Name : Nancy Lane

E-mail :

Adult:  20 years old

City, State: Falls Church, Virginia

Personal History:

I began having pains in my left ankle probably around the age of six or seven.  Gradually the pain got worse every year, but came and went at different times.  I remember one summer I woke up with intense pain and swelling when I was about eight or nine years old.  I could barely walk on it for a few days, but it did begin to feel better, so I never went to the doctor.  The right side of my left ankle was swollen and very painful to the touch.  Any time I'd twist it in the wrong way I'd cringe.  But then some days I'd feel perfectly fine.

Finally, when I was about 13, I went to the doctor because I wasn't sure if I'd be able to participate in Physical Education with my ankle hurting so often.  The doctor took X-rays, but then wanted to consult with some other physicians.  When I came back he told me that the "candle-drippings" shown on my x-rays was Melorheostosis.  He said that usually the condition gets better as you get older, and that no treatment was needed. He said that exercise would help.  I continued to take Advil almost daily to keep going.

For the next few years my ankle did seem to get a little bit better.  However, for the past couple of years I have noticed that my ankle is getting worse again.  Now, strangely, the left side of my left ankle is constantly swollen.  Four out of five of my toenails on my left foot are also thickened and partially discolored, and the skin on my ankle is very dry.

I think I have noticed that my ankle does better when I've been exercising.  I even trained to run an 8k, and my ankle was fine throughout the race.  I have stopped running, and a few months ago I had another bad episode where my ankle hurt terribly to walk on and I had to take very strong pain killers to be able to walk.  I am planning  back to the doctor soon to see if anything has changed in the diagnosis.  But what can you do when they all seem to say there's no treatment?

Has anyone else out there heard that it can get better as you get older?

I've suffered from this condition for over 10 years now, and although it is not life-threatening, I am just looking for some hope for a little relief.

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