Trying to adjust and struggling...

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by sjustic1, May 29, 2008.

  1. sjustic1

    sjustic1 New Member

    My name is Sarah and I just signed up for this support group this morning. I am 44 years old and a full time student in graphic design. Lately I can't draw because my hands ache and burn so badly. The last few days they have been swollen and it's scaring me. I am diagnosed with CFS and FM, relating to post traumatic stress (they say). Went with pain meds for awhile but backed off alot due to side effects. I'm on neurontin, 5htp, pain meds but not coping well lately. Especially with the mood swings.
    [This Message was Edited on 05/29/2008]
  2. Debra49659

    Debra49659 New Member

    i noticed that you responded to one of my threads today...thanks for that. what is great about this group of people is that the group is so large and supportive that someone can usually help with an answer or tell you where to find the answer.

    i congratulate you for continuing on with school, i hope they are able to help with some accomidations for you.


  3. zenouchy

    zenouchy Member

    Hi Sarah,

    I'm so sorry to hear about your aching, burning and swollen hands. It might not be as serious as you think. Just last month two friends of mind in their early 40s told me they were diagnosed with arthritis of the hands. (That by all means doesn't mean you have that.) My fingers swell up sometimes, and my doctor told me I have tendonitis and to ice it them.

    There are many kinds of hand conditions that women can get as we age. I also have carpal tunnel and have to limit typing (which stinks!) and wear braces on my hands at night. Anyway, I would check with your doctor and try not to worry ahead of time (I know that can be easier said than done). Let us know how it goes.

    Graphic design sounds so interesting. I'm sure you will be able to continue it with no problems.

    All the best,

  4. findmind

    findmind New Member


    I don't know a darn thing about swollen hands, but I wanted to say hi, and hope you get answers to that problem.

    Also, so proud of you, to be in school and doing what you love while chronically ill. Please do contact your school about accommodations for your medical problems; they are usually very happy to help!

    Best of luck to you in your endeavors.

  5. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    I get swollen hands from cleaning. It is an allergy to dust.

    Allergies (not the common sneezing, watering eyes) but the swelling tissues, rashes, are common in our population.

    I wash my hands/body then take an antihistamine.

    If that fixes it, then you know you encountered something that made you react.

    Could it be a chemical that you have not used before? Multiple chemical sensitivities is also common in our population.

    For mood swings, is it too high or too low. GABA is a good calming supplement -reduces excitotoxicity. Also Valerian root, 5htp.

    Neurtonin can cause some issues so if it is not helping much, perhaps a replacement.

    Best of luck to you,
  6. marti_zavala

    marti_zavala Member

    could it be fatigued muscles due to overuse.

    I use magnesium 400mg and malic acid (enzyme from apples) to counteract the lactic acid in muscles from overuse.

    Can't live without both.

  7. sascha

    sascha Member

    these conditions are a trip and require deep and difficult adjustments. i say don't be astonished at anything that crops up. also never give up quest to find best means of help for yourself.

    this Board is a excellent resource for ideas.

    i'm on lexapro, and i think it is useful through the trials of cfids. i'd like to give it up when/if i get better, but definitely not now. i'm also on the valcyte and am having a hard time dealing with its impact. i have 5 weeks to go on the 6 month course of treatment (it's an anti-viral approach to treating cfids)

    we are our own best advocates on our journeys. maybe some supplement, prescription, dietary approach can help you stablize your moods. i hope you get good advice here to try-
    very best to you- Sascha
  8. Jayna

    Jayna New Member

    My daughter doesn't have CFS/FM (yet!) but she does have wrist problems, as do I. Both of ours started in university, because of the intense amounts of writing and typing we had to do. Her whole hands swell, mine only do in the side of one wrist.

    We have learned to be proactive about protecting our wrists from over-use, and ways to help them when we've gone past the zone.

    First, you might try wearing the generic wrist braces (available at any grocery/pharmacy) WHILE YOU SLEEP. My physiotherapist told me the wrists can actually damage themselves further by flopping overnight into positions that further limit blood circulation and delay repairs to daytime workload, so the first line of defence is keeping them more or less straight while sleeping.

    My daughter has a specially molded brace for her right arm, but uses a generic brace on her left when needed. Usually one night of brace is enough to get her swelling down, and then she keeps using it day and night for the next week to give her tissues the maximum overnight healing time with the minimum new daytime damage.

    Second, try to adjust where you work so that your wrists stay as straight as possible while you are drawing. Maybe change the angle of your drawing table? Good body position really helps - I have had lots of computer-intensive jobs and was always able to handle them if I had the ability to adjust the chair height, keyboard angle etc.

    If you're driving, that will also aggravate wrist problems because of the continuous tiny muscle adjustments that we don't even think about. Getting someone else to drive can give your wrists a vital break.

    Good luck getting it under control without messing up your school. My right wrist is already hurting in sympathy.