POLL How many of you are / were HealthWorkers?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by goingslowlycrazy, Apr 1, 2003.

  1. goingslowlycrazy

    goingslowlycrazy New Member

    I read recently, during my (endless) research, that it is common for this DD to be found amongst workers in the Health field.
    I was a Registered Nurse for seven years and then became a Registered Sick Childrens Nurse.(UK terminology)
    In fact I wonder if this is where my problems started as I had been in good health prior to this and then literally woke up one morning with my hands covered in exzema. I had to take three months off work as the exzema became infected with Staph. Aureus and we couldn't get rid of it. Had to be hospitalised in the end to get rid of it although it still flares. (That's the least of my problems now LOL).
    I would be interested to know how many of us fit into this category?
    Mary xx
  2. SuzieQ

    SuzieQ New Member

    I've been a nurse for about 10 yrs now. Before that I worked as a direct care worker in group home. Most of my working life has been taking care of other people.
  3. dojomo

    dojomo New Member

    I've been an RN for 22 years but had to go on disability in 1998. I can trace my illness back to recieving the hepatitis B vaccine. I believe it pushed me over the edge.

    There are several studies showing an increase incidence in healthcare workers. So occupational indicators are a GOOD clue......Perhaps we are more exposed to pathogens or toxins or both....

    I have been reading that mercury spills in hospitals have never been properly handled.....not to mention the mercury we have been injecting into ourselves with vaccines....

    Mercury can induce autoimmune diseases and as healthcare workers....we have been working in toxic waste lands.

    Now, they wonder why there is nursing shortages. Just about every nurse I know has some sort of autoimmune dysfunction......asthma, endometriosis, thyroid, MS, CFS, diabetes.......to name a few...everyone of my friends has SOMETHING going on......

    I am begining to wonder just how environmental safe healthcare setting are............... DJ

    Here is an interesting study

    Estimating the prevalence of chronic fatigue syndrome among nurses.

    Jason LA, Wagner L, Rosenthal S, Goodlatte J, Lipkin D, Papernik M, Plioplys S, Plioplys AV.
    Department of Psychology, DePaul University, Northwestern Medical School, Rush Presbyterian--St. Luke's Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois 60614, USA.

    The present study assessed the prevalence of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) in a sample of nurses. There is a paucity of studies on the prevalence of CFS in healthcare professionals. Two samples of nurses were recruited through mailed questionnaires. Data were collected on demographic characteristics and symptoms. In addition from the sample, those nurses with CFS-like symptoms were more comprehensively evaluated using a structured clinical interview and reviewing their medical records. A physician review team estimated the prevalence of CFS to be 1,088 per 100,000. These findings suggest that nurses might represent a high-risk group for this illness, possibly due to occupational stressors such as exposure to viruses in the work setting, stressful shift work that is disruptive to biologic rhythms, or to other possible stressors in the work settings (e.g., accidents)
    [This Message was Edited on 04/02/2003]
  4. patchwork

    patchwork New Member

    I was a podiatrist and sometimes wonder if a combination of chemicals I worked with contributed to this.I wonder about propellants that they used to put in sprays such as quick prep e.t.c.
    I also have a theory that healthcare workers are more at risk as they have frequent skin contact with many people every day and so are constantly picking up viruses e.t.c. If for some reason the immune system is 'down' then it doesn't have a chance to get back to normal with the constant invasion. I don't think I will ever be able to go back to podiatry and if ever I do feel well enough to work it will have to be something where I'm not so much in contact with the general public........Having said that it's been 18 years since I had to give up..........
    By the way I hear that teachers are also high on the list of sufferers....could be for similar reasons......??
    [This Message was Edited on 04/02/2003]
  5. AnnetClo

    AnnetClo New Member

    until it just became too much for me. But even before nursing and after I have been caretaker to others. Now I do well to take care of myself.

  6. CPRN911

    CPRN911 New Member

    Am also a nurse....25 years....very interesting posts....my family Hx is excellent....parents are 75, NO health problems, siblings also have none, but me....Crohns, diabetes, back (fusion of C5/6,laminectomy L5S1)...and I'm the ONLY one in healthcare....hmmm....it surely makes sense that with all that we come in contact with that maybe the immune system gets overtaxed in some of us thus the response...then the breakdown....
  7. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    In one study on a cluster outbreak of CFIDS, half the patients were nurses and another ten percent were working in health care facilities.

    I worked for years in a large group practice in the insurance dept.

    Love, Mikie
  8. kerrymygirl

    kerrymygirl New Member

    Srated in nursing field changed over to P.A. Had to take care of 15 yrs illnesses of kids. Spent good time in hosp. even then when I wasn`t working outside but in school. Also caregiver. Sis has fm oncology nurse. Dr. from Johns Hopkins rheume, frriend has fm now. Many of my pts. at clinic were in health care field. Take care yourself that is about all alot of us can do now.

    P.S. We are way ahead of so called professionals here on this board. Alot of sharp people I have noticed. I have been doing research and advocacy myself for 8+ yrs.
    [This Message was Edited on 04/02/2003]
    [This Message was Edited on 04/02/2003]
  9. kgg

    kgg New Member

    My little sister is a PT. I worry she is already starting to show signs of some kind of immune dysfunction. Sad . . .
  10. allhart

    allhart New Member

    i was a medical asst,but for a short amount of time
  11. BethM

    BethM New Member

    I've been working as an RN for 23 years, 18 of them in education as a school nurse. So, double whammy here, I guess!
  12. dsames

    dsames New Member

    I was also in the health field for many years.

    I first worked at the Health Dept. as a medical secretary for 16 yrs. Was exposed to many sick people daily. The last 3 yrs that I worked there, I established and operated an adult foster care home for senior citizens on one level of my bi-level home with the intent of getting this up and running so I could take early retirement from the Health Dept.

    For those of you who may not know what an Adult Foster Care Home is; We are people who provide a home for senior citizens who can no longer stay home by themselve, but do not require skilled nursing. We literally give them 24 hr care, and learn to give insulin injections as well as Heparin. I thoroughly enjoyed this work, and retired about 4 years after being in business for 13 yrs.

    Now I have combined my love for older persons and my love for dogs and have trained two shelties (my fur babies) as therapy dogs. We go to extended care facilites, and hospitals, children's wards and other facilities to try to
    bring some happiness to them.

    Statistics prove this is great therapy for people who are ill, and has helped many people to recover.

    Michigan (where I live) has been very open to this concept and it works. We love it and the bonus is it helps me feel better.

    I hope this post is accepted here, I really wasn't trying to do a "commercial". but just to say that I am still in the health field somewhat, as far as being exposed to sick people is concerned.

    God Bless


  13. Solstice

    Solstice New Member

    I was not a health care worker, but did work in the schools as a counselor. Someone else who replied to you mentioned that there is also a high incidence of teachers having this DD. I would pick up every virus and bacteria that was around me in the school and could not continue to work, as I was sick more often than not. Now that I don't work, I get less infections, but still have all of the other symptoms of this DD. It is endless.
    I also know of several nurses who have this DD. So, it sure seems there are high risk careers ...........yours and mine being two of them.
    I wish you well.
  14. kadywill

    kadywill New Member

    times 28 years. I've been out on a medical LOA since November due to spinal stenosis and all of THIS stuff. I've been sick with all of THIS stuff since 1974 and more and more symptoms keep showing up. I was mostly a longterm care, geriatric nurse.
  15. Kay2

    Kay2 New Member

    enviormental services at childrens hospital. Came in contact with ALL sorts of things, of course.
  16. obrnlc

    obrnlc New Member

    hi all-interesting poll! I have been a nurse since 1980, had vague symptoms since mid 90's, full fledged symptoms (pretty severe) since 6/2002, constant pain and weakness, severe muscle "tightness" in legs especially. I was late with my hepB vaccine, just got it in early 2002. Coincidence? I wonder. As far as mercury--my brother and i used to spend alot of quality playtime "rolling little mercury balls around" and he has many of the same symptoms, just asked me if guys can get fibro too. WHO KNOWS WHAT TO THINK!!!!!!!!!!!!!! laurie
  17. Echos

    Echos New Member

    I am also in the health care field. I am a Radiology Technician and a Registered Medical Assistant. I was always catching one thing or another from my patients, but I love the job. I've always wondered if there was some kind of connection with my line of work and my disease. One will never know I guess.

  18. goingslowlycrazy

    goingslowlycrazy New Member

    This is amazing - I had read some statistics - but to hear if from people that I feel I am coming to know is weird!
    Just goes to show how much more research is needed as I wonder about the future of our current health care people...do they know what they may be letting themselves in for?
    Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to reply so far..
    Mary xx
  19. ForeverFlaring

    ForeverFlaring New Member

    Although I started showing symptoms of fibro when I was in retail, I spent ten years as a nurses aide at a hospital beforehand.
  20. NewEnglander

    NewEnglander New Member

    I started out as a nurse aid at the age of 16 and from there became a home health. Then I worked for myself doing nurses aid, home health aid, pca, companion and Then I start caring for people who were terminaly ill. I tood care of so many people and alot of them are gone now. I also cared for people who were in acoma. I took care of people with many different illnesses.
    Love Lisa