I went to see a podiatrist at the hospital who told me my achilles problem is mechanical, not RA related but didn't suggest any insoles or anything - just to maybe try trail running shoes. I got a couple of pairs which felt good to start with (see my previous blog) but gradually, I realised that they still had a heel counter with a lip at the top that was digging in.
I've googled continuously and found absolutely nothing that is going to help me with outdoor walking. Even all the comfort shoes and specialist walking shoes still have high heel counters. The only suggestion I've had which is the best, but not perfect, solution is from runners who have the same problem. They said they'd cut off the top of the heel counter. I've done this with a pair of the trail running shoes but now the heel counter on those is ragged and unstable. I might try duck tape! It made no difference on my Salomon walking shoes - they still left me in agony. Even Goretex trail running shoes aren't going to be good for winter walking though.
I agreed to be one of three guinea pigs when my RA clinic was holding a foot and ankle ultrasound afternoon for medical professionals. One of the guys running it was the boss of the podiatrist I saw at the hospital and he confirmed that my tendinopathy (as it's now known) was not RA related but mechanical. He told me the tendon in my left ankle, in particular, was very swollen - twice its normal size - and that I should think of it as a fraying rope. Lovely! He also said not to waste money on orthotic soles as the best and only treatment is to keep up with the stretching exercises I was given.
I've just cut down the heels on another old pair of trainers and it looks like this is all I can do.
Completely and totally fed up. Dog walking is a good part of what I do for a living and I'm wondering how much longer I can go on if the problem doesn't get better.
Losing the blooming will to live with it now.