Posted 4/15/2012 10:54 AM (GMT -7)
So I have some nasty dental stuff going on as well as an undiagnosed autoimmune condition my GP believes may be Rheumatoid or Lupus. He referred me to see a Rheumy, which I'm seeing this week, and obviously I'm in the process of scheduling surgery for my dental stuff. I'm a full time student and our short term plan, since I'm in the middle of a semester, was to take Prednisone and Norco b/c I had been struggling to get any relief from anything else, mobic, ultram, OTC pain relievers, etc.
Once I started the Prednisone 3/4 the problem was gone, my weak and hurting muscles felt like those of a 30 year old male who exercises regularly should, my muscle pain was subsided a little, cognitively I was better, I didn't feel so much pressure in my head and neck, I could breathe, gums stopped bleeding, joints crack almost not at all anymore, libido was back, energy, ear fluttering stopped, ear ringing stopped, had an appetite again, was less depressed and anxious, and overall everything wasn't as much of a struggle as it was. I tried to only take the Prednisone as I didn't like the idea of pain killers, b/c I try to take as little medication as possible. Although, my girlfriend even agreed that the norco was probably necessary for now, as I still couldn't get rid of this horrible neck and eye pain I was having, probably due to the dental stuff. I found that the norco actually helped me cognitively, as I couldn't concentrate on anything b/c of eye pain and neck pain is all I could think about to the point it was making me crazy.
So, I was originally taking 30mg for 2 days, 20mg for 2 days, and then 10mg for 2 days of Prednisone. We decided, since I responded so well to it, that I would take 20mg once a day until I could get in with the Rheum. I am now taking 30mg spread out 20mg in the morning and 10 at night.
I take 2 10/325mg norco as needed for pain. Some days I can take my last dose at 6-7pm and I'll wake up no problems. Other days I'm waiting til hour 4 to take it again b/c I'm in a ton of pain. I keep a very detailed medical journal even including barometric pressure, weather, and all kinds of details that probably don't mean anything and can't find any correlation to my pain level and anything else. I had a stint of not being able to sleep through the night b/c of my neck pain and so my GP put me on 2.5/325 percocet at night only. They didn't help at all, prob b/c I was only taking 2 of those versus 20mg norco.
My question is, after all of this, do I ask for something else for the pain? I just hate taking all this tylenol and I feel like though the Prednisone seems to control something different than the norco am I right in directing my attention towards the pain med instead of the prednisone? Are there other factors that I should keep an eye on that may correlate with my pain levels? How much pain should I tolerate before I page my doctor on a bad day?, as all I have is the norco and somedays I take them and they do almost nothing which then the day is effectively lost laying in bed.
I'm just trying to figure out how to deal with all of this. I've spent the last year trying to find out what's wrong with horrible doctors, up til now. My current GP is the first person to make me realize that there is relief out there and since going from a 3.9 GPA highly motivated, happy person, to lying in bed hurting most of the time kind of guy back to the somewhat normal person after some medication I refuse to accept the bad place I fell into. I just want to be able to be productive again as I've went through most of my savings because I can't hold a job, school is a struggle, and my relationships have suffered. Any advice would be much appreciated. Sorry for the long post.