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This morning I went to PT and at the same time I picked up my medical records from my current foot doctor in order to shop around for a second opinion. I went and saw the same doctor that did surgery on my knee to see what he might suggest and while it’s not an area he does surgery in he did say given everything that’s gone on that foot surgery may be the only route left to try. I am going to be seeing another foot doctor on the 24th and then I suppose I have to make a decision. I’m more worried about this surgery than I was about the knee but it’s really not getting better.

The doctor today said that normally they tell people with plantar fasciitis to “stretch, stretch, stretch” and the problem generally lies in not stretching enough. I have heard this one before so I do stretch a lot – I stretch in the morning, before bed and a few times during the day at work or before/after I go for a ride.  He said that my flexibility was really good so I may have reach the limit of the benefits of stretching. He also commented that my heel spur was pretty impressive and that they don’t normal see one of that size in someone my age. He said that people come in talking about having this “big” heel spurs and normally they aren’t much but in my case it really is a huge spur. I believe he also said it was “angry” and really swollen.

I did get new shoes today, Brooks Ariels, to replace my old pair of Ariels. So far they have been pretty nice but I’m not sure they’ll be a miracle cure to my problems. One of them already has a scuff/oil mark from the bike though so that’s a little sad.

Some good news though, he went ahead and “released” me as far as my knee is concerned and I don’t need to go back. The knee is doing really well and I’m quite happy I went ahead with the surgery. Now I have to decide if the foot surgery is going to be worth it.

The Bike

Yesterday, when I got home from work, I was really excited to get out and ride my bike. Rain was in the forecast but at that time everything was clear and nice. I happily rode the bike down to FoodPride and picked up a few groceries, it felt so great to be able to use my bike for a purpose. After my trip to get groceries I still felt like I needed more ride time, the store is only a mile from my place. So I decided to head up to the cemetery and ride around there.

Riding around the cemetery, oddly enough, is really nice. There are some nice hills mixed with flat area and lots of nice pavement – some of which was recently added. The older area is well treed so it made for some nice shaded areas to bike. I felt like I was 10 years old again, zooming around the corners and flying down the hills. It was such an awesome feeling with the wind zipping through my helmet. I am currently in love with riding my bike. I hope to get out tomorrow and hit the trails, I really want to get downtown and figure out the best route into work. I really want to bike into work a couple times a week to start. Long term, I’d like to get ride of my parking permit and just walk, bike or ride the bus.

The Foot

I think I said this before, but I have plantar fasciitis in my left foot. Plantar fasciitis is when the plantar ligament in your foot, for various reasons, becomes stretched or damaged and causes pain in the heel (or calcaneus) and can present with or without heel spurs. In my case, I have a “moderate to large” spur on the plantar side and a “moderate” one on the Achilles side of the calcaneus. This information is coming from the MRI I had done in March. So far my treatments have been icing, trying to rest (ha), stretching, night splint and finally a cortisone injection.

MRI Heel Spurs

Heel Spurs on My MRI

The cortisone injection was done prior to the MRI in hopes that it would help – instead it seems to have made things worse. The going theory now is that the injection somehow further weakened the ligament causing it to tear. This tear then created a high amount of inflammation that so far is still present. (As a side note, my right foot had plantar fasciitis also but responded quite well to stretching and hasn’t been a real problem since, never had an injection or spurs)

So today I went to a new physical therapy place, this one is located in the same building as my foot doctor. Some of the things were did were the same as I have been doing but she did a few new things. We started with ultrasound followed by some pretty deep massage. This massage, while not downright painful, was certainly not pleasant. She has to really dig in at times but I survived just fine. After that we did some exercises and stretches and that was followed by icing and something called iontophoresis.

Iontophoresis is basically an electronically charged pad that has both a positive side and a negative side. Steroid medication is placed on one of the pads and is drawn into the tissues via the electrical charge. It’s apparently similar to getting an injection without the actual injection part. This one last 14 hours and so far has been interesting – I seem to get waves of relief followed by waves of pain. I’m hoping it will work with time so I’m doing my best to leave it alone. I’m not a big fan of things stuck on my foot. I go back and see her on Monday so hopefully there will be some improvement. Our goal is to keep me from having to have surgery. I do know that prior to any surgery options, I’m getting a second opinion – it’s just the smart move.

Vital Stats

Name: Angela
Height: 5’8″
SW (2019): 475 Lbs
CW: 410 Lbs

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