Thank you so much, Frances!
I understand it won't all go away, but to have the pain reduced a bit, and maybe get off the meds a bit would both be a godsend in my book. Since being on the narcotics my memory has started to feel like swiss cheese, and unfortunately being allergic to NSAID's has cut out alot of other options. With winter my pain has increased dramatically ... I'm starting to think moving might be something to consider as well given the tempature extremes we experience; I really only have about 4 months of "comfortable" weather every year.
Because of what I have, CRPS, I have already hit the 'life altering' stage. The fact that there is no going back, no cure, and that it will just continue to get worse with time, isn't a happy outlook. While I'm not fond of the surgery option, it's really my only option. My drug therapy is already in need of a major over-haul. And of course CRPS needs to be fought... you need to fight the pain and use the affected area daily. So again, any reduction in pain would be welcome.
I don't ever expect to return to the life I had. I don't expect to return to training horses, or driving stages and wagons in parades. I don't expect to go back to making gun belts and other large pieces of leather craft with intricate hand tooled details. I'd like to, but I know that's not reality. I'd just like to not feel so ruled by my pain, or have my day structured around making sure I don't miss my next dose of meds so that the pain becomes debilitating. I don't want to have such horrid days so that I fall asleep because the pain is to much for me to bear.
I have heard so much negative about the SCS units, and yet for me this is my only hope. This is my ONLY option aside from the drug therapy. There are not other treatments. Now a days they don't even talk about the possibility of just removing the afflicted nerves because they've finally realized what a bad idea that is. They are trying some stuff now with ketamine induced coma's, but I can't see taking the risk... I can't do that to my son; outside of my parents I'm all he has.
I think regardless the risks I am still going forward, provided I qualify for the trial unit, and the trial unit works. But I've had the stalate ganglion nerve blocks done and they do squat for me. =( It's bad enough in the last 3 years the pain has spread from my wrist/hand area in my right hand, to include my entire right arm. I have lost so much of my life that getting back even a sliver would be a major accomplishment.
I'm not saying I'm going to ignore everything everyone here has said. Far from it! I've always been a person who believes in being educated. I've done research online, and watched videos, etc, and at least have a neighbor who has the same unit I'm looking at getting... but from everything I've heard she's still in the honey-moon phase with her unit. She's decreased her meds, and she's gotten back some of her life, and for some of us that's all we could ask for.
I am more scared now then I was before, but I would not go back and change things... I would not leave my blinders on and walk into this unknowing with false expectations. So thank you... thank you so much for sharing with me. I deeply appreciate it.
Originally injured 10/26/2007 - Initial diagnosis; Tendonitis
Spent next year seeing specialist after specialist; Bone, Muscle, Hand, Chriopractor, Physical Therapist...
Went through a battery of tests, multiple MRI's
11/16/09 I was finally diagnosed CRPS - Stage 2
Permanently disabled and on Percoset for pain.
Hoping 2011 will see my spinal cord stimulator unit finally implanted.