I’ve been researching this lately. Over twenty years ago, I was diagnosed with chronic myfascial pain and then fibromyalgia. (t1d for 30 years, 55 years young) Muscle pain, tightness and fatigue ever since. Add to that, rotator cuff tear, shoulder tendinopathy, trigger finger/thumb and lower back and hip pain. But the recent symptoms of carpel tunnel syndrome and problems with my knees has really got me thinking. I’m thinking diabetic tendinopathy. (Other people just keep telling me that I’m getting old. Grrr.)
Yay - maybe an explanation for all my pain
Boo - you’re only supposed to get it if you’re a “bad” diabetic, right?! I eat well, skate, hike, do resistance band exercises, lots of stretching. My A1c is 6.1. Yes, there have been times in my life when this wasn’t the case, but c’mon!
So ya, I’m having to come to grips with accepting that I have complications. Did I mention new tingling in my toes?
I hoping to hear from anyone who has experienced this kind of wide-spread tendinopathy. Tell me anything: diagnosis, treatment, coping skills. I would love to hear from you.
Diabetes and high blood sugars aw known to cause problems with connective tissue. I have had two frozen shoulders, and dupuytrens contracture in both Hands and both feet.
Lucky for me my handsand feet are not terribly effected at this point. I needed to give up running though.
Dupuytrens runs in families and my extended family has it in one form or another. Mine is quite mild. It’s impossible to deny that they are related. Either genetically or as a cause and effect.
Elevated blood sugar levels cause advanced glycation end products and can wreak all kind of pain from the impairment of connective tissue in long term diabetes.
I think lowering your overall glucose levels as close to normal levels (<5.7%) as one reasonably and safely can helps. One tool that has brought me great pain relief to the bottom of my feet and lower legs is a massage gun. I still live with significant pain and loss of flexibility due to connective tissue problems in my right foot.
Massage gun. That’s a new one to me. The prices floored me when I googled it. Well, I’ll put it on my wish list and see what happens. My worst pain comes in my upper back which is really hard to reach myself. I use tennis and hard rubber balls, as well as something called a Theracane on my trigger points.
The carpel tunnel stuff is affecting my motorcycle riding, which brings me so much joy. So I feel for you when you say you had to give up running.
Are you experiencing numbness in the thumb, index and middle fingers? This is a common problem in bicyclists without the added complication of diabetes. There are two nerves, the median and ulna. Where the median nerve exist the tunnel It can get compressed by handlebars.
I use cycling gloves that have gel pads with no pad at the tunnel exit. This eases pressure on the nerve. Also gel tends to dampen vibration. The constant vibration is hard on nerves.
Even with those gloves I cannot ride straight bars without going numb. On drop bars I found a great position on the hoods (brake hoods) resting my hand on the outer heel. The Ulna nerve can be compressed by that, but is more protected.
Having ridden motorcycles as well, my hand position is not applicable to motorcycles, but the gloves are.
One other thing is to have your wrists straight, not bent up, down or to either side, but straight to the forearm. Yes you will have to use your wrist for throttle and brakes, but when you are cruising keep them straight.
There are gloves by by Shock-Tek designed by a cycling neurologist. I can’t post a picture, but here is the page of the sport type gloves. You will have to scroll down to get to the motorcycle gloves, which come in both half finger and full finger.
Now, there’s an idea! Thank you for sharing that. I’ll check those out. Yes, numbness in thumb, index and middle fingers.
I was thinking of having the handle bars raised a bit which might relieve some pressure. I’ve also thought about a throttle lock which would be nice on longer rides, but not practical with city riding.
I learned about the massage gun through my physical therapist a few years back. It felt so good when she used it on me that I bought one on Amazon.
I too was surprised at their high price (I think I paid about $130.) but this tool not only gave instant relief to physical pain but that relief sustained for days or longer. Because of how it is structurally built, hefty and with a gun shape, it permits effective intensity in hard to reach places.
In my mind, it comprises a purchase that definitely provides value. Your judgment, of course, may vary.
I am 67 years old. I was diagnosed with type 1 at age 60 after receiving a monoclonal antibody, Opdivo, for melanoma in transit that kept recurring on my leg near the initial lesion. In addition to diabetes I developed numerous autoimmune problems which included lots of joint complaints. Regarding type 1, I have a pump and have been quite stable since diagnosis. The interesting thing is in February 2018, I suddenly woke up in the middle of the night with acute wrist pain and numbness of my fingers. I was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands. I tried every non surgical therapy, but it continued to get worse. After horrible nerve conduction results, the hand surgeon finally agreed to perform surgery. What a relief. I still have psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis leading to some hand and finger complaints but these are manageable. Jane
Checked out Shock-Tek gloves, but not available in Canada. However, I’ll look for something similar here. I’d like to just buy a padded insert so I don’t have to fork out the money for new gloves for each season.
That is interesting. Glad to hear you’re on a pump. They’re great.
So far the carpal tunnel is a self-diagnosis but pretty sure that’s what it is. I’m just doing exercises that I found online while waiting on a referral. I have a feeling though, because of the state of my tendons, that this won’t be enough. Good to hear that surgery worked for you.
I had carpel tunnel surgery more than 30 yrs ago. I don’t remember it as being a big deal, and what a relief!
Let me know how you do. Before my surgery, besides the exercises, I tried massage and acupuncture. The acupuncture almost put me in crisis mode. My thumbs swelled and my wrists were actually swollen. I got my rings resized several times over the following years.
One thing that did help was ice. I would keep ice packs in the freezer. Pain was worse during sleep or while trying to sleep. I would get up in the middle of the night and use ice.
Good luck. Keep me posted.
You must be rough on gloves. I have some serviceable cycling gloves that are 4 years old. As to inserts, I don’t think I have ever seen anything like that.
I never bought the Shock-Tek gloves, but have some that work well, Specialized and Bontraeger.
These might do for you. They are quite inexpensive at 20 USD from Amazon. They are listed as work gloves, but have anti-vibration pads in the right places.
I’ll check those out.
I already own a couple pair of motorcycle gloves that I paid good money for. It seems like a waste to have to buy the entire glove when all I need is the pad.
I found these, but still with dollar conversion and having to buy two, are a lot of money for me. However, I could use them with both my existing pairs of gloves.
But now I see that the pad isn’t separated to protect the median nerve. Sigh.
For me it’s all about adjusting my wrist position. I need to bend my elbows and keep my wrists in a neutral position. If I don’t think about it, it’s extended too much and I get numbness and tingling and eventually pain in my wrists and hands. But it’s also a good thing because it forces me to relax. Which makes me a better rider.