Thursday, June 17, 2010

As I Stand Now

Yesterday I had a consultation with Dr Richard Burstal from Hunter Integrated Pain Service. I found him to be compassionate and understanding. Having requested a referral through my General Practitioner, I was optimistic that I would be offered some pain relief other than my current list of medications.

It turned out to be a painful emotional experience. I awoke in the morning feeling unwell; not at all like me. When I arrived at the Mercy Hospice for the Outpatients Clinic I could not believe that my stomach was churning. Even my coffee from the brilliant barista did nothing to settle things down. I was able to recognise the reason for my dilemma. The last time I had been in that particular part of the hospital was 1993/94 when I accompanied my late husband Ray to meditation sessions held at the hospice. Bitter sweet memories.

Taking 80mg of Oxycontin [1 b.d.] is a concern as I have been led to believe that it is not terribly effective for nerve pain. There is also the fact that it is highly addictive. Dr Burstal reassured me that the Lyrica [Pregabalin] and Epilim [Valproate Sodium] were used for that purpose. In his opinion, the 80mg of Oxycontin night and morning was not a huge problem. Although my pain is reasonably well managed, I am well aware that there have been times in the past - and likely to be times in the future -that it will be different. It is important for me to feel that I am prepared for the future and I know exactly who to turn to should the need arise.

My current treatment is designed to give me quality of life and, unfortunately, the fear factor often rears its ugly head. Having had uncontrolled pain on numerous occasions, I do not wish to go there again.

Now that Dr Burstal has seen me while I am feeling well, I have been reassured that there are many options available, should the need arise. What a relief!

Today I attended the monthly meeting of the Oncology Support Group at the Calvery Mater Hospital. I felt it would be particularly interesting as I personally have always used some form of complimentary treatment.

Our topic for this month being Anti-oxidants and other Complementary Medicines. We were to have Jon Dickson as our guest presenter. Jon has 4yrs post graduate qualifications in herbal medicine along with his pharmacy qualifications. He has 35 yrs experience in community medicine and 14 yrs experience in Herbal Medicine.

Jon is keen to introduce complementary to orthodox medicines which have scientific evidence to back them up.

Unfortunately, he was unable to attend due to a sudden death. Seems it will be rescheduled. I look forward to that.

There was some discussion about the benefit of following the asparagus cancer treatment and it surprised me to learn that one member has been using it for about 6 months while another intends to commence shortly. I believe the jury is out on the success of the treatment and it is certainly not something I would commence midway through treatment without the approval of treating doctors.

I believe it is important to remain optimistic. I find myself reflecting on complimentary treatments which are often suggested. Undertake it only if I truly believe it will work for me.

And........ never, never, never give up HOPE


Anonymous said...

Hey Chez,
So hope you don't get in that pain again as i know what it does to you.Good to hear you more about different options.
Yes never give up and know i will always be here for you so you don't.
Much love my friend.xo

Jeanne Marren Egan said...

It looks like you are facing a great challenge with the pain. Hopefully some of the alternative therapies will complement the traditional meds and you will get some relief. My hopes and prayers are with you.

Debby said...

I am hopeful for you too. You have such an optimistic attitude, and it does seem as if you have quite a good medical team. Those two things make a big difference. Fight on, friend!

Starry said...

Hi Chez,

nice to see another post from you.

The good thing about asparagus is that if it doesn't heal you it won't harm you.

I love your message of hope and optimism.
xoxoxox Starry

mandy said...

Lovely to hear from you again Chez....It`s so frustrating isn`t it with all the knowledge doctors have today and yet there are people like yourself who have to suffer with chronic pain.
Your doctor is right with the Oxy, 80 mg per day is nothing to worry about at all...
I pray everyday that the doctors come up with a cure and especially to relieve sufferers of chronic pain issues...
Thinking of you

sunflower said...

Hi Cheryl,
So good to see that you are blogging again as I always enjoy your entries! Just wanted you to know that I keep you in my thoughts and prayers dear friend. Glad to read that your pain is managed fairly well now! Good news! Keep the hope and optimism it suits you well Cheryl! You're such a delight and never hesitate to think any different! Many Hugs and Much Love to you!♥xo

Chez said...

Kaz, I have learned to value and rely on your friendship so very much.
Thank you my friend.

Chez said...

Thanks Jeanne. Of all the places to have a recurrence I must admit, this has been a challenge. The nerve pain is very difficult to manage without being put into a stupor.
Thanks for your thoughts and prayers.

Chez said...

Knowing that we all have this battle Debby I gain strength from the friendship and support found right here.
Good luck with your studies my friend.

Chez said...

Starry we did have a discussion about the foul smell of our urine with the amount of asparagus consumed.
It is always lovely to catch you here.
Must be time I gave you a bell.
Love and gratitude dear friend xo

Chez said...

Mandy although the doctors seem to feel that the dose is of no concern, there are other medications and I really cannot get used to taking so many daily.
It is lovely that we are both back on these pages as I have heard nothing from you since the move.
Will be looking for some pictures of the new home.
Do hope all is well and Matt and children are fine.
Love and light xo

Chez said...

Sunflower this is a lovely surprise.
Can see I will have to be out there behaving like a 'wild child' to give me some interesting posts.
Guess I realise that I can still manage to post and comment as long as I give myself more time.
Love and friendship xo

Chez said...

Kaz, these are for you my friend xoxo

Anonymous said...

Chez what do u mean these are for me?? I am confuse...xo

Anonymous said...

Hi sweet friend,
So good to see another post here from you today. It is good you are finding so many different ways of treatment and combining which ones you will choose or not. All I pray is for healing to take place and soon you could be off all of this...As you say over and over...."Never Give UP Hope!"
Keep that beautiful smile and encouraging attitude ... so many are helped by knowing you and loving you! Lots of love , Di xox

Chez said...

Hi Di
Another day. Another doctor's visit. The joy is to arrive home to check my blog and find your comment.
Di this is certainly a two way street as we all gain from the positivity of both posts and comments. Beautiful! Isn't it?
Was going to write more and have decided to put it in another post so that you will know the next one is a follow on from your comment.
Live life, laugh and love my friend xo