With the exception of two drive-ons and two very short and easy walks I have not been into the hills since 6 June 2016. The last time I ventured out properly was on a trip to South Wales to take on Sugar Loaf Mountain and Coity Mountain. It was on this trip that something happened that has led to this extended absence. I had enjoyed a lovely sunny and warm climb up Sugar Loaf and has experienced some weird and wonderful VHF propogation however, in my eagerness to get down and move on to my next appointment I turned my foot over and stumbled on a small loose stone. Giving my ankle a quick check over all seemed fine so continued off the hill without further incident.
It was not until a couple of days later that I noticed a sharp stabbing pain in the outer edge of my left foot. I put it down to the fact that at work I am on my feet for 8-10 hours at a time. However, over the next few days the pain got worse and I found it difficult the walk at times. Eventually I got the see the Doctor who’s first thoughts were that I had a stress fracture of the 5th Metatarsal so was sent for X-Ray. A couple of days later I received a call to say the X-Ray was all clear so made a further appointment with the Doctor. This time he suggested it could be a ‘soft tissue’ injury and referred my to a Podiatrist for futher investigation.
Eventually, eight weeks after the injury, I get to see the Podiatrist. Following a lot of poking around he concluded that I had an acute injury to the Fibularis of the Peronial Brevis Tendon i.e. the point where the tendon joins the end of the 5th metatarsal. It was following this diagnosis that he came up with the classic course of action. Immediately after the injury was caused I am to take 2 weeks off work and keep the foot elevated and use ice packs to reduce the swelling! Dispite explaining to him that this injury occurred 8 weeks ago he insisted on repeating the initial course of action in the event of this tendom injury!!! Eventually, he concluded that maybe I didn’t need time off work but should consider the ice pack to help ease the pain and expedite the recovery. Throughout the whole consultation he didn’t seem to be able to grasp the fact that the NHS works at a snails pace and it had taken 6 weeks from first requesting an appointment with a Doctor to eventually getting to see him! I just hope I never have a serious illness.
Well, his parting pearl of wisdom was that he would refer me to have a scan on the foot to see how bad the damage was given that the pain had lasted so long. He said we should have the results within a week, that was 2 weeks ago and I still have not got a scan appointment yet! Oh I almost forgot – there was a student Podiatrist present at the consultation watching him track the tendon down the side of my feet to the tuberosity of the 5th Metatarsal. When he asked her what she thought the problem was her first, confident, responce was that I had damaged my Achilles Tendon – this is the future of the NHS!!!
So, where are we at the moment? Well I await the appointment to attend for a scan then a further wait for the results followed by a wait to get an appointment to discuss the outcome of the scan – to be honest I have not got a clue when I will be better. I am going stir crazy not being able to get up the hills. I have a week in the Lake District coming up in October and I am hoping that I will be fit by then.
Until then 73 Glyn