How to Talk About Pain
Greg has been to every doctor in our area for leg and feet pain – he’s had every test in the book – and does NOT want to do it again. It makes him feel crazy when all the tests are negative – and he comes out perfectly healthy. But he’s still in pain. Frustrating.
Thanks for sharing your experiences, Lea Ann and Carla. I pray this will help others who have chronic pain communicate with their drs and get help.
It took me four years to get diagnosed with Fibro. That was 15 years ago when no doctor believed in it. I was referred to more psychiatrists than I can count. I didn’t get through to any of them, no matter how specific I was. I was just fortunate enough to finally be referred to the right physician. He touched a few spots on my back and said, “I know what’s wrong with you.” I held the tears until I was out in the car. By the time the arthritis flared and the lupus came along, I didn’t have to really explain as symptoms were pretty obvious. I have to admit to hating. . . no, make that LOATHING. . . the thought of going to a new doctor. It’s like here we go again. . . frustration personified!
It is very hard to discuss pain with doctors, especially if we have a chronic condition. After a while, I feel like I am just whining in the office. Once, I was so frustrated with my doctor’s lack of understanding I burst into tears and sobbed for a good 10 minutes. He referred me to 2 specialists (within the week) and gave me better medication. I have inflammatory arthritis.
I have learned since that doctors want facts they can chart, informationthat can be objectively compared over time. How does the pain affect my life? What must I do differently because of the pain? How is it at different times of day? By patiently noting these things and patiently relaying them each visit, my doctors can finally get a sense of how pain changes my life and what help I need.
Pain is … a pain. Can’t wait until we have no more!
It’s very frustrating, Cindy. This has been my issue for the past 40 some odd years with thyroid issues that they now say have developed into fibromyalgia. Drs did nothing for my thyroid because my tests always came back negative. Then they were unable to do much about the pain of fibro either. I also have borderline hypoglycemia as well as tmj, insomnia, headaches and menopausal symptoms. Drs always thought I was too young to have any of this and so just left me alone.