exercise, money, physical status report, work

the story of the feet (oh, not that story)

Sunday January 19, 2020

I had been at Wright Business Graphics for about 13 months. I was working on the production floor. I was working in the digital print department. I was on my feet most of my shift and the majority of that was standing with limited walking. The floor of the plant is concrete.

Within the first four months of my employment I began to have significant pain in my knees, feet and mostly in my hips. Eventually I had to go to a doctor to be evaluated and treated. The first part of the treatment was getting shoes that would cushion me against the unforgiving concrete floor and letting the injuries heal. The second part was doing stretches and strengthening exercises for my hips and lower back and core.

The progress was slow and was interrupted by a new health concern that came on suddenly: diverticulitis. I was diagnosed after an ER visit. Recovering from that took priority over the lower body issues. The stretches and strengthening exercises went out the window. That delayed the healing process for my lower body by a couple of months. Over the next month or so the diverticulitis came under control and I returned to working on the lower body issues. The hip pain slowly resolved as did the knee pain.

I was beginning to see the end of this wilderness of pain when suddenly my foot pain increased. I was again forced to seek medical advice. This time I was referred to a podiatrist. On August 31st I had my first visit with Dr. Daniel Johnson, DPM. He diagnosed me with posterior tibial tendon dysfunction. He told me what the prognosis is for this and that we might have to try various solutions to see which would be most effective. He gave me a pad for the inside of my shoes.

I wore the shoe pads and for almost two weeks the pain decreased. But suddenly the pain increased again and I had to return to the doctor. I had to start wearing a brace but said this was no more than a stopgap measure. The best solution would be an orthotic insert. He was very blunt with me. He told me that eventually I would have to go to an orthotic insert or the tendon would rupture. If that happen then I’m looking at major surgery. However my insurance would not pay for these inserts. I would have to pay for them out of pocket and they are not cheap.

Finally a year after seeing Dr Johnson for the first time, I had to swallow hard and go get fitted for an orthotic insert. The man who got me set up was very knowledgeable. He had been doing orthotics for 40 years. He told all about how they work and what I could expect. Toward the end of my time with him, he took molds of both feet. I was surprised. I thought I only needed an insert for one foot. He said that the doctor had prescribed a pair because my left foot would soon have the problem that my right foot already had. Actually the cost was for two inserts not one. That made me feel better about paying out the money.

I can’t remember if it was September 7th or 14th but on one of those days I picked up my orthoditcs. He man who fitted me slid them into my shoes and made a couple of adjustments. He told me how to break them in and then I was off and running (so to speak).

I must say that the difference has been amazing. They changed my gait, changed my stance and changed my life. The foot pain is gone. I can be on my feet again. I’m walking 10000 plus steps a day. Work doesn’t kill my legs anymore. It has been wonderful. hats off to Dr Daniel Johnson! Hats off to Anderson’s Footwear and Custom Orthotics! My feet are eternally grateful.

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