Wednesday, November 9, 2011

My Torn Calf Muscle - Part I: Doctor Referral

I am sooooo behind on my posts. :( Funny how my running injury has killed my desire to post on my blog, too. :(

I have three race posts to edit and publish: my Springbank Half Marathon from September, my Festival City 10K, and my missed 10K in Grand Bend - the Pinery Provincial Park Run. I keep promising to get this done!

However, I am also behind on my posts on doctor's appointments, physio, etc. so I am going to jump in at this point. because my race reports are already five weeks+ late. I should get the more 'timely' posts done first and then catch up on the others when I can. That's my theory anyway! :)

OCTOBER 19th - Walk-in Clinic Doctor Visit

In London, we are extremely fortunate to have the Fowler-Kennedy Clinic. From the moment that I realized I truly had an injury, I knew that I wanted to be treated by the FKC.

I called the clinic and was told that I needed a referral from my doctor. Because they still had a few appointments available at the end of the week, I went to a walk-in clinic that day rather than booking an appointment with my family doctor. I wanted a quick referral. :)

My appointment with the doctor at the walk-in clinic was quick. He barely looked at my calf, putting his hand around it and squeezing it a few times. We spent our time together discussing my injury. He was nice, but dismissive of referring me to the FKC - "They are only going to tell you what I am about to tell you." The doctor told me that runners hurt themselves 'all the time' in this area, that it was a common injury, and all that I needed to do was to stop running for 6 weeks and my leg would be fine. I told him that I was interested in facilitating the healing, that there must be something I could do besides ice packs/heating packs (which is what he also advised). He showed me the basic calf stretch most runners are familiar with - the lean against the wall , bend one leg, keep the other leg straight and stretch. He said if I had extended benefits, I could take advantage of physiotherapy and then wrote me a physio referral.

However, I did stress that I still wanted to see a sports doctor about my torn calf muscle, and a referral to the FKC was the main reason I had come into the clinic. He had no problem with my request for a second opinion, but it did leave me feeling a little mixed. My gut feeling is that my left achilles tendon injury at this time last year is connected to my current torn calf muscle on the same leg. I could follow this doctor's advice, and just not run for six weeks (with the caveat of seeing him again in six weeks if it was still bothering me), similar to what I did last year (the "do-nothing-but-rest-and-no-running" approach), or I could see this as a sign that my left leg needs to be treated professionally.

As it turns out, it took a week for the FKC to call me with an appointment with a sports doctor. In the interim, I started thinking that my referral was going to be 'refused.' :( Silly of me, I know, but this reflects how the seeds of doubt were planted by the walk-in clinic doctor that I might be making this injury more serious than it really was.

1 comment:

  1. Glad to see you are still going to go. GP for the most part are woefully informed about a lot of sports injuries. Sports clinic will give you a quicker recovery.