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Good tendon gone bad!

November 6th, 2010 by melanie

One year ago (in October 2009) almost to the day, I fell off a step ladder and definitely stepped back hard on my left foot, but the pain wasn’t severe at the time. Over a period of several months, though, I noticed that my left ankle was very stiff in the morning, or after a few minutes of sitting still (like at my desk at work). Then it began to actually hurt (quite a bit) after periods of rest, though the pain did subside after a few minutes, and usually didn’t bother me again till I rested. What got my attention was that my knee and ankle started “popping” a LOT - and it got to the point that the pain and stiffness was pretty severe UNTIL both the knee and ankle popped.

This began to affect my usual routine of walking for about an hour each morning. First infringement on my lifestyle…

I think the “coup de grace” was when we moved in April (6 months after the pain and stiffness began). We had a two story house and I must have run up and down those stairs 50 times. Though I was careful to wear really good athletic shoes with good support, within a few days, I realized things had reached a critical point. My knee and ankle were swollen and I had to elevate the leg, pack it with ice, and take lots of ibuprophen - all of which were effective. But I was worried now, and finally went to my family doctor, who immediately referred me to an orthopedic specialist.

Now, I am going to sound like an old fart, but my first alarm went off when I met the doctor. She looked like she was a small child.

Her “bedside manner” was basically nonexistent. She looked at my foot for about 30 seconds, and sent me down the hall for an X ray. When she got the results, she immediately said I had no arthritis, no fractures (honestly, I could have told her that), and that she felt that the very obvious lump on the back of my ankle was bursitis and that I also had a Achilles tendonitis. She put me in an AirCast, telling me to wear it for one month, and return. She said she felt my ankle simply needed rest. She said I could take the Air Cast off when I got home each day from work, as long as I was sitting down for the most part. My instructions were to wear the cast for most of each day.

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