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chronic pain
An_255556 posted:
I am a chronic pain patient living with a family member who does not understand the effects of chronic pain and the related fatigue/depression issues. I just need to talk, anyone out there experiencing the same problem. Any suggestions.
atti_editor responded:
Hi and thank you for posting,

I am sorry that you are living with chronic pain and that your family member does not understand the effects it is having on your life and your body. The members of this community might have some great advice for you, but I encourage you to also post your question over in our Pain Management Community if you haven't already done so. The active members of that community might have some valuable advice and suggestions for you as well.

Best wishes,
Thomas L Schwartz, MD responded:
Hi- this is a common issue. The non-pain family member does not experience pain the way you do. They also likely feel helpless and weak in that they cannot help you. Sometimes it makes them mad and irritable to feel this way, then they take it out on you. Ideally, you both can talk about it on this level. The pain has changed and hurt your life and it likely has changed and altered your family member's too. The key is to talk about it. If not, consider couples therapy, or you can consider therapy for yourself so that you can deal with your family member more effectively...
ssmiddy responded:
Totally understand. I have RSD (Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy=chronic pain) in my right hand to the extent that I now have a morphine pump implant to control the pain.

However, for MANY long years, I was existing in excruciating pain minute by minute while on a LOAD of opiate pain meds, as well as meds for mental illnesses. I totally understand your situation, and I am so very sorry you are in such a situation. There's no way to phrase it better than, "It Sucks!"

Any person who has not experienced severe pain, day in and day out, for a looong period of time, can not possibly "get it" regarding the pain OR the effects it has on a person dealing with that pain.

I was and am very fortunate that I had a wife who took her wedding vows seriously, and took care of me, and advocated for me, to the very best of her ability, even during periods when I was either entertaining thoughts of self-harm, or just plain spitting venom at everyone around me.

Personally, had it not been for her, and for my counselor who dealt with other mental issues, some related to the pain and some not, I don't think I'd be sitting here typing this right now.

May I be so bold as to ask where your pain is located? Or how you are being treated for it?

In the past, doctors often just loaded people up on nasrcotic pain killers, maybe an anti-epilieptic pill for "nerve pain", or possibly something like Lyrica (typically used for fibromyalgia), and figured if you could just "get by" on such meds that this was the best they could do.

I think it is actually the WORST treatment for chronic pain. I've had, I think, 4-5 implant surgeries for spinal-cord-stimulators (SCS's), and ONE for a pain pump. The pain pump is what finally helped ME. It is an extremely slow intrathecal dose of morphine, released 24/7, at about 1.1mg per day (versus the maximum dose of Opana & another narcotic pill who's name I do not recall.)

From personal experience, I recommend a pain pump over the SCS. The SCS gives an effect similar to a TENS unit, and if it is place right on the money, it does help a LOT....but eventually mine just didn't do the trick any longer. So, I turned the dang thing off, went to my doc, and asked about a pain pump.

They implanted the pump and spinal catheter on Dec 24, 2011, and by February of 2012, I was no longer taking ANY oral meds for pain, nor was I experiencing any side effects of any medicines at all. Worth looking into if yours is a long-term condition.

Probably more than u wanted to hear. Sorry.

Best wishes to you!

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