In the beginning, there was no pain, only a gentle ache. It was located in Fizz’z upper back and was easily controlled with Advil.
Then, the pain began to grow. It started to creep down the right arm. One Dr. thought it might be tendinitis. So, Fizz had cortisone injections in her right elbow and wrist to help alleviate the pain. The cortisone injection relief lasted 3 weeks. Fizz went back to the same Dr. for another round of cortisone injections. The relief lasted a week.
Fizz decided to move on and just "ignore" it, thinking that it was too much this, or too much that, or because she worked on a computer all day. But, the pain increased.
Fizz changed from a Dr to a Nurse Practitioner (NP). The NP started Fizz on Lyrica. Lyrica worked at that dose for about 3 months. Fizz's NP decided that it was time for a specialist, so Fizz when to a Rheumatologist.
The Rheumatologist ran all sorts of tests. Fizz had to hold her hand in one spot for 1/2 and then do the same with the other hand. Fizz had all sorts of X Rays done, but no MRI. This Rheumatologist said that Fizz had Ankylosing Spondylitis of the Neck. Fizz walked away from the last appointment with 4 different prescriptions.
Fizz also walked away from this appointment disappointed. The Dr. barely looked at her and did not even acknowledge her plea for help with the pain. Fizz went back 3 months later, with the same result, so Fizz went looking for a new Specialist.
Fizz found a Neurologist just down the road from work. This Neurologist did good things. He listened and nodded when she spoke and worked with her to help her get better. He had an MRI done. Low and behold, Fizz had Cervical Stenosis of the C6/C7 area. Fizz had physical therapy... many weeks, and was given her first muscle relaxer. It worked! Fizz was given injections of cortisone on the temples, down the back of the neck and spine to loosen up the muscles, which worked wonders.
Fizz was able to go 6 months with out needing more injections and therapy. This trend continued until the pain got to the point that Fizz could no longer handle it.
By this time, Fizz was on the maximum dose of Ultram ER, 450 mg of Lyrica and had run the gamut of anti-depressants, all of which where going help her pain and her 'tude.
Fizz had also started taking narcotic pain meds to help get her through a work day. Only one a day, just so she didn't go insane from the pain and could actually work for a living.
At this point, Fizz'z world turned upside down. The company she worked for, which was privately owned, was sold to a group of investors. All of the old management was switched out, including her boss, and new men were brought in, who had Type A personalities. The work slogan was "Faster, Harder, Faster, Harder" and it seemed that there was never any time where she wasn't going as fast as she could.
Also, Fizz found that the new Manager of her department decided that she wasn't working hard enough, doing her best or being the type of "Leader" he thought she should be. After each round of work, she would have to sit though is "Coaching" sessions, a nice little closed door meeting where everything she had done wrong was listed and she had to justify herself and what she did.
Fizz'z Fibro raged out of control. She was up to 2 pain pills a day. Her Neurologist tried to up her to 600 mg of Lyrica, but she was sleeping all the time and couldn't keep awake at work. She couldn't handle that high of a dose and work.
Fizz had more blood work done as Fizz'z mom has Rheumatoid Arthritis, and Fizz showed positive. Perhaps Fizz had Rheumatoid Arthritis. Fizz'z NP suggested going to a Rheumatologist that they had recently started using.
So, Fizz went to see another Dr. and her 2nd Rheumatologist.
This Rheumatologist was different. He looked at her from head to toe, even looking in her hair. He took so much blood, Fizz was worried she'd faint on the way home.
After 3 weeks, the reports were in. Fizz did not have Rheumatoid Arthritis. Fizz had Fibromyalgia.
Fizz went home and starting living her life with a diagnosis that made sense. She worked on her stress relief. She even went so far as to go to a hypnotist so that she would deal with the "Coaching" sessions in a better manner. Fizz found that the further away from the hypnosis she got, the better it worked for her. She was able to reduce her work stress and not cry during the "Coaching" sessions.
Finally, Fizz'z NP heard about Savella, a new drug for Fibro. This was not the golden pill, but Savella did help reduce the pain enough so that Fizz could function and go to work and still have a life.
And this is where Fizz'z story begins...
(C) 'Fizz' 2010