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chicubs 07-12-2008 10:52 PM

Any help for my swelling?
[B]I am new and I have a question. First a little background about me. I have been diagnosed with RSD since 2005. I have my good days and my bad days. I had bunion surgery on the right foot and after that is when the RSD started. It has spread now to my left foot and up to almost the knees on both legs.

I also have carpel tunnel in both wrists. Which my pain doctor contributes to the RSD. I will not have surgery on the wrists yet because I am afraid that the RSD will spread even more because of the surgery itself.

Anyway, the last four days my right foot and ankle have been swollen. Now I do have swelling in the feet everyday. But no where near to what this is. My foot looks like a balloon. The toes have started to turn purple and the skin on the foot and ankle is very shiny and tight. The pain from this is just terrible. I have tried staying off the feet as much as possible but that hasn't really helped.

I know that putting ice on the foot is wrong because of the RSD and truthfully the thought of putting ice on my foot makes me shudder. In all this time that I have RSD the swelling of this foot has never been this bad or painful.

If it is still this bad on Monday I will call my doctor and see what she thinks. In the meantime though does anybody have any suggestions on getting this swelling down? And also do you think that the swelling might just be from the RSD. I cannot think of anything that I have done to the foot recently which would have caused this much swelling and this much pain.

Thanks for any help you can offer. I am new to this board and this is my first post. I'm looking forward to learning from you people and to leaning on you all when I need to. I'm just so glad I found a place where other people understand what it is like to have RSD. Because although my husband and the rest of my family and friends are very supportive, they simply don't get it. They don't understand what it is like to live with RSD everyday. [/FONT][/B][/B][/FONT][/B]

RoseinSanDiego 07-13-2008 12:52 AM

Re: Any help for my swelling?
Hello, and welcome to the boards. I have RSD in my left foot, and neuropathy in both legs. My left ankle swells an awful lot too, especially when I walk on it alot.
2 nights ago I got woke up by the most horrible leg cramp (calf area) I've had in my life -- It was really awful. I'm 48 and I sure hope I don't get anymore of those. It was so bad that I'm still pretty sore.
I've spoken to my doc about the swelling but he says it's the RSD. I'm taking 120 mg daily of Cymbalta and 750 of Lyrica.
Take good care and keep us posted on how you're doing.

chicubs 07-13-2008 02:37 AM

Re: Any help for my swelling?
Thanks for the reply Rose! I think I know that the swelling is just from the RSD. But because it is so big and it really has never been this big, I worry that the cause of the swelling may be from something else. That's me though, I seem to worry too much about the "What if's".
---I am also taking cymbalta and Lyrica. I was taking neurontin before Lyrica. My doctor seems to think that Lyrica works better than the neurontin. I take the Lyrica two times daily @ Mg's. per capsule. And the cymbalata is 60 Mg's. once daily. I take methadone for the pain. I have been taking methadone for about two years now. I am on a very high dose of the methadone, 90 Mg's. daily. I take three 10 Mg's. three times a day. At least I think that the amount is pretty high.
--- I had tried other narcotic medicines before taking methadone. But the methadone is long acting and it is way less expensive! At first I was afraid to take it because of the reputation it has. My doctor help to take away that fear for me. It does normally work very well. But there are days when I am unable to walk and in so much pain that I really believe that nothing would help. At least during those days the methadone takes the edge off of the pain. And on other days it keeps my pain at about 2-3. I was told that the job of the all the medicines is to keep me comfortable and able to participate in my life. But I will never be totally pain free.
---I too signed a contract when I started taking the methadone. There is no way she would except getting a early refill. Perhaps if there was a true emergency, maybe. I have never asked for a early refill so I'm not sure. She has the prescription written that I can get the refill the day after the 30th day. So when I pick up the methadone on day 31 I have not taken any methadone that day. I usually pick the methadone up at about 10:00 am. So far that has worked very well.
---Sorry for getting off the subject. Perhaps I should have started a new post? I guess I just wanted people to know a little more about my medical background. Perhaps the more they know about me, the more they may be able to help me.
---Have you ever tried to do anything to get your swelling down in your feet? If so what? Right now I really believe that if I could just get the swelling down then the pain level would also go down. It is 4:17 am by me. I didn't go to bed until 1:45 am. And now the pain has woke me up. I think I may just be up for the rest of the night. Yucky! Perhaps just putting the foot in cool water may help the swelling? Or would that hurt too much because of the RSD?

Sunnycal 07-13-2008 03:32 PM

Re: Any help for my swelling?
Welcome to the boards. My husband has RSD and takes 120 mg of methadone a day. His pain has increased, so he may be talking to the doctor about increasing it. Some people have soaked their feet in Epsom salts to take down the swelling. My husband's doctor gave him Flector patches which did help the swelling, but he was allergic to them (caused such intense itching that he wanted to jump out of his skin). Good luck.

chicubs 07-13-2008 05:50 PM

Re: Any help for my swelling?
Hi Sunny ~ Thanks for your advice. I have a silly question though. What is flector patches? And how do they work? Can you just put the patches on when you are having problems with swelling or is it something you need to have on all the time like the fetanyl pain patches?
How long has your husband had RSD? I think it is great that you are on this board. I'm sure that you have offered people wonderful insight into what it is like to live with someone with RSD.
I know that my husband can become very frustrated when I am experiencing a terrible relapse, such as I seem to be doing now. He gets frustrated because he wants to take care of me and make the pain and swelling go away NOW. I think that may be a "man thing" though. It seems If a man can't fix it or help it then they don't understand what to do. He doesn't like to hear me complain too much, again because he can't make it go away. So I tend to keep my feelings to myself on how badly I am feeling. And right now I am feeling like crap. He is not home right now so it is easier for me to cry and believe me that is what I am doing right now.
It has been a long time since I have experienced this much swelling and this much pain. Do you think that part of the reason that I am suffering so much lately may have to do with stress? Because we have been under a lot of stress lately. More than I have been under in a long time.
We recently had a flood in our city. My husband and I had five feet of yucky water in our basement. We lost so much! All of my appliances that were down there were ruined. We lost the furnace, water heater, water softener, my washer and my dryer. Not to mention so many personal items like my grandmothers china. All my seasonal decorations, an extra bed and a recliner that we keeping for our youngest daughter (it wasn't' fitting in her apartment). So many pictures. I think that is what may be the hardest, loosing the pictures of a long time ago. We have our memories but still I love pictures.
The night of the flood and the next day, the only way anybody could get ahold of us was with a boat. I took pictures of boats going by my house as I stood on our porch!
I did quite a bit of crying at first. But then I said to myself, "Self (Ha! Ha!) you need to pull yourself together and get things cleaned up. My husband did most of the cleaning and my whole family came over and helped get everything out of the basement to get tossed. I was the supervisor and the organizer. We are still on the waiting list to get a furnace/central air from one of the places in town that sells and services furnaces. The house is getting rewired so my new washer and dryer are not hooked up. Actually the only that is hooked up is the water heater. It just has been so stressful but thank God for FEMA. I don't know where we would be had it not been for them.
So do you think because of this flood that I am having to deal with, the RSD has gotten worse? That the pain has gotten so terrible? And if that is the case, then what do I do about it? Thanks for any help you have. I have finished crying again. Sometimes having that good cry helps me.

Sunnycal 07-13-2008 11:15 PM

Re: Any help for my swelling?
Oh, Chris, I am so sorry about your flood. What a mess (literally and figuratively)! Losing precious memories makes it doubly hard. Yes, stress can certainly make RSD worse. Plus you were probably on your feet more, "supervising". Flector patches are Voltaren, a pain killer, in patch form. You don't need to keep them on all the time like Fentanyl. Ibuprofen would also help, since it is an anti-inflammatory. My husband's doctor says you need at least 600 mg for it to do any good. By the way, the Epsom salts would be in warm water.
It is hard watching my husband be in pain. I tend to want to fix things, too. Hope tomorrow is better for you. Try to put your feet up as much as possible.

hdladyred 07-15-2008 11:28 AM

Re: Any help for my swelling?
Welcome to the board although I'm so sorry to hear about your RSD and your flooding. Yes, stress and cool/cold water are both hard on you. Please avoid both. You could try elevation and a heating pad set at a very low heat along with the ibuprofin. Also, if you can tolerate the touch at all a very gentle massage of your foot from your toes back towards your knee will sometimes take the swelling back out of your foot. What is happening right now is your lymph system (the clear liquid that comes oozes out of a blister) is collecting in your foot due to an inflamatory response from the RSD. If you can get your pain killers to work well enough for you to allow you to tolerate either the heat which will allow the blood to flow better or the massage with elevation either of which will allow that fluid build up to get out of your foot/feet the swelling should go down. Just keep in mind that all of us are slightly different and our bodies respond differently so do what works for you but that cold is universally bad. Please take care of yourself and try and best you can to focus on happy and stress free thoughts.
Take care.

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