Protecting muscles and joints from further injury
April 10, 2012 9:40 PM Subscribe
Bad calf injury of some sort. Must get up and down stairs once a day, three days in a row. Strategies for minimizing the pain (and potential damage) of this?
posted by kalapierson to Health & Fitness (12 answers total)
I've been bedridden for several days with a so-far-undiagnosed left calf muscle injury (or blood clot, but that's unlikely -- never any cramping or symptoms like hardness, redness, swelling).
Saw doctor yesterday; will get a leg ultrasound today to see if muscle tear or detachment can be found and rule out clot; will see a specialist tomorrow. (Remaining two appointments can't be rescheduled.)
Standing on the calf, or walking, OR just having the calf at rest with my foot on the floor (so it's the lowest part of my body) = excruciating calf pain. Sitting or lying with calf at hip level or above = little to no pain.
I'm in a two-story house. Doctor appointment yesterday meant my first attempt in five days to get down and up the stairs. I sat down on the stairs, resting my left ankle on my right knee to prevent the pain of lowering the calf any further, and used my right leg to lower myself down each step. Reversed the same thing to go back up the stairs, sitting down and lifting myself with my right leg. (Rode around doctor's office in their wheelchair with calf elevated.)
This approach to the stairs unsurprisingly made my right knee hurt, and that knee is already inflamed (calf injury might well have initially come from overcompensating to protect right knee). So this approach may be unwise to do three days in a row.
But attempting to just walk down or up stairs = blinding pain.
What would you suggest I try for today's and tomorrow's stair descending/climbing? I will have taken Tylenol (can't take any other OTC pain reliever -- not aspirin / ibuprofen / any NSAID). I have someone to help me, but he can't carry me and it's unclear exactly how he should assist otherwise.