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    aprilrose9 posted:
    Just curious since this has not been discussed, or at least I have not seen this discussion anywhere on this site.

    Spent yesterday on the couch or on the bed all day. My SI joint was so irritated my legs were spontaneously jerking throughout the day. When I finally fell asleep, I dreamt I was in a very crowded library, unable to find my cane, unable to walk and had to CRAWL around all the peoples feet to get to the exit. My cell phone wouldn't work and I was in a great deal of pain. Since I couldn't think straight, I couldn't figure out which way to go and ended up in another building...a hotel. I felt stupid about having to crawl through the busy hotel lobby to get to the door. Once outside, I was at the opposite side of the parking lot from my car. I have had these stupid dreams for 25 years. They are usually about being at work and I can't get to my patients.
    Anyone else going through this or am I the only strange one?
    trs1960 responded:
    I did and terrible night sweats. They finally went away. I also suffered a substantial subdural hematoma so between all the trauma the meds and head injury who knows what was going on?

    Good luck

    davedsel responded:
    I have a recurring dream where I go back to work but the pain is too much and I have to go home and stop working again. The work environment in my dream is usually the same as my last position, but sometimes it is from prior jobs even from decades ago.

    My career in Information Technology was very fulfilling and I enjoyed what I did for a living. I miss working and being a productive contributor in society. However, I must admit that I am still enjoying my early albeit forced retirement.

    Interesting topic. Hope everyone has had a blessed and fantastic Friday.
    Click on my username or avatar picture to read my story.


    davedsel replied to davedsel's response:
    ....or maybe everyone has had a blessed and salubrious Saturday, which is really what day today is.
    Click on my username or avatar picture to read my story.


    bj1208 responded:
    I wish I dreamed, but I usually dont have dreams - even before my disc blew I didnt have dreams that much -

    what I do note is I have been sleep walking a lot and sweating real bad - my face is always drenched in sweat. but I found out this is from muscle relaxers. I was prescribed to take 5 a day (3 every 8 hours and 2 at bed). I never had been bothered by them until the last couple of months. so no I only take the muscle relaxer if I really need it.

    I guess Im just dreamless~~
    ~~ Click on my name or picture and read my story ~~

    Take care ~~ God Bless ~~

    ~~ Joy ~~
    mainebestlife responded:
    I may be able to help with this one- The body responds to pain and especially chronic pain as a TRAUMATIC EVENT. It's held in the subconscious mind- in memory. Therefore pain trauma "cycles" much like any PTSD trauma does. It can cause insomnia, nightmares, depression, anxiety symptoms etc. I find myself going through the cycles of emotional change denial, anger, grief ( loss of my old life) as well as the PTSD trauma cycle. I developed anxiety and panic attacks that are pain based- usually a trigger is when I think I'm going to be in pain that I can't endure. I think that the nightmares are actually "normal" for people living in pain and may actually be a way of your subconscious mind releasing pent up emotions and anxiety in the role-playing in the dream.
    trs1960 replied to mainebestlife's response:
    That's very true and is why I say (if the injury puts your spine at risk etc) to skip the general practitioner and get into an appropriate specialist ASAP. Twelve weeks is the magic number the medical profession has used to define acute pain/injury or chronic pain not fitting the old Cartesian pain model of x amount of tissue damage equals x amount of pain. After twelve pain is considered chronic and falls under what is now called the Biopsychosocial model. As you stated, our primal instincts cause us to scream out for help when we are injured. Ironically soldiers being in a different mental state often don't feel immediate pain after serious injuries such as dismemberment. While this is an interesting study in psychology it's another story.

    So pain equals immediate responses such as pulling your hand away from fire and screaming for help or in modern times calling 911. Chronic pain has been present for 12 weeks and despite the brain asking for help the pain signal is still present. It's source is typically unknown (Trauma has been treated and heeled) and the mystery pain is now worse. The brain is still yelling to get help, it can't understand the cause of the pain so the imagination runs wild. We've likely all been told we must have a medical test for some life threatening disease. We live in absolute anxiety from the moment we're told we need this special test until the phone call telling the results are negative is received. thats kind of a compressed version of the larger model; Pain or discomfort, call and make doctor appointment, doctor tells you maybe this, maybe that, but we need yo test you for cancer or MS or ??. during this time your mind runs wild and fear breads anxiety and stress which increases the pain level which increases the fear which increases the anxiety.

    This is why we say knowledge is power. If you can replace mystery pain with that phone call that says you do not have lung cancer, its just the smoke in the air from the wildfires. Once the smoke clears up you'll be fine (I bet you relaxed just reading that little story) we are half way down the road of pain managment.
    trs1960 replied to trs1960's response:
    Didn't mean to hit submit yet. Traumatic pain is pretty straightforward and it is believed that the brain maps the body and much like a computer's IRQ (interrupt Request ) the brain polls the neurological, chemical and other systems for new data that is prioritized through what are called gates. These gates close to allow a pain signal to pass up the CNS to the brain.

    Back to the original point, the brain can do so many things we can't even begin to count. We do know that the brain can tell us a foot that was on a leg that has been amputated has toes that are burning in pain. We don't even need to be asleep for this nightmare.

    So after months and years of the pain gate being stuck closed and the pain signal getting to the brain so the brain can go get help, but no help comes anxiety leads to depression and misery...can this cause nightmares? I'm sure it can.

    So can classic PTSD symptoms such as reliving an accident while sleeping. So will many medications. Some medications will have you dreaming away in REM sleep, but forget all about the dream by the time you're fully awake. REM sleep is a whole additional problem. As chronic pain sets in the base operating frequency of the brain shifts up to a higher frequency. This makes it harder to relax and can make it impossible to sleep, especially achieve much needed REM required for restorative functions of the brain. This and serotonin loss are the prime reasons chronic pain sufferers rarely sleep. Sleep deprivation is he'll, there is a reason it is used as torture!

    I'll leave it there and back to my very first reply, "yes."
    aprilrose9 replied to trs1960's response:
    Dear Tim,

    You are far more optimistic concerning pain management. I think we are in the dark ages. "Half way down the road of pain mangement", is far more optimistic than I feel. After 25 years in pain, I feel there has been little change. IMHO this could change a bit if health care professionals (physical therapists, psychologists and physicians) would listen to the patients. When friends of mine were in medical school, they used to joke that patients are considered LIARS until proven differently. I realize, they are in training to look at things from a scientific viewpoint and to begin to build confidence in themselves and their decision making skills, but I think this is the advent of not listening/believing patients. Even in nursing they lecture about the "manipulative" behavior in patients. Now that I have been on "the other side" of things, this kind of talk makes me sad.

    I think we would be further down the road of pain management if the patients were not viewed in such a suspicious light by the medical community. I once had a Psychologist who had pneumonia, for a teeny 2 week period, tell me she now understood what I was going through. She was not someone I would have chosen to see, but part of a program I had to attend after my injury, and the way this pain clinic was run at the hospital. I could not even "politely" hide my disgust.

    Some of this stuff is a terrible waste of insurance dollars. All under the guise of providing a holistic approach to pain management. After 25 years, all I see is a bunch of people doing a half way job and pretending they are helping me.

    Usually health care dollars follow the bouncing dollar bill. Money goes to areas of research and areas of the hospital which make/ bring in money. This is why the Labor and Delivery Unit has pretty decorating, Coronary Care has expensive equipment and the Psych Unit and Dialysis gets put in the cockroach infested, old parts of the hospital.

    With the amount of dollars lost in this country each year due to back injuries and subsequent chronic pain, you would think I would have seen some kind of change in care over the last 25 years, but I do not.
    trs1960 replied to aprilrose9's response:
    I meant half way there metephorically not mathematically. My point is in agreement with you. We must gain our own knowledge for if we wait for someone to take our hand and fix us, it will never happen.

    People will sell us gimmicks and we will continue to free fall into depression.

    Which is why I say, knowledge is power.

    trs1960 replied to aprilrose9's response:
    ...and we're approaching $100 billion a year of lost production caused from back injuries.

    aprilrose9 replied to trs1960's response:
    Dear Tim, Only trying to say you are more positive than I am and I meant this as a compliment of your unfailing optimism.
    trs1960 replied to aprilrose9's response:
    Dave's the true optimist. I have my bad days, but I haven't given up yet. I know that if I do give up trying to be optimistic I will lose this battle.

    So I try to be like the white lab coat the Doc wears. The lab coat makes you think he's a wise doctor so when he says "here, this will make it better..." you feel better. I try to point towards paths of possible success and not failure. That's why I hate the label "Failed Back Surgery Syndrome" It's so fatalistic and it almost sounds as if it's time to throw in the towel as soon as you say it!

    So we should all keep the faith that while fraught with pain, our lives have great value to those that love us and for them we keep fighting the good fight.

    Bless you April,


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