Posted 11/7/2007 11:03 PM (GMT -6)
Good evening. My name is Tracy. I'm a 47 yo grandma. I have an unusual condition simply called chronic calcific tendonitis. My body grows chunks of calcification in my joints. As I write this, pieces of bone are growing happily in both shoulders, both elbows, and my right knee. Eventually it will grow in all my joints. I've tried to keep up with the calcium deposits with surgery: three shoulder surgeries and one elbow surgery. All successful for a few months, until more calcium grows. I'm no longer a candidate for cortisone injections. Today my left arm is pretty much useless and my knee clicks and fails frequently. My hips are in beginning stages of calcific growth.
I've taken opioids very conservatively (2 -5 vicodin pills a week) for 25 years. After elbow surgery in July, I found it necessary to take vicodin every day for six weeks. I was afraid of becoming addicted so discarded them and went cold turkey off pain pills. My husband was thrilled. I was miserable.
I don't know what to do or where to turn. Every day I live with unbelievable, burning shooting pain. It's causing me to be depressed in spite of taking anti-depressants. I don't want to turn back to narcotic painkillers because I was chastised by my family for using them. My adult daughters and my husband think I'm looking for excuses to take vicodin. One of my orthopedic surgeons told me this week that I'm no longer a candidate for surgery because the short-term benefits do not outweigh the risk of surgery. Instead I will need to figure out a way to live with this pain for the rest of my life, using ice and Ibuprofen. I'm considering consulting a pain management specialist.
I guess I would like to hear from others who have been made to feel like drug seekers; who wake up crying in pain at night; who can forcast a change in barometric weather more accurately than NOAA; or who have felt the depressing solitude of living with pain with every move.
Thanks for reading..... Tracy