Tendin' the Tendon
October 8, 2012 4:51 PM   Subscribe

Frustrating physical ailment filter. Help me find temporary relief.

YANMD. I'm on my feet a lot. For work, for getting around, for everything. I've been in Berlin for a week, and the tendon that controls the upward movement of my large toe is starting to really hurt when I walk. It's also become one of those annoying physical things that I can't stop noticing, even when I'm not moving (like itchy-feet syndrome). So until I can get to a doc, can someone give me some advice for relieving some of the symptoms.
posted by outlandishmarxist to Health & Fitness (8 answers total)
Oh, man, I get that a lot....

Try some gentle stretches; curl your toe as hard as you can, and then flex it as hard as you can (for whatever definition of "as hard as you can" excludes extreme pain). Just a few times.

Then relax and stay off your feet as much as possible.

(I get all sorts of weird toe stuff now after a broken foot; gentle stretches followed by taking it easy for a little while helps, and making sure the arches in my feet get good support also helps.)
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:54 PM on October 8, 2012

If you have no contraindications to taking ibuprofen, you can take that over the counter at 400 mg 3 x day, for both pain relief and its anti-inflammatory properties. Take it 3 x day whether you feel like you need it or not, to let the anti-inflammatory action kick in. Icing and/or heat might also help.
posted by SweetTeaAndABiscuit at 5:00 PM on October 8, 2012


Get a bucket of very warm water and a bucket of ice water. Heat for a minute, ice for 30 seconds. Alternate ten times, ending with ice.
posted by Specklet at 5:01 PM on October 8, 2012

Eating gelatin may help. It can strengthen the tendon by "feeding" it.

Seconding: Anti-inflammatories, like ibuprofen, and also hot and and cold treatments.

Compression socks might help. I used similar support for an injured wrist while going to school and needing to type a lot. It helped get me through.
posted by Michele in California at 6:50 PM on October 8, 2012

Check to make sure your footwear isn't aggravating the problem.
posted by nat at 7:16 PM on October 8, 2012

I have one pair of shoes that did this to me, though they were otherwise comfortable. I would try different footwear.
posted by emjaybee at 7:18 PM on October 8, 2012

It's probably your shoes, but in the meantime: rest and put it up when you're sitting, and if you can get Voltarol (may be under other brand names in Germany - it's Voltarol in the UK and Belgium, but the underlying medicine is Diclofenac) you can rub a little dab of it over the affected area once a day (or whatever the pharmacist recommends). Worked a treat when I had tendon issues in my foot.
posted by bedhead at 7:56 PM on October 8, 2012

I have a different toe problem (an extra bone that rubs against a tendon sometimes) and my dr said that I should take 4-6 ibuprofen when it first happened and try to stay off it for the next day since swelling and irritation begets more swelling and irritation.
So far this has worked really well for me in the past 6 yrs, and has kept me from having to get surgery or cortisol shots.

Basically: get the swelling/irritation down asap if that is the problem.
posted by rmless at 8:09 AM on October 9, 2012

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