Is depression a big part of this terrible disease

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by shelby319, May 2, 2006.

  1. shelby319

    shelby319 New Member

    Hi to all, I hope I'm doing this right as I'm new here and only posted one post and made a profile so far. I am going through a period of a flair up and I have been rather depressed now for about 7 days, even though I am on antidepressants and pain meds. I'm sometimes wondering if the pain meds is what is causing the depression or feeling down because of the pain and not being in control of this terrible disease. Its sort of a catch 2 2!! I had only gotten the diagnosis 5 months ago, although they are beginning to think I've had it for at least since 1997 when I had a severe car accident. Sometimes its so hard to do simple things like write out the bills which I have to do today and I have a bad right arm anyway which makes it difficult to write too, along with severe pain in the shoulder. I had a cortisone injection last Friday that a friend told me could be causing the depression from the cortisone...which is a terrible drug in my eyes and I don't do well on it anyway!!!! Alot of reactions to it!!! I take Lorcet for the breakthrough pain while I'm on the Oxycontin 20 mgs twice a day, and the Lorcet the Dr. said to take as much as I need for the breakthrough pain. Isn't that alot of meds for pain that could be causing the depression too?
    Thank you for all your help in advance, and I absolutely love this board and have found so much info and nice people by just reading. Then today I thought I would make my first real post with a title, which I'm assuming starts a new thread area? I hope you can have patience with me, as I said this is all new to me and so is this Fibro!!
    Thank you again for any help you can give me~~
  2. KMD90603

    KMD90603 New Member

    Depression can be a part of any chronic illness. Disease can really uproot your life physically and emotionally. It's only natural to go through periods where you are feeling depressed about everything going on. Fortunately, depression has not been a major issue for me, but I do have my days where I feel depressed, just like everyone else with these illnesses. I have CFIDS which was officially diagnosed about 2 years ago, however I believe it dates back to having mono 9 years ago.

    Usually the depression hits me whenever I'm in a bad flare, like the one I'm in now. You start to feel like you'll never come out of it, and you realize how devastating this disease is.

    Welcome to the board. I'm glad you've decided to post and that you've found a home here. It's a great place with lots of good advice to offer.

    Gentle healing hugs,
  3. onlythestrong

    onlythestrong New Member

    And yes depression is a VERY big part of this,it's all so hard to understand but when you hurt and you don't know why and you want to be able to do things and can't you get depressed and then you have all the doctors tell you one thing after another is all depressing.
    You've come to the right place to find people to understand you.
    We're all here,and good luck!
  4. carebelle

    carebelle New Member

    I had a mental breakdown from depression thats about the same time I was told I have fibro and CFS .Its been a very hard road to go down.My doctors tell me that depression that goes untreated for years along with my hormones are probably what cause my breakdown.When you live with pain 24-7 that does affect your depression.Then for me atleast they all go together when I hurt its both mental and physical .
    Please be careful with the Oxycontin that sounds like a high dose and its very addictive.It can get out of hand very easyly. Read more about it and watch your paper about how there is an ungodly amount of addicts from that this site for help for your pain and try things that some of us have tried.I have alot of pain but I have a bigger fear of addiction.good luck.people here care and truely understand probably more then your doc cause we are all going through it.
  5. mrstyedawg

    mrstyedawg Member

    I have had CFS for 22 years. For me depression has not been an issue for me until 5 years ago. I remained upbeat for 17 years and then bam depression set in. So I would say that CFS has made me depressed. But depression did not cause the CFS.
  6. Michelle_NZ

    Michelle_NZ New Member

    Hi, welcome to the boards.

    I personally have found that CFS has caused me to have episodes of severe depression. Here is a paragraph from a letter that I have written and plan to send my friends on May 12th...

    One of the hardest things about having ME/CFS is that it is misunderstood by many people. You would think that getting a medical diagnosis would be helpful, but to tell you the truth, at times I just feel that I’ve been negatively labelled. In spite of scientific medical research, some people still think it is a form of depression, a psychological illness, or worse - that the person is just lazy! I do get quite upset by this. It is now proven that ME/CFS is a biological illness. There IS a psychological component, but it is all about managing your own emotional response to the very real and horrible PHYSICAL symptoms. Although depression plays no part in causing ME, it is sometimes, but not always, a symptom of the illness. However, it is a SECONDARY symptom – i.e. it is as a result of having ME that the person gets depressed, not the other way round. Did you know that just 30 or so years ago Multiple Sclerosis, for example, used to be called ‘Hysterical Paralysis.’ Diabetes, asthma, stomach ulcers and epilepsy were all thought to be psychological illnesses at one point. It’s a familiar pattern. When a physical cause can not be found for an illness straight away it is often labelled as being psychologically caused - even if there is no evidence for that either.

    ANNXYZ New Member

    I had the inherited form before CFS ( my mom and grandma had it before me ) and I think it is always a challenge even with AD's . I concur with those who say we grieve over the losses , and the sick feeling i s in our faces 24/7 . I know I never have any periods of remission , though a few may be so fortunate .

    I think the depression for me is not only from the genes , but also from a constant internal battle wanting to feel adequate and normal. I am so discombobulated and always aware of how disfunctional I am.

    I truly thank God for the drugs , and those I pity most are the folks who can not respond to any of the meds . I checked out the depression board here , and found there are so many who never find a med that helps and struggle
    to want to keep going .
  8. Pinkgirl

    Pinkgirl New Member

    It kind of creates a vicious cycle, you're depressed because you're in pain, then just being depressed causes more pain, then you get even more depressed because it won't go away... *sigh*

    I was dx'ed with serious depression before I was dx'ed with FM/CFS, and all that has done has aggrivated it and made it worse... As I said in another thread one of my dxs is Severe Depression aggrivated by long-term chronic pain.

    I believe depression is just another horrid side-effect of this DD..

    Hope you are feeling better soon,
  9. bunnyfluff

    bunnyfluff Member

    even though I have to be on AD's. I feel like they are sort of a requirement of the DD. There are just some things that don't work right anymore.

    I do get a little down sometimes when I think about this being 'uncurable', but then I think that maybe next year someone will figure it out and it will be okay! I find that when I take vicodin I tend to be a little more down than when I take other painkillers, so that can also be part of your problem.

    Overall, I have a good life, and I am thankful for that. But yesterday, my neice sent me an e-mail that had a tribute to my dead sister.

    It is a lovely slide show presentation that is in her memory, and a part of the fundraising effort for the American Cancer Society. My sister died a few years back after a long and courageous battle with cancer at the age of 52.

    I know she meant well, but it was very upsetting to me. Losing my sister was losing one of my best friends, and it hurts every day. So is it just depression, or do I have a right to be upset? Hard to say. I don't think that the other members of my family felt the same way, so I think this DD makes us more vulnerable, too.

    I get frustrated that I can't get all the things accomplished I would like to do, and sometimes it makes me feel like a slacker, or worse yet, when my mind isn't working at all, a complete idiot!

    I try to live by the advice that yesterday is over, tomorrow hasn't happened yet, so all we have is today, and just try to focus on each day, and try not to look at this thing 30 yrs down the road and freak out.

    Hope it helps a little.
  10. Seeseaisme

    Seeseaisme New Member

    Hi Shelby,

    I believe the depression and fibro come in cycles. I have been dealing with a major depressive episode since last October and feel like I'm just coming out of it. My family doctor told me I needed a psychological exam after non responsive treatment for the fibro with antidepressants. He said he didn't know what else to do for me. I applaud him for this actually.

    I was already depressed because of the fibro affecting every aspect of my life. I was having problems at work, mentally. I couldn't do my job anymore. My coping skills with pain and inability to function "like everybody else" was too much for me. Then my Dad died in November and the depression really hit.

    I couldn't understand why I continued to grieve. My therapist explained that I was in a "mourning" period but it wasn't just for the loss of my father. I was in a mode to mourn for all my losses. I was off work at the time on medical leave because of the depression and pain of the fibro.

    I'm responding to lexapro very nicely now and in fact have a therapy session today. I'm feeling so much better. I haven't posted for a while but thought I would respond to you. Yes, fibro and depression go together, like peas and carrots, as Forrest Gump would say.

    I'm doing ok for now, but I have to keep a close eye on both the depression and the fibro. I'm in pain 24 / 7 like everyone else on this board, but I deal with it. I've learned to pace myself when I feel good. I'd love to do a million zillion things on my good days, but I take it slow or I'll pay for it.

    I also had a bad reaction once to prednisone I took for a bout of asthma. I had never had a problem with it before but it really messed up my body chemicals and put me in a depression once. I've been diagnosed as having chemical imbalances in my brain, thus depressive episodes. So maybe the cortisone messed with your homrmones???

    Anyway, hope this helps you and I have been working on my attitude for quite some time. I heard something on a movie the other day, Hitch, actually. Anyway the statement was Live everyday as if it is on purpose. Hope you have a great day.

    Lots of care your way, Seeseaisme

  11. meditationlotus

    meditationlotus New Member

    (I have CFS), THAT not only am I so wiped out for days, that I can do very little, but also I am very depressed, and it seems to be a component of the post-exertional malaise.

    I read some where that when the body iSf under stress, the immune system thinks you are sick and begins attacking inappropriately, and sometimes goes after seratonin. So, indirectly, depression can be a part of CFS.
  12. shelby319

    shelby319 New Member

    I guess I will find out fast enough if I posted this under the right thread.LOL!!
    Seesesisme, I want to thank you for all your input and great info about yourself and depression! I can't thank all of you enough either for the help in answering my questions about depression.
    I'm having a much better day today after a conversation with a long time ( since first grade)girlfriend who somehow managed to enlighten me with her stupidity about FM, and actually had the hostility to make a statement that we all have pain and depression in our lives and that I have everything to make me happy, including a new home, a wonderfull husband, beautiful animals, etc. Then proceeded to called me a hypochondriac!! Well, to say the least, I blew up and sort of snapped out of it and told her she would never understand how horrible this disease is and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy!! But if she could walk in my shoes for just a day, she would totally understand what I go through!! I just lost it and lost respect for her as I'm finding it very difficult to explain this to alot of people who I'm close with and family members!!
    Now that I've done my ranting and venting~~~~ I did want to say that I have found alot of great support here and am learning more everyday. I'm in the field of psychology and can relate to my clients as its somewhat related with the stress and depression, but I can't get a hold of it for myself when it happened to me, and all I can tell them is about certain medications that would work and have them sit there and discuss their problems with compassion and understanding. Yet when this hits me I am not able to comprehend the effects it has on me and I should understand the chemical imbalances in our brains and how they function and so on. But to be honest, I haven't dealt with this in my practice as I deal mostly with post traumatic stress syndrome. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I should beable to get a handle on this and I'm beating myself up because I can't!!! Why is it so hard to beable to help others but not myself!!!!!! Probably because now it has become so personal for me and I just can't seem to accept it, mostly I'm sure because its all so new to me and that is why I'm here.
    I do try to take one day at a time and find laughter and a light at the end of that tunnel daily, but I'm still working on how to pace myself and admit to myself that I'm not in control of this right now. But hopefully I will with time and understanding and with alot of support from all of you wonderful people!!!! This place has been a godsend to me and I can't thank you enough!! I think what you lovely people wrote back to me about depression and your stories has helped me feel better today!!!!!
    Thank you all for your replies, I really appreciate it more than you know!!
    Have a sparkling day!
  13. kimfibro

    kimfibro New Member

    depression can arise (or should i say 'arrive') when your body is battling pain, fatigue, etc.

    your mind battles the stress but when there's an overload with a chronic physical condition, depression takes over because the stress has gone awry.

    it makes perfect sense to have depression along with chronic illness. it's just the trial and error part of finding the 'right' meds/solutions for each individual.

    and, with fm, you go thru the same trial and error. it's a cycle that feels never-ending but our searches continue because we care enough to do so!! :)

    hope positive things come your way!

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