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Re: [at-l] Vitamin "I" and other pain relievers

At 05:57 PM 12/19/96 -0600, Peter Fornof wrote:

>Does anyone on the list use pain relievers other than aspirin, tylenol, 
>ibuprofen, or naprosin that they have found effective? I use two hiking 
>poles also, and have found that this is a good "non-drug" method of 
>relieving knee pain.

What is the cost difference Peter between Aleve and Ibuprofen?  I bought
Ibuprofen in large quantities and got it pretty cheap. Can you do that with
Aleve?  I've taken naprosin in the past as well and you are correct - it is
a bit rougher on the stomach than ibuprofen, so heed Peter's advice on
eating something with it.  I also think you have to build up a certain
amount in your blood stream before it starts taking effect, so you might
want to start taking it before you get into the pain world.  (I'm no doctor
- so take all this with a grain of salt - no, not literally).

Personally, I took 3 ibuprofen each night to sleep for the first few months
until the trail leveled out a bit and my knees got a break. I only took it
occasionally during the day.  My knees got bad enough,however, in the first
few months that I wasn't sure I was going to be able to continue either and
I used Lekis, which were a great help, but more for climbing than
descending. On the descents, I found they helped my balance, but the pain in
my knees made me wonder if they were really helping that much.  Of course, I
didn't try hiking without them, either. 

I mentioned this once before and got a bit of grief from another member for
offering my opinion, but I will offer it again (only this time with the
admonition that you seek out your doctor's, podiatrist's, P.T's opinion) and
that is that part of the source of your knee pain may be in your feet.  How
many of you with knee pain have orthotics? Now, let me hasten to add, before
you think that is a cure all, that I have orthotics and have worn them for
years and personally don't think my podiatrists over the years have ever
made them correctly, thus perhaps, and I repeat perhaps, my knee pain.
Getting your foot into a neutral position and casting it correctly is not an
easy task. I wonder to this day if I got them made correctly, would my pain
go away?  Unfortunately, all these little trips to different doctors add up
to bucks and not every insurance company will cover orthotics. I really
think you need to find a doctor (whatever the speciality) who backpacks and
who understands the particular stresses of this endeavor.  I would be
interested to hear of any.

Someone on here mentioned that they had knee problems and worked out
seriously on a Nordic Trac and did exercises and I think they benefited from
that.  On the other hand, if your foot is not planting correctly, all the
exercises in the world may not help, as your knee will get twisted
constantly. Nonetheless, I think the exercises help and will work out on my
NordicTrac and do whatever else I can to strengthen my quads. I'm afraid
genetics has a whole lot to do with this problem.

Recently, I took a 3 day backpacking trip and couldn't walk for 3 days
afterward. I felt one little tweak on an uphill of all things and then it
started to ache bad. Obviously, I knocked something out of whack.  I'm
thinking about wearing a knee brace and would like to know what people think
of those (besides being a pain to wear, hot, etc.)

And finally, not being a young buckeroo in the 20-30 bracket anymore could
have a whole lot to do with my problems.  

Boy, sure glad I got all this out of my system.  Now, if I could just cure
that pulled muscle in my back!

Mark and Janet Holmes (Appalachian Trail - GA>NH (minus PA) '95)
NH > ME + PA 1997
Fox Hill Inn - Innkeepers 1-800-874-3313 (for reservations)
VA 16
Troutdale,VA  ( 4 miles from Dickey Gap on the AT)
AT Hiker stopping point in the Grayson Highlands!
-provider of shuttles in SW VA
Phone: 540-677-3313 

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