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ARTHRITIS, Not my only pain

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Old 12-13-2007, 03:12 PM   #1
Enchanted D
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Post ARTHRITIS, Not my only pain

Let me introduce myself, I am called enchanted, and I have a lot of arthritis all over. I have had some form of arthritis since I was about 11 years old. I am in my 30’s, and even though insist that I am 28 again, finally look as if I am in my early 30’s. Everyone looks at me as if I am crazy, that I am young and should be spunky and full of life and energy.

I have had many surgeries, a back fusion from the front and back with my bone and donor bone, and a titanium plate with screws permanently holding my lower back together. I have also taken plenty of different medications, and whole lot of physical therapy sessions. I have had TMJ surgery to remove the completely arthritic disks, and am currently wearing braces in an attempt to adjust my bite, in hopes of relieving the TMJ problems, symptoms, and pain. (I do seem to be doing better on that part of the pain, far less sliding, clicking and popping, and hardly any locking out of place).

As my title may suggest, arthritis is not my only pain, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia in March 2005. Although this news is heartbreaking, it was not unexpected. I have been denying its’ possibility for the last decade. (Almost every female in my mother’s line of the family has some form of this disorder.) No one in his or her twenties should ever have to suffer like this. I feel that all of these things have been destroying my life. I can’t seem to do things that others are able to do. I don’t get to play sports, or go running with my friends. I am tired of my body feeling like it is 100 years old, especially since I am only in my 30’s.

Does anyone else feel this way? I am currently taking antidepressants for depression and anxiety, Ultram and a muscle relaxer at bed, and have been told to go and get Myo-facial Deep Tissue Massage. I don’t know what is like, but there are times when I just can’t be rubbed softly, deep tissue sounds horrific. Has anyone else done this, how bad is the pain, and is it actually helpful? My insurance finally will pay for this service (before, they said it wasn’t medical). My doctor also wants an EMG. That scares me too. How bad are those?

I am trying to use some homeopathic, nutritional, and herbal remedies to help, along with the medications and injections of steroids. (I am allergic to Novocain, so my steroid injections have to go in alone. This means that I do not get the numbing comfort that may make these injections a little more bearable. Ooouchhhhh). Along with the medications that have been prescribed, I have been using an OTT Light (full spectrum light, used for winter months when there is not much sunlight, thus causing Seasonal Affective Disorder), and have been taking Glucosamine/Chondroition with MSM extra fruits and vegetables and dietary fiber with much less fat and processed foods. I am also using Cinnamon tablets (1000 mg) 3-4 times a day. These actually seem to be helping. I have noticed a marked improvement in the circulation to my extremities. I was waking up every morning with my hands so swollen and numb, all the way up to my elbows, that I couldn’t use them for days. Now, I can actually wake up without the excruciating pain radiating from hands and arms that cannot move themselves (like dead limbs), and can go through my day somewhat capable. I used to type over 100 wpm, now I am lucky if it is half. HOW DO I DEAL WITH THIS, for the rest of my life?????????

If there is one huge thing that I am thankful for, it is the fact that all of my doctors have told me that my arthritic problems are of the Osteo-arthritis, or degenerative arthritis types, and not Rheumatic Arthritis. Although some think this is little comfort, those suffering with RA truly know how lucky I am. Even though I do suffer with the Fibromyalgia (as I have been told by my rheumatologist that it is an autoimmune problem linked too many of my other illnesses), I am thankful that my arthritis will not deform my bones making them even more painful and unusable. My heart is heavy for all of those who have RA, and I hope that no one sees me as a baby who is complaining. I am looking for coping methods and other ideas that may help me in my future fight.

Thank you all who read this, and for any advice anyone can give to me; including information on arthritis, fibromyalgia, treatments, homeopathic possibilities, and any studies or research that has been done.

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Old 12-14-2007, 01:34 AM   #2
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Re: ARTHRITIS, Not my only pain

Hi Enchanted,
sorry you are feeling bad at the moment and please dont ever apologise for telling us about this as it is your right and everyone on here understands how you feel!!! I am at present having a bad flare and can barly move (fingers, shoulder, knee, ankle and jaw). The only thing that helps is rest, cold/hot compresses/ painkillers ets. Thankfully it only lasts a couple days usually then the RA just attacks one or two joints which i can cope with just about!!! Have only had this blasted disease since May this year and have just started on my first dmard (fingers crossed it will work)!!! Have just re-read your post, sorry i did'nt realise it was OA you have, i dont know much about this but from what fellow sufferes say if they had a choice they would prefer OA as oppose to RA. Do takecare and hopefully someone will have some answers for you.

Old 12-22-2007, 04:54 AM   #3
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Re: ARTHRITIS, Not my only pain

hello starting with arthritis at 11 yrs old really caught my eye. i had my first spinal injury getting thrown by a horse at 11.
i have degenerative spine and disc disease, degenerative joint disease (i've had so far, 2 knees and 1 hip replaced)also fibromyalgia, and diabetes.
i can't remember ever having no pain at all. i also felt useless in my younger years like you, and still feel that way at times, i'm 57 now. i left my last job at 43 to go on ss disability(my doc's idea).
depression is normal, feeling helpless is normal. i got thru the yrs waiting for a "good pain day" to do anything. i can't count how many times over the yrs i was laid up in bed or in the hosp. crying, feeling sorry for myself, i still do that every so often. what has helped me get over myself at the time is thinking about someone who does'nt have any limbs to feel the pain.
i lived in massachusetts all my life, then hubby retired 4 yrs ago and we came to florida. my dr's seem to think living here may slow down the degeneration process. i do have less fibro flares and arthritis pain where i live now. i have what i call normal pain every day, which i'm sure you know what i mean. it never goes away completely, but, some days are worse than others.
hope this helped to know i went thru the same thing at your age and feel bad for you, hope you get some good pain days!.......bevann

Old 12-26-2007, 01:38 AM   #4
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barbie62 HB User
Re: ARTHRITIS, Not my only pain

Hi enchanted, I am sorry that you are feeling bad but we are in the same club. I know it stinks and I can not be much comfort to you but I thought I could help with the questions. A deep tissue massage is painful, they generally will just be able to do one area at a time. Like your neck and shoulders and then go back for your back. It is like a kneading of your muscles. I used to like it when they are doing it, it is the after affects that I do not like. It releases all of the toxins. So if you are prone to migraines then this can cause one. It can take many sessions depending on how tight your muscles are. The emg is used to test for nerve damage. It is like having electric currents put thru the nerve and it shows if there is nerve damage. I had this done and it is extremely painful and will never do it again.
I hope this helps you with any future decisions you may have to make.
Take care,

Old 12-28-2007, 07:56 AM   #5
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Re: ARTHRITIS, Not my only pain

HI everyone,
I'm beginning to see a pattern with all of us who have arthritis. alot of us also are dx'd with FIBROMYALGIA.
It seems to go hand in hand. I just learned that I have fibro and It's quickly spreading to other joints in my body. the left hip on the back of my body, (not the front side) hurts at times when I'm walking. it feels like I'm going to get stuck in a position. do you know what I mean? the sharp stabbing pain feels as if I move, it will snap or something. I can't explain the pain.
I'm beginning to think now that when I finally get medicaid, I really need to have further testing performed on alot of other areas that are now becoming effected. what type of testing should be peformed and what type of blood work should be done?
I'm not going to just sit back and let this thing spread all thru my body like wild fire.
I am in agony everyday and it's impossible at this point for me to work because it takes me hours to even feel normal upon rising out of bed in the morning. let alone always feeling so weak and tired. I feel guilty having to always lay down while others in the family are working. I feel like i'm losing my life and there's nothing I can do to stop it.
I NEED to have more tests done. this is why I need some recommendations from others here who have gone thru it. I am just learning about these conditions being I'm newly diagnosed with it.
Is anyones sense of smell diminishing like mine is? It's frustrating to miss out on scents around me. foods, pretty potpourrie this christmas, not to mention if there's ever a fire or if food is burning on the stove. one never thinks of these things till we're afflicted with it.
I'm at my wits end today and wish to God they'd hurry and get my medicaid thru so I can go to my doctors. meanwhile, I have to suffer and wait.
I'm afraid to try the lyrica because of what others have said here about it.
I have a script for it sitting in my wallet ready to be filled if there wasn't so many bad side effects to it.
did any of you try it for your fibro?
thank you for your help.

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