I'm knew to the forum and just thought I'd introduce myself.
I've been dealing with pretty severe pain for a little over a year now. I went for nine months without any pain medication and it was awful. Finally around month 10, my PCP (probably not knowing what else to do with me) prescribed me oxycodone..what a relief. I take 10 mgs, 3X a day along with .5 mgs of Klonopin for it's anxiety and muscle relaxant properties and I tend to go into muscle spasms pretty easily. I'm also on Wellbutrin.
Just a little background, I have cervical spine spondylosis but the MRI shows it as "mild". I have two bulging disks, C5-C6 and C6-C7. MRI's also show this as "mild". I had an MRI of my shoulder which came back normal. My worst pain is in my left shoulder, kind of where the shoulder blade is. That pain is constant, gnawing, aching and it never leaves. I also have pain on that side of my neck along with some pretty severe muscle spasms also on my neck. The pain goes into the back of my head. Also at times is travels down my left arm (on the outside of my arm) and causes numbness in my pinky and ring finger. Just recently, whithin the last couple of months or so, I've started to have pain on my right side as well, which is really scary.
To make this as short as possible, I've tried almost everything to find some help. I've been to two Pain Centers (one was also a spine center), a physical medicine doctor, 2 orthopedic surgeons, a neurologist, a shrink, my PCP numerous times, acupuncture, massage therapy, 6 weeks of PT, three months of weekly chiropractor visits. I recently saw a physiatrist. Also, three visits to the ER, two visits to urgent care. Fun, Fun, Fun.
I've had an MRI of the C-spine twice, an MRI of my neck once. EMG and nerve conduction studies, three sets of trigger point injections on different areas of my shoulder area. Over the weekend I had a nuclear medicine study with Spect. I guess this can help spot microfractures in my spine that maybe the MRI missed. I'm hoping to be a candidate for facet joint injections or something close to that.
I've been on just about every medication out there including gaba, several antidepressants, tramadol, ativan, xanax, klonopin, oral steroids, ambien for sleep..and most recently, like I stated above, the oxycodone, klonopin, Wellbutrin combo.
Sorry this was so long, just wanted to get that off my chest (or off my shoulder/neck )
Anyhow, I'm beyond frustrated. I get very depressed. I get so anxious I have panic attacks. I feel trapped. The only person who has even listened to my concerns and shown me some compassion is my PCP. I'm also having massive guilt about being on these meds. It makes me feel weak and dependent and scared. I have yet to have the discussion with my PCP about how long she will prescribe and how she will taper me off so I don't go through withdrawals. She seems to be quick to write the script but not very clear as to what her future plans are for me.
Most of the time I get lumped in the chronic pain category. I've also been told it's myofascial pain syndrome.
I'm trudging forward to try everything. I'm seeing a osteopathic doctor right now for 13 treatments. He gives massages from my feet to the top of my head. They can be very painful. He seems to know a lot about trigger points, etc. I'll be seeing him for my fifth visit tonight. So far, it hasn't changed my pain much. Actually, it has caused increasing pain on my right shoulder. Maybe it's my body trying to balance itself back out again, I don't know.
After this I plan to try PT with a more upscale place I recently found. I might try facet injections if I'm a candidate for that. After that, I'll probably try seeing a rheumatologist..since what I have is a type of arthritis.
Anyhow, I'm glad to see this forum out here. I've been scared and very isolated and I don't know anyone with chronic pain who I can talk to about it. No one wants to hear it and I'm sick of talking about it so I lie a lot and tell people I'm just fine. I had no idea how something like this could take over almost every aspect of ones life. I've learned that the hard way.