Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

Afraid the diagnosis will be Plantar Fasciitis

Posted by Pam M on 8/21/03 at 20:16 (127594)

One month ago I broke down and went to my regular physician to hopefully put an end to my terrible pain in both feet. I was embarrassed to go because I just thinking the reason my feet was hurting was because I am overweight. I went to NY at the end of May 2003 and walked over 100 blocks in the 24 hours that I was there. Needless to say I have times that I can hardly walk. I have bought at least $500 worth of shoes hoping it would cure my feet. I finally went to my regular physician a month ago. She took some xrays and did see 1 heel spur. I told her she had to be mistaken because I could hardly walk on both of my feet. She scheduled an appointment with a foot specialist and the earliest they could get me in is Sept.8th. I wake up every morning hating to get out of bed, I know the minute I step on my feet that the pain will be unbearable. By the time I shower and get moving, the pain eases but does not disappear. I honestly thought I had broken the bones in my feet. They feel like they are tearing on the inside from my heals up 3/4's of my feet. The pain goes through my arches. By the time I drive 30 minutes to work and get out to walk into the plant I can hardly make it to the door. I have left work many of times crying from the pain and wanted to drive straight to the emergency room. I now walk in very small steps. I have learned never to walk without shoes. I have birkenstock shoes, sass(with some elevation in the heels)Naturalizers, Clarks, you name it I've bought them. I am also having swelling in the ankles, sometimes even in my knees. I now sometimes have back aches, which I assume is because of the way I am walking. I have read several of the messages about people with plantar faciitis and I feel this will probably be what I am diagnosed with. I can't bear to think it could be months before I am cured. I can fully understand the message about ending it. I am an outdoor person, I am always on my feet, the past 3 months have been unbearable, I can't hardly do anything. I can't believe they made me wait 8 weeks from my first visit to my regular physcian. My question I guess is, do my symptoms sound like plantar fasciitis? and what can I expect once I see the specialist? Is Plantar Fasciitis easy to diagnois by the doctor?
Thanks for any information. I never realized how many people were suffering like myself.

Re: Afraid the diagnosis will be Plantar Fasciitis

JudyS on 8/22/03 at 12:00 (127664)

Hi Pam - while your symptoms do sound like Plantar Fasciitis it will be best to listen to what docs here have to say and, of course, the foot doctor you will be seeing.
Meanwhile, you might want to read the PF Book on this website which is full of good advice. You've already read the responses to Kristi on the Social board so you have that information as well.
Until September 8 you may want to follow what we call the conservative protocol....
1. Don't go barefoot
2. Mildly stretch, massage and move your feet and lower legs before you get up every day - and after sitting for awhile.
3. Ice several times a day for no more than twenty minutes. Try not to get up on your feet for a few minutes after icing.
4. If you can, take an anti-inflammatory regularly.
5. Wear good quality shoes that are not flat-soled.
6. Most of all, don't overdo. Try to live as normally as possible and try to take frequent breaks but don't overdo rest periods either.

If you are early in this problem, it may not be months before your pain is relieved - if you follow protocol religiously.

I can't speak to the issue of weight. I have heard that too much weight can exacerbate the problem but PF is not exclusive to overweight folks.

Re: Afraid the diagnosis will be Plantar Fasciitis

Will B on 8/25/03 at 04:52 (127883)

There are thousands out there like you Pam. Im just one of them. my battle has been going on for 3 1/2 years. Only recently did I get any real help. It was a combination of stretching. Ice and Heat (heat is important for blood flow to the heel). Vitamins can make a differnce depending on if your condition might have 'started' by a nutritional deficiency. Vitamin C and Calcuim are very important, as is vitamin D, and Magnesium. Over time, if you have a job that requires standing and walking alot, and if your don't have good support in your shoes, it can take a toll.Just as it's also important to keep up your calcuim level to offset bone loss. The above advice sounds good to me. Get to a reputable Podiatrist ASAP. You might qualify for a cortizone shot to offset your symtoms for now. The one I got had B12 in it also, which my doc claims good luck with. I have only had 2 so far. Your facia needs to be stretched. Not overdone, just a good stretch. I do a hanging stair stretch (10 sets of 10 for 10 seconds each foot in the morning). But before 'I' say your facia needs to be stretched - go to a good podiatrist. I may be gatting ESWT soon - depends on how I do with the latest shot. The Ossatron is what my doc uses. Good luck with your appointment on the 8th. And hang in. Better days will come around for you. I did not think they would for me, but...they did. ESWT can do wonders apparantely. Sometimes it takes more than once though, which can be costly if your insurance won't pay. Give it time, and most insurance will cover, and additionally, will be cheaper 'out of pocket' eventually. hang in there.

Re: my dr. told me i have Plantar Fasciitis i'm clueless

jessie s on 9/04/03 at 19:47 (128790)

hi will,
i just went to the dr. today. he took x-rays, and examined me. i don't know a thing about p.f. much less spell it. i have been twisting my anckle constantly for 15 years. i always thought it was my ankle, but this time it was worse. would you tell me about it, and if twisting my ankle so many times could have something to do with it. i have all the symptoms i have read about it. i also get a burning in my arch down to the bottom of my foot. any info you could give me would be great.

Re: my dr. told me i have Plantar Fasciitis i'm clueless

Will B on 9/07/03 at 11:11 (129024)

Hi Jessie. Well, I would certainly like to see a Dr. on this board comment on your mention of constantly twisting your ankle, because in no expert at all. Plantar Fascitis is common in alot of people, it 'can' be accompanied with 'heel spurs' but not always. And the 'spur' itself does not necissarily cause the pain - usually, it's just the damaged fascia and surrounding tendons that are trying to compensate, or have tendonitis to varying degrees. You are on the right path to see a Dr. ASAP - in your case - I would ash for an MRI too - too fully get a better picture of any severe damage. Constantly twisting an ankle sounds like weakened tendons, and or real damage that needs to be indentified. You may have a real 'gate' or 'rollover' type foot problem. If I were you - I would get a fell for diagnosis protocol approach fron one or more of the Docs here by Email, or call thier office. You problem sounds Biomechanical, or structural too me.

I don't have an 'arch' problem per say, but that does not mean my arches, or calves do not need to be stretched, and that they never played a role in my PF, as they may have. You may get some relief while you are getting a proper diagnosis by going to a very good Podiatrist in your area (possibly the one you see now?) and getting a taping regimen in place. Try some 'mild' over the counter orthotics. Look for some in your local medical supply stores, or Pharmacies. I use 'spenco' brand. they (Spenco) make about 15 different 'types' of pads - and hey seem better than most brands to me. Massage your heels regularly, and your arches. USe heat and cold (I use cold pack at night for 10 min and heat in the morning after a foot massage)- get some waterproof First Aid tape from Eckerds or Walgreens (in the US?)that's about 1 1/2 inches thick - read up on Scott's taping techniques on heelspurs.com web site. run two simple stips from heel to ball of feet in a V-pattern, The V- starting fron heel outward to ball and outside edge of foot. If I exercise I run a third strip in the middle. I keep more 'raised heel' type spenco pads in my regular, and dress shoes, and use less agrgesive, Dr. Scholls in athaletic types in running shoes (Adidas, or brooks). I never use tennis shoes, just runners. I get Chiropractic treatment once a month, and it offers great relief for me. I also have 2 podiatrists I see. If it were me I would..


* Get more than one opinion on your X-Rays

* Ask about an MRI for better assesment of damage

* Get a good visual foot exam and gait analysis - learn what 'foot type' you have

* get a way to lower your pain now, learn how to tape, masage, use heat and ice, and learn how and 'what' kind of stretching you need.

*Find out if you have bone loss, get a bone density test, and possibly a blood test, ley your foot Doc asess your overall health, hips, and possibly your back, also any limb length discprepancy.

But like I said, if you are always injuring your ankle, you really need a very true and accurate diagnosis of the damage that you have now, and the reason for your ankle problems now, as well as a clear plan to get your ankle and PF under control now, and in the future. It's one thing to have PF, but in really worried about why your ankle if always being injured. get help for both --