Ok, this is some sucky shit. A little history....I ran my first Marathon on October 26. During my training I had a few minor injury issues (mainly hip pain that was pretty much fixed through a lot of PT, and the random broken rib). During the marathon everything went pretty well until about mile 17-18 when my right ankle started to kill. When people asked how it went I told them everything felt pretty good until mile 17-18 when it felt like my someone "stole" my ankle joint, leaving me with "bone on bone" (my visual demonstration for this was making my hands into fists and hitting them together....bone on bone). In the days/weeks following the marathon my ankle still hurt, some days were worse than others. There were times that it would feel like it got "stuck" really deep in there and if i put weight on it, it would hurt bad, but then it would go away. Finally one day while I was out shopping the pain got pretty bad and I could barely walk on it, so I headed to Med Express for an x-ray (thinking it was a stress fracture). They didn't see anything but also said that it would probably need an MRI to see it and to call my ortho dr. So I did that, he couldn't see me for 2 weeks, so I waited, then had to cancel my appointment because of work drama and re-schedule the following week. During those 3 weeks it felt pretty much better, just sore on the outside. So when I went to see him he did a basic exam and said that I had tendinitis and gave me a prescription for PT. Cool. But them I went to cardio kickboxing that Saturday, and during the "jumping jack and shuffle" my ankle "went". It felt like someone opened up my ankle and put a "jack" (you know, the pointy thing that you play Jacks with) in it then I jumped up and landed on it. PAIN!!!!! I had felt this same thing after the marathon, but just kept trying to get passed it, and eventually it faded out, but it was BACK. I couldn't put any weight on it, then it went away, then came back, took 2 steps, it came back, finished the class barely putting any weight on it, walked out of the room to the weights, it happened again and had to sit down. Finally I managed to leave, and it was gone for the rest of the day except for a few steps. Over the next couple days it came back sort of on and off. In the meantime, it was Thanksgiving (I did the Turkey trot), everyone was busy, blah blah blah (I didn't make a Dr's appt right away).
Fast Forward to the Jingle Bell Run, everything went well, except that my knee hurt and my ankle didn't feel great. I was fully trying to ignore that there might be something wrong and I didn't want to go back to the "Above Dr". However on Monday of last week I decided that I needed to get everything checked out and made an appointment with a different Sport Medicine Ortho for Thursday. At the appointment she was super thorough with my knee and ankle, even addressed a weakness that I wasn't aware of in my quad and hip and gave me a scrip for PT, along with the tendinitis in my ankle. Then back to the ankle, she felt that there was "something else" going on deep in there, possibly a stress fracture or torn cartilage, and set me up for an MRI on Friday morning.
Friday afternoon I heard back from her...........upon initial review of the MRI it's apparent that there is cartilage damage in the ankle joint, comparable to a "pothole" in the cartialge (WTF? am I going to need asphalt dumped in my ankle???) that would most likely need to be addressed surgically, often they drill tiny holes into the bone to make it "bleed" and make new cartilage (**I'm sure I'm off on some of this....if you know more, feel free to chime in!). Hmm, tiny holes in my bone, YEAH!!! That sounds GREAT!!!!
"Luckily" for me, one of my best friends just happens to be engaged to the "THE" foot/ankle surgeon here (and the same one that this Dr would refer to me). So, I called him and he went and looked at the MRI yesterday. In addition to my "pothole" I also have a cyst on the tip of my tibia, which he told me "is a rather unusal place for this type of cyst" (cool, i'm so unique!). Most likely I will need the surgery to address the cyst, cleanup the cartilage, and repair the "pothole". My next question was "What's the recovery like?" Believe me, you don't want to know. 6 WEEKS non weight bearing on crutches (and I forgot to mention, it's my FLIPPING RIGHT FOOT, aka THE DRIVING FOOT, which means NO DRIVING), then 6 weeks "intense" physical therapy, and basically "you're looking at about 6 months until you are getting back to "normal". WTF???? That doesn't mean that in 6 months you'll be ready to run a 1/2 marathon, that means that in 6 months you might be able to do a 5K.
HOWEVER - Since I said that I would want to wait until after the Holidays to do the surgery he suggested that we at least try a cortisone injection first, just to see if somehow I can avoid the surgery and to also help in seeing if this is really the source of pain. So, he's fitting in me in at 7:45am Monday for the injection. After the injection I need to take it easy for 1 week, then return to normal activitiy (along with PT) and see what happens.
Bottom line, I am hugely disappointed. I cried forever on Friday, I kept thinking about my "Rock Star Plans" for 2009 and how much I was looking forward to becoming a "better runner". I know that this is all still possible and maybe it won't be in 2009, maybe it will have to be in 2010, but I wanted it now. I was finally feeling like I found something that I enjoyed, that I could work on and get better at, I love all of the running friends that I have made and I was looking forward to getting to do so much more with everyone this year. If it all happens to work out and the injection "fixes" everything, I will have an even bigger appreciation for it all, but if the injection doesn't work.....that is just going to suck.
So, anyone have any experience with this? Anyone have a spare ankle? Sorry for such a shitty post, but it's where I am right now.