My left foot

5 09 2016

FullSizeRender-20A few days before setting off for Scotland, I went for one of my usual runs even though  my left foot had been hurting a bit for a few weeks. It turns out pain has a function (duh), and that in ignoring these signals I was giving myself tendinitis which very suddenly, 2 days before the flight, rendered me barely able to walk. The foot also became strangely-shaped, the swelling around my posterior tibial tendon forming something like a giant second ankle. This picture was taken in Edinburgh, where I ended up weepily unable to leave the hotel for 3 days, the inflammatory mess I’d started just getting worse and worse despite me resting and icing it (and only walking a few metres max each day, and that with a walking stick).

This put a massive damper on the conference, as walking to the meeting was a challenge, nipping between the parallel sessions impossible, and the distracting pain and lameness made me tired and incredibly anxious (as if on some primal level, I knew that if a predator appeared, I’d be easily picked off).  Interesting intellectually though: working on the ILAR Pain Report a few years ago I’d learnt that pain is distracting, and that it can induce anxiety, but had never experienced anything like this firsthand. Matt Leach confirmed I had a “pain face” too!