Tuesday, January 31, 2012

When Good News is Hard to Take

Saw my rheumatologist today. We talked about my back pain, stiffness and decreased range of motion. We talked about medications and effects, fatigue and exercise. She sent me downstairs for x-rays of my spine, "just to be sure" and gave me a referral to physical therapy. If nothing abnormal shows up on the x-rays I don't need to see her again until April.
I feel... deflated? Elated? Relieved? I realize it's really good news that my spine is (most likely) not affected by the rheumatoid disease. I am glad to not be adding any new medication and happy that I am actually able to decrease the prednisone by 2.5 mg. So why the hesitation? Why the anxious, unsettled, drowning feeling? Am I just waiting for the other shoe to drop? Do I really wish my spine pain was inflammation due to the disease? Why would anyone wish for that?!? I know, because it's a definite answer. It is a for-sure reason for the horrific pain that has come and gone the past few weeks. I don't want to go to physical therapy to "learn how to manage". I don't want to have another medical facility get to know me by name and expect to see me regularly. I don't have time for that! I just want a quick answer and treatment, and then to get on with my life. But I suppose, this is my life now. I just need to accept the facts and do what I can to learn, cope and live well.
Wish me luck. Or better yet, pray for me to quit being a whiny baby and "just do it".  :-)


  1. A magic pill, what a wonderful thought. I'm sorry you're hurting and you're not crazy for wanting a defined answer. I'll be praying for peace, no matter the outcome and of course answers and pain relief.

  2. I'm sorry your hurting and I hear you about not wanting to go. I no longer go to any physical therapies by choice. Cost vs time vs theraputic relief just don't justify it. I can do just as much from home in my home or around my home to do therapy. It is good your not having to add meds. It's not always a good thing. Hang in there. Hugs... gentle ones. Tammy

  3. OK, so the physical therapy is for what? Did your doc rule out "Ankylosing Spondylitis....

    Ankylosing spondylitis is an autoimmune form of arthritis which most often affects the spine, although other joints may be involved. It is characterized by inflammation, pain and stiffness in the spine and pelvic joints. The eye can be involved (uveitis or iritis), along with the heart and lungs. There can also be some bowel inflammation.

    The disease usually begins between the ages of 20-40 and affects men more than women. There is some belief that it really may affect women in the same numbers as men because women seem to be affected differently and therefore may not be diagnosed as often.

    Ankylosing spondylitis may affect as many as 2.4 million people in the US, according to the CDC.?"

    I have been having bad back problems alot for the past 8 months with my ra and yes, I do know it is ra related or some other drat autoimmune problem arising. I don't get the PT without a proper diagnoses of what is causing the problem. But that is just me. I hope you find some resolution to this as with mine, it can get really bad on some days. Feel better!

    1. Thank you for the insight Deb. After reading more about AS I won't be surprised if this eventually becomes my diagnosis. Currently though, my back pain hasn't been bothersome for more than 6 weeks, my bloodwork and x-rays all came back normal and it's not affecting my lower back, so for now we're going with "muscular strain". It's hard to believe that muscles can hurt so bad, but apparently it is possible.
      I will probably go to PT, if only to learn some exercises I can do on my own to strengthen my muscles.

  4. Love your blog. Found you off of twitter. My wife was diagnosed in 2007 with fibromyalgia and in October of 2011 with RAD. We've seen so many doctors and specialists and can totally relate to the feeling of "please just give us a diagnosis so we can move on with our life." If the disease itself isn't wearying enough, the mental wear and tear of med games, visiting doctors, fighting with insurance, etc can break one down. But there is hope through it all that God is working a greater good for His glory. That all of this is but a momentary affliction. (2 Corinthians 4:16-18) Blessings, Eric


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