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janewhite1 02-06-2008 05:50 PM

My ankle problems recovery
Time for a new thread title, to go with my latest diagnosis. This title is optimistic, see?

So, I'm scheduled for arthroscopy on 3/19, if I don't get super lucky and get squeezed in sooner. Current working diagnosis is anterolateral impingement, caused by scar tissue following my sprains. It's been a long hard fight to get this far, to a diagnosis and treatment plan, so I thought I'd just throw out a few comments to anyone else struggling with chronic ankle pain.

I had several inversion sprains, sought treatment, got mostly better, never got entirely better, then got worse again (with no repeat trauma). I apparently have scar tissue inside the joint, which causes me some pain if I walk more than a few dozen steps at a time, and causes me sharp pain if I squat down.

At this point, I think I've had this problem at least since Dec 06. I had instability before that, but the instability I was able to fix through diligent physical therapy, since the ligaments were still basically intact.

I'm still annoyed about the normal MRI from last September. That set back my treatment months, because my doctors at the time didn't know that ankle MRIs just plain aren't that good at finding "minor" problems. Hence, they were treating me for some sort of vague sourceless chronic pain, whereas I had a specific abnormality and needed to see a surgeon. The ankle joint is too small and has too many parts to be easily viewed on MRI, and false negatives are extremely common. Contrast imaging is more effective.

Okay, that's enough for now. One way or another, I'm going to beat this, and I'm starting with pre-hab. Don't tell me that's not a word, I just made it up. It's when you exercise before surgery, so that you are as strong as possible when you finally get done and get to rehab. I'm spending time alone with dumbbells, building up my crutch muscles. I do leg lifts with weights to keep my legs strong, while my walking ability is limited. I even exercise the calf and ankle as much as possible. (which ain't much!)

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