well, after months of hearing it, Ive finally decided to break down and try it again. Ive had accupucture before, with absoutely no success, but im trying to write that off as the provider who did it, didnt do it well.
I was given the name of someone (thanks Bearygood) a while back who is supposedly very good and finally broke down to make an appt. I go this morning. Im excited and nervous. I know what to expect, but the idea that if someone can help me with pain managment without me having to take pills is almost too good to be true. Ive lived with my parastasia for over a year, almost 2 years now, and at times, like yesterday- its too much to deal with. I sit and hold my bad hand with an ice bag on it, wondering if it will ever be "right" again. My Neuro says doubtful.
On top of that, ive developed some pretty intense pain in my shoulder from stenosis- and exercising is making it worse. PT didnt work- and the last resort is gong to be steroid shots in the muscle...so, before I go that route, Its off to the accupuncturist to get his opinion...
Wish me well? This really is my last resort befrore trying the steroid injections...which im trying to avoid.
My chiropractor, who I have been visiting for nearly a year now, does acupuncture as part of his routine visits. He uses needles for areas that do not involve the face, for the face he has an acutens unit he uses. I can tell you this much. When I get out of his office, I feel like a million bucks. Best money spent hands down.
I do hope that your experience with acupuncture is as promising as the results I have experienced myself
I don't know much about accupuncture, but I wish you the best of luck with your shoulder and hand problems. Are you talking about cortizone (steroid) injections for your shoulder? This one can go either way. I've meant alot of people who swear by them and others that it doesn't even touch the pain. If it is cortizone, I know that you can only have so many injections per year too (since it can brake down the bone and such). I hope it works out for you. Its always good to be given a name from someone whos gone there and had a good outcome. Try to keep an open mind for now, there are alot of holistic approaches to medicine out there that are proven to work. Take care.
Hi Tara. I honestly dont know if its cortisone or not they are discussing...my Neuro just hit me with this "possibility" last week and told me to think about it. He referred to it as "steroid shots" which of course COULD be cortisone- but it could also be solumedrol, ive heard of them injecting both. My guess is it is cortisone. Im told its very painful while doing the injection.
I hate to go that route. I dont even like to go on steroids for MS related stuff- but the pain IS that intense...so Im trying the accupuncture now, with hopes that I can skip the shots altogether. Wel'll see. I will keep you posted, im off to my first appt in the next hour..
Hugs and happy days!
've also been thinking about it for a while but haven't yet actually made an appointment.
Some of what I've read suggests that it can take a few go's before you feel an improvement. Others (as stated here) feel better immediately. Just something to bear in mind. Maybe results are dependent on individual cases?
I look forward to hearing how you get on. I hope it gives you some pain releif.
Hi Ya Cat- how ya been?
Okay, so I went. I really liked the guy and he seems to have great credentials..it was interesting, he spent alot of time talking to me about MS and symptoms but he also addressed how much of my hand pain MIGHT be coming from the radial nerve, which somehow is accessed thru the spine..thats where I have stenosis and alot of pain..
SO I let him do his thing...he is under the theory that you should "hit it hard" and go every day for the first 3 days...and then, if there is some improvement, start going every 3 days, and eventually down to once a week- I told him to prove to me what he could do today and we'd talk.
He needled me in the toes, which is supposed to work on the back pain, and again in the wrist of my bad hand...to try to work on those nerves. We talked about nerve stimulation- and the potential of trying that next time...and with that he left me for 15 minutes. Ive had accupuncture before, so I knew what to expect; however this wasnt the relaxing type of accupuncture I was expecting- instead I felt very keyed up and on edge..
when he returnd and removed the needles, my back felt great. Its been about 8 hours now and it still feels 75% better than it did when I woke up this morning..my hand, unfortunately feels the same...there might be a reason for that, I tend to always hurt worse in humidity and when it rains..today, it is POURING where I live...im not suprised it hurts so bad- more like dissappointed.
Im going back tomororw morning and again Monday morning..by that time, I should have more of a chance to see if this is working, or if it was just a fluke..the guy is good, but Im still not 100% convinced that this will really help long term. We shall see- Im trying to keep an open mind and really let it work if its going to. Heaven knows Ive tried everything else short of cortisone injections and surgery!
By the way, he is also a board certified Chiro- he WILL NOT and DOESNT recommend Chiro care for MS patients. Interesting.
Nikki- I hope this does help. I will be interested to see. I have also had 2 different chiros tell me they won't touch a patient with MS. They both cited that manipulation can cause nerves to freak out and cause a flare ups. ?
Hi Lisa, he kind of alluded to the same thing. I know weve had disucssions on this board about pros and cons of Chiro- and some people have had luck with it..but this guy strikes me as pretty legit and board certified to boot. If he wont touch me and had similar reasons- then I cant imagine it would be a good idea to let anyone "manipulate you" while knowing you have MS....
Its interesting to me that he was able to pick up so much about my pain. I purposely "forgot' the MRI so that he wouldnt have a clue what I was dealing with. I wanted him to really tell me where and why my pain was coming from, and he did. He also managed to pinpoint (no pun intended) what makes it better and worse..
We'll see. I am taking my MRI and report to show him tomorrorw because he "earned it" in my book. Im tough, arent I??
Keep ya posted and have a great night.
I find it interesting that he said that about chriropractic as well -- I wasn't adjusted but saw my chrio right after I was dxed and he was pretty defensive about its ability to help MS.
Nikki, that's great that you went. I think you know I haven't met him but my sister thinks he's terrific. That's a good sign that he picked up on stuff without knowing too much and what he told you about coming a few times at first is very much in keeping with how mine works each time we've worked on a new ailment. As far as relaxing, a lot of it is about just breathing and kind of "giving in"...you'll get there. My guy has an amazing and light touch but there are times it does hurt when he hits a "hot spot"! But again, when this happens, just try to focus and breathe into the spot when you're on the table.
I look forward to hearing more about your visits and don't forget to drink plenty of water!!
Okay, I am officially confused. I just spoke to my sister and she said that Orrest is not a chiropractor -- maybe I misunderstood and you went to someone else? In any event, I'm glad it was a good visit!
Hi Bearygood. thanks for the tip on water, that wasnt mentioned to me- although I do drink quite a bit of bottled water all day long on my travels, gotta stay hydrated with Rebif especially..
The guy you gave me, Orrest, has a wait time for new patients of over 4 months. I had tried calling before Christmas and was told that, and when I made up my mind to do this, I found out the wait time is still that long. I dont have the patience....duh. I should have made the appt last November! Anyway, I spoke to him at length...he gave me the name of a guy who he trained and refers to...Dr. Orrest was really great. I wish I could have seen him- but maybe one day I will...anyway, the guy he referred me to was equally as knowledgeable and they work the "same way" and have had the same training...
So sorry if I confused you- I did publically thank you for the recommendation but didnt qualify it with the details...now, you have them.
Meanwhile, Ill take your advice and work on breathing and relaxing....this guy did tell me that some people have differnt reactions to Accupuncture- while it relaxes some, it stresses others out..I went in there really UP and left slightly less UP, but hardly relaxed...I go again in the morning and maybe Ill relax even more...whatever it takes, if it works, Im all for giving it a few more sessions..
Ill keep you posted, and again, sorry for the confusion..this actually worked out better though- my insurance actually takes this place BECAUSE it is a chiro practice as well...so, they are covering up to 20 visits....not a bad deal at all!
Hope you are well..
Ah, mystery solved! That's great that your insurance covers it, Niki!! Let us know how your next appointment went (and the others) and also, I would like to hear more about this chiropractor's reasoning for not treating people with MS!
glad you are seeing results. i've been undergoing acupuncture for 4 years (maybe 5?) myself and have had good results. it sounds like your practioner is comprehensive which is excellent. my only caution for people with MS and acupuncture is that the practioner can not use treatments that are typical. they must employ an atypical treatment because a "direct" treatment can truly aggravate symptoms and not alleviate them for MS patients. I've also experienced something that can be typical and that's that after about 10 treatments, you might have a treatment that hurts, every needle you will feel and it will not be comfortable at all. many people drop treatments when they experience this but stick with it, it is truly a turning point and you see great results if you can endure a couple uncomfortable ones,
sunshine makes a good point. There are different types of acupuncture. My first introduction to it was at a spa many years ago and when I found an acupuncturist in NY to follow up, he did the "stick 'em in and pull 'em out" technique! Obviously, I don't know what this is called technically! I know that there are other less obvious differences in techniques as well but whatever technique the guy I go to now uses, it's a gentle insertion and then relaxing on the table to allow it to work technique!
Hi guys...I have to be honest. There is NOTHING relaxing about this; but I think I know why. Because he is treating my back and my hand- he is sticking most of the needles in my hand, wrist and between my fingers...the back, he continues to do my toes and yesterday added in my ears! He also tried putting 2 leads on my hand (the one which is numb) and adding stimulation to the hand...he turned it up to the point where I was crying in pain at the wrist part (where the leads are) however I could NOT feel the stimulation in my fingers at all....this leads us both to believe that the nerve damage may very well be both signicant and permanent; however he isnt willing to give up yet.
Anyway it is almost impossible to relax when you have to hold your arm up in the air (due to needles being all around it in a 360 degree circle) you cant rest your wrist on the table...and its hard to deal with needles in your ears, as you cant turn your head even the slightest amount...so thats MY theory on why this isnt relaxing at all....thoughts?
Next, you guys talked about differnt techniques...this guy seems to do things the same way that others have in the past- he inserts, leaves me alone for 10-15 minutes and comes back and removes...however, something yesterday did happen which triggered more thoughts
I think I told you, I didnt take the MRIs with me on the first visit...well, i did take them yesterday. He was really concerned about the fact that my MRI shows problems in my Cspine EXACTLY where I should be having pain in my hands/fingers. He is really wondering if my issues are MS related, or spine related...for those of you who have been following my story- i ALSO have worried about this for the past year. My Neuro is SURE its MS, my Osteopathic doc says it is spinal, however PT did nothing- and now the chiro thinks it could be spinal as well...he wanted the rest of the weekend to "think about me' and talk to someone else, and get an opinion on whether or not trying some sort of manipulation (chiropractic) MIGHT actually be worth trying..
When I asked him why he changed his mind so quick, since just the day before he said absolutely not to chiro- he blamed it on the films and seeing more then he knew from his evaluation...however, he also stated that he wouldnt consider doing anything chiro on me to try to treat MS issues, because the possiblity of nerve damage is too extreme.
So now im completely worried. I have no idea what to do or whether to trust him on this and give myself up to him. I dont worry about the accupuncture as much as I worry about manipulation...and, I dont want to be stuck having to do this forever, either.
Does anyone know exactly what manipulation MIGHT do in a negative way? Is it worth trying it a few times to see if it helps my hand? Or, should I continue giving this accupuncture thing a few more visits and see?
Right now, I actually hurt again. My back WAS better for 24 hours, but is back to feeling like it did before I went...
im very confused about all this.
info and feedback appreciated.
I can't give you any info or insight about what you're going through, but I can give you my support and interest. I can tell you that my grandmother, my new-age holistic grandmother, has been pushing me to see her acupuncturist in Chinatown since my dx, but I just haven't yet. It was interesting to read about your provider's doubts about manipulation as well. I have an acquaintance who is a chiro who thinks he can help me, but I just have doubts about it. If I knew it wouldn't harm me, I'd do it in a heartbeat, but I just don't know that. But if I knew there was even a tiny chance that it would alleviate some of my pain, I'd try it.
I'm sorry your pain came back, and if you find a solution, do tell. I also have several lesions on my C-spine and I also wonder if some of my pain is not MS related, so your post greatly interested me. Please keep us posted.
Avonex started 11/07,
Stopped 4/10 due to no insurance.
April, Ill keep you posted, but just so you know, none of my pain is MS related as far as lesions go, in my Cspine. I dont have any.....however, my Neuro thinks the whole hand/finger thing is from lesions in my brain....its the chiro who isnt sure.
Im not going to let him manipulate me unless he can show me why and how he thinks he can help me and what the downside is.....as far as accupuncture goes, Im all for trying it a few more times.
Ill keep you posted.
i personally would not try a chiro but that's me, i don't believe it's a good idea but as far as the technique he's using i have a few concerns but my understanding from your post is that you do NOT have an MS dx, is that correct? when i was referring to different techniques, i was referring to bilateral and unilateral points. most of the time acupuncturists use this approach for a overall treatment, overall wellness etc. but for an MS patient a bilateral approach is too direct, needles should be placed in balance, not overstimulating one system or Qi area. it seems that your practioner is using a symptom approach, stimulating areas where you have symptoms (back and hand) but I have my doubts, if you have MS, that this would be a good approach either. i think a unilateral system's approach is the best approach for people with auto-immune and neurological diseases.
Nikki, acupuncturists can be different and I will tell you that mine has a very light touch. Some are just not as gentle! Does he ever massage the spot before he sticks in the needle and do you feel every one going in? Like I said before, I have definitely experienced some discomfort when mine hits a hot spot -- it is not always pain free but it should release itself if you breathe into it, at least to a certain extent. If you tense up, it will continue to hurt. I'd continue the first course of treatments he's recommending, especially since it's covered by insurance but maybe ultimately he's not the right practitioner for you.
Sunshine, I didn't realize you meant that in terms of technique. I don't know what mine does but he's very good and has helped me with a number of things -- I actually attribute avoiding gallbladder surgery at least partially to my treatments. Besides what you mentioned, there are other techniques for insertion -- when I had the "stick them in and pull them out" guy I headed for the hills! Took me years to try it again.