I've been having foot issues for a while now. Started in Mississippi. Everyone would look at it, poke it, go "Hmmmmmmmm"... And then look me in the eye and tell me it was gout.
It was getting to the point that it felt like I had a grain of sand under the joint of my big toe every time I took a step. I would have flare-ups where the joint would swell and it was painful to walk, but it would subside after a couple of weeks and go back to normal. This wasn't going back to normal. So I finally got an appointment with a podiatrist.
THIS particular doctor took x-rays, did some scans, did some measurements with pressure pads, and after a bit, walked back in with the x-rays of my left foot. He points to a a couple little black blobs on the x-ray, and asks "How long has that been broken?" It's the sesamoid bone under the joint of my big toe. The doc in Mississippi had noted that it was broken, back when this problem first started. But he wasn't a podiatrist, he was a GP. So I tell this guy three years, give or take. "Well, that's your problem."
I asked him about gout. He giggled a bit. It's not gout. The bone never healed, and as it grinds against itself and the tendon it's encased in, it causes inflammation.
So, we're trying some custom orthotics to see if we can get this tiny little bone to heal. If that doesn't work, then it's surgery, where they just take the bone out. The bone is too small for them to do anything with. You can't screw it back together, you can't put a plate in there. All you can do is remove it, which gets you 95% back to normal. Which is better than where I'm at now.
So anyways, I might have surgery later this year. But not in the summer time, because I'll be too damn busy to be off my feet for a couple weeks.