What Do We Do About Chronic Pain?
This is probably one of the most frustrating questions ever and the answers are even more frustrating. It seems that no one really knows the answer. What works for you may not work for me. So what happens now?
For me personally, I can’t say enough about LDN or Low Dose Naltrexone. So far in my journey, it has been the one single drug that has helped the most. When I thought it wasn’t doing much for me anymore I stopped taking it and discovered that it really was working. It just wasn’t controlling as much of my pain as I hoped it would.
Multi-Disciplinary Pain Clinic
Today I went to my first appointment at the multi-disciplinary pain clinic. I had been to a pain clinic in the past at the hospital but found it to be very disappointing. The doctor discharged me because I told him I could not tolerate THC. (It increased my neuropathy pain severely and caused hallucinations. It also sent me to a very dark and scary place.) He had nothing else to offer me.
In October of 2019, I had an appointment at the Scleroderma Clinic at Mount Sinai in Toronto. The doctor recommended a multi-disciplinary pain clinic. Unfortunately, the report got lost and I had to request it again. I finally got the referral but due to COVID did not get a call. Last week I called to make sure the Clinic had received the referral since so many of my referrals go missing (another post someday) and was informed that they’d had a cancellation and could I come in on Thursday. You bet!
Everyone at the clinic was very nice. The doctor actually seemed very concerned and caring. It was the first time in a very long time that I felt like someone actually wanted to help me rather than just write me off.
The doctor offered me two treatments. My fears that I would just be dismissed were unfounded for a change. He acknowledged the fact that I had failed so many other treatments due to horrible side effects and never once tried to get me to try something I’d already tried unsuccessfully.
The first treatment offered was lidocaine nerve blocks and the second treatment was a lidocaine IV. The doctor explained that they were both treatments that have been successful for people when everything else has failed so I’m keeping my fingers crossed!
I start my first nerve block treatment next week and have 3 sessions lined up over the next 3 weeks. The plan is to try and break the inflammation/pain cycle. I’m hoping this means that I can get some sleep since I am positive that lack of sleep is making my chronic pain a lot worse than it needs to be.
I’m waiting for a phone call to set up an appointment for the Lidocaine Infusion. The nerve blocks are covered which is a relief since they are weekly treatments. The infusion will cost $30 a session. Worth it if it helps and I believe that is only once every 9 weeks so I can make that work.