Saturday, October 4, 2008

Pain Management

Friday I had my first appointment with the pain management dude er..Doctor...
I was so nervous. I had that "Your a Drug Addict" paranoia going on. I felt that my regular Rhuematologist felt like I was abusing my pain meds because I was needing more and more of them. I kept telling myself that I had been on the same dosage for almost 5 years. He explained how a PMD(pain management doctor) had more options to treat me. I was thinking sure...he will pull me off all meds and tell me I am faking...

Well I am happy to tell you I was wrong. He is a very caring doctor and understands fibromyalgia...What??? I am so lucky to have two doctors that believe in me when I read the horror stories from others that can't get more than an aspirin to help with their pain.
Wow..I am blessed.

He really gets it. I don't know what I expected from him, but not this much understanding of pain in Fibromyalgia. Well go ahead and say it...DUH...he is a PAIN Doctor....
He spent almost 2 hrs with me going over my history and examining me.
And then he wrote out the instructions and treatment plan. WHAT???Words that I understand and written down so that my foggy brain won't forget. And an explanation of what each med would do for me...I was blown away.

He also through in some counseling. I will write it down as he did
  1. Must accept that you pain will likely NEVER TOTALLY go away.
  2. Must learn to adjust and pace activity.
  3. Must learn it is okay to "Be Broken"
  4. Understand that your meaning and value in this life is not measured in what I do.

It was like he knew what all of us feel. You know that even as hard as my family trys, they cannot see all these truths. How can I expect them to when I have not accepted it myself. We had some discussion of the You Must Accept one...And I told him that I go through the whole accept...Have a good day, week or even month and I start to feel I am NOT Sick...and bam I am knocked down again, and then of course you go through the denial, grief and acceptance thing all over again. This is when he gave me the pace speech again with a different twist that I had not heard before. If a diabetic is in denial, and will not eat properly, his diabetes will never be under control. So when we are in the denial part, and we are pushing ourselves, this creates more and more pain and we will never have our pain controlled...so in fact...we must ACCEPT and PACE to ever get our pain under control.

He then said his goal was to have his patients as pain free as possible and the only way our families know that we take meds is by the empty medicine bottle sitting there.

As we sat and talked, he put this gadget on me. It had little clamps that clamped onto your ear lobes. He turned it on and it sent electrical waves through the brain. I wish I could explain it like he does. It is not cheap and of course Medicare as well as other insurances will not cover it. He uses it in the office while you are there and I have to say that after 25 minutes of use, it did help me feel more relaxed and I was in less pain. Now to understand how I knew it affected my pain, you have to understand that I had not had any pain meds for almost 24hrs and I was in pretty severe pain when I went in. I also had a sinus headache and menstrual cramps. Also my anxiety levels were up as I got lost on my way there and I was late, added to the fact I was seeing a new doctor that I thought was going to yell at me for taking too many pain meds. So in fact I know that it made my pain more tolerable and it did calm me. I left that office at 12:00 and I didn't get my meds until after 4. Anyways, moving on..the name of the device is Alpha-Stim. This is their website. www.alpha-stim.com

Of course I did get the excercise speech and he told me that on FIT TV, they have all kinds of excercise programs and some of them are for people with arthritis. So I found the channel, and will try and find a program that will help me.

Now the medication part...He said that he wanted to try me on a med that would keep a small dosage of pain med in my body at all times. Then I could use the Lortab for breakthrough pain. Instead of taking my pain med, and then it wear off and my pain levels get out of control before my next dosage. He said patches or pills. He decided pills. He also said he likes the name brand better than the generic as he thinks they work better. He also said we might have trouble getting the insurance to pay for it. Well guess what...Nope it wasn't on my Medicare D plan. So on Monday I will call him and tell him that and see what he wants to do, cause I cannot afford 200 plus for one medication. He also wants me to continue my other meds and only change one thing at a time. So here we go.

Hey I went to RXList to look up the drug Kadian. They had a slide show about Fibromyalgia posted there. You know it was funny, that this was on that page. One of the slides says that Narcotic meds were not often prescribed for FM because they have not been proven to work. So why would you put this slide show on this particular med then...who knows... But here is the slide show. http://www.rxlist.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=90070

Well Have a great weekend and GO SOONERS!!!! Whoo Hooooo

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Not feeling Well

I hate Fibromyalgia, I hate not feeling well and I get so angry when I don't feel good...
I ended up teaching a half a day yesterday in the Special Ed class at an Elementary School.
I enjoyed it so much.

I did not sleep well. I hate Zanaflex...I have to take 3 for them to help me sleep. If I try more than that, I will hallucinate...and sometimes the 3 makes me. Like last night...But when I am sick, I dream crazy anyways...
I sit up last night too long as I knew I had to work today, but I just kept feeling worse and worse.
I was coughing...When I got up this am, I knew I could not work today...
I can see that this is the type of job I need. And I feel I have made huge progress...When I worked before, I would make myself go in sick or not...I could not let my people down now could I...
We were told in the workshop that they would not question us for cancelling a job, if we couldn't do it, we couldn't do it...I just feel rotten about it...

Do you ever get confused on if it is JUST the FM, or if you are really sick????
Doesn't it make you crazy? You spend a few days thinking it is just the FM until you get way worse and realize you could have nipped it in the bud. Or you think you are really sick and go to the doctor, and guess what...It is ONLY your FM...

I suppose you can figure out that this is a big ole whiny post today...
Here's to hoping for better days tomorrow...

Oh by the way, I have an appointment with a pain doctor on Friday. I am feeling pretty depressed about that also. I feel like my doctor is punishing me for needing more pain meds.
I have been on the same dosage for about 4 years...and now I am needing more than I have been prescribed. Duh...4years...I am becoming tolerant to the issue. Not only that, and I have talked to the PA about this. I had gastric bypass surgery 5 years ago. So I believe that the drug is not absorbed by the body before it is pushed out of my system. Much like the nutrients in my food.
So although the dosage I am on is higher, I am getting much lower bennefits from it. I even have to take chewable vitamins so that they will dissolve quicker.
You know, the doctor could have tried me on the liquid...but nope...

Have a great day and I will try and cheer up before I come back here...

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