Hello CB

I haven’t posted here in forever! Nice to see some familiar names. Hope you are getting some relief since you posted in April.

Here is my experience with plantar fasciitis.(read on, there is a good ending!):

For years, I would recover pretty well from bouts of PF by doing stretching exercises, as recommended by rheumy, and by using shock-absorbing insoles (Sorbothane, which is an engineered shock absorbing material, works best for me). But then 5 years ago I had a crazy bad flare in both feet, and was getting no relief from my tried and tested methods, so I went to a foot doctor. Well, you would hope that an actual foot doctor would be able to help with a foot problem wouldn’t you?! Not a bit of it! Worst experience possible - he gave me steroid shots in the plantar area while wiggling the needle around to “promote healing”, which made things worse. Then the doc said I should have both feet in plaster casts, use a wheelchair for 6 weeks and not put any weight on my feet. Yikes! I opted to keep the weight off of one foot at a time and to use a removable cast. They also did ultrasound treatments, which were very painful and helped not one jot. And keeping the weight of the foot? No improvement at all (also the cast caused probs with the tendon at the back of my heel) Doc then wanted to do a surgical procedure but I was not keen on surgery, so I continued hobbling and hurting, and looking for options. It’s so debilitating when your feet hurt like heck, even just to stand.

Eventually a friend recommended a different foot doctor an hour’s drive away, so I went there and was told to do mucho mucho stretching. Like loads! And they said that surgery was absolutely NOT recommended. Well all these stretching exercises that they told me to do turned out to be not much help, but there was enough improvement to see that this might get me somewhere, so I went to a physical therapist. The therapist said I was “quite the pronator”! After years of ankle problems, I tended to curl my feet inwards while sitting or lying down to relieve my ankles and keep the pressure off my sore feet. But the knock-on effect was that my plantar fascia had tightened, which was causing the foot problems. After many PT sessions where the main aim was to get those ankles to bend (trying to get the outside edge of the foot to go upwards), I realised that I needed to have steroid shots in my ankles to free them up. By this point, steroid shots in various joints had become a routine part of my spondy treatment, so I checked in to the injection clinic at my orthopoedic specialist’s office for shots in both ankles. Well the PT after that was swimmingly successful, and my feet improved dramatically. Yay! Relief at last.

Since then, when my feet get a bit stiff, I do a few stretches, and if my ankles have stiffened up too much for the stretches to be effective, I go to the injection clinic and get the ankle shots again. My mobility has improved a great deal as a result.
The unexpected part of getting the now-regular ankle injections is that along with the obviously reduced ankle pain and the aforementioned plantar fasciitis benefit, my knees are a whole lot better, and so are my hips. It turns out that my stiff ankles were having a knock-on effect and putting extra strain/misalignment on other joints. Result!

All the best
Rach


Rach

"Knowledge is power" - Francis Bacon
"Try all things, and hold on to that which is good" - Thomas Jefferson