever, too late to hope. Giving up guarantees defeat, so hang onto that hope!!

Re: How long before it's too late to turn back the pain?

Julie on 4/25/01 at 12:50 (045677)

Hi Val

My understanding is that the sooner PF is treated, the quicker it will get better. But there are all sorts of variables, as you know. The lucky thing for many people has been early discovery of heelspurs.com (myself included: I found the site just two weeks after my heel pain started) and the consequent identification and understanding of the problem and establishment of a treatment programme . The fact that you worked on your feet for 6 1/2 months probably does mean that the healing process will take longer than it would for someone who began to address the problem with less delay, because all during that time your fascias (fascii?) were being re-injured every day.

But it is certainly not too late to hope, I doubt that the damage is irreparable, and you probably will get better, as long as you realize that the most important component of any treatment programme for PF is - yes, you guessed it - REST. You're a little better already because you've been resting for five weeks. If you went back to work, you would undo all the good work that you've done in those five weeks. So there is no question of your going back to work.

I know you know that already, because I've read all your posts this afternoon, and also the great responses you've had from everyone. Others have counselled you about getting an attorney, not resigning from your job, and dealing with your employer: all excellent advice. But the one thing that stands out a mile (and I have the advantage, I think, of having taken in the whole story of the past two weeks in one afternoon) is that your doctor is not supporting you. If he had a proper understanding of your condition, and the relation between it and your job, he would not be advising you to return to work.

You say you don't understand why he wants you back at work. My guess is that this is a serious error on his part - but it doesn't matter whether you understand it or not. All you need to do is draw the accurate conclusion from the fact that he does, and take appropriate action. I'm sure you've thought about what Steve and others have said. I sense that this is one more instance in which it is going to take you some time to see things clearly. I think you do need to find a new doctor, one who will support you, and that the sooner you do this the better.

It's all part of the same underlying issue: realizing that these are your feet, and your life, and that you are in charge. You've come a very long way towards that in the last six weeks, and that's great. But the fact is that if you aren't going to return to work, there is a limit to how long you can conduct a holding operation. You'll need full support from a doctor if you're going to go for long-term disability, and you obviously haven't got that support now. So what I think is: go get it from a new doctor.

All the very best, Val

Julie

Re: How long before it's too late to turn back the pain? Don't wait for treatment.... Welcome back, Julie

Cynthia D on 4/25/01 at 21:07 (045748)

If I could turn back the clock to over four years ago, and had gotten myself in to see a podiatrist, I bet I'd be all better by now. I kept working through my pf just ignoring it for over four years!! (*&^%$#, what an idiot I was. Finally, I found this site and knew it wasn't in my head, or it wouldn't go away on its own, and it definately got progressivly worse. So to answer your question, all the people I know in real life who have received treatment early (less than one year, or even less), have recovered more quickly. Although Dr. Z. says that the more chronic cases get the best results with ESWT.

Julie, I got your book, I love some of the stretches.

Re: How long before it's too late to turn back the pain?

Nancy N on 4/22/01 at 14:34 (045369)

Val--

I don't know of any specific timelines--I've had this current bout (had it first in the other foot) for just less than two years, but am finally feeling better thanks to the time I spent on Celebrex and the new orthotics I got, which are like night and day from the old ones I had (which were little more than torture devices).

I do know, though, that it is never, ever, too late to hope. Giving up guarantees defeat, so hang onto that hope!!

Re: How long before it's too late to turn back the pain?

Julie on 4/25/01 at 12:50 (045677)

Hi Val

My understanding is that the sooner PF is treated, the quicker it will get better. But there are all sorts of variables, as you know. The lucky thing for many people has been early discovery of heelspurs.com (myself included: I found the site just two weeks after my heel pain started) and the consequent identification and understanding of the problem and establishment of a treatment programme . The fact that you worked on your feet for 6 1/2 months probably does mean that the healing process will take longer than it would for someone who began to address the problem with less delay, because all during that time your fascias (fascii?) were being re-injured every day.

But it is certainly not too late to hope, I doubt that the damage is irreparable, and you probably will get better, as long as you realize that the most important component of any treatment programme for PF is - yes, you guessed it - REST. You're a little better already because you've been resting for five weeks. If you went back to work, you would undo all the good work that you've done in those five weeks. So there is no question of your going back to work.

I know you know that already, because I've read all your posts this afternoon, and also the great responses you've had from everyone. Others have counselled you about getting an attorney, not resigning from your job, and dealing with your employer: all excellent advice. But the one thing that stands out a mile (and I have the advantage, I think, of having taken in the whole story of the past two weeks in one afternoon) is that your doctor is not supporting you. If he had a proper understanding of your condition, and the relation between it and your job, he would not be advising you to return to work.

You say you don't understand why he wants you back at work. My guess is that this is a serious error on his part - but it doesn't matter whether you understand it or not. All you need to do is draw the accurate conclusion from the fact that he does, and take appropriate action. I'm sure you've thought about what Steve and others have said. I sense that this is one more instance in which it is going to take you some time to see things clearly. I think you do need to find a new doctor, one who will support you, and that the sooner you do this the better.

It's all part of the same underlying issue: realizing that these are your feet, and your life, and that you are in charge. You've come a very long way towards that in the last six weeks, and that's great. But the fact is that if you aren't going to return to work, there is a limit to how long you can conduct a holding operation. You'll need full support from a doctor if you're going to go for long-term disability, and you obviously haven't got that support now. So what I think is: go get it from a new doctor.

All the very best, Val

Julie

Re: How long before it's too late to turn back the pain? Don't wait for treatment.... Welcome back, Julie

Cynthia D on 4/25/01 at 21:07 (045748)

If I could turn back the clock to over four years ago, and had gotten myself in to see a podiatrist, I bet I'd be all better by now. I kept working through my pf just ignoring it for over four years!! (*&^%$#, what an idiot I was. Finally, I found this site and knew it wasn't in my head, or it wouldn't go away on its own, and it definately got progressivly worse. So to answer your question, all the people I know in real life who have received treatment early (less than one year, or even less), have recovered more quickly. Although Dr. Z. says that the more chronic cases get the best results with ESWT.

Julie, I got your book, I love some of the stretches.