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plantar or raynaud's?

Posted by peter s. on 9/21/04 at 23:15 (160312)

Hi - I'm a 35-year-old who's been running marathons for 10 years. I never had foot problems until a year ago, when I developed a bad case of plantar fasciitis in my right foot. After seeing no improvement from stopping running or cortisone shots, I showed gradual improvement from active release massage and orthodics. There's still pain in the morning and after running, but it's manageable now.

but three weeks ago, I began feeling a tingling and numbness in my right foot, and to a lesser extent my left as well. also - my feet are cold a lot, even though it hasn't been partic. cold outside. I feel like the circulation to my feet is bad - I crunch my toes to get some feeling in them. Running feels like running on a block of wood or ice.

My podiatrist the other day diagnosed me with raynaud's syndrome. the symptoms are right - but I am wondering if it's nerve damage from the plantar. it seems like too much of a coincidence raynaud's would just crop up now after a year of foot problems, and it's pretty rare - partic. in men. any thoughts?

Re: plantar or raynaud's?

Julie on 9/22/04 at 02:10 (160321)

Peter, I'm not a doctor, but I share your scepticism re the Reynaud's diagnosis. It sounds to me as though you're describing nerve-related symptoms, tingling and numbness, that are not necessarily part of Reynaud's. I think you would do well to have your spine checked out by a chiropractor or an osteopath. Impingement of the sciatic nerve, which has branches which end in the foot, has been implicated in cases of PF (mine included).

Re: plantar or raynaud's?

Darlene on 9/22/04 at 10:00 (160333)

I too have very cold feet even in warm weather along with the tingling a numbness. I was diagnosed with TTS.
Were you diagnosed with a blood test for Raynaulds? I believe the test is called ANA (antinuclear antibodies).


Re: plantar or raynaud's?

SteveG on 9/22/04 at 11:10 (160340)

Peter - Interesting. I have PF and Raynauds and the Raynauds appreared about a year after my diagnosis. The key features of the Raynauds would be color changes - toes (feet) become red, blue, or pale. Not everyone has all of the these colors, but if your toes don't become red or blue I would wonder about the diagnosis.

Your family doctor can easily check the circulation in your feet via your foot pulses, capillary refill, hair on your foot and toes, etc. As mentioned, He or she might also want to do some automimmune tests to rule out lupus or RA. You should be taking an aspirin a day to help with the circulation, and there are other drugs they might help, if need be

I don't know about the nerve damage theory. None of my doctor thought they were related.

Re: plantar or raynaud's?

Dr. David S. Wander on 9/23/04 at 07:28 (160372)

If your doctor believes you have Raynaud's, performing an ANA will not provide a diagnosis. The ANA can be elevated in a variety of conditions. Although your tingling may be secondary to a nerve problem, the circulatory changes may be indicative of Raynaud's. You should be evaluated by a vascular specialist to have non-invasive vascular testing performed. This may include a 'cold challenge' that involves checking your circulation and then re-checking your circulation after your feet/hands are exposed to cold. If the vascular exam is inconclusive a visit to a neurologist may be in order to rule out a pathology of your spine/back. My personal recommendation would be to see the specialists I've mentioned and not a chiropractor. In my opinion, the chiropractor could be seen after you've received a diagnosis.