walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Oh, hey: OA

Years and years and years ago, okay, fine, from about 1999 to 2004 give or take a year or so on either end, I trained in martial arts. I spent a lot of that time learning how to lunge forward, and a good lunge is sort of an all over thing: the goal was to get muscles from my toes through my feet, legs, butt, torso, etc. all rallying cooperatively to move forward quickly and do something painful to an opponent. When I developed chronic, intermittent pain in my big toes, I was prepared to chalk it up to a repetitive stress injury and kept expecting each break (vacation, illness, eventually a move across country) to allow it to permanently heal.

It sort of never did. I grew to accept it.

More recently, this happened:


I wasn't sure what to make of that little bump. I thought, maybe I'm losing fat deposits in my hands as I age, and it is exposing underlying Stuff. I noticed that finger isn't straight anymore. I thought, maybe I broke it as a child, and never noticed it wasn't straight before.

Then last night, out of the blue, my right pinky finger became hot, tightly swollen and painful to bend. The sort of thing that happens if you slam a finger in a door -- but I hadn't, or at least, when I'd recently jammed a finger, it hadn't swollen up. Mystery! Scary mystery, actually. What if I woke up and the whole arm was like that?


Well, I took a baby aspirin, re-researched gout, re-researched arthritis, and learned about Heberden's Nodes and perimenopausal women.


Oh, hey: I have osteoarthritis! Which is a complete explanation for the mystery problem that has developed in my right foot (so, R.: you were _sooooo_ wrong. NOT plantar fasciitis.).

Bad news: there's not a lot that can be done about this. I'm _real_ familiar with this, because it's so common in my family that my sister (a nurse!!!) has the same problem but hadn't actually realized it. Good news: I know enough to not wipe my stomach out with pain killers, and to be moderate about what I do with complaining joints.

I may have to give up the hair coloring in favor of getting back into swimming, however, and I'm feeling very happy about having bought the stationary recumbent bike in the basement, because that treadmill can only be used in comparatively short bouts.

ETA: Here's a bit more:


"How Does Osteoarthritis Affect the Foot and Ankle?

Each foot has 28 bones and more than 30 joints. The following are the most common foot joints affected by osteoarthritis:

The joint where the ankle and shinbone meet
The three joints of the foot that involve the heel bone, the inner mid-foot bone, and the outer mid-foot bone
The joint of the big toe and foot bone"

Obvs, I knew about the last of that list. I don't have trouble with the first. My mystery right foot problem appears to be the middle in the list.

Boy, do I seem to have a textbook case.
Tags: aging
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