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    Old 04-15-2004, 07:47 PM   #1
    peaswink
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    Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

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    Hi all! I am new to this board, and I have lots of questions, hoping I can find some answers.

    I am only 24 and have been struggling with back pain for the last 5 years. The pain began only 4 months after I gave birth to my daughter, which the doctor rudely wrote off as "pain caused because I was nursing!" Wow, strange. I have had 2 more children since, and the pain sticks around even when I am not nursing.

    I have been to all the doctors, and they send me away like I am imagining this pain. It is very frustrating. I have been to physical therapy (3 different doctors, massage therapists, the lahey clinic, etc... ) 10 doctors total, lots of time spent that I didnt have and it was just wasted.

    I am tired of being in constant pain, especially because I am young, and a stay at home mom. I feel like I miss out on so much because of this. This is an idea of my back pain:

    My pain is ALWAYS in my upper right side of my back. The worst behind my shoulder blade. The pain in my back stretches a little more than halfway down my back. Almost feels relieved when someone presses on it, but doesnt make it better at all. I always have tension in my neck, which sometimes causes headaches. The pain heightens by tension and stress. Any loud noises, especially ones that I am not expecting make the pain much worse. It hurts when I press on my ribs even gently on my right side. It heightens the pain in my back, making me wonder if my back pain is somehow related to my ribs. I can never take a full deep breath. I don't even feel good when I wake up from sleep, I feel like I have been hit by a Mac truck. I am ALWAYS feeling fatigued, too. I have pain in my right forearm, which gets worse with overuse. For example, I love to bake, but the pain in my arm from using the mixer almost makes it unbearable, and no longer enjoyable. I can't write a letter, I lose strength in my hand after writing only 1/2 a page. My right knee has been killing me lately, just wondering if this is possibly related. This is it in a nutshell...

    Does this sound like it could possibly be fibromyalgia? Or does anyone experience anything like these symptoms?

     
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    Old 04-16-2004, 12:26 AM   #2
    kristinita9
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    Ouch! Sounds much like my pain of 5-6 years, only mine is on the left side; including space between the shoulder blades, behind the blade, rib cage back side then runs to the front just under the breast.

    My gp diagnosed costochondritis, I believe it is 'intercostal neuralgia', seems left handed people have right sided pain and right handed people have left sided pain, (I'm right handed).

    I am seeing a rheumatologist today; 1st time. I've had bone scans, xrays, labs, etc....nothing shows up. I also have trigger points from myofascia which the massage therapist works on....believe I have fibro too. Should know today hopefully.

    I use hot tub, warm water (90 degree) pool, massage, am reading now about meditation and self-hypnosis. I've spent a small fortune on rib belts, heat wraps, Biofreeze, capsasian<sp>, pillows, wedges, etc. Have tried accupunture, chiropractor, .......yada yada....

    Can't imagine dealing with this kind of pain and caring for small children; mine is grown. Best to you....let us know what you find out.

     
    Old 04-16-2004, 05:18 AM   #3
    producttramp
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    I thought my knee, hip and low back pain was caused by nursing too. I went from doc to doc (not easy with small kids) trying to figure out why. Turned out to be bursitis, tendonitis and si joint dysfunction -for no apparent reason, its not like I had an injury etc. BUT still had major fatigue/soreness plus insomnia (and not from my kids-haha!) finally, after 2+ years of useless docs and plenty of $, physical &pool therapy, chiro, etc, I found out I had fibro but only b/c my husband asked if anyone ever looked at that as a possibility and I mentioned it to my doc. Not one of the docs i went to ever did say fibro once. They wanted to say I had rhum. arth. b/c my mom does-which I dont and put me on methotrexate-a very strong drug. I just felt they couldnt figure it out and wasnt just going on a drug b/c they thought that was it. I got a good rhumy who did diagnose FM (in addition to all my other junk). The only thing I can say is see a rhumatologist and try to do your best. I feel the same-like my kids are missing out on mommy b/c I never know how I will feel. Most just dismiss you as looney/looking for drugs-esp if you are young. I dont want drugs, I want to not feel pain and be able to hang with my kids without feeling like a great gramma instead of 32 y.o. mommy. Try the rhumy. Insist on the proper care and try to take good care of you b/c you cant take care of everyone else without you taking care of you first.

     
    Old 04-16-2004, 06:43 AM   #4
    typingterror
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    Yes, I have this type of pain also. However, besides fibro I also have severe osteoporosis and arthritis of spine, etc., so who is to say where one condition lets off and the other begins. I continually try different things to alleviate pain as much as possible -- what a hobby. Have you had MRI's, x-rays? You need to find a doctor who will listen to your symptoms and try to diagnosis something. Welcome to the jungle! My heart goes out to you with having a family to take care of as I have a hard enough time taking care of myself.

     
    Old 04-16-2004, 10:21 AM   #5
    peaswink
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    I havent been to a rheumatologist yet (spelling?) but I will try that, too. I just recently heard to try that kind of doctor. I actually have my first appointment with my new primary care today. I am hoping he will be good in the referral dept. and find me some good doctors. What you said about feeling like a grammy instead of a mommy totally relates to me....

    It is strange to hear people say that they can relate to my pain. I have had this pain for so long, and people just write it off as maybe overexaggerated (though I dont say much often) because they can't really tell I am in pain. About a month ago, on my daughters birthday to make it worse, I was sitting in church after a long day running around. This usually exhausts me especially if I dont get a few minutes of shut eye during the day. My pain got really bad and I started feeling sick. I could barely breathe because of the pain and I got up to go to the bathroom....I almost passed out 3 or 4 times...It was horrible. I think this was when people really could understand that these 5 years of pain that I have had ARE INDEED true...And about the medicine, yeah they have tried putting me on meds too. But, I dont have time to deal with fatigue and side effects from drugs. I can't even remember what they gave me now (I havent taken anything for this pain for a couple of years) but, all I remember was it wasnt enough to make my back actually feel better. Plus, what good is it to just mask the pain, not make it better??? Another strange thing is each time I was pregnant my back pain was considerably better! How odd is that??? Go figure, my husband laughs and says, "maybe your best medicine is to be barefoot and pregnant!!! LOL, but I dont think so My primary care actually put me on Paxil and reassured me that sometimes this type of medication can actually help with back pain. Oddly enough, it eased the pain a little, but the side effects were so horrible, I wanted out. Plus, my husband and I decided we were going to try for baby #2 and I didnt want to be on those meds during pregnancy. (It is very strange, but each time I was pregnant my back pain was considerably better! How odd is that??? Go figure!!! My husband laughs and says, "maybe your best medicine is to be barefoot and pregnant!!!" LOL, but I dont think so ) This is when I realized that I was basically taking a "controlled substance" and that I couldnt just stop taking them, but had to "come off them" I was a little paturbed, especially since he handed me the prescription like it was Tylenol...

    So, wish me luck with my new doctor, I will tell you all how it goes!!!

    Last edited by peaswink; 04-16-2004 at 10:28 AM.

     
    Old 04-16-2004, 02:54 PM   #6
    DTemple
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    You might want to look into mercury toxicity, possibly from your amalgams. Do some research on the Net if you have metal fillings. If the pain is gone during pregnancy, it's because the body is dumping the excess mercury into the fetus. Sorry to sound so gruesome but this is what I read in a book called Whole Body Dentistry. I am looking into it for myself because I was recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I have eleven fillings and I grind my teeth at night because I have TMJ pain.

     
    Old 04-17-2004, 06:08 PM   #7
    peaswink
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DTemple
    You might want to look into mercury toxicity, possibly from your amalgams. Do some research on the Net if you have metal fillings. If the pain is gone during pregnancy, it's because the body is dumping the excess mercury into the fetus. Sorry to sound so gruesome but this is what I read in a book called Whole Body Dentistry. I am looking into it for myself because I was recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I have eleven fillings and I grind my teeth at night because I have TMJ pain.

    [FONT=Comic Sans MS]


    I had an appointment with my new primary care doctor yesterday. I took up an hour of his time, and made sure he knew I was desperate to rid my body of this pain. I discussed my excursion with the 11 doctors that I have already seen...After all that, he looked at me and sadly said, I am gonna run a bunch of tests, but this seems like it will be hard to diagnose. I burst into tears because that is not what I wanted to hear from yet, another doctor. I asked him about Fibro, but he said I dont seem to have the other spots of pain that are associated with that. I asked him about arthiritus and he said he wouldnt rule it out, but most likely not. I have an MRI on Tuesday, and a bunch of blood work. He says he feels it will show nothing, but it is worth the shot.

    I have had some metal fillings from when I was younger, and I have TMJ also from excessive teeth grinding. I actually have a mouth guard I paid lotsa money for from my dentist that I am supposed to wear to bed. It is a pain, and I find it disrupts my sleep, maybe just cause I am not used to it? I am willing to look into all advice, I will research this one!

    Thanks!!!

     
    Old 04-17-2004, 06:31 PM   #8
    DTemple
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    Peaswink, I have had similar experiences with doctors. My symptoms started about nine months ago. Actually I thought I had lyme disease at first and who knows, maybe I did. I have seen eleven doctors so far. If something disrupts your sleep, it can be causing fibromyalgia symptoms. I can't wear mouth guards, they are too uncomfortable. My teeth do not touch when I bite, so my whole mouth is torqued. It causes neck, shoulder, jaw and facial pain. I had physical therapy three years ago and the results were tremendously good, but my therapist was a miracle worker. She is one in a million, so you need a very talented, experienced therapist. Each of your teeth rests on a meridian that corresponds to another area of your body - think about acupuncture. There is a connection to your pain. It is highly likely that Western medicine will not be able to help you, as seems to be my case. Look around for an environmental dentist, mine is in CT and his son is a homeopathic doctor. They treat the "whole body". Alopathic physicians have no clue because it is not part of their education. The sooner you find someone with the right training, the sooner you will find answers.

     
    Old 04-18-2004, 04:09 AM   #9
    kristinita9
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    I had my rheumatology appt on Friday, and as I was already pretty certain, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and chronic myofascial pain. Doc did not think that the recurring rib pain was from either; but a separate problem that still remains a mystery. She does not think it's costochondritis as my long time gp had diagnosed; more of a problem with the pleura...perhaps recurring inflammation for some reason and she wants to start me on prednisone when it flares again; anyone have success with that med for inflammation? I only took an anti-inflammatory one time, it was appr 15 or so years ago and don't remember the name of it though I'm thinking it may have been naprosen, but took one pill after dinner and several hours later ended up in the ER with horrible abdominal pain; stomach was 'burned' and had to eat soft foods for several weeks; so I'm very leary of taking them again.

    I personally think that alot of people who see a rheumy and are not diagnosed with fibro could well have CMP, you will not have the tender points of fibro that they check for; but pain from the fascia is very real and many times referred to places away from the actual trigger point. Many people have only fibro, many have only CMP, many like myself have both.

    Would also like to mention as I've read quite a few posts from people who suffer similar rib cage pain; the medical supply stores do sell a 'rib belt' that can help with this problem, they come in different sizes, and are sold specifically for men and women (womans is made different to accomodate the breasts) ....they help support the rib cage, have velcro closures so you can adjust how much tightness you need, and much easier to put on than trying to do the same thing with ace bandages, etc.

    Hoping for a pain free day for everyone.

     
    Old 04-18-2004, 01:01 PM   #10
    peaswink
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    kristina9,

    Where are your "pain points" that I have heard so much about? I think it is strange that I have almost all the symptoms that fibro people do, but I just dont have all the pain spots to call it that. My doctor will send me for my first MRI on Tuesday and lotsa blood work. I asked him to refer me to a rheumatologist after these tests, just to explore Fibro in more detail. If I could at least put a name to my pain (although I wish the name was "COMPLETELY RECOVERED, PAIN FREE!!!! lol) I could start to deal with it in a new fashion!!!

     
    Old 04-19-2004, 05:46 AM   #11
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    Kristinita9:

    I take low dose prednisone (10 mg) and plaquenil daily. I have fibromyalgia and connective tissue disease.

    The prednisone is the best thing that I have taken for inflammatory pain. NSAID's never touched the pain and gave me bad side effects similar to what you mention.

    Perhaps a trial would be worthwhile.

    Mere --

     
    Old 04-21-2004, 06:44 PM   #12
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    Re: Chronic back pain for 5 years...fibromyalgia?

    Hi,

    I'm glad to see that DTemple posted about mercury toxicity. Ever-once-in-a-while I'll write here to let you know some more facts...and my own personal experiences with fibromyalgia symptoms.

    Some of the facts: Everyone that has mercury-silver dental amalgams (metal fillings) has mercury in their body...which can spread to the brain, liver, and kidneys etc. This mercury is extremely toxic, even in very small amounts. It accumulates. Some people apparently are more sensitive to this, than others. Mercury can come from a lot of other sources too, like medicines.

    My personal experience with this: In 1978 a doctor told me to not run more than a hundred yards. Today, I run nearly 20 miles a week.

    My muscle pains, headaches, lower back pain, chest pain, urinary problems etc. got worse as I got older. Doctors could not help me. Then I experimented with vitamins, minerals, improved diet, herbs, limited exercise and found some relief. About 10 years ago my tooth broke and exposed one mercury-silver dental amalgam. My pains "shot through the roof". I now had a link to what was causing me all these health problems.

    After having these mercury fillings replaced with less toxic (porcelain) white fillings, I have slowly recovered over the years. I read from at least one source, that once you have this mercury locked in your tissues, that it is there forever unless it is chelated out. So, recently I have been experimenting with cilantro (a natural plant chelator). I took heavy amounts of it recently for a few weeks, and I had some interesting symptoms. Both arms, near the elbows got really sore. So sore, that I had to reduce almost any heavy use of them, particularly my right arm. Now after suspending this cilantro experiment (it's been about a month now), my arms feel pretty good with only very minor muscle aches. I've experimented with other interesting anti-mercury supplements that actually made me worse, right after the dental amalgams were removed. But that's another long story...of what not to do.

    I'm so well today. But the pain and misery that I endured still is remembered. I know what it's like to not want to live any more. Now, I'm not happy in just being well...I want it all...I want all that mercury out of my system. I'm so mad at them for poisoning me, that I want to set records...and I want you all to know the truth.

    I invite anyone to read more about it. I feel some responsible persons and associations are covering it up. For example, why do they talk about mercury in fish, but ignore the primary source of mercury for some people...the mercury that resides in our teeth? Remember, that the amount of mercury that one is exposed to from dental amalgams, is dependent upon many factors...like how many of these fillings are in your teeth...like the type of dental amalgam...the grinding that a person does...the amount of hot liquids a person consumes...and so forth.

    I feel your pain...been there...done that. I've seen so many of those doctors dumb looks, where they think it's mental. Well, they are "mental" by being so badly informed and ignorant. They are missing so many parts to this puzzle. I wish so much that they would listen to us and go outside their sphere of "known and proven science". This "known and proven science" is skewed in the direction that some people would like for us to believe.

    I truly wish you all well and hope that any of you will explore this avenue of research. It may not be what's causing your problems, but it's worth some time to investigate. Doctors are mostly still in the dark concerning this subject, but when they learn more about this, I feel it may be too late for some of us. Who knows? They may not admit that this is a problem from dental amalgams for a hundred years. If they won't take action, then we have to. We have to be smarter...and be willing to brave the unknown. For the cure is outside their no-cure approach to this debilitating fibromyalgia condition.

    If you have any questions, or would like to know more, please let me know. I can explain any of this from a personal perspective in detail.

     
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