One of my biggest rules about picking doctors, they MUST be a runner! I unknowingly went and broke that rule today. So I apologize for my little rant below, all I can say is I can't help it!
Monday morning I had an appointment with a Specialist that my PC Doctor sent me too. My PC (a distance runner) knows that I only see doctors that are runners, so I didn't question his recommendation and I booked the appointment and waited several weeks to get in.
I wasn't sure on what to expect, but I was hopeful. Instead of dragging it out, let me just say it. It was NOT a good experience!!!
The Podiatry Specialist said he believes the original diagnosis was correct, the Tendinitis in the Achilles. However, he also believes I also strained or pulled 2 of my other tendons that run up the side of the leg as well as the Achilles. I agree with him, only because when you push on the tendons I feel pain. He wanted to do an MRI to be sure, I of course declined. I am not going to spend thousands of dollars just to be told what I already know.
Mainly the reason I decided to make and keep this Doctor Appointment was because I would love to be able to take a step with my left leg and have no pain. I also wanted to make sure that my gradual return to running is okay if I measure it by listening to my body and the injury.
I believe the injury(s) are on the healing end, and would have been healed by now if only I could get the inflammation down. But no matter how many times a day I ice it, and the daily Naproxin, it hasn't gone down yet. If I can get the inflammation down, I know the injury will heal quick! (gut feeling!)
In short he kept telling me I am already doing everything correct, that should aid in my recovery. Blah blah blah story of my life and every doctor visit over the past 5 months.
All I wanted was the shot with some steroids (cortisone) and heavy anti-inflammatory (the only thing I haven't tried). Which he wasn't interested in giving without an MRI.
Now one thing I wasn't expecting, was the guy to say. "Maybe it's time you start looking into a different sport." WHAT?
Well, he lost my interest right then and I could of cared less about his opinion on anything after that. He's not a runner, and obviously isn't interested in helping a runner get back to running. He suggested I take up something less stressful on my joints like biking or swimming.... I would have liked to give him some suggestions on where he could go, but I managed to keep my manners in check:)
He finally agreed with me, that I need to get the inflammation down. So rather than the shot, he prescribed me a heavy anti-inflammatory pill that I take for 5 days, and it will stay in my system for quite a while.
So this was really the only thing of benefit that I took from the appointment.
He also suggested heel inserts, which I have been meaning to get anyway so I did accept the ones he gave. He also suggested I purchase orthotics, just one that have a tad more support to keep the ankle more secure. Since this was something I have done in years past, I could see the benefit for. So I did go ahead and purchase this.
He also recommended I go back to wearing a walking boot... ARGGG I only wore one for almost 3 months straight.. Thinking I must have used the wrong one, he suggested I purchase a new one... (Don't ask me why I did this, but I did.. Funny thing, its almost exactly like the one I was in before....)
He also suggested I lay off running for a considerable amount of time. (I ignored him on that one!)
Do you see a pattern, Specialist was just into selling me stuff. Not helping me heal, he wanted to sell me stuff and of course set up follow-up appointments (which let me say will be cancelled!)
So basically I just went to a Specialist and spent hundreds of dollars, to be told exactly what I already knew. As well as that I am already doing everything right, and he said he is not sure why with everything I have done and how aggressive I have been with the healing of this injury that I am not healed??? Yes, and he's the one with the medical license and not me??? Go figure!
Honestly, I have gotten better FREE advice from You Tube video's on Runners World about my injury than this guy who cost a small fortune.
Well I am hopeful about the stronger anti-inflammatory, that I start taking in the morning. As for the rest of my recovery. You can call me an idiot if you'd like, but I have decided I am done with Doctors for now. Most everything that I have done that has actually helped me, has been stuff I have researched on my own anyway.
So, I am going to take the anti-inflammatory for the next 5 days. I am also going to not run this week while I take them. (I am smart enough to know that they will only be masking the pain of the injury.)
I want to give them time to do their thing and help the healing. Then see what happens next week. At which time, I may gradually begin running again (low mileage, very very slow build up.. Using any pain as my guide to back off.)
Additionally, I will continue to slowly stretch the tendon's out, and strengthen them and do all I can to help getting the blood flow needed to them to heal!
It's a bit discouraging, but I don't see I have any other options left. I know I probably sound crazy tossing doctors out for now. But I have been to so many doctors in my life, so many physical therapy appointments (years worth from way too many car accidents in my younger years). Then you add my own medical training to the mix. Lets just say, a girl can pick up on things. I know my body better than anyone else, and so I believe I am my own best option at this point.
Guess we'll see what happens. Best case scenario, eventually things will heal and I can slowly get back into running again. Worst case scenario, things get worse and I have to back off running even longer to let things heal. Either way, eventually it WILL heal, and eventually I WILL get to run again pain free!
One thing, I am now looking to get into a different line of work in the coming weeks/months. My 2nd job (which caused the injury) is obviously keeping things from healing each day to go and do it.
Might even go back to something I told myself I never would and get back into Marketing and Advertising... (Still gotta talk myself into that one a bit more though!)
So the smartest option is to quit that job and find something new that won't be as strenuous. My wedding company can be quite strenuous, but I'm not quitting that one (I love it) but that is the best part about being the boss, I can just hire more help and do less lifting and so on at the events!
So for now, I am moving on with my week:) Getting everything finished and packed up tomorrow to take the long hot drive from Salt Lake to San Diego to decorate for a wedding I am doing there this weekend. I am looking forward to a hotel near the beach, and watching Fireworks across the bay for the 4th of July!