One of the problems of living with severe Fibromyalgia is sorting out the pain signals. You become so accustomed to pain that is medically meaningless, that you don't know when it is too much, when it signals that something else is going on. Sometimes the pain is so bad it just overtakes my brain; I can't think straight. I rarely get this bad -- maybe 3-4 times per year. I take the max of all the kinds of painkillers I have: Ultram, T-3 (codeine), Ibuprofin 800 mg., and it may as well be water. I can only lie in bed and try to sleep through it, but unable to because the pain is so bad. I feel like I want to crawl out of my body to get a break from the unrelenting head-to-toe pain. While my feet and calves feel torturously pained, and might be helped with some cream (Burt's Bees for feet and legs) I cannot even bear to reach down that far to apply it. This is when I pray for the release that death would bring, and wonder why God keeps me alive, so useless is such a life.
That is what I was experiencing on Mon. and Tues. But finally I used my phone-a-friend option yesterday afternoon, to discuss my symptoms, and she (my sister-friend, Monica) made the sensible suggestion that I call my doctor's office. Honestly, I just didn't think of it! By that I mean, I just couldn't tell it had gotten to that point. Now, it is not uncommon for me to have a sensation of chest muscle pain and constricted breathing due to the fibro. But this was strong enough to suspect something else, so the nurse told me to go to the e.r. to rule out heart trouble or pneumonia - which they did. I was glad my neighbor-friend, Deb, was available to drive me, so I didn't have to go by ambulance.
It turns out I have "asthmatic bronchitis". A nebulizer treatment and pain shot later I was a whole new person! (I don't think I have ever had Toreadol before) So I left with a prescription for an inhaler and antibiotic.
This morning I feel back to normal, except for the headache, which is a side effect of the Doxycycline. By "normal" I mean, normal for me: in pain, but able to cope with it. One thing I gained from this experience is the knowledge that maybe an option for me in the future will be to get a shot of Toreadol when I get this bad. Also, when I do get this bad, chances are the flare-up is being triggered by another illness which may be treatable, which will help relieve the flare-up. If you read this blog to learn about fibromyalgia, that is the important thing to take away from this post.