Discussions that mention enbrel

Arthritis board

I have a diagnosis of spondyloarthropathy and started taking Enbrel a little over a month ago. My doctor has asked me if I have noticed a difference in my pain yet, but I'm really having a hard time differentiating it.

So my physical therapist said that it is usually really hard for people with chronic pain to tell when they aren't in as much pain because the pain receptors change or something like that. Anyways, he suggested that I keep a little notepad in my purse or with me and whenever I think of my pain, write down what number it is, at the end of the day, he said to average the numbers and start a chart in Excel, and just before going to the doctor, he said that I should make a line graph of what I had entered into Excel, so I would have a visual of whether my pain has decreased over time. I have kept track of it for 10 days so far and I've found this to be really helpful!!!

I thought I would suggest it to you all because maybe this will come in handy for someone.

My physical therapist also gave me a pain scale that describes the numbers.
0-1...no pain or just barely noticeable
2-3...tolerable. It doesn't prevent any activities. The pain is present, but you may have to stop and think about it to tell when it is there and not gone.
4-5...Tolerable, but it does prevent some activities. You not notice pain, at rest or with activity.
6-7...Intolerable, but you can do things like use the phone, watch TV, or read. The pain is distracting, but you may be able to focus on something else rather than the pain for a short period of time. You may be gritting or clenching your teech to carry out activities.
8-9...Intolerable. Your pain is severe enough to cause you to stop in the middle of an activity. It is difficult to think of anything but the pain.
10...Intolerable and may be unable to verbally communicate because of the pain. It is the worst you can imagine. It is not necessary to be crying at a level 10.

I just found this really helpful because usually doctors are like 10 is the worst you have ever had and then I think, "well how do I know that this is the worst, maybe tomorrow it will be even worse". So it just gave me a description of hte different levels so I can make a better judgement of where my pain really is. My physical therapist said that if you do use this system, it is also good to take a copy of it to your doctor so they can have an idea of what you consider a 5 or 7 etc. Especially since pain is so subjective.

So I really hope this helps someone, I know it is helpful for me!
Good luck to you all!