In a perfect world I would be writing a race recap today. The GPS Meet of Miles was last night; 1 timed mile on a track that counts toward my run club’s Grand Prix Series standings. I was REALLY looking forward to this for a few reasons:
- I haven’t been timed to see how fast I can run one mile since high school and
- It was on a track and I never get to run on a track and
- It would have been my 4th GPS race. I believe they only take your 4 best performances for the year into consideration.
I almost thought that the weather gods were going to help me out again like they did with the snow-out of the original date for the 15k in March when I was still recovering from tendonitis, but alas the thunderstorms that rolled through right around 5pm didn’t hang around and the event went on as scheduled without me. Could I have gone to run that mile? Yes probably, but it most definitely would NOT be my best performance and not running at all seemed like a more attractive option than hobbling through an 11 minute mile and not being able to walk tomorrow. There are three more races in the GPS series this year so I’m trying not to get too down about it.
I bought myself a present to reward myself for being so smart and sitting this one out.
Anyway there have been some further developments in my current injury saga. I recently paid a visit to my chiro, Dr. Dave and was diagnosed with a neuroma in my foot. Then later in the week a pinched nerve in my calf. I was put on run-rest with the blessing to bike and do yoga. Since I started seeing him, my leg has been feeling better.
My foot, however, has not. Even going to yoga class has been an excruciating experience. Any pose that bent my toes up was pretty much out of the question which has resulted in a great many one-legged dogs. Over the holiday weekend I did a lot of walking during our amusement park trips and it left my toes feeling so agitated. I started getting really antsy and angry. I wasn’t running and it wasn’t helping. What else could I do? So on Monday I decided to make another phone call to one of my podiatrists for a second opinion.
I have several foot doctors by this point and don’t worry…I didn’t go back to Dr. Awful. I don’t have a nickname for this guy yet so I’ll just call him Dr. No-BS, which is exactly why I like him. Dr. No-BS is incredibly straightforward and non-sugar-coaty about everything. To some people this may come off as terrible bedside manner, but to someone like me who is also very No-BS, it is the preferred method of communication.
Anyway, Dr. No-BS rolls in and asks me why I’m there. I tell him that I’ve been diagnosed with a neuroma and explain the tests that were done, where the numbness and pain were, and in his very No-BS way he did a ‘talk to the hand’ gesture at me and told me what was wrong with everything I had just said.
He jabbed around under my toes, explaining that if I had a neuroma I would be screaming in pain, which I wasn’t. He then started pressing on various areas of the top of my foot, trying to recreate the pain/numb feeling that I have been experiencing. As he pushed right in the middle of the top of my foot, that funny, obnoxious, terrible sensation shot through my toes and I knew he had found the source. What I have is a chronic case of being misdiagnosed by doctors. And neuritis. How did I get neuritis? Apparently by being skinny.
I cringed as he told me that I had basically no cushioning for the nerve on the top of my foot so it has been rubbing back and forth over my bone.
He told me that it would be easy to get neuroma and neuritis confused so not to think that Dr. Dave is a total hack who gives me false information. Then he told me that there is a fix that works almost every time. The good ol’ cortisone shot.
I happily agreed. If the end result is me being able to walk without feeling lightning bolts in my toes, bring it on.
When setting up for this sort of thing, first Dr. No-BS wanted to use some ultrasound technology on my foot to locate my artery. He told me that my nerve runs right next to the artery and the ultrasound image would help him better locate it. I asked him what would happen if he were to inject the cortisone into my artery by mistake and was informed that I might have some heart palpitations, but that it wouldn’t happen anyway so don’t worry about it. Whatever. I was just making sure I wouldn’t die immediately.
He put the ultrasound wand on my foot – as I was having flashbacks to like every ultrasound I ever had with B – and then produced the most enormous syringe I’ve seen since my epidural.
It looked roughly like this:
Except that Dr. No-BS was not dressed like one of the Village People and his office is much more tidy than this situation. He sprayed my foot with an annoyingly cold topical numbing solution and I began to mentally prepare myself for the stabbage that would ensue. And I waited. And waited. And waited.
Apparently he could not locate my artery on the ultrasound. This went on for several minutes before he broke out a doppler (cue more flashbacks to being pregnant) and began navigating the top of my foot for my pulse. Nothing.
Ugh. Stupid zombie foot.
I’m not even usually afraid of needles and there I was sitting in the chair staring at this huge shot hanging out of the doctor’s pocket and getting more and more nervous by the second. He assured me in his no-nonsense fashion that this was normal and I DO have blood flow to my zombie foot. At one point he moved the doppler around to find my pulse next to my heel and I was surprised when it was slow, steady, and relaxed. He said my pulse is so slow because I’m a runner and I felt a momentary burst of pride before the anxiety took back over.
Eventually after like a year – or 10 minutes…whatever – he found the artery, sprayed some more of that annoying, cold stuff on my foot and I looked at the ceiling as I got the injection. It didn’t hurt aside from maybe a little pinch.
As I was getting up to leave Dr. No-BS asked me what my tattoo on my arm meant an I proudly told him that it was my marathon time. He asked me if it was my first one and when I told him yes, he looked impressed and told me congratulations and that I would see him in 3 weeks. Hopefully not for any more needles.
As I’m writing this, I’m still less than 48 hours post-cortisone and while I still have mild to moderate pins and needles when I move my toes in certain ways, the painful lightning bolt sensation is gone. I went to yoga yesterday and was capable of keeping both of my feet on the ground for my downward dogs, so huge win there. For the next couple days I’ll be taking it easy and sticking with the bike and strength training, but I’m crossing everything that there will be some pain-free running in my future. I’m even crossing my toes now. Because I can do that now that they don’t hurt so badly.
What was the last annoying injury you dealt with? Have you ever been misdiagnosed by a doctor? Have you ever gotten a cortisone shot? If so, did it help?