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Continuing Intense Heel Pain Woes - Please HELP.

Posted by Judy Maxwell on 10/01/02 at 08:46 (096586)

Hi, there... I found this wonderful website and I was wondering if someone could kindly help me with my major foot and ankle pain. I don't know what else to do or where to go - I have no health insurance, but I really need some help before spending thousands of dollars on medical bills.

Here's the background of my problem...

To start off, it's also important to note that I'd been walking approximately 10 miles/day for the past few years and compulsively exercising such as doing thousands of jumping jacks and etc. and my foot was sore from that shortly before... the accident. over one year ago, I accidentally 'cracked' my left heel on solid oak which resulted in immense pain and paralysis for two days. Afterwards my foot has never been the same!

Since I didn't have health insurance, I was unable to attend to the doctor. However, I couldn't stand the constant pain in my ankle and the chronic heel pain (mostly a burning sensation on the left side and going down to the bottom of the heel) and it felt like all the bones in my foot were broken. It just hurt so badly! Moreover, I had no movement whatsoever in my ankle! I had to eventually go to the hospital ER about 6 months later and they found... I have a perfect foot! Go figure! All the x-Rays turned out fine - no problems. How could this be when I have a constant burning in my heel? I lie awake all night long because of intense burning? My knee buckles? They couldn't help me. Funny thing is... WHen I left, I fell on my face about 3 times and the nurse asked 'What are you doing?' I replied, 'I fall! This is why I'm here' and she responded that I needed to see an orthopedist asap. About six months later, I had to visit an orthopedist. He wouldn't even bother looking at me and after about five minutes, he said that there was nothing he could do for me and couldn't see why I couldn't walk 10 miles/day. (Since my accident, I haven't been able to walk at all - I stumble and my knee now buckles) The orthopedist said that the 'pain moves around my foot too much' and I just had a weak ankle. He recommended 2 sessions of PT to strengthen my ankle but in the end, he prescribed 1 month of PT. I attended all my sessions and the PTs thought that I had a severe knee injury (my knee burns and buckles when I take a step) and tendonitis in my ankle. To treat the tendonitis, I had numerous iontophresis treatments which helped considerably. However, nothing could be done to diagnose or help the intense burning in my foot. In fact, all the PT exercises strengthened my ankle but agitated the burning. I've used aspirin, excedrin, tylenol, ibuprofen, ben gay, pure emu oil, shoe inserts, new shoes, heat and ice compresses, stretches, and more to no avail. It kills me when I walk, when I sit, all night. I have this awful burning sensation in my foot. Plus, now my knee's bothering me even more and it still buckles when I walk. At PT, they had me on the treadmill for 10 seconds at the most before my knee started buckling.

So..,. What can my problem be? Here's my symptoms as of now -

Intense burning in my left heel (lower back side of foot near ankle, going down to the bottom left side of heel)
It burns when I take steps, when I'm at rest, all night... ALL THE TIME!
The burning increases when I twist my foot and ankle to the side!
That area throbs

Arch hurts just as well, but not as bad as it did a year ago.
Ankle bone and the tendons underneath hurt - it feels as if my ankle's broken

Bones generally all hurt in my foot

Knee buckles when I walk
Knee has a slight burning sensation

I feel a slight tingling sensation running down the front of my leg (tendonitis?)

It's also a bit funny - the only shoes that i can comfortably walk in and experience very minimal pain are - HIGH HEELS!

It's really difficult to explain in an e-mail message but I'm at a loss. I was thinking of making an appointment with a foot doctor, but... after the breakdown of costs, it's not feasible at this moment. I was told that I would need to make the following payments in addition to others not known at this time...

$75 consultation fee - initial
$45 per in-house x-Rays - I need approximately 6 x-Rays, even though I have x-Rays
$1000 or more - MRI

If you have any questions please ask! I'll be checking for replies. This means so much to me... I need to get on with my life. I haven't lived during the past 1 1/2 years due to this injury and it has greatly affected my life.

Re: One more thing...

Judy Maxwell on 10/01/02 at 08:48 (096587)

Since my accident, I've fallen and most likely sprained my ankle about 60 times which could have also aggitated the problem. When I fall, I twist my ankle and the ankle lands directly onto the pavement or ground.

Re: Judy

Carmen H on 10/01/02 at 15:59 (096621)

I recommend you read up on RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy) otherwise known as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome.
There are a few experts on this her on the board that also suffer from it...do a search on google.com and put those terms in and see if the pain symptoms match yours.

Re: Thank you!

Judy Maxwell on 10/01/02 at 16:21 (096623)

I will look that up right now and hopefully it'll shed some light on my condition. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for caring and responding to my post! Bless you!

Re: Thank you!

Carmen H on 10/01/02 at 16:33 (096624)

There are a lot of people who care out there...if you need anything come back here for support. Please keep us posted!

Re: One more thing...

BrianG on 10/01/02 at 17:03 (096629)

Hi Judy,

You could also have other type of nerve problems. For this, I'd advise seeing a Neurologist, who would probably perform an EMG test. A search will bring up many posts on this.

Good luck
BrianG, not a doc

Re: I did a little research...

Judy Maxwell on 10/02/02 at 05:46 (096674)

I don't think that my problem can be classified as this, but... It's always a fall-back! I appreciate your taking the time to post! I greatly appreciate it. As I was doing the research on it, I know some of the symptoms sound like something that I may have, but elsewhere though. I'm always experiencing a tingling/burning of the skin or as I say, 'My hair hurts!' lol! Maybe this is a sign of that? I don't know. I just hope that I can go to the doctors soon!

Re: One more thing...

Judy Maxwell on 10/02/02 at 05:48 (096675)

I thought about that too... I never really had any problem whatsoever with my foot until that fateful day when I cracked my heel on that solid oak. :-( A nurse advised me to see a neurologist - I just need the money to do so. All this testing and etc. will get expensive and I don't have insurance. :-(

Re: One more thing...

Carmen H on 10/02/02 at 16:49 (096743)

That's one reason you need to ask about RSD...it can be triggered from an accident or trauma.
It is nerve related pain as well....

Re: Continuing Intense Heel Pain Woes - Please HELP.

Ed Davis. DPM on 10/02/02 at 20:37 (096762)

Judy:

I feel sorry that you have not gotten a response from the docs yet. The dilemna is that you have too much going on and we have too little objective clinical information to even make a good educated guess at this point. Getting the appointment with a foot doctor would be a good step -- the MRI can be negotiated as to whether you need it and to the price. Insurers often reimburse less than $1000 for an MRI so if you really need it you should ask for a cash discount.
Ed

Re: Continuing Intense Heel Pain Woes - Please HELP.

Judy Maxwell on 10/03/02 at 07:07 (096774)

Ed,
Thank you so very much for responding to my question! I know that I do have a lot going on, but I appreciate your input. I applied for health insurance in July and I should be shortly finding out whether or not I've been accepted. As soon as I am accepted or even if not, I'll definitely head to a regular physician for a physical (my mom and 2 brothers have fibromyalgia so I'm worried about that too) and to the foot doctor. Keep your fingers crossed that I hear from the insurance company soon. I'm just worried that maybe all claims will be barred because this is a pre-existing injury?

I'll inquire about the MRI and see if it's really necessary just as well. I'm a full-time law student and I don't have much cash on hand!

I'll keep everyone posted!

Thanks so much! I can't express how grateful I am for you and this board!

Bless you!

Re: One more thing...

Judy Maxwell on 10/03/02 at 07:07 (096775)

I'll look into it further! Thanks for your help!!! !!!

Re: One more thing...

Judy Maxwell on 10/01/02 at 08:48 (096587)

Since my accident, I've fallen and most likely sprained my ankle about 60 times which could have also aggitated the problem. When I fall, I twist my ankle and the ankle lands directly onto the pavement or ground.

Re: Judy

Carmen H on 10/01/02 at 15:59 (096621)

I recommend you read up on RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy) otherwise known as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome.
There are a few experts on this her on the board that also suffer from it...do a search on google.com and put those terms in and see if the pain symptoms match yours.

Re: Thank you!

Judy Maxwell on 10/01/02 at 16:21 (096623)

I will look that up right now and hopefully it'll shed some light on my condition. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for caring and responding to my post! Bless you!

Re: Thank you!

Carmen H on 10/01/02 at 16:33 (096624)

There are a lot of people who care out there...if you need anything come back here for support. Please keep us posted!

Re: One more thing...

BrianG on 10/01/02 at 17:03 (096629)

Hi Judy,

You could also have other type of nerve problems. For this, I'd advise seeing a Neurologist, who would probably perform an EMG test. A search will bring up many posts on this.

Good luck
BrianG, not a doc

Re: I did a little research...

Judy Maxwell on 10/02/02 at 05:46 (096674)

I don't think that my problem can be classified as this, but... It's always a fall-back! I appreciate your taking the time to post! I greatly appreciate it. As I was doing the research on it, I know some of the symptoms sound like something that I may have, but elsewhere though. I'm always experiencing a tingling/burning of the skin or as I say, 'My hair hurts!' lol! Maybe this is a sign of that? I don't know. I just hope that I can go to the doctors soon!

Re: One more thing...

Judy Maxwell on 10/02/02 at 05:48 (096675)

I thought about that too... I never really had any problem whatsoever with my foot until that fateful day when I cracked my heel on that solid oak. :-( A nurse advised me to see a neurologist - I just need the money to do so. All this testing and etc. will get expensive and I don't have insurance. :-(

Re: One more thing...

Carmen H on 10/02/02 at 16:49 (096743)

That's one reason you need to ask about RSD...it can be triggered from an accident or trauma.
It is nerve related pain as well....

Re: Continuing Intense Heel Pain Woes - Please HELP.

Ed Davis. DPM on 10/02/02 at 20:37 (096762)

Judy:

I feel sorry that you have not gotten a response from the docs yet. The dilemna is that you have too much going on and we have too little objective clinical information to even make a good educated guess at this point. Getting the appointment with a foot doctor would be a good step -- the MRI can be negotiated as to whether you need it and to the price. Insurers often reimburse less than $1000 for an MRI so if you really need it you should ask for a cash discount.
Ed

Re: Continuing Intense Heel Pain Woes - Please HELP.

Judy Maxwell on 10/03/02 at 07:07 (096774)

Ed,
Thank you so very much for responding to my question! I know that I do have a lot going on, but I appreciate your input. I applied for health insurance in July and I should be shortly finding out whether or not I've been accepted. As soon as I am accepted or even if not, I'll definitely head to a regular physician for a physical (my mom and 2 brothers have fibromyalgia so I'm worried about that too) and to the foot doctor. Keep your fingers crossed that I hear from the insurance company soon. I'm just worried that maybe all claims will be barred because this is a pre-existing injury?

I'll inquire about the MRI and see if it's really necessary just as well. I'm a full-time law student and I don't have much cash on hand!

I'll keep everyone posted!

Thanks so much! I can't express how grateful I am for you and this board!

Bless you!

Re: One more thing...

Judy Maxwell on 10/03/02 at 07:07 (096775)

I'll look into it further! Thanks for your help!!! !!!