(This picture has nothing to do with this post, I just like it.)
Last Tuesday, I finally had my follow up appointment with my fabulous Rheumatologist. If you remember from this post, my first appointment was TWO months ago.
And as before, he was amazing. Although I had to wait an hour past my appt time to see him, he then spent an hour with me. This still just blows me away, he is truly a special doctor who treats his patient with such respect.
First Dr. W, pulled up his notes from my last appointment and went through them with me. I couldn't believe how thorough they were. And at the end it said, "Thank you for referring such a pleasant and delightful young woman to me." That made me smile.
Anyway, then we got to the results of my blood work, MRI and X-rays for the other things he was looking for. Anyone want to take a guess what they yielded, anyone, anyone?
Gold stars to those of you who said they showed a BIG FAT NOTHING! As usual, everything looked "favorable." Good news right?
Well of course that's good news in the sense that I don't want something horrible to be wrong. However, also super frustrating because obviously things still aren't the way they are supposed to be and we were back at square one.
I am not too proud to tell you that I cried a little in the office. But Dr. W was so compassionate and understanding.
And then he talked to me like an equal of his, not as some egotistical doctor telling me how things were going to be and sending me on my way.
His newest line of approach is that I have Fibromyalgia AND/OR IBD related Arthritis.
He went through the treatment options for both and asked me what I wanted to do. And to spare you all the things we talked about. I decided that I wanted to try treating the Fibromyalgia first, since the medications for this aren't as harsh as the ones for the arthritis.
Click HERE and HERE for information on what Fibromyalgia is. It really does sound very possible that this is one of my issues. I have all the symptoms and have had most of the triggers for Fibro. So I've started taking Gabapentin. The hope being that it will help dull my over active nerves and stop them from firing so many pain signals. I've been on it for a week now, just increased my dose yesterday and no improvements yet. But I have to increase again in five days so hopefully something will help.
For some reason, I can't explain, rationalize or figure out, I've had a very hard time with this information over the last week. Hence the lack of blogging. Maybe it's because we still don't know for sure and we are just throwing darts at things. Perhaps it's that I had to make a choice between medications and I didn't really want to take any of them. Or maybe it's the fact that this is very real, that these are things that I really do have to accept living with for the rest of my life -- widespread, chronic pain (whether it be one or both of the above diagnosis) in some form.
Now do I know that these things are totally manageable? Of course I do, I've been living this way for years and "managing." Do I realize that this is at least something to go with and that it could be so much worse? If you've read this blog you know that I'm not a pity partier and never take for granted that there are people suffering so much more.
So what's my issue? That I can't answer. I'm working through it, I'll hope the meds work. And I'll try to do some other natural things to help my situation (unfortunately I can't do yoga, which is one of the suggestions because I can't bend over otherwise the nausea will be a bigger issue.) And I'll go back in 6 weeks for a follow up with my favorite Rheumy. And we'll go from there.
In the meantime, I'm working on scheduling an appt with a new GI and I have an appt with a "Lady" doctor for next week. Because we still need to figure out what my nausea and other lower abdominal discomfort is due too, that's still the biggest of the many mysteries.