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Diagnosed injuries and TMS healing plan

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Thebestwhey, Jan 5, 2017.

  1. Thebestwhey

    Thebestwhey Peer Supporter

    Hello everyone

    I was diagnosed with de quervain's syndrome about a week after I went back to work after taking some time off due to my "RSI". This diagnosis happened roughly in late April and no physio- was working so I got a cortisone shot and it seemed to help up until about a month ago. I have had some thumb pain again the last month and have just been icing it and doing light physio- with clay.
    My question is:

    the TMS healing plan makes total sense to me for injuries such as my "RSI" as doctors would call it that is in my right arm. I now know that it is all in my mind and them on the path to healing as I have been feeling better the last week after taking this more seriously.
    When something is diagnosed and there is an actual issue such as de quervain's syndrome does the healing plan for TMS work the same? I ask only because the "RSI" was never actually confirmed and diagnosed with a total guarantee but the de quervain's syndrome was and there is the test to confirm that it is the problem (thumb tucked in and bend fist forward)

    Thank you!!!
  2. RichieRich

    RichieRich Well known member

    I feel your pain on this one. I had an unconfirmed dx of de quervain's after my son was born. Evidently, this happens quite often when you're clutching a child under the arms to pick them up, and do it over and over and over. My typing hand was the one that got it. I want to say it only took 3 months to resolve itself. Not surprisingly, it resolved itself when I developed excruciating ankle/foot pain. I think my tiny brain wasn't able to split the obsessiveness between the two ailments so instead decided to go for the greater of two evils.

    Another poster on these boards mentioned an instance where her friend overcame some pretty brutal shoulder pain she had had for some time; cured it in a week. The solution: got hit by a car. She survived, but had so many other pains to deal with, her mind gave up the struggle with the shoulder.

    DO NOT approach de quervains as an actual issue. All it is, is tendonitis just in a different tendon. Even though my pain shifted due to another pain, I believe the one you're struggling with is most definitely mind/body. Keep digesting and implementing the message of TMS and/or other mind/body management approaches. You will get over your tendonitis.
    Thebestwhey likes this.
  3. Thebestwhey

    Thebestwhey Peer Supporter

    Thank you so much for the reply in the insight RichieRich

    It's amazing how our minds find peace when we are told something like that. This is what I had in mind but I didn't want to be a little bit naïve but now that you said that I'm very happy to continue my healing

    maybe just one other thing if I could for yourself or anybody else:

    I tend to have pretty bad muscle tightness - sitting at a desk all day
    I typically phone roll my back and shoulders and chest every day and when I do there are several cracks and incredible alleviation of pressure… I just want to make sure that standard maintenance of the body is still okay because I did here on one video that if you continue to go to massage and what not it can actually be detrimental because you are still trying to heal something that is all in your mind
    so I guess the big question is
    is body maintenance still fine considering we get tight muscles and sore sometimes?

    Thank you so much
  4. Alexis1984

    Alexis1984 New Member

    I'd like to know that too... I am an athlete. I know that stretching and conditioning muscles is good and can improve your performance. I am getting more comfortable every day that the normal degenerative changes noticed in my MRI aren't a structural problem with my body and that my pains are just muscle stiffness. Suddenly the pain feels more like muscle stiffness and not aching, shooting, deep bone pain (crazy!) but I still like foam rolling because it helps me get ready and warm for a good work out. I don't think I need it to fix my damaged body, but it does make me feel more able to do strenuous workouts like running stairs or lifting weights.

    Any thoughts on the line between feeding into unhealthy fears and engaging in body enhancing work....
    Thebestwhey likes this.
  5. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi all,

    These are issues i've though a lot about as a physical therapist who is benefitting from TMS theory to relieve my own pain from lumbar disc herniations. There are many "real" diagnoses that are really just TMS pain (though certainly not all).

    As I understand it, TMS theory states that an actual acute injury to a tendon/muscle/nerve can produce some pain initially upon injury and until that area is healed. If you have an actual injury to the tendons of your thumb, at least some of the pain could be explained by the injury itself. That pain could continue as long as it takes for the tendon to heal (a few weeks or month).

    De'Quervain's syndrome is a fancy name for tendinitis of some of the thumb tendons...which is also known as an RSI (repetitive strain/stress injury). TMS theory says that pain from these chronic tendinitis/RSI diagnoses is really mindbody caused pain, not pain due to true tissue injury with inflammation (such as a laceration or tear of a tendon). Therefore, to treat the root cause of the pain, you must do the psychological work to address the repressed rage or other emotions.

    As Sarno says, you must first fully believe in TMS and feel that the root cause of your pain is psychological. You must be doing the psychological/emotional work first as your primary treatment.

    As I understand it, as you progress in your healing, I think it is sometimes ok to do occasional "body work" such as massage, foam rollers or whatever else as long as you understand you are merely treating the symptom, not the cause. It is best to engage in general physical activity for the sake of health and enjoyment but if doing a foam roller first helps you temporarily, thats fine. Just know that it will not take your pain away long term. This is similar to taking Tylenol for a cold or flu to reduce your fever but knowing the root cause is a virus that must run its course.

    So as you stretch, massage or foam roll, ask yourself why you are having the pain (aka thinking psychologically) and make sure to address the true cause for the pain. Hope that helps!
    Alexis1984 likes this.
  6. RichieRich

    RichieRich Well known member


    If you wanna sling some weights or jog, do it. What's important is you continue doing what you were doing before the pain happened. There's absolutely no sense in guarding yourself because of the possibility of pain. I'll tell you, when my thumb tendonitis was beating me up, I had to type by dropping my thumb on the space bar as opposed to pressing the bar. It was almost comical watching myself do it, but I did it anyways.

    You can keep foam rolling for tension, it does work for some. I tried rolling because of tension. You're good for a few minutes then BAM, the tension is right back. Massages are fine so long as you're not leaning on them as a crutch. You should try no massages or rolling for a day or two just to see what happens. Fear keeps people stuck in one spot. When I was having wicked shoulder and neck pain, I figured I'll never be able to do jumping jacks ever again. One day I just said I'm going to try. It was pretty incredible how quickly I overcame the shoulder pain. Then I figured it was time to ditch my cervical pillow and just sleep like a slob on my side. I knew I'd be taking a huge risk of waking up with frozen shoulder if I did, but I said to shreds with that thought. I woke up, no pain. I think I was more scared of the "normal" feeling than I was of the pain. I've been sleeping like a baby for a few months now, when the baby isn't actually waking me up.

    There's a lot more to the story than that, but hopefully these posts help you along your journey.
    cdub likes this.
  7. Thebestwhey

    Thebestwhey Peer Supporter


    Thank you so much! I love that answer, very helpful
    What would you (or anyone else on here) say about TMS and dealing with several problems? Take them slowly and just see what happens? I wasnt sure if it would be more like one issue at a time or if i get these emotions out if it could all feel better together?
    Eyes, arm, thumb, back, knees, feet, sins, shoulders to be specific. Right arm has been my worst but has had healing the last week. Left thumb has DQ (so in told). Back an shoulders and arch have ridiculous tightness, my shins get splints all the time (told to where orthotics) and my eyes are dry and strained just so you guys know
  8. Thebestwhey

    Thebestwhey Peer Supporter


    This is so helpful and encouraging! Made my morning man

    I like the foam rolling a lot but i do feel like i do it as "I need it to feel better" but its so temporary because it cracks my back then the tension brings it back to where it was... It feels a bit overwhelming because the tightness gets so bad.... Ill have to dig deep here

    Any advice on the journal writing and how you guys have had such success?
    I started to journal last night
    just went off and wrote everything i could down for 25 minutes or so... Anger, fear, avoiding, frustration, stress and much more
    Does it help to say it out loud too or just keep it on paper?

    Thank so much guys
  9. RichieRich

    RichieRich Well known member


    I'll be completely honest, I hate journaling and have no desire to write my emotions down. I know what I'm feeling and don't really need a reminder on paper. It's like the fat photo on the mantle at your grammy's house when you were 15. Why god?!

    I practice selftalk and redirection to realign my thinking so that it doesn't go overboard. This has been most helpful for myself..........and bourbon.
  10. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi thebestwhey!

    Glad I could help! I think many of us have several issues (I mostly have back pain but also TMS caused shoulder/neck and knee pain occasionally)...TMS likes to manifest itself in different ways. Sarno calls this the symptom imperative, meaning that even if the original issue has cleared up, TMS can come back in other forms. If you are concerned you have an "actual" issue/non TMS with any of those areas be sure to check with a doctor. Otherwise be patient, take it slow and work through any/all of the emotional issues that have arisen. When you feel some pain or a symptom in one of those areas try not to worry about it or give it too much attention. Know that those TMS pains in ANY area of your body are occurring due to the emotional reasons you are beginning to figure out.

    I definitely recommend the Structured Education Program and Alan Gordon's TMS Recovery program, i'm using both of those free on this site. They involve some journaling in specific ways that they will walk you through.

    Best of luck!
  11. Thebestwhey

    Thebestwhey Peer Supporter


    Thank you again! Great to hear

    Any thoughts on voice dictation? I feel like at times its just easier as i do have it - Typing long emails and what not. If i am using it as an ease in life rather than a crutch what are your thoughts on that? I guess i would have to reflect and make sure im not over using it because of fear
    Today i am not using it AT ALL for the first time in i would say 8 months! I feel good after 1 hour and feel very excited to make it a great day!!

    MindBodyPT likes this.

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