CMC joint steroid injection

Archive, Arthritis

So today is the day, I get my steroid injection in my left (worse hand) with a view to getting the right hand done within 3 months. Opted for this instead of both together, as right hand is slightly better, so I’m waiting for it to get worse.

So what are steroid injections and where do you get them?

Steroid injections can be used to treat some problems in the arm and hand. These can include trigger fingers, tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis, tennis elbow and rotator cuff tendonitis. These injections usually contain cortisone and a numbing medicine.

Mine is the CMC joint as seen below.

Cortisone is the steroid normally produced by your body, and it is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Corticosteroids tend to shrink, thin and slow things down. These steroids are different from anabolic steroids, which have been abused by athletes to build muscle and enhance performance.

I get mine in my CMC joint, which is the base of the thumb. And usually done under ultrasound for precision at MiCats. However some GP surgeries also carry them out without the ultrasound.

What happens afterwards?

The injection should take effect within a few days, and the benefits can last for many weeks or months; however, results are not the same for everyone or every problem. For some conditions, one injection solves the problem. For others, several injections may be required. There is no set rule as to how many injections a person can get. Your doctor might limit the number of injections because repeated cortisone can damage tendons and/or cartilage.

Side effects?

The most common side effect of steroid injections is known as a “flare.” This pain is felt for one or two days after the injection. It can be treated with ice and by resting the area injected.

Other side effects might include:

  • A rise in blood sugar level for diabetic patients for about five days
  • Thinning of the skin
  • “Lightening” of the skin at injection site (more common in patients with dark skin)
  • Weakening of tendons, making them more likely to rupture
  • Allergic reactions (rare)

One of the rare but more serious problems is an infection, especially if the injection was given into a joint. If you notice redness, extreme pain or heat at the injection site, or if you have a fever greater than 101° after an injection, you should call your doctor.

Hoping to get similar results as last year, I know it will increase pain for up to a week, so I’m well prepared. So fingers crossed it all goes well.

OMG that was actually horrendous, way way way more painful to previous ones, the sharpness of the needle I expected. But the joint space was really tight, and small. Having the steroid (kenalog) put in, I went hot, faint and sick all at once. I even nearly cried. So unlike me.

And the pressure was worse than just the crushing. It felt like it was going to explode!! Wow that was awful. I had to lie down for a minute or two. Thankfully it passes pretty quickly though.

Home resting with splint on, and little pillow to help rest it.

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Week 35 post #hipreplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

A quick relaxing break away before it’s all change and our youngest daughter paves her own path in life, when she starts university once we are home. So this week away is our last family holiday. So clinging onto the last second while we can.

So first aboard holiday with my hip replacement, I can honestly say I had envisioned that I would be skipping off into the sunset. And reality is, I’m still taking my walking stick, taking tramadol and ibuprofen, my splints and compression gloves. So there’s no rest or break away from health issues sadly.

I am armed with my sunflower lanyard for hidden disabilities, my first time ever using one for the airport.

Though with a splint on my hand and walking stick, I’m not sure it’s hidden!!

It helped with the security queue, though not mentioned I was ushered into a faster line, very professional. Once there though I was put into the x-ray machine is it? Then patted down, then with the wand all over, yes hip did bleep. I wore leggings so it would be easier to see that it’s my hip. They removed my hand splint, and put that through the machine, as well as my walking stick. Extremely thorough!!

Flight went ok, nothing to report, except I knew it would ache and it did, so plenty of fluids to help combat that, and moving the leg to prevent stiffness.

I will say I’m extremely disappointed that so many people will push in, shove and rush past me to get ahead. I was squeezed into a chair arm rest and this was the result.

The rush to get a seat on the bus was hilarious, and so obviously I’m slower,so I had to stand, complete with full death grip on pole and walking stick!!

But finally we arrived, middle of the night so it was a quick brew and water to drink then bed. Shattered.

But I’m determined to enjoy myself and kickback and forget my worries, if only for a week.

Catch you laters my lovelies.

Day 221 post #HipReplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

It’s been a horrid week, in physically, mentally and weather wise too.

I’ve wanted to give up at times, I’ve cried such self pitying tears too. And it’s got me nowhere. It’s been the hardest most testing weeks I’ve had, and really none of it is my hip! Well, that’s something I’ve not been able to say since 2005!!

So that’s my silver lining. After all week following Mondays too much physio injury. I’ve felt good hip wise, a bit too good at times so I was sorely tempted to do physio again. But I promised myself I wouldn’t until Tomorrow (following Monday).

When I had injured it, it felt like an intense thigh pain, while also feeling like I was sitting on a ball, when I sat down. I presume it’s muscle, and swelling. Once I rested it soon got better, especially when I added hot water bottles and ibuprofen 400mg X 3 a day.

It’s been all my hands all week, they have felt like lightening, throbbing an swollen and just absolutely agony. I have solidly worn the splints, the gloves and used as much gel as allowed, to get minimum relief. I can’t wait for steroid injections, let’s hope they will do them.

I’m even starting to debate the CMC joint surgery? Has anyone had it? Is this my life now, replacing all the joints and arthritis already at 43?? Will I be more bionic by 50?? At my wit’s end. I’m wondering if I’ll ever drive a car, or will I ever make jewellery again? Stupid joints I hate them.

The week has been difficult and mood so low, not sure if pain or the weather has caused them. But I do now realise I work better mentally with routine, so I’m happy to be getting back into a routine tomorrow, and start off gently again with post op exercises and only 1 set too.

photo credit

Week 31 post #hipreplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

What do they say? Don’t RUN before you can WALK. Yeah I should listen to that advice!!

After my set back last week, and boy was it a set back!! I’d really pulled my hip, and the thigh swelled up, and felt like a golf ball when I sat down again!! So eager to never cause that again. It’s all change for my physio.

I thought on Monday I would do well, simply doing week 2 version of exercise. (Not my best idea honestly)

  • Hip flexion ankle weights 20 reps
  • Hip abduction ankle weights 20 reps
  • Hip extension backwards ankle weights 20 reps
  • Hip extension forwards ankle weights 20 reps
  • Mini squats 20 reps
  • Ball squeeze between ankles 20 reps
  • Ball squeeze between knees 20 reps
  • Traditional clam raise green banded 20 reps
  • Hip thrusts green banded 20 reps

I added in some free weights for the upper body.

  • Bicep curl 20 reps
  • Shoulder press 20 reps
  • Bicep row 20 reps
  • Tricep kickback 20 reps
  • Chest press 20 reps
  • Tricep overhead 20 reps

These were admittedly too much. I had to wear my splints as well. Hindsight I would say I wasn’t ready Arthritis wise to do these. Broke them down into 2 x 10 reps. My hands have caused a few tears and sobbing events this weekend.

And all was ok, until I needed to go out. And the front of the hip around the hip flexor is now in pain!! An I’m experiencing pain in the right hand side of my stomach, quite low too. So maybe it’s hip related, ie scar tissue, or I’ve pulled something?! Maybe the psoas??

So obviously Tuesday I’ve had to rest so much more, really limiting myself to straining it any further.

So here we are and it’s Wednesday and officially 31 weeks, and I’m nursing sore hip and groin pain. Frustrating but shows how it’s 1 step forward and 2 or 3 steps backwards.

No weight loss this week, but I have gone down in measurements so that’s proper encouraging to me. I take my measurements once a month, as I know this process is super slow compared to able bodied folks.

Week 26 post #HipReplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

This week I turned it up a notch! But I may regret it. But knowing I probably couldn’t do 6 days of physio, I decided to do some harder, more challenging exercises, but less days.

Let’s see if I survive this week. I’ve started with. Monday do the routine, Tuesday day off, Wednesday do routine, Thursday day off, Friday do routine (this is the plan) will it work??

  • Foot pointing outwards, leg raise (ankle weighted) 20 reps
  • Side leg raise (ankle weighted) 20 reps
  • Single leg hip bridges 10 reps per side
  • Hip thrusts (green banded) 20 reps (why did I try this, it’s so hard!!)
  • Reverse lunge (ankle weighted) 10 reps per side
  • Side lunges (ankle weighted) 10 reps per side
  • Goblet squat 20 reps
  • Supine marching (ankle weighted) 20 reps
  • Dead bugs 20 reps
  • Chest press 20 reps
  • Bicep row 20 reps
  • Tricep kickback 20 reps
  • Bicep curl 20 reps
  • Shoulder press 20 reps
  • Tricep overhead 20 reps

Tilt foot outwards, then lift in leg raise, works the inner abductors.

Supine marching, is lying on your back, pulling stomach down to engage, and stabilise pelvis, march on the spot.

For Dead bugs it’s opposite arm and leg going down then up, pull stomach down to engage core. Helps to stabilise the pelvis.

Hip thrusts why did I try these? I had a band around my knees to stabilise them. And oh my god it activated my right hip that’s replaced, super challenging. But worryingly I felt nothing in the left glute, I don’t think it’s working properly, like the message isn’t going through. I have tried many different ways to awaken it, but it’s surgeries were so long ago (2011), it may be too late. I will ask for advice from my Physiotherapist though.

It felt good but difficult and I gave myself plenty of time to recover and re position myself between each exercise. Form is more important than quantity.

Getting some weights out for my upper body also gave my lower limbs chance to breathe and recover.

Day 172 post #Hipreplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

It’s been 1 solid week of daily physio, and my findings apart from exhaustion!?

Well I do feel better and stronger, but also in pain and swollen too afterwards. ( Pain is a muscle ache though, not a pain to make you stop)

The nights I do recover and feel good in the morning (aka after 2 huge coffees I may be able to drag myself to do some physio at 11.30am) though, but I’ve noticed a 20 mins set now takes 30 mins, and I’m quite tired afterwards. Mentally though it’s doing wonders, I’m feeling productive and proactive.

Some things I’ve also noticed is I’m tolerating lying on the side a bit more, just enough to do side leg raises, but for me that’s a huge improvement. (Literally 1 minute, but before I couldn’t bare mere seconds)

I fully understand that this week has been possible, because of the lack of other duties I’ve had to do in the week. I struggle to maintain both. It’s all or nothing at the moment. I simply don’t have the pain threshold to do both yet. Or the energy required to do multiple things. Hoping it will change over time though. Or is this my ehlers danlos syndrome??

So that’s my next goal, to carry on next week doing the same, while slipping in other chores, or outings and see if I can manage both.

The ever lovely Linda Bleck shared this, and it resonates with me. I am meant to be ‘fixed’ but I don’t feel it. It’s taking its time to strengthen these muscles, and tendons. I feel guilty if I mention pain, like I’ve failed the replacement somehow, and in turn I feel useless. So I needed to see this, to remind me it does take time, and patience too.

24 weeks post #hipreplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

This week I’ve said previously, I’m taking a more pro active approach to physio, as my left hip is very very behind in movement and stamina and strength. While it doesn’t hurt, it certainly doesn’t perform well either.

So every day this week I’ve been doing my at home physio. As well as going to my actual hospital appointment physiotherapy as well.

I’ve also had medical advice regarding my hands, as it feels like a daily battle of pain, and inability to hold, grip and use them. I still feel at 42 I shouldn’t have to live this way, it’s a daily frustration, and humiliation when you can’t do simple tasks, or holding your cup is super painful. The plan is I’m referred back to MiCats for steroid injections. Hopefully it won’t be too long before the appointment comes through.

So though I’ve been worn out, and hip feels like a golf ball again (what is this feeling? What causes it?), I’m hoping with consistent and regular physio (or stop being lazy and letting life get in the way) I’m really hoping I can strength both hips and finally be rid of piriformis and this waddle limp I sport.

This week at physio I did, pretty much what I’m doing at home, but with the added bonus of having someone watch my form.

  • Stationary bike level 3 5mins
  • Clam knee drop outwards (Green band) 20reps
  • Single leg hip bridges (so so weak) 10reps
  • Ball squeeze hip bridges 20reps
  • Prone knee raise (Ankle weight) 20 reps
  • Kettle bell, sit and stand glute squeeze 20reps
  • Dumbbell lunge walking (new to me) 20reps
  • Duck walking (Green band) 20reps

I’m glad I got assessed for form, as I’ve been doing this exercise all week. And when I do my left leg, I feel pain and ache in the front of the right hip. Which was confusing me, it seems I’m tilting towards the right, so it can do most of the work. Left hip copping out again. So the therapist pushed down on my right side, and the form was instantly corrected.

After a solid 4 days of physio, I’m honestly shattered and worn out bodily, but I am seeing and feeling improvements. Though I soon waddle from exhaustion out of the physio session.

Looking forward to the weekend, let’s hope the sun stays out.

Week 23 post #HipReplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

Such a lot has happened this last week, I feel like my feet have barely touched the ground. And if I’m brutally honest, my body is not entirely up to it all either. All I’m asking for is to be able to do daily living painfree. But nope!!

I’ve been practise walking, and I wear trainers but I’ve somehow given myself an injury of the foot? It’s called metatarsalgia, and it feels like walking on Lego, at the ball of the foot.

I first noticed it in Barmouth while walking, but didn’t give it too much thought, rested it and it settled down. Now it’s reappearing just simply walking to the loo. Clearly it’s not really healed.

So what is Metatarsalgia? Metatarsalgia (met-uh-tahr-SAL-juh) is a condition in which the ball of your foot becomes painful and inflamed. You might develop it if you participate in activities that involve running and jumping. (Which I’ve done NONE of these activities)

There are other causes as well, including foot deformities and shoes that are too tight or too loose. This isn’t the reason why either for me.

Although generally not serious, metatarsalgia can sideline you. Fortunately, at-home treatments, such as ice and rest, often relieve symptoms. This worked well for me, hence me thinking it had gone.
Wearing proper footwear with shock-absorbing insoles or arch supports might prevent or minimize future problems with metatarsalgia. But somehow me wearing trainers isn’t enough?

Symptoms of metatarsalgia can include:

  • Sharp, aching or burning pain in the ball of your foot — the part of the sole just behind your toes. (This was me straight away)
  • Pain that worsens when you stand, run, flex your feet or walk — especially barefoot on a hard surface — and improves when you rest. (Yes definitely me)
  • Sharp or shooting pain,numbness, or tingling in your toes
  • A feeling of having a pebble in your shoe. (I prefer the term Lego!)

Sometimes a single factor can lead to metatarsalgia. More often, several factors are involved, including:

  • Intense training or activity.Distance runners are at risk of metatarsalgia, primarily because the front of the foot absorbs significant force when a person runs. But anyone who participates in a high-impact sport is at risk, especially if your shoes fit poorly or are worn.
  • Certain foot shapes. A high arch can put extra pressure on the metatarsals. So can having a second toe that’s longer than the big toe, which causes more weight than normal to be shifted to the second metatarsal head. (My second toes are Longer than big toes)
  • Foot deformities. Wearing too-small shoes or high heels can cause your foot to be misshapen. A downward-curling toe (hammertoe) and swollen, painful bumps at the base of your big toes (bunions) can cause metatarsalgia.
  • Excess weight. Because most of your body weight transfers to your forefoot when you move, extra pounds mean more pressure on your metatarsals. Losing weight might reduce or eliminate symptoms.
  • Poorly fitting shoes. High heels, which transfer extra weight to the front of your foot, are a common cause of metatarsalgia in women. Shoes with a narrow toe box or athletic shoes that lack support and padding also can contribute to the problem.
  • Stress fractures. Small breaks in the metatarsals or toe bones can be painful and change the way you put weight on your foot.
  • Morton’s neuroma. This noncancerous growth of fibrous tissue around a nerve usually occurs between the third and fourth metatarsal heads. It causes symptoms that are similar to metatarsalgia and can also contribute to metatarsal stress.

But almost anyone can develop metatarsalgia, but you’re at higher risk if you:

  • Participate in high-impact sports that involve running and jumping
  • Wear high heels, shoes that don’t fit properly or shoes with spikes, such as cleats
  • Are overweight or obese
  • Have other foot problems,including hammertoe and calluses on the bottom of your feet
  • Have inflammatory arthritis,such as rheumatoid arthritis or gout

The last risk above is probably my likely cause of this injury, coupled with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome too.

So now I’ve done my eventful days of Birmingham for exams for youngest (she’s PASSED) And visiting my Second eldest daughter in Chester. I’m going to rest, elevate and ice the foot to try and return it to normal, before next week’s physio appointment. If I can’t heal it, then it’s a GP visit for me.

Definitely a dampener on hip replacement recovery, and with walking differently to protect the foot, I’m causing pain in my lower back, and my hip, even the groin!! Which I admit is troublesome, but I’ve been told to expect grumbling groin for a couple of years, so I’m not too worried yet.

Physio appointment on day 146 #hipreplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement, SURGERY

So it’s physio time, and I’ve been looking forward to asking about the weakness I’m experiencing in the opposite hip. It’s something ive noticed ove the last few weeks. I do work both legs at home whereas at the official appointments we only do the operated leg.

Also I’m officially 21 weeks post op tomorrow. So it’s nice to show her how far I’ve come, as suddenly I feel like this leg has really turned a corner. Yes I’ve ached (well deserved aches, from pushing it hard) but rest, medication and time have stopped the aches, and I feel stronger than ever.

After a brief discussion of what I’ve been experiencing, such as weakness in the left hip, but with no pain. We decided it could simply be from muscle wastage and weakness, so the plan from now is to work on targeted areas (glutes and abductors) on both legs.

So we started with a Stationary bike for 5mins at resistance level 3

Then onto the leg press machine 25reps with 40lbs (I felt operated leg taking over though)

Onto a fave, duck walking with a green resistance band. Feet outwards, bend a bit, then walk sideways. 50 reps.

Onto other butt burners, walking lunges (so as deep) between parallel bars for stability. 30 reps.

Hip abduction with resistance band around knees 25 reps.

Onto hip bridges, where I know quads dominate. So adding a ball to squeeze between knee, engages the glutes. 25 reps.

Absolutely exhausted, but carrying on, we added an ankle weight and did a front leg raise, with foot out, toes pulled up. To engage abductors. 10 reps. (Left leg would NOT lift up)

Rolling into the front, prone lying Knee bent it was a knee raise with an ankle weight. 15 reps. (Left struggled)

Then to finish up we grabbed a kettle bell to hold. While sitting, going into a standing position, while pushing pelvis forward. 25 reps.

I can honestly say my butt was on FIRE after these. I surely waddled out as well. But I felt productive, and like we had done some good. So now it’s resting up, and nursing that burn.

19 weeks post #hipreplacement

Archive, Arthritis, Health, Hips, Hypermobility, Hip replacement

The weeks are flying by, and with the warmer weather we as a family are getting busier, which is lovely. But boy oh boy I’m still paying a high price for any activities.

Which I wholeheartedly admit is gutting. I truly wanted, wished and hoped that by now this magic bullet surgery would be the answer and I’d be skipping into the sunset.

And while this surgery has been amazing, it’s clearly not the sole issue I thought it was. I’m struggling with my hands alot, but not just them though my ankles, knees and shoulders too and I feel cheated. All I’ve ever wanted is my life back, who I was at 32 and I’ve chased this dream headlong ever since.

I had no concept that I was literally fixing the hips to then swap the goal post and need intervention on other joints.

So I’m not going to compare to others healing times anymore, it is what it is. I’m not sure if it’s the Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Hip Dysplasia or Arthritis that is ruling my life, but something is, more than I care to admit too.

It sucks that I have some issues, I have to remember not to focus on them, I need to remember the positive thoughts and drive my energies into them.

No physio appointment booked this week, so physio at home is foundation basics to keep movement going and no stress out other joints. Using ankle weights for resistance.

  • Hip abduction x 15 reps
  • Hip extension x 15 reps
  • Hip extension (backwards) x 15 reps
  • Hip flexion x 15 reps
  • Single leg lunge on areobic step x 15 reps
  • Monster walk x 30 steps

Going to work on these while I await the next physio appointment.

Found these exercises on Pinterest and I will try to add some of these are well, later on in the week.