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Very scared and tierd of the pain

Posted by Marcia on 2/23/04 at 18:46 (145123)

I have had heel pain (Plantar Fasciitis) for three very long years.(both feet)
I have been through every treatment there is (cast,theropy,shots,otho,and just started steroids) I saw my foot dr. today he gave me my 7th shot, and told my I should have the surgery. I am very scared I have two kids I do not see me being able to sit still for more then one day, also I would have to have surgery during the summer becuse of work. So my question is (not sure there is a answer) will this surgery help and I am I going to spend my summer recovering and my poor kids will not have a summer vacation..........also why will my dr. not give me anything for pain....when he did give me pain killers it did help

Re: Very scared and tierd of the pain

Pauline on 2/23/04 at 22:03 (145137)

I'm not a physician, but here are some ideas for you to consider. I've had P.F. 3 different times and each case lasted over 3 years. I dont consider myself lucky, but each time I had P.F. it eventually went away with only conservative treatments.

Having small children, working and a good case of P.F. doesn't mix well.
Something usually gives as frustration sets in. P.F. takes it's toll on the patient, family members and on work.

Please remember I'm not a doctor just speaking from my heart. No one can tell you what your response will be to surgery or the length of time necessary you'll need for heaing or even that you will be pain free following any surgery.

There are things that you can do, however, to give you more peace of mind.

Personally at this point, if I were you ,having already had 7 shots, I'd seek a second opinion prior to letting your doctor do surgery.

A second opinion never seems to hurt anyone and often times insurance companies even require one. If your going to a Podiatrist DPM, then you may want to see an Orthopedic Surgeon M.D. who specializes in foot and ankle surgery or a Sports Medicine M.D.

If you've not had tests other than xrays, ask for an ultrasound or MRI to be done.

If you've not investigated ESWT or don't understand it read about it here. It's the latest non-invasive treatment that some doctors offer as an alternative conservative treatment to surgery. Again no guarantee of success, but there isn't any with surgery either. If it helps, your Plantar Fascia remains just the way God made it and continues to support your feet and you get pain relief. If it doesn't you can always have the surgery should you choose to do that later.

Finally do ALL your homework prior to having surgery. Write down your questions and ask the doctor you select all of them. Understand everything that he will do and what you can expect as far as post op care and healing. If possible speak to other patients that he has treated with surgery. Ask him how many he's performed and how many of those patients are pain free today.

Discuss the type of orthotics that you will need, whether you'll be in a cast or be offered Physical Therapy.

When your satisfied you've overturned every leaf, got all your questions answered and surgery is your last resort select the doctor of your choice. Go into that surgery with a possitive attitude, knowing you've done all that you could do. The rest is in your God's hands and that of your doctor.

Wishing you the very best in what ever decision you make.

Re: Very scared and tierd of the pain

Ed Davis, DPM on 2/23/04 at 23:42 (145153)

As far as I am concerned, it is the obligation of the treating physician to provide ALL reasonable options to a patient so patients are making truly informed decisions. I would be concerned if the physician did not mention ESWT in such a case. Luckily sites like this can allow 'self-help.'

Some links to read include: http://www.sonorex.com http://www.unitedshockwave.com

Re: Very scared and tierd of the pain

Marcia on 2/25/04 at 16:37 (145346)

Thank you very much for your reponsed, it helps to hear for other people about this and that have been through this. I have and ESWT it also did not work. also this is the second foot dr I have seen about this he basicllay said when I frist started seeing he was that he wanted to start over and treat me for this from that begining. So I had to go thorugh everything again with the second dr. that I went trough with the first. I am very depressed because I am in so much pain not only my feet, but from my hips down. I am getting fustrated becuase the dr. keeps telling me to take over the counter pain releivers and I continue to tell him they do not work! I do not know what to do..................

Re: Very scared and tierd of the pain

Ed Davis, DPM on 2/26/04 at 10:47 (145418)

Did you have one or two rounds of ESWT. One interesting thing I learned from Dr. Z and later, confirmed by experience, is that the success of one treatment does not have any bearing or predictability concerning the success or failure of the second treatment.

There is some hesitancy among medical professionals in the use of pain releivers but much of that is not warranted. Considering all of the modalities out there to control pain, from TENs units to Cox-2 inhibitors to judicious use of yes, narcotic pain meds (okay I said the big 'n' word) patients should have their pain minimized. The key to successful use of narcotic pain medications is to use them on a strict schedule, not exceeding or violating that schedule irrespective of needs --- that is how one prevents from becoming dependent.

Finally, if one is simply not responding to any of the reasonable treatments for PF then it raises a red flag that one may be experiencing pain from a source other than PF and diagnostic investigation should continue.

Re: Very scared and tierd of the pain

BrianG on 2/27/04 at 22:39 (145554)

Hi Marcia,

Very quickly, about the pain meds. Most foot doctors do not want to treat the pain, on a long term basis. You would be better off to go back to your family doc, explain your pain, and ask for help. If he refuses, ask for a referrel to a pain management doctor, or clinic. There is no reason to suffer in this country !!!!!

Good luck

Re: Very scared and tierd of the pain

Ed Davis,DPM on 3/05/04 at 09:47 (146088)

You are correct about your first statement. Yet, unless someone is in an HMO requiring PCP referrals, the podiatrist can and should make the referral to a pain specialist. Sometimes, pain specialists are not easy to find in many areas.