Hey all! Wow, am I glad a Google search turned up some posts on this forum!! I've been reading a few, and thought I'd introduce myself and tell my story so far (hope that is the right protocol here) and ask some questions.
Questions first - has anyone had their pain triggered the first time by a medication - I haven't ever had this type of pain before taking Flexeril (a muscle relaxant)? When do calcium channel blockers start to work, and have you taken diltiazem? When/How do you know to call the dr again if the pain doesn't really stop, but isn't necessarily worse?
Now my story thus far (sorry it's pretty long) - It actually starts with a headache. First, I've had a headache that was coming and going since October, but was nearly every day. Since the beginning of this month, it has been everyday, I even woke up with it still hurting. Last Weds, dh was home from work and I took advantage of that to go see a dr about my headaches. My regular GP was booked, so I saw someone else in his practice. She felt I had a tension headache and Rx'd Flexeril. I took half a pill (5mg) Flexeril Weds (12/8) night, and it didn't help, so I took a full 10mg Thursday night. Then I woke up early Friday morning with chest pain.
The pain that woke me up at 4:20am was right behind my breast bone, and a little to the right. After an hour, I was scared and made dh take me to the ER. ER did blood work, a chest xray and ECG. Finding that I wasn't having a heart attack (really good since I'm too young at 33) they gave me a percocet for the pain. When that didn't really help much, they dx'd me with heart burn (sorry, I've had 3 pregnancies which all involved heart burn, this was NOT any incarnation I've ever felt before) gave an Rx for Pepcid AC (20mg, I just bought it OTC) and sent me on my way with instructions to follow up w/my regular GP - that got scheduled for Weds. I haven't taken any more Flexeril in case it was part of the issue.
Two days ago was my appt w/my GP. Conveniently enough, the chest pain that had been waxing and waning since my ER visit decided to wake me up again, this time 2:45am. I just hung out dealing with it knowing in just a few hours I'd see a dr. I think I have a great dr. He spent a full hour with me, first listening to all my symptoms, reviewing what we'd already tried, and then doing the exam and finally sending me to the in-house lab for blood work (I'd fasted that morning just in case hoping we could get it all done). The only thing of note we found during the exam is that I have a loud second sound to my heart beat, and he called me yesterday with a referral to get an echo-cardiogram (note - I should never have googled that symptom, not reassuring) I called to make that appt but their new patient person hasn't yet called me back to schedule. My GP thinks the headache may have started as a tension headache, but since I've had migraines in the past, it seemed to now have migraine features (like light and sound phobic) and he felt a prednisone burst pack would interrupt the headache, and then wants me to try magnesium supplements to see if it works as a preventative. As for the chest pain, he feels it is likely esophageal spasms. For that, he decided to Rx a novel calcium channel blocker, diltiazem. In my brief looking around the web, it seems diltiazem helps with headache pain - bonus. At first, the pharmacy didn't want to fill the Rx - the pharmacist told me she'd never heard of that med being used for esophageal spasms, and made me wait until she'd spoken directly to my GP before she'd dispense it. I have since read articles on the net that link for that use, but whatever, I got it in the afternoon. If you've taken it or know more about it, I'd love to hear about it - I took one last night, and one so far today, will take a total of 4 pills today.
So far, the pain will wax and wane, but hasn't hit that intense level again yet (finger crossed it stays that way - waking in the middle of the night to that pain is nearly terrifying). I read here about the peppermint oil - I happened to have some peppermint extract for baking and mixed a small capful of it with water to see if it would ease the lower level of pain that kept me tossing and turning last night and continues this morning - so far it's hard to tell if it's doing anything or not, but maybe it won't help since it is not just the oil (extract is water, alcohol and peppermint oil)?
Thanks so much if you made it all the way through that!