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as if one foot isnt bad enough

Posted by Anthony P on 2/23/02 at 00:13 (074777)

Hi, I feel like I'm burning a candle at both ends , As you already know I'm 3 and a half monthes post op the left foot I had surgery on is improving slowy so from favoring my left foot, My right foot is getting worse . My bunion is on fire, arch pain ,tearing feeling at the arch The morning pain in both feet Gets me reaching for the pain killers . I remember when the pain in my rigth( better )foot would feel better after a few days of iceing , non weight strenches etc . I 'M still
going to PHYS . th. So this condition is really taking over my life just when I thought I was doing better , I feel like
I'm not getting anywere . at 36 I cant stand for more than 10 minutes.. 2 years ago I would work 8 to 12 hours on my feet . Then work out for a hour . I'm sorry for the pity me post : ( But I needed to vent . Any advise is helpful .
Were is the light at the end of the tunnel ???? MY BEST TO ALL , Anthony P

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Laurie R on 2/23/02 at 00:56 (074778)

Hi Anthony , I am so sorry for your pain in your other foot. I'm starting to feel the same thing . My good foot is not good anymore. It is a lot better then my bad foot , but I fear it is going to end up the same way . I use a cam walking cast on my bad . So I limp and put most of my weight on my so called good foot. I am seeing my Pod next Fri , I am going to have him check it out . Maybe a cortisone shot would help before it gets to bad. I feel very old , the pain is now in both feet all the time .

You know you can come here and vent anytime Anthony , I was wondering how you were doing . Wow I can't believe it has already been 3 and a half monthes since you had your foot surgery . I had to read it two times .

Have you had your doctor check your good foot yet ? If so what did he say ?

I wish I had some good advise for you . Hang in there and vent vent vent .... My very best to you always , Laurie R

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Carole C in NOLA on 2/23/02 at 08:25 (074789)

I'm sorry to hear that you are having such trouble with your other foot! It's so ironic that just as one foot is improving, the other foot is getting worse. It's got to be very difficult to bear, right now.

Sometimes it takes longer than a few days to heal, but you know the drill and what works for you. You probably need icing, gentle stretching, not standing or even one step without your orthotics or Birkenstocks or whatever, anti-inflammatories, and rest rest rest. And even with all that, it might take a couple of weeks. Don't let that tearing feeling happen! That's no good.

Since you are going to PT for the left foot that had the surgery, can you get some help for your right foot too from your PT while you are there? That might be an advantage. And as another response (from Laurie?) suggests, be sure to see your doctor to get your right foot checked out.

Don't think of what you used to do before when you were healthy. You have problem feet right now. You may eventually get back there, and I'm sure you will get better than you are now. But, it takes a long time, as you know.

There will be light at the end of the tunnel. There will be, so you hang onto that thought and have faith in that thought. Right now, I think you need to make a list of conservative treatments and work at them. Read the message board, and the archives, and the heel pain book again. Above all, don't give up hope! When that nasty little voice inside tells you that you'll never get better, just tell it to shut up!

Carole C

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

BrianG on 2/23/02 at 09:24 (074801)

Hi Laurie,

I did the same thing, with the walking boot, for about a year. I was still working, pushing it every day. Looking back, it was a BIG mistake that I was still working. Anyways, after about a year, I couldn't wear the boot an longer, as my other side (Knee, hip, etc) was really starting to bother me. Everything was getting out of alignment.

I haven't heard anyone talk about this, but it might be good to have the good leg measured. For me, it was probably a couple inches difference (shorter). Could I have worn a shoe with a 2' lift on the good side, to compensate? Would it have made a difference? Maybe you can ask your Pod about it. Less than a year after I stopped wearing my boot cast, I had gotten PF in my so called good foot. I now have PF in both feet, equally as bad :*(

Good luck
BrianG

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Rick R on 2/23/02 at 10:53 (074807)

Anthony,

I had the same experience post op. I was doing extreemly well and after about one year I was ready to start running again. OOPS there went the other one, even while I was taking it easy to bring back the surgicaly repaired left heel. This is why I have posted the opinion several times that rest is the proverbial double edged sword. Rest is an absolute necessity for recovery but it can place many of us in a position we have never experienced. I believe any major downtime places us at risk and we may not know how to bring the systems back up. If I have any situation that takes me off my feet for a significant period of time, I'll go back to taping and other precautions that I have weaned myself off of while things are going well.

Good luck

Rick

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Julie on 2/23/02 at 12:36 (074819)

I agree with this, Rick. Rest is essential for healing, but obviously it weakens muscles and other structures, and a gradual programme of targetted exercise is needed to bring back the lost strength. I think people understand this instinctively, but may not know what to do.

The other problem is that it's hard to know when enough rest has been enough, and when to introduce more normal activity. Resting is, as you say, a double-edged sword, not least because foot pain sufferers develop a real fear of not resting. The time comes, though, when we have to push the boat out. The question is - when?

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Carole C in NOLA on 2/23/02 at 13:15 (074824)

I do have one comment... when pushing the boat out (beginning to rest less) there is one thing that I wish I had remembered.

Resume normal activities more slowly than you think you need to.

I did not do this the last time I resumed activity after years of forced inactivity. (I got PF after some very successful treatment for osteoarthritis). I overdid it when I began to resume exercising with enthusiasm, and my feet couldn't take the kinds of stresses I thought they should be able to take. As I recover from PF, I hope that I remember my own advice and proceed forward cautiously, and slowly.

So, in a somewhat vague answer to the question you pose, Julie, I'd suggest to start a little after you think you can, and to do a little less than you think you can, and build up a little more slowly than you think you should. Be cautious and alert. It may take a few more pain-free months, but if you re-injure yourself it could take a lot longer and could hurt more.

Carole C

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Suzanne D on 2/23/02 at 14:17 (074831)

I am so sorry, Anthony, that you are having more troubles with your 'good foot'. I remember your posts as always being encouraging to others, and so I hope we can encourage you a little right now.

I wish I knew what to tell you to do. I don't, but I want you to know that I am sorry and that I care!

When I was a little girl, I remember hearing talk that my grandpa, a farmer, had 'spurs on his heels'. I didn't understand what that meant, but I remember him coming in in his overalls and taking off his work boots and saying how his feet hurt. I think I remember that he had shots, but I wish I could remember more about it. I wonder now how he got all that farm work - feeding, milking, etc. - done with his feet in pain.

Well, I'm not sure how I got off on that little memory, but I guess it was thinking about your working those long hours. Are you on medical leave right now? How much longer can you be off work?

I wish you healing in BOTH feet!

:-) Suzanne

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Beverly on 2/23/02 at 14:42 (074838)

Hi Anthony,

This is a good place to vent. We understand your pain.
I too have this in both feet (as well as ankle problems).
I have no idea if I will ever be cured. I won't regail you with treatments I've tried. What works for one may not be any help for another.

But I have learned this:
rest is VITAL.
Making peace with my disablity was a long process. I'm still a work in progress.
I take advantage of electric scooters in all places that have them.
If I need to buy something in a store without them, I often call ahead and ask if it can be brought up to the counter.
Some of my pre-PF work was not foot-friendly. Today, I work on a computer and it is foot-friendly.

Nothing has helped me more than rest, never giving up on finding a better shoe/orthodic combination, and sending my ego packing and using a scooter or wheelchair when needed. If only all places had them. Oh, I also have a handicap parking sticker.

Hang in there,
Beverly

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

Pam B on 2/23/02 at 17:16 (074855)

Like you guys, I have no good foot any more......it makes you wonder where it will all stop......I agree the boot may not be the right thing to do, but I also know where Laurie is coming from.......it is the only answer to a bad situation.......what else can you do when at least something gives you some relief.....life goes on even when our feet do not.......I know that for me changes in the gait from back surgery is what started it and I know that cant be changed........so what is one supposed to do when nothing works????? I know there are lots of things we all do that are not the right things sometimes but instead are the only things we know to try to get through the day without feeling totally crippled......

One more ???????? for you Brian.........did the doc say that a heel lift would have prevented it spreading to the good foot??????? I remember as a teenager many many moons ago :) that I had back pain and the doc told my parents I had a leg just a little shorter than the other one however he did not suggest anything to correct the issue because it was supposed to be only a slight difference.........so I was wondering if your doc thinks that is your culprit?????????

Take care and together, we will get through the bad days :)

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

Anthony P on 2/23/02 at 18:31 (074862)

Thank you all for kind word of encouragment, After 4 hard casts& cam boot this has alot to do with the damage done
TO my better foot . from just a mild case of P F to Now bunion problems , I will be back later for more venting . I got to get my dauther to bed .
Later : ) Anthony P

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

BrianG on 2/23/02 at 20:50 (074878)

Hi Pam,

No, my doctor never mentioned the lifts on my 'good' shoe. It's just something I have thought about since I stopped wearing the walking boot. It does kind of make sense though, doesn't it? My main culprit was concrete!

BrianG

Re: More venting

Anthony P on 2/23/02 at 21:55 (074883)

Hi. Thank you again your encouragment means alot to me ,NOW I'm all taped up and getting this under control . I agree Rick , Julie I felt great 2 weeks ago thinking I will do more and now another set back The extra 20 pounds I gained doesnt
help either . I over did it to soon : (
Just when I thougth I would be better :
1. My disabilty will end in 4 weeks after 7 monthe s on disability leave
Time is not on my side .
2. I dont have a job The company I worked for Laid off 30 people after 14 years of service
3. I'm Working at starting a repair bussiness . with this disabilty stopping me : (
4. This Blue collar type job that is my life may put me in a wheel chair .
The 2 years of favoring the bad foot damaged MY better foot
Anyone on the board have 1st meditarssol bunion problems ?
I am sorry for this negitive post .
BUT I'M DETERM INED TO BEAT THIS THING IN THE LONG HAUL !
AS ALWAYS MY BEST TO ALL MY FRIENDS : ) Anthony P

Re: One leg shorter

Julie on 2/24/02 at 03:11 (074892)

An elevated shoe is a good idea only if one leg is genuinely shorter (as can be determined by measurement). Often, the 'one leg shorter' syndrome arises from spinal scoliosis, which lifts one shoulder and one hip higher, creating imbalance between the two legs. In such a case, an elevated shoe would probably only add a new problem to the spinal problem.

People sometimes think they have one leg shorter, when the problem really originates in the spine.

Re: Negative is part of life and it's ok

Julie on 2/24/02 at 03:16 (074893)

Anthony, please don't apologize for a 'negative post'. Negative and positive are two sides of the same coin: we can't have one without the other, and the genuinely 'positive attitude' is one that acknowledges the reality of both.

You're feeling a lot of pressure now, with disability coming to an end, but you have a lot going for you, especially if you're working on starting a new business. Go for it - and while you can't be on your feet much, concentrate on the paper work (there must be plenty).

And keep venting. And don't apologize. People here understand.

Re: One leg shorter, due to walking boot

BrianG on 2/24/02 at 14:14 (074929)

Hi Julie,

I was only talking about a lift in the 'good' shoe, while wearing a boot cast. The boot I have, adds at least 2' to the foot I'm wearing it on. Walking lopsided is going to hurt you, sooner or later. I believe most of these people who wear the boot casts have normal leg lengths. It's the cast, that makes them uneven. Sorry for the confusion.

BrianG

PS I was wearing my boot cast about 10 hours a day, for a year.

Re: One leg shorter, due to walking boot

Julie on 2/24/02 at 14:38 (074932)

Hi Brian

Yes, I realized that - my comment about leg length was more of a general one, and prompted more by Pam's comment than by yours.

It's hard to believe that doctors who prescribe boot casts don't address the kind of problem you had.

All the best,

Julie

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Laurie R on 2/23/02 at 00:56 (074778)

Hi Anthony , I am so sorry for your pain in your other foot. I'm starting to feel the same thing . My good foot is not good anymore. It is a lot better then my bad foot , but I fear it is going to end up the same way . I use a cam walking cast on my bad . So I limp and put most of my weight on my so called good foot. I am seeing my Pod next Fri , I am going to have him check it out . Maybe a cortisone shot would help before it gets to bad. I feel very old , the pain is now in both feet all the time .

You know you can come here and vent anytime Anthony , I was wondering how you were doing . Wow I can't believe it has already been 3 and a half monthes since you had your foot surgery . I had to read it two times .

Have you had your doctor check your good foot yet ? If so what did he say ?

I wish I had some good advise for you . Hang in there and vent vent vent .... My very best to you always , Laurie R

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Carole C in NOLA on 2/23/02 at 08:25 (074789)

I'm sorry to hear that you are having such trouble with your other foot! It's so ironic that just as one foot is improving, the other foot is getting worse. It's got to be very difficult to bear, right now.

Sometimes it takes longer than a few days to heal, but you know the drill and what works for you. You probably need icing, gentle stretching, not standing or even one step without your orthotics or Birkenstocks or whatever, anti-inflammatories, and rest rest rest. And even with all that, it might take a couple of weeks. Don't let that tearing feeling happen! That's no good.

Since you are going to PT for the left foot that had the surgery, can you get some help for your right foot too from your PT while you are there? That might be an advantage. And as another response (from Laurie?) suggests, be sure to see your doctor to get your right foot checked out.

Don't think of what you used to do before when you were healthy. You have problem feet right now. You may eventually get back there, and I'm sure you will get better than you are now. But, it takes a long time, as you know.

There will be light at the end of the tunnel. There will be, so you hang onto that thought and have faith in that thought. Right now, I think you need to make a list of conservative treatments and work at them. Read the message board, and the archives, and the heel pain book again. Above all, don't give up hope! When that nasty little voice inside tells you that you'll never get better, just tell it to shut up!

Carole C

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

BrianG on 2/23/02 at 09:24 (074801)

Hi Laurie,

I did the same thing, with the walking boot, for about a year. I was still working, pushing it every day. Looking back, it was a BIG mistake that I was still working. Anyways, after about a year, I couldn't wear the boot an longer, as my other side (Knee, hip, etc) was really starting to bother me. Everything was getting out of alignment.

I haven't heard anyone talk about this, but it might be good to have the good leg measured. For me, it was probably a couple inches difference (shorter). Could I have worn a shoe with a 2' lift on the good side, to compensate? Would it have made a difference? Maybe you can ask your Pod about it. Less than a year after I stopped wearing my boot cast, I had gotten PF in my so called good foot. I now have PF in both feet, equally as bad :*(

Good luck
BrianG

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Rick R on 2/23/02 at 10:53 (074807)

Anthony,

I had the same experience post op. I was doing extreemly well and after about one year I was ready to start running again. OOPS there went the other one, even while I was taking it easy to bring back the surgicaly repaired left heel. This is why I have posted the opinion several times that rest is the proverbial double edged sword. Rest is an absolute necessity for recovery but it can place many of us in a position we have never experienced. I believe any major downtime places us at risk and we may not know how to bring the systems back up. If I have any situation that takes me off my feet for a significant period of time, I'll go back to taping and other precautions that I have weaned myself off of while things are going well.

Good luck

Rick

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Julie on 2/23/02 at 12:36 (074819)

I agree with this, Rick. Rest is essential for healing, but obviously it weakens muscles and other structures, and a gradual programme of targetted exercise is needed to bring back the lost strength. I think people understand this instinctively, but may not know what to do.

The other problem is that it's hard to know when enough rest has been enough, and when to introduce more normal activity. Resting is, as you say, a double-edged sword, not least because foot pain sufferers develop a real fear of not resting. The time comes, though, when we have to push the boat out. The question is - when?

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Carole C in NOLA on 2/23/02 at 13:15 (074824)

I do have one comment... when pushing the boat out (beginning to rest less) there is one thing that I wish I had remembered.

Resume normal activities more slowly than you think you need to.

I did not do this the last time I resumed activity after years of forced inactivity. (I got PF after some very successful treatment for osteoarthritis). I overdid it when I began to resume exercising with enthusiasm, and my feet couldn't take the kinds of stresses I thought they should be able to take. As I recover from PF, I hope that I remember my own advice and proceed forward cautiously, and slowly.

So, in a somewhat vague answer to the question you pose, Julie, I'd suggest to start a little after you think you can, and to do a little less than you think you can, and build up a little more slowly than you think you should. Be cautious and alert. It may take a few more pain-free months, but if you re-injure yourself it could take a lot longer and could hurt more.

Carole C

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Suzanne D on 2/23/02 at 14:17 (074831)

I am so sorry, Anthony, that you are having more troubles with your 'good foot'. I remember your posts as always being encouraging to others, and so I hope we can encourage you a little right now.

I wish I knew what to tell you to do. I don't, but I want you to know that I am sorry and that I care!

When I was a little girl, I remember hearing talk that my grandpa, a farmer, had 'spurs on his heels'. I didn't understand what that meant, but I remember him coming in in his overalls and taking off his work boots and saying how his feet hurt. I think I remember that he had shots, but I wish I could remember more about it. I wonder now how he got all that farm work - feeding, milking, etc. - done with his feet in pain.

Well, I'm not sure how I got off on that little memory, but I guess it was thinking about your working those long hours. Are you on medical leave right now? How much longer can you be off work?

I wish you healing in BOTH feet!

:-) Suzanne

Re: as if one foot isnt bad enough

Beverly on 2/23/02 at 14:42 (074838)

Hi Anthony,

This is a good place to vent. We understand your pain.
I too have this in both feet (as well as ankle problems).
I have no idea if I will ever be cured. I won't regail you with treatments I've tried. What works for one may not be any help for another.

But I have learned this:
rest is VITAL.
Making peace with my disablity was a long process. I'm still a work in progress.
I take advantage of electric scooters in all places that have them.
If I need to buy something in a store without them, I often call ahead and ask if it can be brought up to the counter.
Some of my pre-PF work was not foot-friendly. Today, I work on a computer and it is foot-friendly.

Nothing has helped me more than rest, never giving up on finding a better shoe/orthodic combination, and sending my ego packing and using a scooter or wheelchair when needed. If only all places had them. Oh, I also have a handicap parking sticker.

Hang in there,
Beverly

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

Pam B on 2/23/02 at 17:16 (074855)

Like you guys, I have no good foot any more......it makes you wonder where it will all stop......I agree the boot may not be the right thing to do, but I also know where Laurie is coming from.......it is the only answer to a bad situation.......what else can you do when at least something gives you some relief.....life goes on even when our feet do not.......I know that for me changes in the gait from back surgery is what started it and I know that cant be changed........so what is one supposed to do when nothing works????? I know there are lots of things we all do that are not the right things sometimes but instead are the only things we know to try to get through the day without feeling totally crippled......

One more ???????? for you Brian.........did the doc say that a heel lift would have prevented it spreading to the good foot??????? I remember as a teenager many many moons ago :) that I had back pain and the doc told my parents I had a leg just a little shorter than the other one however he did not suggest anything to correct the issue because it was supposed to be only a slight difference.........so I was wondering if your doc thinks that is your culprit?????????

Take care and together, we will get through the bad days :)

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

Anthony P on 2/23/02 at 18:31 (074862)

Thank you all for kind word of encouragment, After 4 hard casts& cam boot this has alot to do with the damage done
TO my better foot . from just a mild case of P F to Now bunion problems , I will be back later for more venting . I got to get my dauther to bed .
Later : ) Anthony P

Re: Be careful of the long term boot use

BrianG on 2/23/02 at 20:50 (074878)

Hi Pam,

No, my doctor never mentioned the lifts on my 'good' shoe. It's just something I have thought about since I stopped wearing the walking boot. It does kind of make sense though, doesn't it? My main culprit was concrete!

BrianG

Re: More venting

Anthony P on 2/23/02 at 21:55 (074883)

Hi. Thank you again your encouragment means alot to me ,NOW I'm all taped up and getting this under control . I agree Rick , Julie I felt great 2 weeks ago thinking I will do more and now another set back The extra 20 pounds I gained doesnt
help either . I over did it to soon : (
Just when I thougth I would be better :
1. My disabilty will end in 4 weeks after 7 monthe s on disability leave
Time is not on my side .
2. I dont have a job The company I worked for Laid off 30 people after 14 years of service
3. I'm Working at starting a repair bussiness . with this disabilty stopping me : (
4. This Blue collar type job that is my life may put me in a wheel chair .
The 2 years of favoring the bad foot damaged MY better foot
Anyone on the board have 1st meditarssol bunion problems ?
I am sorry for this negitive post .
BUT I'M DETERM INED TO BEAT THIS THING IN THE LONG HAUL !
AS ALWAYS MY BEST TO ALL MY FRIENDS : ) Anthony P

Re: One leg shorter

Julie on 2/24/02 at 03:11 (074892)

An elevated shoe is a good idea only if one leg is genuinely shorter (as can be determined by measurement). Often, the 'one leg shorter' syndrome arises from spinal scoliosis, which lifts one shoulder and one hip higher, creating imbalance between the two legs. In such a case, an elevated shoe would probably only add a new problem to the spinal problem.

People sometimes think they have one leg shorter, when the problem really originates in the spine.

Re: Negative is part of life and it's ok

Julie on 2/24/02 at 03:16 (074893)

Anthony, please don't apologize for a 'negative post'. Negative and positive are two sides of the same coin: we can't have one without the other, and the genuinely 'positive attitude' is one that acknowledges the reality of both.

You're feeling a lot of pressure now, with disability coming to an end, but you have a lot going for you, especially if you're working on starting a new business. Go for it - and while you can't be on your feet much, concentrate on the paper work (there must be plenty).

And keep venting. And don't apologize. People here understand.

Re: One leg shorter, due to walking boot

BrianG on 2/24/02 at 14:14 (074929)

Hi Julie,

I was only talking about a lift in the 'good' shoe, while wearing a boot cast. The boot I have, adds at least 2' to the foot I'm wearing it on. Walking lopsided is going to hurt you, sooner or later. I believe most of these people who wear the boot casts have normal leg lengths. It's the cast, that makes them uneven. Sorry for the confusion.

BrianG

PS I was wearing my boot cast about 10 hours a day, for a year.

Re: One leg shorter, due to walking boot

Julie on 2/24/02 at 14:38 (074932)

Hi Brian

Yes, I realized that - my comment about leg length was more of a general one, and prompted more by Pam's comment than by yours.

It's hard to believe that doctors who prescribe boot casts don't address the kind of problem you had.

All the best,

Julie