Following on from last week’s post about eyesight, I have another issue that I’d like to share. Not literally, of course, although...... no, perhaps not!
Every month I have my feet seen to by a podiatrist, once known as a chiropodist. Just like the opticians we knew and loved are now known as optometrists, and most physiotherapists as chiropractors. But I’m getting away from the point.
Friday was the day of the appointment so I went happily along knowing that pretty soon the feet would have respite, and so would I. Don’t misunderstand me, my feet aren’t bad, in fact, the podiatrist, oh to hell with it, let’s call him by his proper name, Steve. Steve often tells me the feet are pretty good for my age. I agreed with that until the following day when I woke with a chronic pain in the right foot. Pain, swelling and redness at the base of the big toe. And they were only seen to the day before!
By this time, of course, it’s weekend and no-one to consult. The pain got worse, and there was a certain amount of numbness in the toe. I could hardly walk. Well, I could, but a walk was more like a stumble, with arms gripping furniture en route. Laughable if you’re a spectator! Believe me, it went on all day and I was understandably fed-up as well as worried. On top of this, I had trouble getting a shoe or slipper on and that worried me even more in case I was making it, whatever IT was, worse.
|(picture form internet)|
It’s a bunion, I thought, and actually convinced myself of that. I checked with Google and found a site filled with advice on what to do. Separate the toes, it said, put a wad of cotton wool there to keep the toes apart. I did and I could swear I felt some relief. I remembered there was a family connection with bunions, my mother having had two removed, and that didn’t bear thinking about either. She couldn’t walk for weeks after the operation and had to wear black surgical boots which she hated. Perhaps it runs in the family, I thought, hoping against hope that it didn’t.
That night, I couldn’t sleep for the pain and in the end I swallowed a couple of paracetamol in the hope that they would help me get to dreamland. They did ... what a relief.
A friend who popped in on Sunday morning asked what Steve had done to the foot. Like me, she blamed the expert. The pain was even worse and I was really beginning to fret. There was nothing for it ... I had to go back to Steve.
8 o’clock Monday morning, I phoned and told him the tale. ‘Drive straight over,’ he said. Always assuming I could drive!! No worries there, I could drive better than walk. Actually the pain seemed to have subsided a little although the area of complaint was still an unhealthy red.
After a fleeting examination Steve declared ‘It’s not a bunion’ and then decided to keep me guessing which was, of course, impossible since my mind was hell bent on thinking only of bunions.
Gout? What the hell was he talking about?
Then he told me that without a doubt I’d had an attack of arthritis (which I doget in other areas) aggravated by the very damp weather, and it had pinpointed the toe area. Hence the gout! He recommended a stiff course of paracetamol and ibuprofen for one day which should remove both redness and pain. ‘Go all out,’ he said, ‘knock it on the head.’ I couldn’t get to the chemist fast enough.
I have always associated gout with overweight, heavy drinking males, which I’m not. Just fancy, a slim thing like me afflicted with gout. Whatever next?!
In order to add a bit of colour to this post I looked on the internet for suitable pictures. I found some of bunions ... wowee ... so now I'm thanking the good Lord that my problem was gout!