Aging doesn’t stop Daniel Barnard from being active.
“I’ve always been active,” says Daniel, a Green Bay native who is in his late 60s. “I walk, climb stairs and move a lot. I ski in the West in the Sierra Mountains in the winter and it’s very physical.”
On average, Daniel skis 10 to 15 miles a week when he goes west for the winter – making extensive ground coverage on the approximately 400-mile-long Sierra Mountain range that borders California and Nevada.
That is, until severe nerve pain in his legs and feet cut short his 2018 ski season.
“It would start tingling in the meaty part of my calves and bottom of my feet,” Daniel says. “The more I did, the tingling turned to pain. I would have to stop and sit down. It slowly got worse.”
The gradual progression of nerve pain in Daniel’s calves and feet reached the point to where he needed pain relief – and he needed it quick.
Upon returning from Nevada, he began to seek care in Wisconsin, but again, he didn’t get the answers or relief that he was looking for.
“(One specialist) thought it was spinal stenosis. But the MRI came back and everything was perfect. The doctor said the main nerve running down the center of my spine was good, really good, especially for my age. So that wasn’t it. Then he said he didn’t know what it was.”
That didn’t stop Daniel from searching for pain relief. His determination to find “the right guy with the right procedure” kept his hopes up.
Daniel’s research paid off. He finally found a doctor and procedure that could help ease his pain.
Dr. Danqing Guo, a provider with BayCare Clinic Pain & Rehab Medicine in Green Bay, was “the right guy with the right procedure” that Daniel had been looking for.
Guo determined that Daniel’s pain was caused by peripheral entrapment neuropathy, or peripheral nerve damage in the upper and lower extremities. It often causes abnormal sensations. People with peripheral entrapment neuropathy generally describe the pain as stabbing, burning or tingling. The skin, usually in the hands and feet, can be hypersensitive to pain.
The pain in Daniel’s legs and feet resulted from peripheral nerves being compressed by swollen tissues surrounding them.
Guo performed a minimally-invasive non-surgical procedure called ultrasound-guided hydrodissection and block. This procedure released nerves that were trapped and irritated.
“He did one procedure in the right leg and then the second in the other leg. He went inside the nerve and put a cortisone-type compound in there, and I had immediate relief. I watched it on the ultrasound. I watched the nerve expand,” Daniel says. “I immediately got off the table and started walking and walking fast.”
Daniel returned home the same day and experienced ”instant gratification,” he says.
That remains true. Every day, Daniel strives to walk 10,000 steps. That was difficult for him to do before treatment.
“Dr. Guo is very experienced. He knows what he’s doing. He’s confident. Very personable. It was not a long, drawn-out procedure,” Daniel says. “My advice is don’t wait, do it now. Find the right procedure, if it’s nerve pain, this is the answer.”
Now, Daniel is eager to hit the slopes and enjoy the sport he loves.
“When ski season starts, I’ll be able to tell exactly where I am as to where I was,” Daniel says.