Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Recent Knee Pain

Since February I have had increasing pain in my knees. It started light, only when I went up or down the stairs. Then it was not light, when I went up or down the stairs. Then it was light all the time. Then it was not light, all the time. Walking across a room became something to be avoided.

I did some research and thought it might be arthritis. I had always thought arthritis would come on more slowly. I went from "OK" to "Can Barely Walk" in a month. Also, everything I read, and the people I talked to, saaid that arthritis gets better and worse according to barometric pressure. I saw no real difference in the pain based on weather changes.

I haven't been to see a doctor. I hate going to doctors. My husband is trying to get me to go, but I keep putting it off. Nothing I have read has said anything about a treatment option that I need a doctor for, unless I want my knees replaced, which I don't think is quite necessary yet. The websites I saw said to loose weight, take ibuprofen or naproxin (Advil or Aleve), try to stay off the knees, and maybe menthol cream (Ben Gay). I have been doing all of that and it helps a little. (Except the weight loss, which is too slow to see improvement yet.)

And something told me that it didn't quite fit the arthritis self-diagnosis. So, I continued my research.

Another possibility presented itself. Tendonitis

I think I had avoided anything that focused on sports medicine when I did my first research, which is why I missed it. Tendonitis fits my situation better.

The pain started when I moved my desk from upstairs (where my bedroom, kitchen, and bathroom is) to downstairs and started having to go up and down the stairs 5 or 6 times a day. A sudden change of physical activity can cause a tear in the tendon.

Now, if a person is in good shape going up a few flights of steps every day is no trouble. I fully acknowledge I am not in good shape. I am working on that. (Of course, having trouble walking does not make exercising easy.)

Anyway, tendonitis is not subject to atmospheric pressure changes. Check.

Tendonitis is caused by an injury, such as from sports or a sudden change in physical activity. Check.

Pain can be caused in NEARBY areas due to prolonged favoring of the injured area. Check. (This is what caused me to revisit the arthritis self-diagnosis. For the last couple of weeks my knees had not been hurting much at all, but my calves felt like daggers were going through with each step.)

Last week after we got back from our vacation I bought a cane. I decided to make that concession to my vanity in favor of being able to walk a little more comfortably. Within two days the pain in my calves was GONE and the knee pain is easing up considerably.

I think I am going to be ok.

My husband has said he will give me a few more days before he insists I see a doctor.

I think I can put him off. I do actually feel like I am getting better.

DD10 wearing some silly glasses.

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