Validation and Pain Management

October 24, 2011 at 5:45 pm (Chronic Pain, Medical) (, , , )

I don’t have a lot of typey-typey in me today, but I really wanted to write about this, so I’m going for it.

I got linked to this wonderful pdf by Sylvia Brallier, who is cool person who also suffers with chronic pain.

http://pain-topics.org/pdf/IntractablePainSurvival.pdf

It is a pamphlet-sized document about the treatment of “intractable pain”, or long term chronic pain.

I loved this for a few reasons:

1. It helped me come up with some new ideas to talk to my pain management doctor about. Although I have a “breakthough” med, he and I both know I take it every day as a compliment to my longer acting med, and not just at times where my pain is worse than normal. I would love to have some emergency med that I only took when my pain is really bad – like last night.

2. It addressed the silly notion, that I hear all the (expletive) time, that opioids cause pain and life is better if you just give them all up. I have heard this from actual doctors. I have doctors blame all sorts of symptoms on my pain meds and when I tell them that I would like to investigate other options, that I accept it could be the meds but it could also be a real physical issue. I had to leave a neurologist because he blamed everything, everything on my opioids, which he felt were way too much for someone my age.

3.It made me want to investigate further this idea that I am “sensitive” to opioids. We have noticed that my body loves narcotics, and while others can take ’em or leave ’em at will, my body lets me know under no uncertain terms when my bloodstream is low on narcotics. It’s not that I feel more pain, although that happens too, but that I start to exhibit signs of withdrawal. I wonder what causes this, if other people experience it, and what can be done to mitigate it without just discontinuing use. I mean, I’ve been thinking about going drug-free for a while to see what would happen once my body was clean, but the idea of no pain meds makes everyone involved in my life, including me, a little apprehensive. Also, my upcoming schedule doesn’t allow for such a time.

4. I really wonder if I’m a candidate for an implant.

5. Lately, with the whole Fentanyl experience, I have been feeling very ashamed of my need for pain management drugs. I feel like I’m letting people down when I consider going back on Fentanyl once the TB is treated. I mean, there are good reasons for me never to touch the stuff again, I know, but now that I’m more than a month clean of it, I know that my pain is no where nearly as controlled as it was.

6. I sometimes wonder if people really understand how much pain I experience. Last night it got so bad that I literally wept. And I’m not a big crier. But I was at “no more cope”, and I had no more interventions at hand (after drugs, TENS unit, massage, acupressure, and meditation/breathing) I just had to wait it out. It renders me completely unable to do anything at all. On a normal day, everything I do is weighed against how much pain I can tolerate. Even typing this. Even going to the bathroom. Even feeding myself.

So it felt good to read something about pain management that was effective and positive and helped me feel like I deserve to get some relief, even if we have no idea why I am in pain to begin with.

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