Janet (need info)

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by blessed3, Oct 22, 2005.

  1. blessed3

    blessed3 New Member

    Hello Janet,
    Its been a while since I posted, but I thought I would start getting more active. I have a question for you.I also have 4 disks in my lower back that are deteriated, a pinched nerve and a bulging disk Right now the doc are trying epideural shots in my spine. But to me thats just like putting a band aid on it.What are they doing for your back? I'm going to UVA hospital. Which is one of the bigger and better hospital in our area.I know we are going to dicuss surgery.I just don't know what to do.I also have osteoarthritis,osteoporosis,fibro and Barrettes esophagus. Do you have any idea what peope with Fibro do about all this fatigue.If anyone else has any replys, please do so.Thanks for listening!
  2. JLH

    JLH New Member

    Hi, blessed3!

    You can read in my bio about all of my back problems.

    Before I got the recent pinched nerve between L4-L5 and S1, my family doc sent me to a orthopedic surgeon who specialized in back surgeries. He recommended NO surgery for now. He said that sometimes, after surgery is worse than putting up with all the problems.

    My daughter is a family practice doctor and she told me that she would prefer that I did not have any back surgery until I was ready to possibly end up in a wheelchair for the rest of my life!! She told me this BEFORE I went to the surgeon.

    So ... no surgery for now. My doctor sent me to physical therapy. He said that if I could learn some exercises to build up my stomach muscles, etc., that I would feel better. I went for the P.T. for 3 x week, for 6 weeks. It helped some, but some of the exercises were hard on me due to my weight. (I am overweight.)

    My primary doc said for me to try and deal with it the best that I could. Of course, they all told me that if I could lose weight, it would help take the strain off my back. He does give me a script for Lortab 7.5 for when the pain gets bad. It helps for my back but does not help my fibro pain. Cymbalta and Neurotin really help on it. I also take calcium 2 x day, plus gelatin capsules (its for bones and joints as well as nails!) 2 cap. 3 x day, and Fosamax Weekly -- all to help my bones.

    I have to walk with a cane when I go anywhere due to the pain in my back. I also have a bad knee that gives out on me--I've had surgery on it once, but know there is just a lot of osteoarthritis in it.

    When I got this recent pinched nerve this summer, it just about killed me!! The pain was horrific, especially the first thing in the morning. It took 5-6 hours, sitting with my feet propped up and a heating pad on my back, for the pain to ease up enough to walk.

    I didn't know what it was at first. I had CT scans, Xrays, etc. My PCP again said no surgery--that I would just have to live with it. My rheumy told me the same thing--only he suggested more physical therapy. I took the script for it but decided that I just could not do it--the pain was just too bad.

    So I thought if the sciatia nerve got pinched, maybe a Chiropractor could do some manipulation and "un-pinch" it!!

    My first week at the Chiro was deadly!!! I took all of my CT scan and xray reports so he could see all of my back trouble and where it was at -- so he would not do anything to HURT ME!! He put me on this roller table for 15 min. each trip that was supposed to stretch my back muscles, then a muscle stimulater to help on the pain, then he did a mild form of manipulation.

    After the first trip ... I had to set in my car forever .. and cried ... the pain was soooooo bad. I went home and took a Lortab immediately. Next trip, I took the Lortab BEFORE I went in for the treatment!!

    I always had to drive myself for the treatments--there was never anyone available to take me.

    I ended up taking about 15 treatments -- some weeks 2 times, and other weeks 3 times. After that 15th treatment, I had such a flare with my fibro and lupus that I ended up in bed for most of the day for a week or two. After that ordeal was over, I discovered that my back was feeling better.

    Oh, forgot to mention ..... that inbetween all of my chiro visits, I took a Medrol dose pak (prednisone) to help on the inflammation of the nerve. It definitely helped!!!!!

    The pinched nerve must have been released a little bit from all the chiro treatments. It still hurts in the morning and I still sit with my heating pad on my back, but the pain has lessened in intensity and in time before I can begin moving for the day.

    Last year, I had the series of 3 LESI's (lumbar epidural spinal injections). The first one helped for 2 weeks, then quit. The 2nd and 3rd ones did not help at all. So, I will not be doing those again.

    My chiro had recommended that if his treatments did not work, that I should try these LESI's, but he did not know that I had already done them. Or, he said maybe try a nerve pain block in my back. I'm not going to try that for a while either.

    For now, I am just going to deal with the pain. I have been doing that for the last few years anyway.

    As far as your question about what people with fibro do about all this fatigue? I don't know what others do, but this is another really big problem for me. Pain is the #1, and fatigue is #2. Some days, I think it is reversed!!

    Because of the pain, fatigue, and all my other health problems (heart, diabetes, lupus, etc.) I had to take early retirement from my job. I am unable to cook much, or do house cleaning much. I spend a lot of time in my recliner with my feet propped up. The biggest thing that would help me know is if I could lose weight--it would help my pain and my fatigue. Until then, I am a prisoner in my own home.

    If my fatigue and pain were not so bad, I would drive 45 min. daily to a fitness center that has a huge pool, inside, that keeps the water temp really warm for arthritis aerobic classes, therapy, and just local swimmers. I LOVED taking the arthritis classes and just walking around the pool, which I did while I was still working--I did it after work, because this facility was at my half-way point home, so it was convenient to stop. Now, it's a long drive down and back, and I just don't have the energy to make the drive, and I have nobody who would take me 3 x week.

    I don't know if any of my story has helped you or not. But, if you do anything different for your back, let me know and maybe I'll try it!!

    I guess I have said before about using my heating pad. It is SO IMPORTANT to me, that I call it my best friend, and I have a spare just in case it goes out! I also just ordered a "massaging" heating pad! I can't wait to try it out!!

    Take care,
    Janet
  3. JLH

    JLH New Member

    Just wondering if you've seen the reply?
  4. blessed3

    blessed3 New Member

    Younder,
    Barretts esophagus starts out as acid reflux, but then it gets worse.The lining of my esophagus is damaged plus I have a preligmate lesion on my esophagus.The doc does an endoscopic once per yr.
    jlove
  5. blessed3

    blessed3 New Member

    Thank you so much for all your info. Seems like you are really having a hard time.How long have you had osteoarthritis and fibro.Ireally hate te pain too. But when I'm not hurting the fatigue I really hate.I will go up to UVA hospital Nov. 10 to talk about surgery to a doc just to talk about surgery.I'll let you know when I get back from my appointment.
    Thanks again
    Pat (jlove)
  6. blessed3

    blessed3 New Member

    Please keep me informed what your doc says about surgery. What type of surgery are you looking at.I know its got to be scary.Best of luck to you.
    God Bless, Pat








  7. JLH

    JLH New Member

    Yes, I really have a hard time of it. My husband jokes all the time that he has never met anyone with as many medical problems as I have!

    I'll be 55 in a few months. I have had osteoarthritis since I was about 40, or at least, that is when it really began to bother me. My sister is only 45 and has had osteoarthritis pretty bad since she was in her early 20's. About 3 years ago, she had to have both of her knees totally replaced due to the arthritis. Now they are talking about some type of shoulder replacement--I don't know if it's only part of it or all of it. The doc also thinks she has rheumatoid arthritis now.

    I think the arthritis is a genetic thing in my family. My mother has it pretty bad, as well as osteoporosis. Her mother had both osteoporosis and osteoarthritis.

    I have had fibro and systemic lupus since I was about 10! My mother took me to many doctors trying to find out what was wrong, but they didn't know. Some thought it was growing pains, one though I had M.S., and the other said it was fibrositis, but all found it unusual in a child so young. I had many of the symptoms of lupus then: the photosensitivity, skin rashes, joint pain, muscle pain, heat problems, extreme fatigue, etc.

    I have had a bad day today. The pain and fatigue have been awful.

    Talk with you later!
    Janet