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whippet mom
New Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 8/2/2009 6:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi - I am new to this forum and have been thinking about posting for some time.  I am hoping that if I can get out how I am feeling - maybe I'll feel better.  I am 30 and was recently dx with fibro.  If I look back - I have probably had it since highschool.  I am always tired, always with a migraine and hurt all over.  The only thing that feels better is a hot - and I mean hot - bath or when I am exercising and my body is finally warmed up.  I try to be tough and not let it bother me - but it seems that over the past few months I have been getting worse.  I feel that I am all alone.  My fiance and family are supportive - but I don't want to complain too much to them.
I think the worse part is that I graduated medical school 1 year ago and I am currently doing a residency in internal medicine.  I feel so helpless.  How can I go to work and help someone with pneumonia or a GI bleed but I can't seem to help  myself.  I initially started out as as ER resident - but as the year went on and the constant night to day shifts - it was just to hard to do with the headaches and the pain.  I recently had to switch to internal medicine because it is a little more predictable and slower pace for my sore body to work in.  I struggle to complete the 80 hour work weeks.  I struggle with the 30 hour shifts. Although I am in the medical field, I sill feel the frustrations that you guys have towards doctors.  For me, I am afraid to tell anyone about what is going on at work - they just won't understand. I'll just be another one of those "crazy people with fibro and headaches." My primary care doctor, rheum and neurologist are great though. 
I find myself in tears - although I believe that I am depressed and I am on antidepressants for it (cymbalta) I still feel lousy.  I wish the pain will go away.  I wish that I could have a whole day without a headache.  I wish that by back didn't hurt everytime a took a step.  I wish I knew what it was like to be happy again.  I am sorry to be so down - I just neded to get this out - thanks for listening.

Nana Monster
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 957
   Posted 8/2/2009 6:30 PM (GMT -7)   
    I also do 40+ work weeks in a demanding job. I know what the pain is like. I recently had knee surgery on top of it all.
i went the herbal route and feel great. During the first 2 months I still had to do my normal painkillers until some of the damage was undone. I've been off all prescription and otc painkillers for 2 weeks now (one herbal has a built in painkiller).
     I know a lot of drs. think we're depressed but I think a lot of it is the fact we don't sleep. I was one mean, nasty person for a long time. Popping painkillers in the middle of the night. Taking double and triple doses and nothing touching the pain.
I've found out that now I am sleeping most nights I'm happier, very few mood swings, and a lot better outlook on life. I can now do the work week.
     I hope you all the best in your quest for relief.....somewhere it's out there.
                                Nana Monster

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 4796
   Posted 8/2/2009 6:45 PM (GMT -7)   

I am so sorry that you are suffering. Fibromyalgia can really knock even the strongest
people down. You must be a very strong woman to be able to put in an 80 hour work

You are going to be a wonderful doctor because you will be empathetic to those in pain.

I am glad to hear that your fiance and family are supportive. This forum is a great place
to be, others truly understand your pain. I have only been posting for a couple of weeks
and found the other members to be very supportive of each other.

Hoping you will find pain relief soon

 possible MCTD, Raynauds, Fibromyalgia, Osteoporosis, Degenerative
 Disc Disease, Osteoarthritis, High Blood Pressure, Migranes and
 Pseudothrombocytopenia, biopsy shows a Scleroderma variant
 MEDS: Methotrexate, Savella, Boniva,Lisinopril, Folic Acid, Flexeril, and
 Vitamin Supplements

whippet mom
New Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 8/2/2009 7:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Nana Monster,
  Thanks for the reply - turn What types of herbal treatment did you find the most helpful? I am on several meds and would like to try a more natural approach.  Thanks

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17501
   Posted 8/3/2009 7:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Whippet, and welcome!  Having the pain definitely is causing some of your depression.  You have a lot on your plate and deserve a huge pat on the back for your perseverence.  You set a goal and are reaching it and that's wonderful!
Many with fibro are deficient in malic acid and magnesium and this can cause pain and fatigue.  I take malic acid/magnesium supplements and they have helped me.  There is a link in the fibro 101 thread....the first thread on the forum...all about these. 
Also, many with fibro are deficient in vitamin D.  I live in Florida and get a lot of sun and STILL am deficient in this vitamin and this, too, can cause pain and fatigue.  I presently am taking 3,500 IU of vitamin D3 a day. 
Both of the above vitamins and supplements have medical studies to back them up.  That is important to me. 
I'm glad you found us and joined in!  The Fibro 101 thread has a lot of info about fibromyalgia but you probably already know all of that!  But, don't hesitate to ask questions.  We are here to help you.  I'm happy you are here and am looking forward to hearing more from you soon.

Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7

American Woman
Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 96
   Posted 8/3/2009 7:26 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Whippet and Welcome to this forum. I've only been posting for a short time and have recently been diagnosed with fibro. I also think I've had it for quite a while. I get kind of mad when people say we are depressed. I think we get depressed because we are always in so much pain and so tired constantly. I hear you when you say you don't want to complain to your family, it's hard to explain how we feel all the time.
This forum will help you so much because they do understand how we feel.
I hope the best for you in your career and also with coping with fibro. Sometimes just getting things out in the open about how you feel even helps.
I hope you have a great day
American Woman

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 84
   Posted 8/3/2009 9:22 AM (GMT -7)   
I also take D-Ribose. It works wonders for energy. My headakes don't come as often now that I am taking magnesium. I also add Grape Seed Extract in orange juice or cranberry juice.
In the strength of the Lord, I can do all things

MT Lady
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 969
   Posted 8/3/2009 9:39 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Whippet and welcome,
I am so impressed by your courage. To get through medical school and now to be practicing medicine while dealing with fibro. You are one very strong woman and I applaud you.

I too tried a more natural approach, yet I never gave up my pain medication, I couldn't. I never felt good enough to be without it. I have tried D-Ribose for energy, vitamin B complex, malic acid/magnesium, in addition to many more supplements I take for fibro plus other "aging" issues. I have also tried a gluten free diet, no coffee, whether regular or decaf, no sugar. Honestly, none of it seem to really make a difference. The major difference for me is exercise. I cannot do a lot of it, like I use to, but if I don't exercise, I find myself in a worse flare. I truly believe exercise somehow keeps us at a certain level. As I said, I am never without pain, but it's not as bad when I can exercise. I'm just the type of person that doesn't know when to stop. If I am feeling good, I always overdo, always, and then pay for it later or the next day.
In any case I wanted to welcome you and wish you well! Your strength is admirable,
take good care,

Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, scoliosis, back problems, hypothyroidism.

whippet mom
New Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 8/3/2009 6:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you so much for all of your kind words and support.  I like to believe that although I hate that I am sore and tired all of the time - it does help me relate better to my patients - especially those is much worse off conditions like cancer. I a m glad that I found this forum and will try to post and keep intouch.  I think that I just need to come to realize that there are good days and bad days....and hope for more good days.  I am on several meds for my headaches - but being on pain meds outside of ibuprophen is just not realistic for me.  Although I have had some pain meds in the past for a sprained wrist and I felt better - I just don't feel like a respondsible doctor, making medical decisions for patients while taking anything that may have a narcotic in it. I wish that there was a better way, but until then, I will continue to try to look forward to the good days.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1495
   Posted 8/3/2009 9:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Whippet,
Kudos to you for finishing med school while having fibro.  I wish I had some advice.  I am hoping to start a phd program in 2010.  It is very competitive here.  Just finished a masters that required a minimum of 60 hours a week and sometimes it worked up to 80.  I think that exacerbated the fibro symptoms.  I am happy for the short rest period where I will be working less hours until the program starts.    Your patient load is probably huge.  Is it possible to slip away and sit quietly for a few minutes a couple times a day?  I found that helped me. 
Keep posting.  Glad to meet you.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 163
   Posted 8/3/2009 10:12 PM (GMT -7)   

Most of us here are also professionals. It's difficult to accept the diagnosis. I screamed at it to go away. My family yelled at the Dr's for more tests, and that I was not getting proper treatment. My husband yelled at the Dr's. He’s a professional too.

The Dr's. Thought I was depress and was put on all kinds of antidepressants. I'm in my 20's and use a Cain. It was embarrassing at first. Know I don't care what people think. It's my life and they don't pay my bills.

I work long hrs. too. 7 days a week. It's draining esp. under stressful conditions at work. I pleaded to God to give me strength to work, drive, and walk. I want to work and ask for God to help me get through each work day.

My rheumatologist cut off all my FM and myofacial meds. I have the remainders left. Afraid to run out. Its flexeril and vicodin I started in May. They want me on more antidepressants, and Meloxicam. The med's did make me gain weight, but I can work, drive and be active.

It took 5 or more yrs to get diagnosed, and then the rheumatologist tells me the cure to this. Eating right, and exercising. WOW> I was doing that for yrs until I could not stay on the elliptical glider at the gym with out falling off dizzy and out of breath. I don't eat badly. Fish, chicken, fruits, veggies, but I still have this illness. I used to exercise 4 times a week until the bad flare up that took me down. Haven't gotten my strength back. The good thing is I won't die from this illness, but it comes back with vengance and stays with new symptoms.

I'll end up in the ER soon again when the med's run out. I am at my wits end, so I requested another rheumatologist I can't even push a door open. I get lost going home. I cry out in pain. I come to this forum for support, b/c these people understand what I'm going through. I'm glad you are here as a Dr. to speak out about this illness.


Fibromyalgia, Chronic Myofacial pain syndrome, major depression.

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 377
   Posted 8/4/2009 2:34 AM (GMT -7)   
Hey and welcome Whippet-

You're a strong woman to be learning your way around this disorder while doing your residency in such a truly demanding field. Ahhhhh...if only every single doctor you were learning with...could spend a week in my body or your body during a flare; they'd learn how to be more understanding for pain. You can do it. It's hard but you know what your goal is...and that can make all the work...practically fade...doesn't it? Sometimes? I hope it does.

Welcome again.
27/f/CD. 4 CD related surgeries: 2 resections, 2 JP drains, 3 NG tubes, many absesses (including the one my most recent surgery scraped off my ovary) and fistulas.
Have lost in these surgeries: appendix, 8 in. intestine, R fallopian tube, gallbladder, 10 in. intestine
Allergies and Asthma my whole life
Depression after surgeries and illness of 2003.
Crohns Dx'd: February 2008.
Fibromyalgia Dx'd: July 21, 2009
Prenatal Vitamin
Allergy meds

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 599
   Posted 8/4/2009 12:52 PM (GMT -7)   
Whippet, that is incredible you are completing a residency with fibro. I'm a secretary now, with a 9 to 5 schedule. I am not able to imagine working a "regular" workweek again - which for me as a program director was 60-70 hours per week. The shifts that residents go thru are very taxing. 30-hour on-call shifts, catching a nap when you can... I physically would not be able to do it. No wonder your back hurts with every step. You mentioned that you "try to be tough." I so understand that. I was raised to suck it up, to work thru it, to ignore it. Fibro has literally kicked that belief system out the door, and it has been hard for me to realize it is OK to admit to the excruciating pain, when all I can do is cry and hug my "bed buddy" sock.  The days when I can't put clothes on because it hurts my skin; when I can't wear a necklace because the weight of it on my neck gives me migraines... nobody can understand it, really, unless they have experienced it, so I'm really grateful for the support of this forum. You don't need to try to be tough - you ARE tough.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1495
   Posted 8/4/2009 1:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Littleneck, really?!  the necklace hurts you, too?  It doesn't happen to me always.  I told my doctor that the weight of the necklace sometimes hurt my neck and gave me headaches and he looked at me like I had three green heads.  That was years ago.  He looked so incredulous that, at the time, I thought it must all be in my head.
I have had headaches seems like forever and been seeking treatments for them that long, too.  I also don't like collars.  I wear mostly v neck or scooped neck shirts.  When I get my hair cut, I am always pulling on the cape because it hurts my neck. 

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 702
   Posted 8/5/2009 8:40 AM (GMT -7)   
wow I cant believe how many of you work the way you do!! Amazing. I am on ssdi so luckily I can focus on my health. altough we struggle to make ends meet anyway.

I just wanted to ask if you have any exposure to ticks? My fibro and Lyme dx came hand in hand. I would suggest even if you have no tick attatchment or rash (only 50%) get a rash anyway that you be tested for Lyme.

what tests you want (i am sure you know anyway) is Lyme Igm and IgG westernblot.

for more info on lyme anyone can feel free to email me at
Chronic Lyme Disease
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Sleep Apnea
Adrenal Fatigue

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 87
   Posted 8/5/2009 12:15 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, and welcome to the forum. Everyone here is really kind and helpful. Just having the support and knowing there are others out there who share the same feelings can make you feel a lot better. You must be a very strong person to work as hard as you do. Being a doctor is a very admirable career, and I am sure you are a very compassionate person because you can empathize with the pain others are suffering. I would recommend that you try taking vitamin B12 every day. I take it, especially when I am working night shift, and it helps tremendously to give me more energy. It also seems to help slightly with the pain. You also may want to try valerian root for when you are trying to relax or sleep. It won't actually put you to sleep, but it will calm and relax your body. If you're looking to actually get some sleep, melatonin works wonderfully. I find that heat can also work wonders to relieve pain. Thermacare makes wonderful heat wraps, which are great for when you're on the move, because they stay in place really well, so you can wear them while you're moving around. Also, when you have a free moment at work, do some light stretching to keep your body loosened up.
I have tried Cymbalta too, as well as Lyrica. Neither of them helped me. In fact, they made me so groggy and out of it that they just caused me to feel even worse. Now I'm taking both Celexa and amytriptiline, which both help some. Everyone's different, so you have to keep trying different things until you find what works for you. TENS units are nice for back pain too. You can get the small ones that you can wear while you're moving around.

I hope that these suggestioins might be helpful to you. Also remember that even though you are very busy, it is important to take some time out for yourself in order to relax and rest. Take care and feel better!

Fibromyalgia, Depression, Anxiety, Social Anxiety, bulging disk in neck
Amytriptiline, Flexeril (PRN), Percocet (PRN), Celexa, B12
Be not afraid of going s l o w l y, be afraid only of standing still.

Mo Stewart
New Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 8/7/2009 12:04 AM (GMT -7)   
I cried reading your post! It is me. I am so sorry you have to feel the way you do, I know I feel the same but I still want to let you know that I am sorry you have to go through what you are going through. All we can do is be strong and take each day one at a time. Lucky you to have a supportive family, not all do (me) rely on them to talk to, let your fiance in and have him there for you to talk to even if he is js listening. I too want to be normal, and walk normaly, sleep normally, act normally and just be normal.....but WE aren't quite normal or who we used to be. But with support, WE can get thru this..........we have no choice but to. Thanx for sharing!

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 478
   Posted 8/7/2009 12:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Whippet, I just want to add that maybe you will make a real difference to those of us with little voice about this very serious condition. You sound very strong and I think you will be a great doctor. My father was one of the best and he had many things in his personal life to overcome and carry on. He did it with great respect and admiration. And YES he did make a difference. You will too.

I do not take any drugs as I am just too stubborn to give in to that. I feel they have too many negative aspects and really don't make a difference. I do not judge anyone that does; we all have to make our own decisions. I have found as many on our forum that you have to remain as positive and strong as you possibly can. We do not have the coping mechanisms other people do for whatever reason.

Anyway I hope we hear more from you.

Best, Patsie
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