Help Needed, Unidentified Injury to foot

JowGaWolf

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Hello

First I would like to thank you for any guidance in advance!

I was sparring on August 2nd 2015. My partner and I were warming up (not sweaty yet). I threw a right low kick at about 70%, my partner backed up quickly so I did not follow through and did some sort of half assed swing and tried to tuck my leg back in close to my body. My pivot foot immediately was in pain. It felt as if the ball of my foot dislocated. The joint since then has felt unstable. I have been to 3 separate foot doctors throughout the years. Since that day i have not been able to kick/push off of that left foot. All contact sports are out, any sprinting or jumping must be done very carefully. The issue is, that no Dr knows what the injury is. Has anyone else had an injury to the ball of their pivot foot? I have had countless X-rays and there are no broken bones. The last Dr said there is definitely arthritis in that joint, but i know that is not what originally caused this. That is just a byproduct of the original injury. If anyone has had something similar please, any info would be greatly appreciated. I am 25 years old and am too young to have to not be able to push myself. Thank you!
I would go to an "alternative medicine" doctor. By alternative I don't mean some crazy doctor with a magical drink. I mean a doctor that isn't so closed minded to medicine where the only way he can tell if something wrong is to take an X-ray. From what you describe it seems like something is either out of place or caught. The reason why I say this is because you describe it as something that felt moved out of place and didn't settle back (dislocated). This is a possibility that something is out of place or hung on the inner workings in your. It's probably tissue related which is why x-rays don't show anything. Having connective tissue out of place is not the same has having bone out of place. With connective tissue the Dr.has to be able to massage and feel your foot for connective tissue vs feeling for bone displacement. I'm thinking a highly skilled massage therapist or someone highly skilled in eastern (non-western medicine).

The thing about a lot of non-western medicine and "traditional" medicine is that they are trained to feel around and diagnose issues through touch and are not always in a position where they can just take an xray. I bet your doctors spent more time setting you for an x-ray than feeling around on your foot to see if something was out place. Doctors that I had when I was a child "40" years ago would spend quite a bit of time actually feeling for an injury. It was more than just bending the foot and saying "does this hurt". I go to a doctor now and the first thing they is apply movement until I say it hurts, then they suit me up for an xray. Many doctors now just want to do a quick look over. Very few want to manually dig around to see what's happening. You are more likely to get that from a physical therapist, but sometimes they don't even do it.

The difficulty is finding a good doctor like that.
 
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Monkey Turned Wolf

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Thats why I am having an MRI. Not everything can be seen in X-rays. You cant see cartilage, tendon, or ligament damage in an x-ray
Hopefully it shows up on the MRI. But if it doesn't accept that it might be psychosomatic. Which like jobo said doesn't make it less real. But the brain is a powerful thing and can make it feel in every way like an actual, physical injury.
 

Gerry Seymour

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Hello

First I would like to thank you for any guidance in advance!

I was sparring on August 2nd 2015. My partner and I were warming up (not sweaty yet). I threw a right low kick at about 70%, my partner backed up quickly so I did not follow through and did some sort of half assed swing and tried to tuck my leg back in close to my body. My pivot foot immediately was in pain. It felt as if the ball of my foot dislocated. The joint since then has felt unstable. I have been to 3 separate foot doctors throughout the years. Since that day i have not been able to kick/push off of that left foot. All contact sports are out, any sprinting or jumping must be done very carefully. The issue is, that no Dr knows what the injury is. Has anyone else had an injury to the ball of their pivot foot? I have had countless X-rays and there are no broken bones. The last Dr said there is definitely arthritis in that joint, but i know that is not what originally caused this. That is just a byproduct of the original injury. If anyone has had something similar please, any info would be greatly appreciated. I am 25 years old and am too young to have to not be able to push myself. Thank you!
The only thing I've experienced that produced immediate pain that didn't show on X-rays was a bone spur that broke off and was just wandering around in the joint chewing up the cartilege. It's probably time to have something more than an X-ray. If your doc can't figure it out, go to another doc.

You say you've had "countless X-rays", but that seems unlikely. If one set of X-rays doesn't show a problem, another doc might decide to get their own to verify that, but then they'll typically look to another diagnostic tool.
 

Gerry Seymour

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Just because you have some pain doesn't mean you can't push yourself you just got to work around it. I spent a few years training at a bjj club with a guy with only one leg and one arm (and even his good arm wasn't fully formed) and he was a blue belt who was taping out numerous able bodied people and competed in the Abu Dhabi championships and even competed against full bodied athletes and won.
That's not necessarily true, HH. Some pain can be pushed through. Pushing through other pains can cause long-term damage. Not knowing the cause of the pain leaves that in question.
 

Gerry Seymour

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I came across that a few times researching, but plantar fascitis effects a different part of the foot. This is the joint where the big toe connects to the ball of the foot.
That's where I had my bone spur. Have you been to a foot specialist? I can't recall if you mentioned that in your OP, and I'm too tired to go back and read it again. :D
 

Gerry Seymour

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Thank you, I'll run it by them. Did your injury feel like a dislocation? Basically since the original injury, the ball of my foot has felt very unstable. And if I push off on it, pivot, step on uneven groud (like a root sticking out for example) It feels like it is about to dislocate. If I try to sprint, then it will dislocate and will bruise, swell, all that jazz. to me it is bizarre that being so young and taking so much time off, it still feels just as susceptible to injury as the first day.
You describe it as a dislocation. Is there actual, visible dislocation of the joint?
 

JowGaWolf

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That's not necessarily true, HH. Some pain can be pushed through. Pushing through other pains can cause long-term damage. Not knowing the cause of the pain leaves that in question.
I pushed through a bad sprang ankle in my 20's and caused permanent damage to my ankle. The damaged ankle now naturally turns inward enough that I now have to make a conscious effort to prevent it from doing that. Whatever I did probably never heal correctly. I probably should have stopped putting weight on it each day thinking I was going to work it off. It seems that the older I get, the more of an issue it becomes, and the more I notice it. I'm definitely not happy with my 20 something's self.
 

Gerry Seymour

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I pushed through a bad sprang ankle in my 20's and caused permanent damage to my ankle. The damaged ankle now naturally turns inward enough that I now have to make a conscious effort to prevent it from doing that. Whatever I did probably never heal correctly. I probably should have stopped putting weight on it each day thinking I was going to work it off. It seems that the older I get, the more of an issue it becomes, and the more I notice it. I'm definitely not happy with my 20 something's self.
Yeah, I have a few things I'd like to discuss with 20-year-old me, too. He was a bit careless with this carcass.
 
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Carson Elmore

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That's where I had my bone spur. Have you been to a foot specialist? I can't recall if you mentioned that in your OP, and I'm too tired to go back and read it again. :D
Thank you for taking the time to read through my post. I have been to foot specialists, all three of the doctors were foot specialists actually. But this bone spur thing is very interesting. Did it cause chronic pain? I am not constantly in pain throughout the day. It is only really painful if I do some type of forceful movement that recreates the injury. Then it is painful for about a week. Thank you for your insight, I want bring that up to the Dr after I get my MRI
 
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Carson Elmore

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You describe it as a dislocation. Is there actual, visible dislocation of the joint?
If I am being honest, It happens so fast, I do not know. Nor have I been willing to try to recreate the injury without shoes on anymore. But this only happens when I am not paying enough attention.

Hear me out. My childhood friend came to town on tuesday of last week. 6 days ago. We played 1 on 1 basketabll like the old days. Everything was fine until we were tied for the game winning point. We kept going back and forth and we got really into it. Chasing a rebound is how I reinjured it. Throughout the rest of the game I was able to focus on protecting that injury. Which I am able to do by curing my big left toe into the bottom of my shoe. Almost like a hawks talon. Somehow this protects the joint I have found?
 
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Carson Elmore

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if it were me, once I got the MRI, I'd take the film and the x-rays to a good Kinesciologist.

And welcome to Martial Talk.
Great idea Buka. Also I like your profile picture. That made my day!
 
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Carson Elmore

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I would go to an "alternative medicine" doctor. By alternative I don't mean some crazy doctor with a magical drink. I mean a doctor that isn't so closed minded to medicine where the only way he can tell if something wrong is to take an X-ray. From what you describe it seems like something is either out of place or caught. The reason why I say this is because you describe it as something that felt moved out of place and didn't settle back (dislocated). This is a possibility that something is out of place or hung on the inner workings in your. It's probably tissue related which is why x-rays don't show anything. Having connective tissue out of place is not the same has having bone out of place. With connective tissue the Dr.has to be able to massage and feel your foot for connective tissue vs feeling for bone displacement. I'm thinking a highly skilled massage therapist or someone highly skilled in eastern (non-western medicine).

The thing about a lot of non-western medicine and "traditional" medicine is that they are trained to feel around and diagnose issues through touch and are not always in a position where they can just take an xray. I bet your doctors spent more time setting you for an x-ray than feeling around on your foot to see if something was out place. Doctors that I had when I was a child "40" years ago would spend quite a bit of time actually feeling for an injury. It was more than just bending the foot and saying "does this hurt". I go to a doctor now and the first thing they is apply movement until I say it hurts, then they suit me up for an xray. Many doctors now just want to do a quick look over. Very few want to manually dig around to see what's happening. You are more likely to get that from a physical therapist, but sometimes they don't even do it.

The difficulty is finding a good doctor like that.
The last Dr I went to was way more hands on. He did take x-rays but thats because #1. I told him my last diagnosis was a broken bone. #2. For insurance purposes a Dr is not allowed to order an MRI unless an X-ray is preformed first unfortunately. Hopefully this Dr will continue being more hands on after the MRI
 

Gerry Seymour

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Thank you for taking the time to read through my post. I have been to foot specialists, all three of the doctors were foot specialists actually. But this bone spur thing is very interesting. Did it cause chronic pain? I am not constantly in pain throughout the day. It is only really painful if I do some type of forceful movement that recreates the injury. Then it is painful for about a week. Thank you for your insight, I want bring that up to the Dr after I get my MRI
The progression of my bone spur isn't the same as what you describe, but I'll share it in case it helps. A bone spur grew on the major joint of my left great toe over years (I also had a significant injury to that toe back in my 20's, and I wonder if that's what started it). I had decreased range of motion and general soreness for many years. Last year, I hopped off the last few steps into my basement (something I do literally every time I go down there) and felt a really sharp pain in that joint. The pain didn't go away and the toe got worse. When I went to a foot specialist some weeks later, he could see the bone spur (had both X-ray and MRI on it). We opted for surgery, and I'm glad I did. When he went in, he found a part of the spur had broken off and was grinding around in the joint.

With the bit of spur in the joint, the joint was tender to the touch, got much worse at times (probably me doing something that ground that bit of bone into the joint more), and was often very tender to even walk on.
 

Gerry Seymour

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If I am being honest, It happens so fast, I do not know. Nor have I been willing to try to recreate the injury without shoes on anymore. But this only happens when I am not paying enough attention.

Hear me out. My childhood friend came to town on tuesday of last week. 6 days ago. We played 1 on 1 basketabll like the old days. Everything was fine until we were tied for the game winning point. We kept going back and forth and we got really into it. Chasing a rebound is how I reinjured it. Throughout the rest of the game I was able to focus on protecting that injury. Which I am able to do by curing my big left toe into the bottom of my shoe. Almost like a hawks talon. Somehow this protects the joint I have found?
Okay, so it's a sudden pain, but not necessarily a dislocation from the sound of it. And the grabbing the bottom of the shoe is exactly the habit I developed to protect my big toe. It keeps the joint from bending as far. I did that off and on for years, and constantly for many weeks. I literally had to learn how to not do that while walking.
 
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Carson Elmore

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Okay, so it's a sudden pain, but not necessarily a dislocation from the sound of it. And the grabbing the bottom of the shoe is exactly the habit I developed to protect my big toe. It keeps the joint from bending as far. I did that off and on for years, and constantly for many weeks. I literally had to learn how to not do that while walking.

Thank you for sharing your experience with the bone spur. That's a very interesting concept that I will toss around to the Dr. I really am convinced it is a form of dislocation or something out of place like Jowgawolf said. Just based on the sensation it feels similar to the dislocations i have had previously. Although the degree of dislocation can cause slight differences in how it feels when it happens. Either way thank you for giving me another tool in my belt!
 

JowGaWolf

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The last Dr I went to was way more hands on. He did take x-rays but thats because #1. I told him my last diagnosis was a broken bone. #2. For insurance purposes a Dr is not allowed to order an MRI unless an X-ray is preformed first unfortunately. Hopefully this Dr will continue being more hands on after the MRI
The next time he feels around for injury on your foot. Ask him what is he searching for or trying to detect. Did he compare both feet, suing the good foot to help him identify what may be out of place on the injured foot? Hopefully this doctor will be able to figure out what the other's couldn't.
 

Buka

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Another thing you might consider, Carson, are orthotics. Custom made hard ones, not the soft ones you buy off a rack. They're usually made from plastic or carbon fiber, they're made from a precise mold of your feet, both feet.

Every ailment and every person is different, but they saved my butt over fifteen years ago and I've been wearing them since, pain free. Obviously, not when I'm barefoot, but my feet no longer bother me then.

Keep us posted how this progresses. And keep the faith.
 
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Carson Elmore

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Thank you for the guidance guys! I finally had an MRI scheduled for the 27th! I will keep y'all posted! I am excited to see who was the closest to the correct answer
 
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