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Posted: 11/22/2003 12:20:18 PM EDT
I have had a sore Achilies tendon in my left leg for about the last 5 months. At 1st the pain was pretty bad. It would hurt when I sat for any length of time, & hurt for abvout my 1st 10 or 15 steps, & then the pain would daminish to almost nothing. After several months of this the pain was very daminished overall, & I thought great, it's healing. I don't know what caused it, but it's not going away any more. It's just not extremely painfull. Just a minor thing. If my wife feels it she swears she can tell it's larger than the other one. If she massages it it hurts quite a bit, but otherwise it seems fine.
I don't have insurance, & money is tight due to an earlier time of 4 months unemployment this year, or I would go see the doc.
If I do end up going, should I see a specialist 1st, to save the GP cost?
& before I go that route can anyone give me some idea as to what's going on, & if it's serious enough to warrent a doctor visit?
Thanks in advance for any knowledgable help. Searcher out
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 12:31:29 PM EDT
I don't have any specific advice on the tendon issue since i know nothing about that (only thing I do know is those plantar fascietis (sp) injuries that can take forever to heal).

What I woudl advise is to be very careful about dismissing a "minor" injury, because I did that, and now I'm paying for it by not being able to run for the rest of my life.

I had what I thought was a minor injury in my knee once, and while it was painful it was not too bad, and I jsut gave my leg some rest and then slowly startedd up my running again. Other than the occasional tight feeling, it was fine. Year and half later, it turned out that I had in fact torn my cartiledge, and if I had seen a doctor at the time, it would have been a simple ortascopic operation - and I could have run marathons still. Because I thought it was okay, and ran for 18 months on it, I screwed it up so badly, that I was told never to run again, had surgery last summer - and now am getting ready for another round of more serious surgery. All because I didn't see a doctor up front, and assumed it was okay because it felt better.

I'm of course NOT saying that anything like that is going on with you - but I just wanted to share then sentiment that sometimes it really is much better to be safe than sorry.

If it's all coming out of your own pocket, Id' definitely skip the GP and see a specialist first (IF you go, of course). If it is out of your own pocket, try to negotiate up front for the cost of the visit - you can often negotiate a lower rate than what they charge an insurance carrier.

Sorry that I've only got no specific advice. Hope it's nothing seriuos and that you'll be fine without having to spend anything.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 12:31:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/22/2003 12:33:22 PM EDT by gunnar]
The recommendation I am going to suggest is just me thinking aloud. In no way am I diagnosing your symptoms or advising medical advice.

Sounds like you have some general, localized inflammation in the soft tissue (fascia) area of the heel.

Typically, inflammation is caused by blunt trauma of some type or even poor circulation.

You have several choices that do not require a Dr's visit: you could apply moist heat 3x daily for 15 minutes at a time, use gentle massage accompanied by OTC therapy such as Tylenol/Advil (any type of NSAID). In addition, avoid copious amounts of alcohol and regulate your dietary habit with prudence.

After a couple of weeks, if you do not see an improvement in swelling and pain relief, I would advise a specialist vs. a GP. The GP will only refer to a specialist and increase your cost and double your time/visits.

Regarding a specialist, consider consulting with an osteopath.

Best Regards,
Gunnar
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 12:36:58 PM EDT
Searcher

Don't know if this is the same. I had a sore achilles for months, maybe years. Not bad enough to stop everyday living, but it stopped me walking golf courses and any lengthy walk sucked. Of course, this meant I waloked less and got fatter - hmm, part of the problem?

I finbally saw a foot specialisat and it seems I have bad feet like most folks. I made some fitted orthotic inserts f or me shoes and I have been trouble free since. I have also dropped some pounds which can't hurt.

If this doesn't go away and it starts to effect your quality of life - go see a real orthotic surgeon.

2 cents worth'
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 12:44:35 PM EDT
I do not recommend and osteopath, but rather an orthopedist. From the description, what you have is tendinitis. (inflamation of the tendon). I recommend a non steroidal anti inflamatory and taking it easy on the leg. When you do have to walk, etc wear a boot that provides ankle support. something that comes above the ankle by several inches. Hot soaks to decrease the inflammation can help too. If you have a massaging foot bath (IE. dr shoals foot fixer or something like it) use it. I have one with IR heat and massage and it works great, including relieving the pain in my knees. Try that for 2 weeks. If that doesn't work, see the ortho doc.

These recommendations from someone that has had some training, but is in no way a Dr. (nor does he want to be) However, it sounds like a simple sprain/strain, probably due to hyper extension. Don't let it go too long without improvement before you see a doc. You do risk additional damage if that is not the cause. It could also be caused by bone spurs which would do additional damage.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 1:20:21 PM EDT
Don't screw around with it. You gotta go & see the Doc. How in the hell do you expect to go hunting if you can't walk, let alone drag out a fine deer ?!?!?!?!?!


And then there is chasing the wife around the house with a big ostrich feather ...


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