Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Swollen foot

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 3 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • October 18, 2007
  • 06:17 PM

My mother has not been able to walk for about 3 months, due to her left foot. She uses a wheelchair to get around in the house. Her foot doc took xrays and determined that she had Achilles insertional tendinitis and possible plantar fasciitis. There was a heel spur. He also believed that her continued swelling even though she was on diclofenac for over three weeks was due to rheumatoid arthritis. So, she took a bunch of blood tests to see if she did have arthritis. Her results were unremarkable, no arthritis. We then went back to see the foot doc again. The pain that my mother had at the back part of her leg was no longer there, but the pain had now moved to her heel area, especially the inner side of her heel. If you pressed you thumb on her heel she could feel the pain and she also had a feeling of blood pooling at the heel if her foot was down. Her foot was still swollen. The doctor said that she had plantar fasciitis.

We have tried just about all the home therapy exercises and stretches. The ice, the elevation, the rest, the hot/cold water therapy, hot/cold towels, OTC arch supports, night splints, massage, warm pool visits, . . . etc. Because my mother does not have insurance, I have been reading everything I can on these conditions and reading up on physical therapy books so I can help her out. We have been going every day to an aquatic center where they have a warm pool. She uses an stationary exercise bike at home. She is a very healthy eater so I know that is not a problem. She is normal to thin in weight.

After 3 months, she was starting to get the swelling down a bit and had started to walk a bit while holding onto her wheelchair. Then, suddenly, her foot was swollen again as it was 3 months ago. The whole bottom of her foot, from the ball of her foot to the entire heel area is swollen. She only has pain at the heel of her foot. I am worried that it might not be plantar fasciitis at all and I am also worried because having swelling in her heel for so long may cause other problems. Do people who have plantar fasciitis have swelling for extended periods of time?

We are at a loss. If there is anyone out there that can help us find a solution, it would be greatly appreciated.

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