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Sitchy
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 1/17/2010 6:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi everyone,
 
Yes, I'm a newbie and not afraid to admit it.  I have been lurking around for a few weeks, though, and have really appreciated the threads I've read.  The support and comradery you feel for each other makes this feel like a very welcoming place.  Kudos to the moderators for that.
 
Anyway, to the point.  Obviously I have fibromyalgia.  Was diagnosed last May, finally, although how long I've had it seems to be in dispute.  The Nurse Practitioner who first recognized the symptoms and started the process for a diagnosis says I developed the condition 2 1/2 years ago.  If nothing else that's when it started to fully present itself and began affecting my life.  The reason I question the timing is because severe muscle spasms in my neck were first found in 2003, I've had a strange, undiagnosable pain in my ribs since 1999, and the pain in my back which has intensified over the last 2 1/2 years first appeared 20 years ago.  Since no one has been able to explain any of these pains, I have to wonder if they aren't also part of the FMS.  Not that it really matters, I guess.
 
The Rheumatologist who confirmed the diagnosis also diagnosed me with Ehlers-Danlos and TMJ.  TMJ didn't surprise me at all since, among other things, I tend to wake people up with my teeth grinding at night.  Of course Anxiety (diagnosed in '99, along with Depression) doesn't help that, either.  Oh, yeah, and I have a partially collapsed lung that's been there since at least '99.  No idea where it came from, but since it isn't getting any worse and doesn't affect my breathing, leaving it seemed a better option to trying to repair it.
 
So far I consider myself very lucky, especially after reading posts from other patients on this and other boards.  I am still able to work, although that is, in part, due to a wonderful, understanding boss who is willing to work with me on attendance and job duties.  We also seem to have gotten my meds under control, at least for the time being, and, while they help, they are neither 100% effective nor lasting.  Still, I am able to push past the pain most days and continue doing what I have to do, and that's a major improvement over my pre-diagnosis state, so I'm grateful.
 
What do I take?  Well, thanks to the mystery rib pain I've had a running 'script for Norco and Flexeril since '99.  For most of those years, though, I took them very infrequently.  I'm talking 4 or 5 a year.  That quickly increased to 4 or 5 a week, then 1-3 a day when the FMS appeared / ramped up 2 years ago.  I've also been taking Xanax for several years to control the panic attacks and anxiety.  The Rheumatologist added Neurontin in May, starting me at 300 mg a day.  That's up to 1800 in two doses now.  The Nurse Practioner also put me on Ultram, which was useless, and Cymbalta in March.  The Cymbalta helped quite a bit, but still not enough to outweigh the side effects, so I stopped taking that in October.  I wasn't surprised since I've had the same bad reaction to anti-depressents in the past.
 
As I said, I feel better now than I did before I got a diagnosis.  I'm sure this is partly due to the medications, but I also think a lot of it is simply knowing.  I admit, no matter how many doctors told me there was nothing wrong, I couldn't stop worrying about how bad it might actually be. But I definitely don't feel like I have a handle on it.  I still feel like I'm just trying to keep up, making it through each day and worrying about what tomorrow will bring, wondering when the hammer will fall, when the symptoms will get so bad I can't push past them any more.
 
So, that's my story.  If I'd known I was going to go on this long, I would have brought some water.  Thanks for listening and understanding.

Marlee2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6067
   Posted 1/17/2010 9:32 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sitchy and welcome to the family. When many of us look back we had signs of fibro long before it was apparent enough to seek medical help.
 
I have a lot of rib pain also and use lidoderm patches for that. They are 4x6 inch pads that you stick on the skin for 12 hrs and 12 hrs off and it does numb the pain some. My doc first rxd them for broken ribs. They work better for pain that is close to the skin so they don't work too well for the deep down pain.
 
If you haven't read the fibro 101 thread please read it.
 
luv and hugs
Marlee
Forum Moderator Fibromyalgia
 
Fibro,Sjogrens, Anxiety, Gastroparesis, IBS, Gastritis, Allergies, High Blood Pressure, Low Blood Sodium, Osteoarthritis and Celiac
 
Amitriptyline, Celexa, Xanax, Synthroid, Zyrtec, Micardis, Spironalactone, Tylenol, Reglan, Lidoderm Patches, Carafate and Prilosec
 
Vit D/calcium


getting by
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 40588
   Posted 1/17/2010 10:21 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Stitchy,
 
A lot of us have had fibro symptoms for a long time before diagnosed, so don't feel alone there.
 
You are right, this is a wonderful forum, and as like Marlee says, read fibro101, there is a wealth of information on that thread. 
 
Getting through each day is my way of living.  Trying not to worry about the future, I take it one day at a time.  And that is what I recommend to you.  One minute if you have to.  That is the only thing that works for me.
 
I hope that you feel better soon.  Take care, keep posting.  And know that we are all here for you.
 
Hugs, Karen
  Moderator-Depression and fibromyalgia
 
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies


FMsaddenedspirit
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 236
   Posted 1/17/2010 3:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Stitchy,

welcome to our Fibro Family .. sorry you have to deal with this though... but at least you now have some answers...
we are here for you .. any time. . just remember you are not alone in this.

take care for now.

hugs.
Spirit ~
 
Fibro, Chronic Fatigue ,Anxiety ,( arthritis,, hands, feet, knees, back , neck )  , disk disease in neck with bulging disk , adhesions , Migraines, High blood pressure ,Gerd, IBS , Sever sleep apnea
Med's ,,,  fentanyl patch, Perc, Soma, anxiety meds, Ect.


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 1/17/2010 3:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Sitchy, and welcome!  You have found a wonderful place where members love to help one another.  And, as a bonus, we really do care about each other, too.  So, welcome to our family!
 
The rib pain could possibly be costochondritis.  There is a link all about that in Fibro 101...the second thread on the forum.  I also have costo and it can be quite painful.  My doctor has me taking ibuprofen with food for that and it has helped.
 
Neck, back, and shoulder pain seems to be a "hallmark" of fibromyalgia.  Nearly all of the members have that pain and, for me, it has never gone away.  I have had fibro for decades.  But, I have learned what works for me to control the pain so I can live my life the way I want.  For me, I have used ibuprofen with food, extra strength Tylenol (generic), malic acid/magnesium supplements, and vitamin D3 to help with pain and fatigue.  There are links about the supplements and vitamin D in Fibro 101.  Many with fibro seem to be deficient in these.  I know they have helped me.
 
Now, stop worrying about tomorrow.  None of us know what tomorrow will hold.  We might have a wonderful day with far less pain.  I look forward to each new day with that type of anticipation.  Attitude is half the battle here.  If you look at your blessings and all the things you CAN do, you realize that things could be a lot worse.  This type of thinking can help with the anxiety issues and the depression, too.  I only know that I feel far better thinking positively.  I'm far happier and can function much better.
 
I'm so glad you found us and joined in.  Don't hesitate to ask questions because we are here to help you.  I'm looking forward to getting to know you and I hope to hear more from you soon.
 
Sherrine


Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Sitchy
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 1/24/2010 4:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Thank you, everyone, for the welcomes. I'm sorry for the delay in replying but I work on a computer 5 days a week, which tends to irritate my upper body pains. Because of that I have a tendency to avoid the computer at home for days at a time.

Sherrine, I agree with you about the attitude thing. It's half the battle in any situation. Sadly sometimes life piles on enough stress to trigger depression that'll break through even the best attitude. Most times it's a non-issue for me, but I'll admit the last couple weeks I lost the battle. There were a lot of reasons that I won't bore you with. I'm back on the upside now and well on my way to regaining that positive attitude I (and those around me) much prefer. One reason I know this is because I'm back to feeling like someday I might actually regain some measure of control of my life.

Part of that is going to be gaining some control of the treatment of this. So, learning my way around the medical system. Oh, yay. I'm thinking this forum will be invaluable in helping with that.

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 1/24/2010 7:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Sitchy, I'm glad to hear that!  Yes, I've had a few bouts of depression this year, too.  This life has a lot of stress but we have to work hard to keep the good thoughts because they really do help with fibro.  I'm glad that you are starting to have happier thoughts now.  Yes, this forum will be very helpful for you.  I'm so glad you are here.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Littleneck
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 599
   Posted 1/24/2010 7:44 AM (GMT -7)   
HI Sitchy, welcome to the fibro family! You'll find this is a nice place to chat, learn, and share. I was diagnosed just about a year ago now. You are correct in imagining that this forum will help navigate the medical side. I can definitely vouch for that: because of my job and varying schedules I had to keep a very detailed calendar. On this calender I also included my pain and symptoms for the day. When my first rheumatology appointment rolled around I was happy to be able to show the recorded symptoms day by day. And I got that idea here!
"You must imagine your life, and then it happens." - John Updike, The Witches of Eastwick


Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 1/24/2010 10:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Welcome to the family!!! It's late so I will make this a quick 'hello' but one thing is sure...you have a lot of good company to whom your story is very familiar. Luckily we have this site to meet and support each other. It's what gets me through each day. Oh, and about that 'worry' thing you have going....no need since fibro will do what it wants. Worry and stress only intensify the pain so we're all giving that one up, or at least we are trying. ;-)

Chutz
"Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, but Wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad."

(\_/)
(o.o)
(> <) Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
Fibromyalgia, PTSD, UC, Diabetic on insulin, collapsed disk, arthritis scattered around and a few other delights.

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