Monday, April 27, 2009

Doctor Update

There are so many things I've wanted to talk about lately, from the Dove Awards (read a hilarious article from David Crowder [of David Crowder Band] here), to the latest flu pandemic scare, or even the possible death of one of my favorite tv shows Chuck after only 2 seasons. But alas, I only have so much energy for one main post today.

And I started with just that paragraph 2 days ago. {sigh}

As you know, I had an appt with a new doctor last Tuesday morning. It was the result of my previous doctor leaving her practice and moving to another city (just a month or two after my rheumatologist did the same thing). So the appt was mostly a meet and greet.

I'd spoken with a couple of blogging friends (one with Fibro, one with Lyme's) and really appreciated their input. They encouraged me to really just get to know this doc - not so much take a huge list of everything to go through and get advice on. So instead I focused on getting to know her and running her through my history (even though she has all my files, I wasn't sure how much she'd read and wanted to give her my version).

And that's mostly how it went. It was good; but there's not really a whole lot to say. But I'm fabulously excited to find out she's a Christian, and a solid one at that. I've never had a Christian doctor before, so this pleases me to no end!!!! She goes to a large area church that I'm familiar with, so I generally know her core beliefs are very similar to mine.

It was soooo great to talk to her a little bit about the emotional/spiritual effects of living with Fibro, and instead of being pushed toward a psychologist, she encouraged me to go back to my biblical counselor. She was very encouraging, and knew more about Fibro and the medicines available for it than my previous doc and rheumo COMBINED!


But all in all, I don't know that she's going to be the very best fit for me. For now, yes. In the long run, we'll have to wait and see.

I still very much want to go the chiropractic route once I've been able to concentrate on weight loss, Bible study, counseling, and exercise a bit more. I think finding a solid routine that I can stick to will ultimately help me figure out a plan with the chiropractor for going to see him the extra hour and a half or so out of my way that it takes me. Right now, it's simply too exhausting to deal with. Have I given up on it? Absolutely not. While I think natural healing is certainly the way to go, for my immediate future it is not. I have to take one day at a time and not let all of this overwhelm me. Losing the weight is difficult enough without adding every single other pressure to it regarding fibro. If I can lose the weight, I think it'll help every part of me in the long run. So, for now, that's what I'm concentrating on.

Whoops, side ramble... okay, back to the doc...

I was so happy to hear that this doc has a pretty decent knowledge of Fibro and Lyme Disease (I wanted to be certain Lyme's had been ruled out, because I was not convinced from just the blood test). She talked to me for a bit about her knowledge and then we went through my history. From that, and my previous tests, she ruled out Lyme's. Now, I'm still not 100% convinced, and my blogging friend Melody has helped teach me a lot about it. I know I need to be my own advocate for this, so in that case to get further testing for Lyme's, I'm going to have to find a Lyme-specific doctor in the area, be tested and have the readings done at a lab that will read all the bands from the test, and then--and only then--will I feel comfortable that I know for sure.

So it was disappointing that this doc wasn't ready to do further testing, and yet I appreciated her comments about how much I'd already been poked and proded and how resistent she was to forcing me to do that even more. We talked deeply about exercise, which has been a really painful issue for me, and I really appreciated the way she spoke to me about it... not condemning or belittling in any way, but realizing that pushing over the initial hump is like pure torture, but once I'm past that I'll find that exercise really helps. It's just getting over the hump (a few weeks or so of regular, moderate exercise) and pushing through the pain, that's the hard part. And with Fibro you're supposed to push, but also know your absolute limit because if you push TOO hard, you can make it all worse and set yourself back completely. Knowing when you're nearing that line is a very big trick I have yet to learn.

So, lots of trial and error to come....

No medicine changes as of yet, but I'm happy to know more about what she knows in that regard, and that hopefully we'll talk about it next time. Sleep is the big issue right now and my Amitriptyline isn't fully doing the trick. I know Cymbalta is used for Fibro sometimes, but the one person I've talked to who had it, had such an awful experience with it that I'm not jumping on that bandwagon any time soon.

Any others of you had any luck with medicines?
If so, which kinds, what doses, what side effects, etc?

So overall, I think it went really well. I'm excited about some things, not so excited about others, but generally I am pleasantly surprised and happy with the results.

Hopefully this is the start of great things!!

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