Saturday, February 15, 2014

Not Such a Good Day Today

Yesterday I saw the rheumatologist and for the most part, I think the appointment went well.  She diagnosed me with fibromyalgia, which I was expecting, and also told me that I have osteoarthritis in my hands.  She recommends continuing with the Cymbalta and also prescribed gabopentin, which is an anti-seizure medication that is also sued to treat fibromyalgia.  She also recommended taking a glucosamine/chondroitin supplement.  I picked some up but I'm not sure if I'll continue taking it, because the research doesn't seem too promising that it will really help, plus it's expensive, plus most of those supplements are made from shellfish and bovine cartilage and I am a vegetarian and do not feel good about taking supplements made from animals.

The only bad news is that she doesn't want to prescribe pain medication or my  muscle relaxer because she says those don't help much with fibromyalgia and can even end up making fibromyalgia pain worse somehow.  Well.   Maybe that's all true, but what about my back?  I have degenerative disk disease.  My back doesn't hurt because of fibro, or at least, not only because of fibro.

And my primary care physician won't prescribe those meds anymore, either, because he said the rheumatologist should be treating my pain.  But rheumatologists don't typically treat degenerative disk disease.

So I have about a dozen pain pills left and even fewer muscle relaxers.  So I decided I needed to stop taking them right away and save the ones I have left for when I really, really need them.  Like if I can't get out of bed at all.  Or if I can't get out of the car.  That's happened before.  Once I lay in bed for about eight hours before I was able to move.  Another time I could not get out of the car and had to call Mike and he had to leave work and come home to help me.  But that's when we were together.  If that happened now, I would have no one to call.  But I have my purse with me in the car and I always have pain meds in my purse.  So I need to save the few I have left for things like that.

For the last couple of months, I've been taking four Tramadol and three Flexeril a day.  This morning, I took one Tramadol because I had to take Cayenne to the vet and it's very difficult and very painful for me to lift the cat carrier with her in it.  She weighs 8 lbs. 4 oz.  I have a hard time lifting a gallon of milk, which weighs five pounds.  So lifting and carrying Cayenne in her carrier is hard for me.   So I took a pain pill.

But no more all day.  I've cried twice today, because of the pain.  I managed to nap for about an hour.  This evening I went grocery shopping, which I dreaded because I was already in pain and I thought lifting groceries would make it worse, but I had very little to eat in the house.  The last few days have been busy for me and I can't do too many things in the same day.  So I went shopping.  I didn't buy anything heavy.  I bought a half gallon of almond milk, but that's the heaviest things.  I didn't buy a gallon of milk because I didn't want to have to lift that much.  I bought yogurt.  I bought a couple protein bars.  Light stuff.

When I got home, I was in a lot of pain.  I had forgotten to leave a light on and it had grown dark while I was at the store.  So I told Isaac to turn on the light.  And he acted like he had no clue what I was talking about.  Wouldn't turn it on.  I don't know what the problem was.  I ended up having to walk into the dark house and turn on a light myself.

By then I was really anxious and also angry and just overwhelmed.  I told Isaac to bring my meds.  Again, he acted like he had no clue what I was saying.  That might have been because I was upset and yelling.  I think I scared him.  I was also throwing my groceries around the kitchen.  I really lost it.  I got my own meds and I practically tripped over Isaac because although he didn't want to get my meds for me, he wanted to be right by me.  So I yelled at him to go lie down.  Which he did.

And he stayed right there until I was done putting my groceries away/throwing them around the kitchen.  After that I sat on the couch and called Isaac over to me and  hugged him.  Then I just cried for a while.

I'm in so much pain.  I don't know how I'm going to deal with this without any medication.  I just don't.


  1. Make an appointment with a pain management specialist. They treat all kinds of pain, not just one type. You shouldn't have to live like this. I live with debilitating pain like this every day and it reflects on your mental/emotional status too.

    1. I'm sorry you have to deal with that kind of pain, too. of course it affects you mentally and emotionally. It's depressing and exhausting.

  2. I'm sorry to hear this. I agree that you should see a pain management specialist. This is no way to live with such horrible pain. I wish too that you could get a PCA to do your shopping and household chores. A friend of mine has a PCA do all of these things for her because she simply can't because of her pain. This is not right!

    1. The issue with getting a PCA is paying for it. If I could afford to pay out of pocket, it would be no problem. But I can't. I have two forms of insurance, Medicare and Medicaid. Medicare doesn't cover an aide to help with things like shopping and household chores, ever. They will cover an aide to help with personal care, like bathing and dressing, under certain circumstances. But not things like shopping. Medicaid will cover an aide for those things, but in my state anyway, only if you would otherwise qualify for admission to a nursing home. I am no where near needing a nursing home. So I don't meet the criteria for a PCA.