Chronic Pain

Posted by chiefd67 @chiefd67, Aug 31 8:43pm

I am Ralph and I have chronic pain from my feet to my head. I have numerous musculoskeletal issues; rheumatoid arthritis, degenerative disc disease of the lumbar, cervical, pain in the shoulders, neck, wrists, right hip, legs, feet, knees, lower left abdomen, and groin.

I have issues with sitting and standing and I have a balance disorder, but I continue to push onward.

All as a result of military service.

I currently take no medications for pain as they all are addictive and have severe side effects.

I have had one epidural injection in the neck and my pain became severely worse after the injection – so I will not take any more injections.

Seems all the medical profession has for back and neck pain is medication, fusion, or suffering.

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Chronic Pain group.

Been there done that.l did get somerelief from a cervical minimal invasive procedure in my cervical spine Take care Penny Toronto

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@chiefd67 I would like to welcome you to this awesome community at Mayo Connect – chronic pain is life sapping, so congratulations for pushing on.

When you say, "…All as a result of military service…", does that mean you are a VA patient? Or do you have private providers? I ask because there are non-opioid, non-surgical strategies for dealing with chronic pain, but this requires a concerted effort & continuity of care to get there.
Also, what sort of trauma or exposure did you have that led to the conditions?

When we have more info about you, other may be able to better share with you.
Sue

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@sueinmn

@chiefd67 I would like to welcome you to this awesome community at Mayo Connect – chronic pain is life sapping, so congratulations for pushing on.

When you say, "…All as a result of military service…", does that mean you are a VA patient? Or do you have private providers? I ask because there are non-opioid, non-surgical strategies for dealing with chronic pain, but this requires a concerted effort & continuity of care to get there.
Also, what sort of trauma or exposure did you have that led to the conditions?

When we have more info about you, other may be able to better share with you.
Sue

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I entered the military at age 18 and was assigned to engineering. I weighed 132 pounds when I entered the military (navy) and left boot camp weighing 155 pounds. I am 6' 1" tall and small-boned. I was required repetitively to lift things by myself (often begging for help) that weighed more than my body was designed to handle. I pulled muscles in my back on more than one occasion in a five-year period. I was in an automobile accident and injured my neck, but I or the doctors were unaware of it at the time (the membrane around three of the cervical discs was torn).

I do see the VA but I am not treated by the VA. I have civilian doctors. I despise drugs as they are addictive and can cause other problems if taken for long periods of time. I have had no neck or back surgeries. I do have back and neck issues, and I have burning and tingling pain from my head to my toes. A lot of it comes and goes, but the worst pain and tingling are in my feet and I have a balance disorder which no one has identified as the cause in over ten years (it is not an equilibrium issue that they have ruled out). I have sporadic sharp shooting pains throughout my body, most lingering in one spot for hours before it goes away.

When I go to urinate, any pressure I exert causes burning nerve pain from my crotch to my feet (never addressed or identified the cause and have been to several doctors). I have urinary urgency. I have ED, "oh, it's just an aging thing". No! I believe it is a nerve issue, but who am I, I am not a doctor, but I do know what is going on in my body. I have problems with completely emptying my bladder. Too many doctors and none of them can connect the dots, they simply zero in on the one problem in front of them. Had a new neurologist today do a nerve conduction study on my left leg and arm and he came to the conclusion that my neuropathy is caused by rheumatoid arthritis (RA). I have had neuropathy for well over 15 years and have been tested many times for RA with negative results, but now it is RA – I say bull!

I really need one or two good specialists working together to figure out all my issues and a way forward.

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Testing for small fiber neuropathy might make sense. It would at least eliminate that as a possible cause. This is done through a neurologist. It involves some testing in the office ( nerve conduction study) to rule out large fiber neuropathy, then skin biopsies on your legs
to examine the small nerve fibers. The treatment for a lot of these type issues is seizure meds. Through trial and error, I am now on Tegretol, and old standby for seizures with fewer side effects than Lyrica or Gabapentin. Good luck with your continued search.

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@chiefd67

I entered the military at age 18 and was assigned to engineering. I weighed 132 pounds when I entered the military (navy) and left boot camp weighing 155 pounds. I am 6' 1" tall and small-boned. I was required repetitively to lift things by myself (often begging for help) that weighed more than my body was designed to handle. I pulled muscles in my back on more than one occasion in a five-year period. I was in an automobile accident and injured my neck, but I or the doctors were unaware of it at the time (the membrane around three of the cervical discs was torn).

I do see the VA but I am not treated by the VA. I have civilian doctors. I despise drugs as they are addictive and can cause other problems if taken for long periods of time. I have had no neck or back surgeries. I do have back and neck issues, and I have burning and tingling pain from my head to my toes. A lot of it comes and goes, but the worst pain and tingling are in my feet and I have a balance disorder which no one has identified as the cause in over ten years (it is not an equilibrium issue that they have ruled out). I have sporadic sharp shooting pains throughout my body, most lingering in one spot for hours before it goes away.

When I go to urinate, any pressure I exert causes burning nerve pain from my crotch to my feet (never addressed or identified the cause and have been to several doctors). I have urinary urgency. I have ED, "oh, it's just an aging thing". No! I believe it is a nerve issue, but who am I, I am not a doctor, but I do know what is going on in my body. I have problems with completely emptying my bladder. Too many doctors and none of them can connect the dots, they simply zero in on the one problem in front of them. Had a new neurologist today do a nerve conduction study on my left leg and arm and he came to the conclusion that my neuropathy is caused by rheumatoid arthritis (RA). I have had neuropathy for well over 15 years and have been tested many times for RA with negative results, but now it is RA – I say bull!

I really need one or two good specialists working together to figure out all my issues and a way forward.

Jump to this post

Hi @chiefd67, Neuropathy is the pits, especially when you can't find the cause and you can't find anything that provides relief. I'm also a Navy vet (62-66) who lost all his baby fat in boot camp and did two cruises to Vietnam on two different destroyers. Wished I could blame my neuropathy on the Navy but alas, mine is idiopathic small fiber peripheral neuropathy and most likely genetic.

I just have numbness and some tingling in the feet and legs and minor in the hands but zero pain related to the neuropathy. I was prescribed gabapentin by my PCP prior to being diagnosed by a Mayo neurologist but stopped it after 2 weeks because it wasn't helping. I posted my story in another discussion here – https://connect.mayoclinic.org/comment/310341/.

I did notice you started a new discussion in the neuropathy group – Do Small Fiber Nerves have a connection to Sciatica Nerves?: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/small-fiber-nerves/. I added some videos that I think might be helpful for learning more about your condition.

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Have you been tested for Arachnoiditis ?

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