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airforceaimee

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Hello fellow sufferers of Fibro...

I was finally diagnosed with fibromyalgia last week, and I am just looking for some direction. My pain began last October. It all started in my right pinky finger and spread from there. I have now been dealing with chronic widespread pain for about 9 months. I was immediately sent to rheumatology due to an abnormal blood test, but nothing else was ever found. I had several lab tests, x-rays and an MRI and nothing showed up. I was beginning to think I was crazy, and became a bit depressed because I was experiencing daily pain with no diagnosis. I requested a second opinion with another rheumatologist who immediately gave me a pamphlet on fibro. He asked me to read it and call him back in a couple of days to tell him what I thought. Out of 10 symptoms, I was experiencing 8 of them. I had no idea that some of these things that I was experiencing were actually symptoms of this disease. Besides the pain and fatigue, my biggest problem is memory and cognitive loss. I attributed this to a medication I had been on and stopped the drug. Come to find out, it is all just part of fibro, and is actually named "fibro fog".

A little background on me... I am a 27 year old female. Prior to any of these symptoms, I was in excellent health. I worked out 5 days a week, and ate healthy. I have never scored less than a 95% on my Air Force PT test. I actually won a squadron push up competition a month before the symptoms started. I went from this to not being able to do anything. I try to do low impact cardio, but I always regret it afterwards. My Primary Care Manager has recommended that I attempt to work out 5 days a week, but I am not sure how it is going to affect me.

The issues associated with fibro have significantly impacted my career. I have promoted quickly within my career; however, my recent promotion has been put on hold because I have not been able to attend a required schooling. I am finally scheduled to attend ALS this month; so thankfully, I should be able to promote at the end of August. I am not eligible to train for a new job or be moved to another location, because of how I am coded. I joined the Air Force with the intention to retire, but it seems that my health isn't going to allow that. My Primary Care Manager has told me that she wants to try 3-6 months of treatment and see if she can get my pain under control. If not, they will begin the med board process for a medical discharge. This has already taken over 9 months, so I expect that I will be waiting at least another year if the med board is started.

I have already been on Celebrex, Mobic, Amitriptyline, and I am currently taking Tramadol. I have heard that I just have to find the right combination for me to get relief.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and any advice for the diagnosis or for my career would be greatly appreciated!
 

1sweed

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1,956
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DX FIBRO
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01/1995
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US
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Pennsylvania
Welcome to the forum. It is always so sad and depressing when fibro steps in and ruins a persons career and livelyhood. It sounds like you are very good at what your doing and now the only thing you can do is slow down. If I were you I would be careful about over doing in the exercise department. Doctor's used to say that more was better, but we as patients have found out that the more we push the less we can do. And the more we do in our jobs or at home the less energy we have in our lives as a whole.

Cutting back from the stress in your life may be the only option you have. I know first hand how hard that can be. Had my own housecleaning service and as time pasted I had to quit one job after another until I was working for one lady. Finally that to had to be given up as I spent more time in bed with arms and legs that refused to move and terrible fatigue and brain fog.

When you have time to relax, do so without thinking about your job. Watch good funny movies and read good books, take nature walks and bubble baths, eat healthy foods and get enough sleep. Be sure to drink lots of water and fresh juices. I tell everyone that getting a cotton fiber or feather bed pad topper is a wonderful way to help ease muscle pain. These pads come in all mattress sizes and are about 3 inches thick. You lay it on top of your regular mattress and it gives the feeling of sleeping on a cloud. The extra cushion helps relax stiff muscles and so you sleep better. Also try to keep your lower legs warm and wear socks to bed. Those things help prevent leg and foot cramps. And try and find a vibrating full-length mat for massaging your body from neck to feet. Some have heat in them for helping sore areas.
If you get a lot of chest pain be sure to have a heating pad handy and use the low heat setting several times a day.

Reading around the forum will give you some more coping skills to try and also give you a chance to forget about your problems for a little while. Look forward to seeing more questions from you and getting to know you through your posts. :)
 

airforceaimee

New member
Joined
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Messages
5
Diagnosis
6/2013
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MD
Thank you so much 1sweed for your inspirational and helpful words! I came to the forum unsure of what to expect. I have never needed a support group until now, but I truly believe that this forum will be theraputic.

Because all of my pain is in my joints, I thought there was no way this could be fibromyalgia. I refused to accept that diagnosis because myalgia literally means muscle pain. After reading the informative pamphlet from my rheumatologist, I quickly learned that it effects joints too and it was like the stars lined up. It all makes sense, but it doesn't make the diagnosis any easier.

I am (was) a very active person. I love adventuring the outdoors and vacation often. I have a vacation planned for the Dominican Republic in September, and I almost dread it. It is a terrible feeling to dread something that everyone else yearns for. The resort I am staying on is huge which means lots of walking. At times, I feel like I am holding my husband back from the things that he loves to do and that in itself is depressing. I am very blessed to have a supportive husband and family, but I hate being a burden. I just cancelled a 6 hour road trip home for the 4th of July because I physically cannot do it. Just last week, I had to drive 1.5 hours to my Drs appointment and I was miserable.

I am only walking on the treadmill now for exercise, otherwise I regret it afterwards. I will attempt to work up to more, but will just have to wait and see how it goes.

Thank you again for responding. It really helps!
 

1sweed

Moderator
Joined
Feb 4, 2013
Messages
1,956
Reason
DX FIBRO
Diagnosis
01/1995
Country
US
State
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Your very welcome. The things I listed are things I did inorder to spend more time enjoying life and less time in bed. Lately I have been pushing myself way to hard and know if I don't slow down I will be back in bed with no strength in my legs or arms. I try and take care of my mom and it seems each day is harder and it makes me sad and tired. So much for complaining. lol
Sometimes the big hotels have motorised wheelchairs and some places provide transportation so you don't have to walk so much. If you get tired just say you want to spend a few hours relaxing and let the family do their thing. It is better to admit when you can't keep up then suffer for it later.
I am a outdoor girl too and miss all my outdoor activities I used to do. Now everything is done on a smaller scale and not nearly so much fun. I am sure you know what I mean. Talk more later. :)
 

ferociousafchic

New member
Joined
Jul 16, 2013
Messages
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Diagnosis
00/0000
Country
us
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fl
Hi, AirForce Aimee,
I'm also in the Air Force and I wanted to tell you about a supplement that works for me. I'm taking D ribose and 5 HTP. Look into it for yourself. It has boosted my energy, allowed me to go back to working out and has helped tremendously with the fibro fog. I've also been gluten free and that seems to really help me a lot too. These things have really improved my quality of life and made me feel more like my old self. I hope this helps... good luck!
 
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