Malice afoot


One cool part about neuropathy is that it turns you into a chameleon.  Your skin can go from purple, to transparent, to bright red all in 20 minutes.  Temperature too; freezing cold, or smoldering hot.  This is part of the autonomic dysfunction inherent in some neuropathies.

Purple foot isn’t so bad, though it does intensify the lack of sensation in my feet making me more prone to injure myself.  I’ve only broken myself twice in the 8 months since I lost feeling, so I’m not doing too bad, am I?  So many bones left to break, so little time.  Snort.

Red foot….oh, red foot, how you pain me.  It looks like my skin has been scalded with hot oil, and that’s exactly what it feels like.  Red foot only happens after I’ve been laying down and circulation to my feet is fully restored.  This translates to nighttime.  I have regular burning/stabbing pain in my legs and feet most of the time, which immediately becomes worse at rest, but red foot is an extra layer of pain that can and does wake me up if I’m lucky enough to have fallen asleep before it sets in.

This wondrous experience stopped happening at some point, likely when I started taking max dose of tramadol for the pain.  I’ve been advised to reduce my dose since my renal function has decreased enough that I’m probably not eliminating it as quickly and there’s concern of the potential of a staggered overdose.  I had already started to reduce on my own because I noticed the pain not being quite as bad as I was nearing my next dose.

Now I’m down to basically nothing, and red foot is back with a vengeance.  It almost seems like my skin becomes so inflamed that it blisters and peels.  The upside is that this rarely ascends past my feet, and only occasionally are my hands involved but they don’t hurt as much.


I’m never going to be a foot model.

Edit: I’m really sorry if my nasty foot is the first thing you saw on your reader.  Grumpy cat was supposed to show up first!  I must be doing something wrong.

21 thoughts on “Malice afoot

  1. Wow! I hate to say it, but finally somebody else that gets it. I started turning purple or red or sometimes blue after I had pneumonia a few years ago. The docs couldn’t figure it out so they gave up and put it down as Raynaud’s. Have you tried Lyrica or Nuerontin? I’ve been through both, side effects ended up ruling them out. But I just wanted to let you know you’re not the only one!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Did this start happening to you after radiation? Or have you had chemo? Both of those can cause peripheral neuropathy.

      Gabapentin I’ve tried. On my ass, it knocked me. Yes, hmm. (attempting to channel yoda here) I couldn’t tolerate it either.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It started after I had pneumonia in both lungs after a metal-on-metal hip replacement (congenital hip dysplasia). So they watch my chromium and cobalt levels. Have they checked those for you?
        Sounds like you’ve been through the wringer too. Fun stuff. 😛 (love the Yoda impersonation!)

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thank ya, sir 🙂

      I have tried imipramine, but not amytriptyline. I had a horrible reaction to the imipramine, so they sort of scrapped the TCA idea. But I do appreciate you mentioning it. I’m using biofreeze and lidocaine patches on my feet, which don’t work all that well, but it’s better than nothing.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Never heard of imipramine, lol so many different drugs around. Yea a few people who have used amytripline have had bad reactions. I did on pregablin, mad my head crazy.
        Is lidocaine an good? I know some who use the patches on the stomach with varied results.
        Again, I just hope it gets a bit better for you soon 😀

        Liked by 1 person

        • My results are mixed. When I use it for muscle strain, it’s fantastic. For the nerve pain, it’s not so great. I’ve tried to use it on my abdomen for my crohn’s pain before and it did absolutely nothing. The problem with topicals is that they don’t penetrate very deep into the tissue. I imagine if they shot you up with a bunch of lidocaine, that might do the trick, but it wears off so fast. And needles.

          I hope you get to feeling better too! 🙂

          Liked by 2 people

  2. I was just wondering, does massage help or hurt your feet? I have nerve pain in my extremities, but it’s mostly the buzzing kind, so it doesn’t eclipse the pain in my head. But since I moved to dry New Mexico, I’ve been covering my feet with petroleum jelly, like, every day. And doing a little foot massage with it… it’s painful, but at least my feet aren’t as dry.


    • Generally I have a problem with them being hypersensitive, so anything touching them, or even walking, is like stepping into an incinerator. They were super itchy for a long time before they went back into incendiary mode, which also really stunk. Lotion seemed to help a little with the itchiness, or at least make my skin more supple so I didn’t scratch it open as easily. Next up to try is compression socks, since it seems to happen in conjunction with increased blood flow (and may also explain why the pain elsewhere seems to improve when it’s cold).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lotion is good, but I find that vaseline works more to protect the skin. I use it all the time for my eczema, which appears to be under control with the use of petroleum jelly. Did you know it’s made from petroleum oil? Sounds yucky, but something in it really helps, especially with the itching. When I started using it, I’m like, won’t it get over everything? (I use it mostly on my hands.) But no, it works great for me.

        Heat works good for muscular aches, but cold works best for inflammation. And if you have both? Then you’re screwed. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I don’t think it’s fair that you have the ability to like my comment, but I cannot reciprocate — unless I want to go through my reader for the past 10 days and see if I can find this post. No, it’s easier to just make this comment, so I don’t suffer from PTSD-WP (WordPress). 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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