Learn from patients with pain similar to yours

CatchMyPain Community and Pain Diary App to manage chronic illness

Is it hopeless?

Feb 24, 2018 12:07 AM

I'm new to this app and figured I would give it a try to see if logging my pain reveals any trends which may help me avoid triggers or at least get a better sense of aggravating factors.

I am 35 and have had back issues since I was a kid of 8 years old. By the time I was in my teens I was in enough regular pain to see someone about it on a regular basis. It got progressively worse over Rhea years but about 2-3 years ago the pain became excruciating and relentless. I got my first MRI which revealed multi level disc bulging and resulting stroke as well as significant disc degeneration and arthritic issues. I have tried every treatment I'm aware of at this point with very little if any relief. I did a surgery consult and the recommendation was to not go That route. The surge basically said he can fix maybe the stroke issue Temporarily but I won't see a ton of relief because I still have the other two issues. He said in his experience guys with multiple issues like me don't end up seeing much benefit to outweigh the cost, recovery time and invasiveness.

I have been taking Norco and tramadol on. And off for the past few years but neither really provide much relief. The pain doc I was seeing retired and now I'm looking for a new one in the chicago area. So far the ones I have visited have been Horrible. No ome seems to care about my medical history, MRI or pain levels. They all treat me like I'm a Junkie shopping for pills even when I'm not asking for any. Also they all say the same thing, I'm too young to have problems like this and to go take some Tylenol and ill be fine. But at the same time they want me to keep coming back to do useless procedures we have already established don't work. I can only imagine they are just looking for billable proceedures to charge my insurance.

Is this seriously our Healthcare system now? I'm absolutely beside myself and not sure I can keep pushing through life like this. I'm at the point where I'm considering going on disability so I can lay in bed all day and minimize my pain but that to me is essentially giving up bit I feel like its hopeless.

Feb 24, 2018 12:20 AM

Stroke = stenosis in the above.

Sorry for all the typos I was using a new keyboard that does split screen for easy horizontal typing on my iPad and the auto correct is tweaking. Don't use Blink keyboard its horrible.

Feb 24, 2018 1:04 AM

I also go to pain management and have been going for years. With the drug scare going on all the doctors I have spoken to are concerned about having their licenses revoked for giving to many drugs. I have been in an emergency room where I was accused of just wanting drugs. I had drugs at home for pain, what I needed was something for the abdominal pain and vomiting that was occurring. My gastroenterologist told me what drug to ask for if I had an abdominal attack. That didn’t work well.

I even took a course in hypnotherapy to help with the pain, it does help. I ended up getting certified as a Hypnotherapist with an additional certification in hypnoanesthesiology. Meditation helps also. Also Accupuncture works. If you can get the insurance company to agree to pay for these modalities. I find that doing something I can focus on if only for short periods of time helps some. That’s reading, or a very good movie even music you love.

I take norco 10 mg up to 5 per day. It doesn’t hold my pain so I also take Gabapentin 1 100mg 2 times per day. My previous orthopedic surgeon gave me tramadol for those breakthrough pain moments. My pain management doctors will not give anything else. I was in a work related car accident in 1986. It has been a long time with many surgeries. I know about being in pain for a long time. I understand your frustrations at the care or lack thereof that is provided nowadays I was declared 100% disabled in 1998. Finding doctors you trust is very important more importantly someone who listens and communicates is a must. As you look for a doctor check his or her references. Be careful about disability as being able to pay rent, eat, pay bills with cost going up every year is something to consider.

I don’t know if any of this gives you useable information but I got a chance to vent so thanks.

Feb 24, 2018 3:52 PM

Zero, welcome. At 50 with 6 freak vertibra fractures my story is very similar to yours. I've learned more than I want too about the machine they call modern medicine. I do lean on 3 x 50 mg tramadol a day to ensure I keep my fast paced employment, but am convinced that it is a multidisciplinary life style that will keep me strong and minimize associated depression. Diet, excercise, counselling, quality supplements and a good sleep rutine. I've established about a 70% life is good standard but it's a day by day struggle. I don't think we will ever be a complete peace or painless state. Hang tough and keep posting (there aren't a lot of younger men on this site so I'm glad to see you here - shhhh, don't tell anyone)

Feb 25, 2018 9:20 AM

its so easy with chronic pain to think bout giving up an even feeling like a bourden to loved ones. but dont give up! i have fibromyalgia an know tha distress! i have started using meditation at home. it helps to build a broken spirit. reach down deep inside yurself an find any bit of you thats there an slowly make yurself change yur state of mind. we are tougher than we give ourselves credit for. yu can still do things you love u jus have to again crawl before yu walk. everyday do something that makes yu proud of yurself even if its tha smallest activity. a few minutes of self gradification is better than days of self disapointment. stay focused on yurself. cause yu are still you. laugh as much as yu can. watch comedy. stuff you loved doin an now suffer in pain doing watch it on a video. aromatherapy helps ease tha soul as well. if yu caint make changes outside yur home make changes in yur home! take new invetory. an know that yur NOT ALONE! all tha love to yall. 🙃

Feb 25, 2018 12:49 PM

Thanks. I’m generally in decent spirits. That was a bad night. Pain wise I’m still the same but spirit wise I’m okay. It’s funny you mention comedy because that is one of the things that helps me. Over the past 2 years I have become a bit of a standup comedy junky. I listen to it at night to fall asleep and in the car in my way to and from work when I’m between audio books. There is an app called Laughly that has a ton of well and less known comedians. They charge a small monthly fee but it’s worth it.

Also this whole opiate crisis thing is pretty annoying. It is really a self fulfilling prophecy. If you go and look at the actual statistics on the CDC website you see that the first problem is they classify all opiates the same. Meaning the 5mg Vicodin the dentist prescribes for a tooth ache and the heroin imported to support terrorism is all the same. They fail to break out or distinguish the difference between the two.

If you review the actual data you see the crisis is really limited to synthetic opiates like tramadol, fetanyl and herion. Natural opiate deaths, like the norco or oxy pain patients generally take, have risen only 1% over 10 years. That 1% also includes deaths where other drugs were also present. The rest of the huge increase is all due to synthetics which are primarily sold and consumed on the black market.

So doctors stop giving legitimate law obieing people the medication they need so what’s the alternative? The black market. Then you go buy medication on the black market which is fueled primarily by overseas manufacturers who use synthics because they are cheaper. So you get a flood of tramadol and other pills claiming to be oxy norco etc but is really SSRIs laced with fetnyl. Then the deathtole goes up.

So to curb the opiate crisis we stop giving natural opiates to ligit patients but do nothing about the actual issue of heroin and synthetic opiates On the black market. There by forcing more people in to the black market and the crisis continues.

I dont know what their end goal is but clearly this is not the way to go about it. I wonder how long this war on pain patients will last before they find something else to focus on.

Wasn’t is adderal and stimulants just a few years ago? How everyone was turning into meth addicts because of ADD meds. Same thing just a new drug now it’s people are turning into heroin addicts because of pain pills.

Where is big pharma in all this you would think they would want to fight this narrative but it seems like they are silent. Why?

Well there’s always the black market.

Feb 25, 2018 1:40 PM

Lol, most phara opioids are also synthetic with modified opioid alkaloids that make them more adictive to some personalities. It also makes phara the only supplier. On the other side, opioid poppies contain about 35 natural alkaloids with 3 being the targeted pain kind. All opioids are addictive and should only be used for good reason and sparingly with someone close knowing exactly what is being administrated. However, assuming that there is a legitimate cronic pain reason that helps someone have a proactive and meaningful life I see no reason not to be able to use opioids for cronic pain. I am most interested in developing a group of cronic pain patients and professionals that support non manufactured basic natural opioid production like a community poppy grow for things like poppy tea or edible latex. I know I didn't even know about the whole opioid issue until I broke my back in 2016. But I'm fairly confident that without with my 3 tramadol a day I would not be able to hide the pain at work and unfortunately the world is a hard and unforgiving place with very little room for winers. Without my good professional job I'd be screwed and not able work more physically. So with a little regulated opioid help in conjunction with PT, counselling, excercise, diet, possitive thinking people and self input I think I can get through the next 10 to 15 years of employment and retire without feeling like a loser. Appearantly I'm also a little frustrated by this whole opioid crisis going on and all the good people with cronic pain who now struggle to make it financially, socially and mentally. Cronic pain is a killer of dreams, jobs and lives.

Feb 26, 2018 9:37 AM

I’m in a similar situation. I have a horrible back with compounding issues. Surgery isn’t a good option and I have litterally tried everything to get it under control with no real success. I have a six figure job a family and 5 children. My pain sucks and makes my life so much harder. I am also taking tramadol to get by but it is not very effective and the anti depressant properties of it are supper annoying. If I don’t take it my head gets all watery like my brains are splishing around due to the reduced Serotonin. It’s horrible. It to me is much more of an SSRI than an opiate. I want to stop taking it and have reduced it to the lowest possible dose but I can’t because I can’t get a script for anything else to replace it. Actually I got my doc the write me a script for a drug called tepentadol which is kinda like tram but way less SSRI and a stronger synthetic opiate but the script was $1,200 and insurance won’t cover it. So there goes that option. But without something I couldn’t function day to day. So for those in a similar situation there is no alternative they are just condemning us mostly to a life of unnecessary pain. Well I’m not the type of person to accept that. I’m going to do what I have to support my family and keep on pushing through life your rules be damned.

For $300 for a months supply of hydro oxy or tepentadol or $150 for tramadol on the black market without having to deal with insurance, doctors or pharmacy’s its no wonder people are going there. It’s just feeds into my whole point. By withholding medication from legitimate pain sufferers they are creating a heathy thriving black market and therefore the whole crisis becomes the self fulfilling prophecy.

Well like I said I’m sure this will blow over in a few years so hopefully we won’t have to deal with this forever.

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