My daughter was diagnosed w/Fibromyalgia in Jun, 2008, as much as a person can be diagnosed. She is 17, a high school senior and an honor student w/a 4.06 GPA. I have never met a person so determined. I am not endorsing the Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Center just yet, just telling my story and I have some questions, so thanks everyone in advance for your time. We have been going to the Fibromyalgia & Fatigue Center since June. You can visit their website at www.fibroandfatigue.com. I think they have 14 offices in the U.S. This was the first place a doc confirmed that there was something wrong and finally made her believe it wasn't all in her head, she wasn’t depressed or that she was not really going crazy. It's kind of expensive and they don't take insurance, but they will give you the forms to submit to insurance. I just submitted a bunch of bills, but haven't heard anything yet. They use natural supplements for your treatment. My daughter is on some prescription medications as well. They gave her some supplements on her first visit, which I think they give for common symptoms. Before the first visit, you complete a 26 page questionnaire and depending on how many symptoms, they will take up to 80 tubes of blood. They took 28 tubes from her. After the blood results, at our 2nd visit, she was on about 40 pills a day, which included mostly supplements as well as prescription meds. The blood results showed that she has viruses for multiple sclerosis, mono and shingles; MS runs in my family, so this scares me to death. The doc said that the viruses will not be totally detoxed out of her body, but the treatment is supposed to strengthen her immune system will be able to keep those at bay.
It also showed that her adrenal gland and thyroid were out of whack and her immune system is weakened. She had mono in Jan, 2006 and hasn't felt well since; she's always tired and run down. She gets sick often and takes a long time to get better. She started her menstrual period right before she turned 11. From the first time and still today, she gets excruciating cramps. Currently takes birth control pills for the cramps, which doesn't seem as effective as when she first started taking it. She has pain in her ankles, which we were told was tendonitis. She has been dancing twice a week since she was three, so I'm not sure if that has anything to do w/that pain. She also has extreme pain in her knees when it rains, snows and is cold. After being outside in the cold, such as cheering at a football game, the next two days she sleeps the entire days and walks like an 80 year old person, hunched over. We have had many tests and of course, they show no reason for the pain, her knees are fine. She had knee surgery in Oct 2006 for a torn meniscus, which they later said was not torn, after they 'went in', but some cartilage that was rubbing on bone and said they shaved it off. Occasionally, she has small bruises on her knee in different places, for no reason. In addition, she is nauseous every day when she wakes up, if wakened suddenly, such as the alarm clock waking her for school. If she can sleep in, she is fine, but if she has to get up early, she is so nauseous that it causes her to vomit once, then she is fine. This started out maybe twice a year, for no apparent reason and is now every single day. It's been controlled w/Zofran, which she takes every night before bed when she can’t sleep in the next day. She has had every stomach test and numerous gall bladder tests, all of which were fine. They can't tell us why the nausea happens. She also gets pains in her right side, left side, all around her torso and between her breasts. Her neck and back have been hurting ever since a minor car accident in Sept 2007; I think this triggered the Fibromyalgia and she has had headaches ever since. She was a passenger and someone rear-ended her and her friend. Nothing happened to her friend, but my daughter is very ill now. The sicknesses are anywhere from flu symptoms to just having so much pain in her head and back and not being able to get up and function. The headaches sometimes last for almost a month at a time. Medication does not alleviate. From Sep 2007 until Feb 2008, she was sick for 6-10 days every single month with different things that the doctors said were viral, because they just don't know, you know? We went to many doctors and after many tests of everything is normal and there is nothing wrong with your daughter, I was ready to take her to the Cleveland Clinic when my mom called and told me she heard a radio ad that sounded just like my daughter. It was for the FFC. All of her pain comes and goes. She can't go to school many days because of one sickness or another. In addition to birth control and the Zofran, my daughter takes Albuterol for sports induced asthma, only a handful of times per year; Protonix for acid reflux; T4 & T3 for hypothyroidism. After she finishes this script, they will switch her to total T3. The center explains how everything works in your body, such as how the thyroid works and about the T3 & T4. They prescribed Valcyte to detox the viruses and Nystatin. Those are all of the prescription meds. She was on Cortisol for adrenal function and Ambien CR to regulate sleep patterns. Fibro sufferers have interrupted sleep. She stopped the Ambien because it was making her too tired all day. She was only taking a half dose and when she started taking it, felt great after 6 hours of sleep, but something changed since Sept 2008 and she is not doing well right now. Anyhow, the supplements she takes, which are 1 or 2 once or twice a day are Rest and Restore for sleep and cell repair; Gastro Health - this helped her to have more frequent bowel movements, her bowel movements are very large; Anti Viral; Fibro Calm; DHEA/Pregnenolone-For Adrenal function; Maitake D' Fraction and they just added back Proboost which is a powder that dissolves under your tongue once a day and Mitomax, which are both for your immune function. Since June, she was continually improving each month and at our visit in Sept, 2008, she was doing great. The doctor took her off mitomax & proboost & added Ambien. He increased the Cortisol. We did not make an appt in Oct because she was doing so well in Sept. Three days after our Sept appt, she started to get sick again. She got a bad headache and except for about 2 weeks total, she still has it today. They thought since her Cortisol level was high that may have been why. She is off Cortisol and still has the headache. This week they said to stop the DHEA for a week and it’s been about 3 days and it seems that the headaches are now coming and going. The Fibro center informed us that the treatment can take 12-18 months to get her 'regulated' and sometimes takes longer for young people. The doctor said if we hang in there and continue the treatment, one day something inside clicks and you are better and end up only taking a multi vitamin when your treatment is done.
My questions are this: Has anyone had experience w/the FFC? I am not giving up yet. Does anyone else have bad headaches w/Fibro? Does this progress? Should I try to talk her out of going to college? I’m afraid she’ll be stuck w/school loans that she can’t pay because she won’t be able to have a good job. Does anyone have the nausea? The nausea and painful knees have been around forever, but as she got each new unhealthy symptom, I have been wondering if it’s all connected? We are very frustrated at this time, because she was doing so great in the summer and now, when she feels good, she feels better each time, but each time that she feels badly, it’s making her more and more angry. I guess maybe she will need a therapist to help her learn to deal?
Any feedback would be greatly appreciated and thanks again for your time.