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    I need advice..I'm in pain.
    allys25 posted:
    I am 23 years old and I have a 4 month o.d baby. But I have severe back and neck pain and chronic headaches. I can hardly walk to my car and back without huting..I can't give my baby a bath without holding my neck up. I cry all day from head aches that don't go away with motrin 800s. I have no help since my husband works nights and sleeps during the day. I went to a doctor and explained all this. I was crying because I'm young and tired of being in so much pain and I want to be a fun and active mom for my daughter and so the doctor thinks I'm just depressed.

    I'm not depressed at all. I'm very happy and optimistic and happy with my life with an exception of living in pain. I don't want drugs or just more pain medication cause it doesn't help anyway. I keep telling her I want an MRI but she says from her examinations I don't need one.

    She has prescribed me a low dose muscle relaxer and thats all. I don't want to live like this forever... It's getting harder and harder. How do I get my doctor to get an MRI done ??

    I would appreciate any support and advice Thanks,
    annette030 responded:
    Why do you want an MRI? It is a diagnostic tool not a treatment, so it won't fix anything at all.

    Most of the time they really do not tell the doctor much anyway. Sometimes they are necessary and very useful, but often they are not. Is this a doctor you trust and feel comfortable with? Is she the OB-GYN that delivered your baby? Where are her strengths and weaknesses as far as medicine is concerned?

    When did your symptoms start?

    Take care, Annette
    ctbeth replied to annette030's response:

    First question: Are you actually taking the muscle relaxants as prescribed?

    Since your child is so young and your husband works nights and sleeps days, it must be difficult for you.

    Pain management MDs are generally consulted after a diagnosis and for long-term pain treatment options. Drugs are not the only treatment modality, but are among the most-effective treatment for long-term pain.

    I understand that you do not want to take "drugs";
    None of us WANT to take drugs, but many of us must in order to live a reasonable form of existence.

    Although when you're hurting, a few months seems like forever, although you haven't said how long you've felt these sensations.

    Has your MD given you any diagnosis? Has she told you that it's muscular (hence muscle relaxants)?

    Seeing as you wrote , " I don't want drugs or just more pain medication", what would you like? Are you thinking of physical therapy?

    If your MD is ignoring your symptoms and they persist, perhaps you need to make another appointment.

    Ditto Annette: Why do you want an MRI? By physical examination your MD should be able to tell if there are indices for MRI evaluation.

    I am risking alienating you by writing this, but if you are in the MD's office crying, that is an indication that you may have depression. I have read and heard that depression can, indeed, cause physical discomfort. If it can help, why not consider being further evaluated?

    Mostly, I urge you to return to the MD, do your absolute best to remain composed while you explain your symptoms- when they began severity, what makes it worse, what makes it better, and all the stressors in your life.

    If the combo of NAIDS and muscle relaxants (are you taking the prescription?) is not helping, be sure to tell the MD that, too. She prescribed something to try to help, so she is not ignoring you. It is up to you to follow- up on that appt to tell her that the medicine prescribed is not helping.

    Good luck and do not lose hope.

    Please let us know how you're doing.

    lindak627 responded:
    Hi, I just found this forum. I know doctors are more reluctant than ever to prescribe expensive tests. However, I would try one more time with your doctor and if you get the same results I would seek out a second opinion. Depression can cause pain but also pain can cause depression. Crying at the doctors office could be total frustration of not being taken seriously.

    I had a bad back and years ago I kept trying to convince them that I had a problem. I was also living with sever headaches. I was told it was all in my head. My husband was in the military and we were left dealing with a small base hospital. Finally a new docotr came to the clinic and I was at total breakdown point. The psychiatrist I saw because "it was all in my head" called the doctor and said that while I had some issues I was dealing with them and it was his opinion that I had something else going on. This same psychiatrist diagnosed me with a severly low B12 deficiency and a thyroid disorder. Well the military doctor listened to him and myself and began running MRI's. I wanted my low back done first as I knew I had injured it a few years earlier but obviously the brain seemed the most logical, headaches and tumors. It came up clean and the next place he checked was my neck-it too was good. Finally in a last attempt he did my low back-Within 10 days I was having spine surgery. Had someone listened to me in the beginning. I would have had a whole lot less pain. Good luck and don't give up but do keep an opened mind. I had to take the back way (seeing a psychiatrist) to get what I needed done. Now I have almost routine MRI's as my back is totally messed up from my neck to my low back.

    silverlady76 responded:
    I get the frustration at wanting to be taken seriously and not just given the anti-depressant band aid. Been there not listened to, my depression tendancies come long after my pain and energy issues.
    Did your pain start after your baby was born? I had an extremely traumatic, long and exhausting labour with my first child. I had all over intense body aches for months until I found a supplement that helped. I know now it wasn't really the supplement I was just eating poorly and my body couldn't rebuild without an extra boost.
    One thing to consider in back, neck and headaches is the chiropractor. The adjustment really do work. They certainly won't hurt anything. Food allergies are something else that can cause extreme headaches but not usually neck or back pain. Don't quit trying to get help but in the mean time find out what simple food, vitamin or exercise changes you might make that could help out.
    Chairty responded:
    I am 37 and just had a baby 16 months ago. I was suffering from the same things. And again I had to fight with my dr. to give me a MRI finally he agreed and we found out the I had 2 discs in my neck that were pinching my spinal cord almost completely off. I had to have surgery to have it repair. And to be honest I am in more pain now than I was before. The surgeon who did the operation told me that if I had been left untreated I would of gone paralyzed. So push your Dr. to help you
    bradbhanes responded:
    Allys25, I've also suffered from neck, and lower back pain, but for the last twelve years. If your not getting the kind of results you think you need from your current doctor, then it's time to look elsewhere. My advise to you is to use a pain management doctor associated with one of your better hospitals in your area. I spent years going in circles when I was first injured, and now the feeling of no one understands.

    Good luck to you!!!

    Dollymarxuquera replied to bradbhanes's response:
    Hi from sunny Spain.
    No babies involved here but have been through the pain, the frustrations, all sorts of remedies from chiropractic to mental health depression treatments to nerve blocks to travel from here to UK and Germany looking for help and nothing worked. MRI showed disc degeneration everywhere, scoliosis, and cervical radiculopathy in the neck. I was at the point of 'finishing it all' at one stage and was rushed off to see a psychiatrist who gave me strong sleep medication but the pain fought its way through that also.
    In a conversation with my daughter in law I heard about Gabapentin and its newer version Lyrica. She had been prescribed it for nerve pain. although it is in fact an anti convulsive drug.
    The relief was almost immediate and I have never looked back.
    My lower back still aches and I have to be sensible about what I do, but I am a single carer and seem to manage.
    Not everyone can take this drug and it is expensive, BUT I now have a life which I was close to losing. Since then I have a friend who has been in the same situation. Eventually and reluctantly she was given Lyrica and her life has turned around
    Hope this helps and if not, that you find something that does.

    I have no idea what the long term use of this drug can be, but I am living in the present and I had no present.
    RobinCoy replied to annette030's response:
    annette030, Allys25 should get an MRI, it is a good start to see what could be causing her pain. I had severe pain in my hips and lower back that was shooting down my leg. I knew something was wrong, but my insurance company kept turning down my doc's request for an MRI. After 3 attempts the MRI was finally approved and wouldn't you know it, there was an annular tear in my L5S1 joint. That got the ball rolling in getting the help I needed to start treating my pain. I think Allys25 should get a doctor that will listen to her and realize that patients with chronic pain often get signs of depression because living with daily pain is ver taxing on us emotionally as well as physically. I agree with you in maybe seeing a new doctor or one that is more knowledgable with pain issues. Just my opinion, but it sure helped me.

    annette030 replied to silverlady76's response:
    Cervical adjustments by a chiropractor can cause strokes. The vertebral arteries can tear causing bleeding up into the brain. This happened to a nurse friend of mine. She was affected on one side of her body, it took nearly three years for her to recover enough to go back to work.

    I have had adjustments to my lower back, and they did help, but I saw an MD first, and after he did his thing and it did not work, he recommended I see a chiropractor.

    I certainly agree with your other suggestions regarding basic lifestyle changes to see if they help.

    Take care, Annette
    annette030 replied to Dollymarxuquera's response:
    I take gabapentin, the original version of this med, it is generic now and not all that expensive. I have used it for over 10 years now, no problems yet, and like you I will keep on taking it for the effect it has in the present.

    Take care, Annette
    annette030 replied to RobinCoy's response:
    Hi, RobinCoy

    Since Allys25 did not mention the duration of time that she has had pain, and I am not able to examine her, I would not recommend just demanding an MRI, or changing doctors.

    A basic physical exam and medical history goes a long way in making a good diagnosis. Most back pain is self limiting, some people need further treatment and diagnostic tests.

    Dealing with depression is very important in dealing with chronic pain. They interact and cause an increase in pain. You can't fix the pain if you don't deal with the depression also. If you do fix the pain, the depression may fix itself, but it also may not...

    I am so glad that you have found decent treatment.

    Take care, Annette
    terbet337 responded:
    Hi Ally,

    I got a brief message on my start page about this post. Your post has brought back so many memories. The pain however has never left but it changes. I'm now 61. It is only in retrospect that I can really view my medical history and how I was repeatedly misdiagnosed. In my forties, I actually overheard a hallway comment about 4F. (forty, fat, frustrated,female.) It had started at 19 just after my first child. YEARS later, I was finally diagnosed with Lupus and Fibromyalgia. I'd been treated. After being diagnosed with Lupus then it seemed no matter what pain or problem I had, the easy diagnosis was. Its the Lupus. I had a stairstep spine and have now had cervical and lumbar fusions. My last surgery was in 2003. I won't have another. I've found my best relief is when I stay alert and very proactive in my own treatment. I get copies of all labs and imaging. I work with my insurance who provides me with an advocate to oversee my medications and treatments. I use alternative therapies. I have to exercise. I have a chiropractor. I've lost weight and most of all, my pain is helped by a PHYSIATRIST. They are not just pain management doctors. I get injections when I need them. The point is only this, Doctors are just well educated humans. They want to do their jobs right but they get busy and sometimes just DONT. Remember, You are paying them to do a job for you. Here are some tips

    Keep a journal of your pain. Pay attention to the kind of day you've had, where you were, what you had eaten. Had you bent over. Were you angry, etc.. They way you have a record to help you discuss your pain symptoms. Be prepared to give your pain a number on a 1-10 scale. Worst, and lowest.

    Write down all your questions before you go to the doctor and take your list with you. When you first arrive, let them know you brought a list. Some places doctors are required to respond to those written questions. I'm sure you'll be reasonable.

    When you make an appointment, ask for at least an intermediate appointment. Most offices schedule two or more different appointment lengths, BRief, intermediate, and ? longer.

    Remember you deserve to feel better, to be in as little pain as you can be but that may never mean you'll be pain free. You can cope but it is so much easier with a support system. Don't be afraid to limit your outside activities especially while you have young children who need you. ACCEPT help that is offered.

    Wherever your journey takes you, keep fighting for yourself. The depression issue... Don't worry about it. Just make sure your doctor is aware. Newer antidepressants are especially helpful with chronic pain management. If the medication helps, what difference does it make what they call it?

    Good luck and God Bless.

    Ps. Let me hear from you.
    twinwolves responded:
    I,too, have been fighting Fibromyalgia most of my life. I am now 39. Around October 2010 I developed excruciating pain in my L4-L5 area. My doctor fought with my health insurance for a year to get my MRI. Then just a couple of weeks ago, my health insurance decided to boot me for some paperwork they claimed to have sent me that in fact, I never even received. I did not realize I had no insurance coverage until my doctor tried for the seventh time to get me a much needed MRI that was yet again denied. I called them to find out what was wrong and then they lowered the boom on me telling me there was nothing I could do to rectify the situation. So my doctor ordered a no-insurance MRI and I finally got it. Only to learn that I have a bulging disc that requires surgery. I however, cannot get the required surgery as I do not have health insurance coverage, nor the money as we exist on my hubby's SSI income. His family cannot help with this surgery as it is too expensive.

    Things I have done:

    1. I have seen my doctor numerous times ( Found out that I have Asthma,Carpal Tunnel, Mild COPD, bones spurs in both feet, Flat arches, Plica in my knees,Uterine Fibroids,Fibrous Cysts in both breast, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Migraines, Pleurisy, Epilepsy, and Irritable Bowel Syndrome)

    2. I have been to physical therapy (only to have surgery on my right shoulder. Did not help my back at all.

    3. I have been to a psychiatrist (only to find out that I also have Bipolar,Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Panic Disorder, Depression, Seasonal Affective Disorder)

    4. I have been to a pain only clinic ( I received a nerve block injection that only exacerbated the problem, then told they could not help me. I also attended their support classes.)

    5. I have tried numerous at home stretching exercises to no avail. Stretching causes my calf muscles to tighten up tighter than a wound spring to the point of bruising them. I have been put on Baclofen 3-4 times a day and this still happens and wakes me up every night when my back does not. The doctor still has not figured this condition out yet.

    6. Been to a Neurologist and found out I 3was very low on B-12.

    I am to the point I am almost wheelchair bound, but according to the Administrative Law judge, I do not qualify for disability. Which my case is at the decision level.

    I have been told many times that the goal is not to make me pain-free but rather to make me "functional" even if it includes pain. At this point I am neither. I guess I have to wait til it bursts and then end up in ER but even them I cannot nor will I ever be able to pay for my surgery.

    So if anyone knows of a surgery Assistance program for patients in the state of Washington please let me know!

    All this to say, I'll be praying for you, hun! I,too, can empathize with the crying because you cannot handle the pain anymore as do I. Frustration & depression because you can no longer do the things you once were able to do. Try to find happy things to focus on, play soft gentle instrumental music to help you relax, and practice deep breathing. Keep on top of your doctor or find a new one. Keep on top of what your insurance allows so you know how to jump through loopholes to get your help. I myself am taking up to 15 medications daily to try and control my conditions. There are Patient Assistance Programs offered by the pharmaceutical companies, and possibly through your local health library. Try to sit and stand straight as slouching only adds to your pain. Try Epsom salt baths, they help me a lot. Do not be afraid to ask for help, your family and friends love you and want to help. Do not take on too much and rest often.

    Sincerely Yours,

    annette030 replied to twinwolves's response:
    If all the income you are surviving on is SSI from your husband's disability, you may be eligible for Medicaid. Each state does their own thing as far as requirements, etc.

    That said, a bulging disc rarely requires surgery. You didn't say where it was or what else you were currently doing for it. We will all have bulging discs eventually because we walk upright, and it puts a certain pull on our spines. Even herniated discs often do not require surgery. It sounds like you know what to do as far as exercise and stretching, etc.

    You mentioned a low B12, but didn't say if you were currently taking any B vits.

    Best of luck to you.

    Take care, Annette

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