Sunday, December 18, 2011

Always Listen To Your Doctor???

I need to let off a little steam here.  I made a very poor decision a few weeks back and have been debating about this post for nearly 2 weeks. I would never tell anyone not to listen to their doctor but I have often wondered if I may know better on occasion where my own condition is concerned.  I went to have my ankle looked at a couple weeks ago to make sure I had not done any real damage at Javelina. As I suspected the doctor found nothing. I have been going to the same orthopedic group for years. I have been there for knee, foot, ankle and IT diagnosis and have always had great care but for some idiotic reason decided to try this new guy. I was intrigued by the fact that he is an athlete himself and promotes that heavily (marathons, triathlons).

During our visit he made what I thought to be an odd assessment. He told me that I severely over pronate.  I was sitting on the table when he broke the news and other than 2 or 3 hops on my right foot he had not seen me touch the ground let alone walk or run. In my mind I was thinking "what on earth makes you think that and how the hell did you come up with this interesting conclusion".  What I actually said was "I have had my stride analyzed several times and have never been told that I over pronate and am in fact neutral".  Is it possible that things could have changed I wondered?  The doctor seemed to think it was obvious.  He said I should get an orthodic called Powerstep. I bought them and tried them because doctors know best.  Right?


I even had confirmation from my wife who looked at me like I was crazy when I showed up at home with these things and shared the story. After my first run I sent him an email explaining all of the things I was concerned about from the arch, foot position and ankle discomfort. He suggested I keep at it, allowing the orthodics to break in. So I kept at it for the next week running minimal mileage. I never ran more than 9 miles and began to experience what I would describe as significant knee pain at the base of my right patella. It was not constant but up hill/stairs, down hill/stairs, during the act of standing up or sitting down and even pushing my chair back at my desk would send sharp twinges through my knee.

Bye Bye orthodics and guess what?  No more pain.  Just had a great week of pain free running. Returned the orthodics too, as they come with a 30 day satisfaction guarantee.

I will continue to listen to my doctor's medical advice but I think I will follow my own advise and instincts where running is concerned.



  1. rock on Eric. and to hell with the white coats with omnipotent views. its amazing how much we as runners can do to heal ourselves if we just listen to our bodies.

  2. How on earth could he make that diagnosis without a full weight bearing assessment? crazy. Most athletes know their body better than anyone else-so I ask them what THEY feel (ie, unstable?compressed, etc), and often my findings correlate. Keep following your instincts! btw, that right ankle, is it the same foot as the hallux surgery? I just overheard another physio telling a patient that if she had that surgery, she would never be able to do triathalons again! I had to step in and quote your accomplishments post-op. Made for a very happy patient, thanks to you :-)

  3. Heather, yes it is the same foot as the surgery, and my doctor told me that surgery was needed if I wanted to continue to run. hmmmmm?


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