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My "Two Appointment Tuesday"

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

My first appointment of the day yesterday wasn't until 11:15am, so I had time to get my workout in before getting ready to go. And before I get started on more of my day, some good news; my neck and shoulder felt a lot better last week. I still had some pain, but it wasn't as unbearable as it had been.

My first appointment was with my oncologist, since my neck and shoulder pain got better last week, he's not concerned that it is new bone mets at this time. I asked him about my fatigue, and the fact that it wasn't better even a month after being off the Abraxane, but he said that will take more time to get better, at least another month.

After that, I had my Zometa infusion, and that went pretty quickly. I got done in plenty of time for Rhonda and I to have a leisurely lunch out before my 2:30pm appointment with the pain clinic.

It was a long wait out there yesterday, they were quite behind because one of the procedures took much longer than expected. I sat an hour in the waiting room, and another hour in the exam room before I saw my doctor. Thankfully, I had a book with me. (I never go anywhere I have to wait without a book or my Kindle.)

When my doctor finally did get to me, he took his time talking with me, as always, and it's always something I appreciate. I told him that the injection I had for my hip last time didn't really make any difference in the pain, and of my concerns about falling on the ice around my house when I got home if it numbed up my leg like last time. (If you regularly read my blogs, you might remember I fell inside my house after my leg went out from under me when I got home after my last injections.) He agreed with me, that since the injections for the hip haven't been helping, that the risk of falling on the ice weren't worth the possible benefits of trying another injection there.

We talked more about the neck and right shoulder pain. I told him that at first, the last set of injections helped, but that I had about 3 weeks where the pain returned and made me quite miserable at times, and even my pain pills did not touch the pain. He told me he would repeat the injections again, and if they helped, even for just 2-3 weeks, he would at least know that he was hitting the nerve causing the problem, and it was a nerve, he said, that didn't serve any purpose other than to send pain signals. So, if this series of injections indicate that, when I see him again in April, he will do something called a rhizotomy, which is injecting a hot needle into the nerve to deaden it, and it should relieve the pain for hopefully 3-6 months. I will go into more detail about that procedure in a future blog if I end up having it done.

Anyway, I had to wait a little bit longer, then I was in the procedure room, was given the sedatives as usual and had the injections. I did ok; it sure felt like I was being poked a lot. It hurt a little, but it was not extremely painful. Then after some time in the recovery room, it was time to go home. I got out of there around 6pm. I felt so bad that Rhonda had to wait so long for me, but she said it wasn't my fault.

I forgot to mention, he increased my pain meds to the next dosage size up, so hopefully that will help even more with the hip pain and other areas I have pain. I haven't had a chance to fill the prescription yet, but that's ok, I have plenty of my other pain pills left.

My neck is quite sore today, but that is normal after those injections. The injections themselves cause some temporary inflammation before they start to make me feel better. I think they are already working though, because despite the pain in the neck, my shoulder is not hurting today. I am just taking it easy today, because the less I have to move my neck, the better it feels. I decided not to try a workout today. I will wait til tomorrow and see how it feels before I decide if I will do my workout. I'm doing good with them though, I've only missed 2 workouts so far this month.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Hi Shari, I'm just catching up on your blogs now... Rhonda is a wonderful friend and it's great that she is okay about waiting for your appointments to finish. You did well to get through such a long day. I know how tired one can feel with intensive sessions like you had at the pain clinic. So glad to hear your doctor is not concerned about bone mets. I hope your neck pain can be improved with the new dose of pain pills, if not injections should you need them. That is good news about having less shoulder pain and you are such an inspiration as always keeping up those workouts despite all your challenges. You are awesome!

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    1477 days ago
    That's good news about the neck and shoulder pain! Hopefully, the injections will continue to be of some help. That Rhonda is an amazing friend. You are blessed to have her in your life. How is your mom doing?
    1483 days ago
    I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you Shari, hoping the neck pain is less. It's a lot to contend with, I know. You have a good doctor who seems to have more ideas of what to do, so that's something to hang onto! I have a lot of patience when waiting for a doctor, knowing that the doctor is trying to help someone else before he comes to me, and that someone might be waiting while the doctor is with me too. Being impatient doesn't help anything anyway. I've learned to take a book along also.
    1484 days ago
    You are doing great with your workouts in spite of the pain. I hope this next round of shots helps with your neck and shoulder and the increase in dosage helps with your hip.
    1484 days ago
    Hope things get better soon!!!
    1484 days ago
    You are a real inspiration to a lot of folks! Don't you ever forget that!
    1484 days ago
  • OWLVR54
    Wow, that was a very long and tiring day for you. I hope that the pain is helped by the injections and your fatigue gets less. Slipping on the ice, wow, sorry you got hurt. Let's pray you have a good week, and weekend without much pain and you can rest.
    It is great and inspiring you still get your workout done before your doctor appointments. That's fantastic.

    May you have a great day and God Bless.

    1484 days ago
    This sounds so redundant but I'm glad to hear your neck/ shoulder pain isn't seen now as bone mets! 2 hour wait for the Dr is truly inconvenient but we don't make appointments simply for convenience, right? And your P.M. Dr. Sounds like he's worth the wait- at least for his listening skills...keep up the good work! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1484 days ago
  • ENG_TV
    You really have a great doc who seems to listen to you. This is wonderful. Hope the injections do their job and you are feeling better soon. You have done such a great job working out, even through the pain. Great job!
    1485 days ago
    Sounds like you have a doc who cares and listens to your concerns. Good that you rested and not tried to work out today. Feel better soon, I hope.
    1485 days ago
    Way to go with the work outs.

    1485 days ago
    So happy to hear that your neck and shoulder pain is so much less---and also that your doctor isn't concerned that it is new bone mets. And it sounds wise to avoid the hip injections if they don't seem to help, and you're worried about a fall on the ice. (My DH had a nasty fall ton the ice while shoveling about 8 weeks ago, and he's just now walking without a cane.)

    You're doing great with your workouts and it sounds like you're being smart about how you feel before you start. Aaahh, good to hear your news, Shari.
    Big hugs.
    1485 days ago
    That is great news that it is no longer believed to be new bone mets!

    Hopefully the next "two-fer" appointment will go a little faster for you. You are doing a fantastic job keeping up with everything. The nerve procedure, if it works will be a real blessing.

    1485 days ago
    Hi, I hope your pain will be better this time. Sorry that you have to increase the amt of pain pills. I will keep you in my thoughts.
    Rhonda is a wonderful friend. God bless her.
    Hugs for your evening and tomorrow.
    Take your time with the exercises.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1485 days ago
    That's almost spooky - I was literally just on your page looking for an update when the blog appeared!

    That's great news that they're not thinking new mets, and especially that there is a treatment available if it is nerves. Hopefully it won't come to that, but it's always good to have the "next step" in your hip pocket.

    I think your onc might be a bit generous with saying only another month for the fatigue to ease up --- I've known a few folks (me!) where it was 6 months or more before there was an appreciable improvement. I don't want to dash hopes, but just to make sure that you neither panic nor beat yourself up if it takes a few more weeks than you'd like to start feeling more like yourself again. You already know that you're doing the best possible things for getting past it (eating right and working out --- and keeping the stress down with those fur-babies!) so just keep taking it as it comes...

    Thanks so much for the update, and keep taking care of yourself!

    Strong thoughts, and gentle hugs...
    1485 days ago
  • --KREN
    Sounds like you're doing fantastic working out so much with all you're going through. I hope it perks you up, emotionally, getting that exercise!

    1485 days ago
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