Posts Tagged ‘needle tenotomy’

So, I’m hoping that the ‘No Pain No Gain’ thing isn’t true in my case.  The doctor told me, ominously, that “Tylenol would be my best friend” as she ushered me out the door after the needle tenotomy on Monday, so I was expecting big pain, but I’ve had only tiny pain, certainly not enough to bother taking a Tylenol for.  It’s day 5 post-tenotomy, I’ve ditched the Big Boot, and am free to walk about with two shoes or no shoes, as long as I don’t do anything strenuous.   I  almost miss my boot..it got me sympathy and attention from strangers.  Someone even gave me their place on the Lucy bus, which was packed, but I was being a good obedient patient and riding the bus instead of walking a mile.  (Note: it was a woman who gave me her seat. Why was it a woman?  Where’s all the male chivalry when you need it?  Just wondering. )  Anyway, that was two days ago and now I’m walking everywhere as usual, but I’m being very obedient, resisting the temptation to run when I am late for the train, or take the shortcut that requires me to walk down the rocky hill behind the baseball fields to get to my house faster.  I am tormented daily by the constant stream of emails from Pretzel City Sports, and the six or seven  other race promoters who have my email address, forcing me  to think about all of the races that I can’t run.  Sigh.  I suspect there’s going to be nothing interesting to say about this until my next doctor visit in about 10 days, and perhaps not even then.  I should probably blog about something else..but what?


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Yesterday I had an ultrasound-guided percutaneous needle tenotomy of the Achilles tendon. The theory behind this, according to my doctor, is that it will cause an inflammatory reaction and stimulate the body’s healing response, increasing blood flow and stimulating the release of various healing factors which will go rushing into the tendon and make it all better.   Either that or it won’t help at all, but hey, it’s covered by my insurance.  Here are five important lessons learned, which I offer for anyone contemplating this procedure.

1. This procedure feels like someone is sticking large hypodermic needles repeatedly through your tendon and into your bone with no local anaesthesia. The reason it feels like this is because that is exactly what they are doing. Do not be fooled by any similarity to acupuncture. These are big needles, not little skinny magic needles that you don’t feel. There will be blood.

2. A “walking boot” is a pain in the ass. The boot is about 3 inches off the ground, so unless your other shoe has a three-inch thick sole, you will be completely uneven when you try to walk and will probably end up with some sort of back injury from listing to one side. (I ended up walking on my tip toe to get to the bus stop to go home.) If you are going to get a walking boot, try to find some platform disco pimp shoes from the eighties ..actually you only need one..to wear on the other foot.

3. You absolutely can not drive in a walking boot. They will tell you this, and you will not believe them, but it’s true.

4. You can not sleep in a walking boot, despite what the doctor tells you.

5. Your walking boot will scare your cat.

So, I have two more days after today to be in the boot, and then, the doctor tells me, I will be able to remove it and carry out my “activities of daily living, but no exercise” which is, of course, an oxymoron.  Stay tuned.

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