I fell down some marble stairs in my apartment in Caracas, Venezuela in 1977. My husband and I were living there for a year or so teaching English. I remember the pain vividly however I managed to eventually stand up and move. Over the period of a few days I seemed to recover quite well however I did have a heavy feeling in my lower back and legs. I ignored it as I was only 23 and didn’t want a silly thing like a fall stop me from enjoying my life.
Thirteen years later I was teaching Biology, Science and Maths in Townsville in a girls’ college. I was very happy with my job and loved all the wonderful people I was working with. However, as time went on, the pain became worse to the point that I needed medication night and day.
I tried many therapies like massage, homeopathy, physiotherapy, acupuncture to name but a few, and nothing worked.
I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia about 13 years ago, but I believe I have had it for nearly twenty years. Back then GP’s did not know or understand what fibromyalgia was and I did the rounds of GP’s, specialists, physios, chiros and massage therapists who constantly mentioned how tight my muscles were, but told me there was nothing wrong. I wasn’t really in pain… but of course I was.
I was finally diagnosed when a physio gave me a copy of a page out of a book about fibromyalgia, I immediately went home and looked it up on the internet, and found my problem. I made an appointment at a GP and took the piece of paper with me and shoved it under his nose and said “I have this”. He said ok and gave me a prescription for Endep. He told me that it could take up to six weeks to work.
I have lived with pain in my lower back and hip for years after an injury. I hurt myself cleaning a spa bath and had five months off work. The pain never went away but I went back to work anyway. For several years I went back and forth to doctors and complained about the pain. It seemed like i was soon labelled as a hypochondriac.
Well i took pain killers and kept on working and would come home from my cleaning job and just crawl into bed. The pain in my hip would have travelled down my leg and across my foot making walking hell. Making it worse was the extra weight i was carrying.
Then my husband passed away and life became harder. Next thing a doctor put me on antidepressants for the pain? I spiralled down rapidly and thought i was losing my mind.
I was first diagnosed with chronic neuropathic pain and a permanent injury early 2009. The pain is from a car accident that happened in January 2007. The main area of pain was in my right hip, from the seatbelt. From the get go, the doctors thought I may have fractured my pelvis. After a bone scan that came back clear of any fractures, I was still in pain, and kept presenting to my GP with pain in my right hip.
I had multiple x-ray and scans to check for bone or muscle damage, but everything came back clear. After seeing a different doctor in 2008, he suspected I may have nerve damage, and he was right. I started to see a neurologist, who did a few nerve conduction studies, and it came back saying I had a compressed nerve in my right hip, which is really common for front seat passenger car accident victims.
I went to see a neurosurgeon and two days before Christmas 2008, I had nerve decompression surgery. After going back to see the neurosurgeon about 6 weeks later, I told him the pain was still the same.
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