a survey- how many in the medical field?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by cbella, Nov 14, 2004.

  1. cbella

    cbella New Member

    Just a thought. How many of you are in the medical field? I'm a nurse and it seems that some of you are too. Do you think there's any connection? hugs, cbella
  2. care333

    care333 New Member

    I WAS "in the medical field." At the time, I did not realize I was 'taking in' the pain and suffering of my patients. The stress literally pushed me into full blown Grave's Disease! (hyperthyroidism) That was when I feel my life came to a screeching halt. Everything became a downward spiral for me.

    However, over the years I've experienced many positives along with the negatives. After all, life is all about "learning." I was raised that we are all both Students as well as Teachers.


  3. matthewson

    matthewson New Member

    I am a med tech in a hospital lab. We have 4 techs total at my workplace who have FM. That is higher than the odds among the general population for having this syndrome.

    At the previous place I worked we had 3 techs who developed MS. This was a very small lab so 3 was a staggering number! We also had our share and more of people with autoimmune diseases.

    I definately think that there could be a connection. We in the medical field get exposed to a lot of sick people. If there is some kind of a viral trigger to these diseases, than it would make sense that we would have more than our fair share of these diseases.

    Definately food for thought. Sally
  4. neen85

    neen85 New Member

    and gjoing to school to be a P.T. assistant. I was also a personal trainer. I now know(after 16+ yrs.,that I have Lyme) Daneen
  5. RxAngel

    RxAngel New Member

    Hi -

    I am a pharmacist, but I have been unable to work since 2000. I just cannot think straight - can't figure dosages, can't recall meds or which med is for what (when I post here, I have the luxury of lots of time and the ability to look things up a gazillion times to make sure I am correct when I give out info - not a possibility when you're filling 20 to 50 prescriptions an hour).

    Plus, when you have brain fog, but are convinced that you are right, no one is there to question you, as you are the final check - you are there to check for other's errors, not the other way around. Just not a safe environment for me to be working.

    And that doesn't even begin to mention the pain, pain, and more pain of standing on your feet for 8 to 10 hours a day with no breaks (although I have noticed that some pharmacies are finally "getting it" and allowing their pharmacists lunch - at 2pm - a good 6 hours after opening, and you can bet they haven't been allowed a break before then).

    And then of course there is the insomnia factor, where you get 3 hours of sleep at the maximum, and in my case, I usually don't sleep at all.

    Doesn't make for a good mix behind the counter.

    It's hard not to hate my sedentary, indoor life right now.

    Plus, I've also lost my life as a professional classical musician.

    We won't even mention the loss of my recreational life - mountain biking, scuba diving, hunting, fishing, etc.

    Hugs and tears -

  6. lighthouselady

    lighthouselady New Member

    I've been a medical transcriptionist in a hospital setting for 24 years. I've been through the neck problems, back problems and all that, thinking it was just those problems. Now w/ the FM, I realize a lot of that could have started the FM or was the FM. Don't let anyone fool you, sitting can be dangerous to your health, at least it was to mine.

  7. Roger_F

    Roger_F New Member

    After my 20 years in the AF I am now working in a Psych. Hospital as a Computer Network Administrator/Technician. Although not in direct patient care I am in and around patient areas,labs, you name it... all the time. If it has a computer in the room then I put it there and keep it running. After touching gross keyboards and crawling around on floors ect. I was my hands constantly. There are some patients with some pretty nasty bugs. Shoot there are some employees with some pretty nasty bugs! lol.


  8. calgarychris

    calgarychris New Member


    I work as a veterinary technician, and have for over 10 years. I know the holding, picking up, and downright wrestling with some animals have made me flare and been a factor in having good or bad days. Sometimes you will do a dental on an animal and it will last for over 2 hours, so that is a lot of time being bent over an animal. I also know helping all of our patients go to heaven :( does not help the situation either. So much sadness sometimes!!


  9. kittymama

    kittymama New Member

    I have been a medical practice manager for nearly 30 years. I did have Hepatitis A in the early 80's due to exposure at work and I'm sure we all are constantly exposed to all kinds of bugs. I wouldn't be surprised if there is some connection. I know in my case the stress has probably played a big part in my ups and downs.
  10. loriRn

    loriRn New Member

    I've worked in CICU,OB,public health dept., and am now working for hospice. I was working at the health dept. when I had mono, then develpoed FMS. Don't know if there is a connection or not. Lori.
  11. peg2635

    peg2635 New Member

    I'm a nurse and have had the hepatitis vaccine twice (first one supposedly didn't take). I haven't been able to work in 2 yrs because of this DD.

  12. lana33

    lana33 New Member

    I am a nurse. I worked 16 years as a nurse in all areas. Hospital, mental hospital, nursing home, home health. I am very sensitive, always have been.

    When I started nursing, I had been diagnosed with depression. I get overly stressed very easily.

    I no longer work. I am not disappointed cause it was getting the best of me, physically and mentally.

    I personally wish I had picked a different profession. My opinion only, I believe nurses don't have a long life expectency. I said this is only my opinion.

    I like helping people. So many people not only don't appreciate being helped but make it extremely difficult to help them.

  13. bakron

    bakron New Member

    Most R.N.'s I know are what you might term "anal-retentive" (or a better term might be compulsive), and I know that's my history. If anything contributes to problems with the immune system (and somewhere in my heart, mind, and soul . . I believe that FMS is related to immune disorders), it's stress. Well, for all of us "anal-retentive" types . . stress is a good way to describe our constant mental state. We have to make sure everything is perfect, you know!

    I really believe that is the only connection. If it were contact to viruses or bacteria . . perhaps the connection would be due to our immune systems being somewhat over responsive (? just a thought).

    My view or idea of what causes FMS/CFS is: (1) hereditary tendencies, (2) stress factors, (3) environmental influences, (4) physiological changes of body (endocrine, etc.), and (5) there may be links to past infection.
  14. JadeTortoise

    JadeTortoise New Member


    I was a medical lab technician(AAS Degree). Got my degree in 1979, worked for a few years, then as planned wanted to go back for a Bachelor's Degree.

    In 1982 I went back to school to become a Pharmacist, had to get in some required courses first.Went to school June 1982 straight through til the end of Summer 1983. Started Pharmacy school Sept.1983, graduated May , 1986.

    I chose Pharmacy because I thought it would be more lucrative, But now many times wish I would have gotten my BS in Medical Technology because actually liked lab work better. Loved Blood Banking, could have gone on to become a Blood Bank Specialist.

    Often times wonder If I would have gotten this DD if I had done that.

    I worked in Pharmacy from 1986 till 1997. RxAngel did a great job of explaining how dangerous making mistakes can be---you literally can kill someone if giving the wrong drug.


  15. phoebe1

    phoebe1 New Member

    I work as a production pharmacist at the moment because I cannot stand on my feet for those long hours when working in a retail pharmacy, it just kills my back and makes everything hurt.

    Even the work I do now takes a lot out of me but at least there are times when I can sit.

    Sometimes I locum in retail pharmacies, did one on saturday for 12 hours and was very sorry afterwards. I did it as a favour for the pharmacist because he has recently opened this pharmacy and so his wife and daughter never sees him.

    Ok getting off the point.

  16. roadkill

    roadkill New Member


    I have a degree in Med Lab Sci and worked in research with some of the great minds of the world. I have officially had FM/CFS for 3+ years now.

    When I look at all the reasons for FM and CFS, I fit just about every category.

    Even with all my understanding of science I am still perplexed with this DD.
  17. cbella

    cbella New Member

    Thanks everybody for your replies! I think stress does play a big role and we all know the medical field can have it's stresses! Hopefully it's not connected with our physical environment. I'm an RN that works with outpatient surgery and treatments, and last winter when all this started I thought I had "caught" something from one of my patients.--But I guess it didn't turn out that way. I'm grateful I can still work and my heart goes out to all of you that are unable to. Keep the faith, cbella
  18. lana33

    lana33 New Member

    I always got so frustrated about the doctors, nurses, etc that did not, after being taught why and how, use universal precautions.

    Someone on this board mentioned MRSA commnity bred or something of the sort.

    My whole 16 years of nursing I watched people use partial, complete, universal precautions. Then people became careless cause they "did not believe" a particular patient was no longer infected so they would stop.

    I believe this is why we have mrsa in the communtiy now. If the hospital personel did not use proper procedure with the isolation patients, naturally they take it home etc.

    I always practiced this procedure cause when I started nursing it was already in effect. I would sometimes be told by fellow workers, "that it is no longer necessary" for certain patients. Not justified by lab findings, mind you, but by the thoughts of the particular staff that it was no longer necesary.

    This may become an epidemic; infections, viruses, etc. cause this is yet being done.

    Moonwatcher, I am sure you understand what I am trying to say even though my words are quite jumbled. LOL.

  19. CAAnnieB

    CAAnnieB New Member

    I'm really not sure about the connection, but it sure would be interesting to know if there is a higher percentage of FM/ CFIDS in our population vs. the general public. If there is a viral or bacterial trigger on top of the genetic predisposition; that would make total sense...

    I worked in the medical field for 30 years or so...Started out as a teen working as a Nursing Asst. in a Convalescent Hospital...Back in the days where there were NO precautions re: body fluids, etc. We weren't even counselled on how to lift properly! I remember lifting HEAVY patients all by myself! We were all to busy to stop & ask for help...Also no gloves, gross infections, etc., etc...Makes me shudder!

    I also was exposed to T.B. somewhere in my employment...I worked at 4 Convalescent Hospitals during H.S. & College. I never was treated for T.B. after testing positive...Just get X-Rays when needed.

    As an adult, I worked as a P.T./O.T. Assistant in an acute County hospital. Again...Exposure to grossities was frequent! We did A LOT of whirlpool treatments of wounds, burns, etc...Thank goodness gloves came along at that point in time! Universal precautions started...There was some resistance to going overboard with the precautions at our hospital...(But I sure used them!)I then worked in Labor & Delivery as a Nursing Asst/ Medical Unit Clerk. There I was exposed to tons of blood, needles, etc! They made it mandatory that we get the Hep B vaccine series. I don't remember having a reaction to it, but within a year, my FM journey began...

    My last job was working as an Activities Coordinator for Skilled Nursing patients in a Transitional Care Unit of an acute hospital. My dream job...LOVED it! Only worked part time...I was seriously thinking of going to Nursing School...Started taking Pre-req's...Then FM hit SUPER hard...Took 2 LONG leaves of absence. Now on SSDI Disability...Will be volunteering as a Hospital Chaplain soon. (Just finished training) I figure if I can't work at my much-loved job, I can volunteer & minister to patients that way.

    Interesting to read everyones' stories...

    [This Message was Edited on 11/15/2004]
  20. QuilterB

    QuilterB New Member

    interesting question (and interesting set of answers so far)...
    I retired from a major medical center after 33+ years as a medical technologist --- obvious exposure to microbes, infections, vaccines, etc. as well as the stresses of such a perfectionist profession. (A former coworker once told me she thought I had the most "anal-retentive job in the hospital!") I do know that in the months since my retirement that the stress levels have decreased, as has my propensity to respiratory infections.
    I'd never thought about any of this as possibly related to FM; my closest friend with the disorder is not in any medical profession.
    Thanks for raising the thought.