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Completely random pelvic pain-my story

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Chris GR, Oct 8, 2017.

  1. Chris GR

    Chris GR New Member

    Hi guys:

    I'm new to this site so I wanted to give a general history of my condition.

    First, I fit the classic Sarno personality type: extremely self-critical, extreme people-pleaser, and perfectionist. I've been like that my entire life.

    I have also been diagnosed and treated for obsessive-compulsive disorder (non-observable ritualizer/"pure O") since 2006. I have also had social anxiety disorder since as early as I can remember.

    In college I was diagnosed with epididymitis, was given antibiotics and the pain went away within a week. The pain returned when I was in law school (1999-2001), this time in my right testicle. I saw a urologist who gave me antibiotics and the pain eventually went away again. After I got married the testicular pain returned and I started to see a urologist regularly, he would always prescribe antibiotics and things would always improve, until one visit, where I was given Cipro and it did not take away the testicular pain. But after a month or two it finally subsided.

    The pain returned in 2009 and i went back to the urologist. He referred me to a pain management doctor, believing that no urologic treatment could help me. The pain specialist performed a testicular exam and found nothing, then scheduled a follow up. I did not attend the follow up because my testicular pain disappeared almost immediately after that exam (probably feared testicular cancer, which my cousin had when he was 18). The pain was completely gone but re-appeared in 2014.

    In 2014 I started going to one of the top pelvic floor physical therapy clinics in NYC. The therapy helped for a while but I still had testicular pain 1-2 days a week; I believe the PT treatment was a placebo effect.

    I've had intermittent right side testicular pain since 2014.

    I tried an experiment in the beginning of 2017: 3 months of daily treatment (mainly stretching and looking for so-called trigger points) to see if that would destroy the pain. It did not. In fact, beginning in March I decided to do absolutely nothing for the testicular pain and my pain diary showed that I did better than when I was doing self-treatment. (1-2 days of testicular pain a week instead of 3-4).

    This leads me to where I am now. I will have a week typical of this:

    M: no testicular pain at all.
    T: no testicular pain at all.
    W: testicular pain develops around noon, which stays until bedtime. (3-10 on pain scale)
    TH: no testicular pain at all.
    F: no testicular pain at all.
    S: testicular pain develops around 10am which stays until bedtime. (2-10 on pain scale)
    SU: testicular pain develops around noon and stays until bedtime. (3-10 on pain scale)

    Medically I have been given every urologic test imaginable: cystoscopy, urine tests, and 3 testicular ultrasounds. Nothing abnormal was ever found.

    Here is the strange part. My testicular pain "appears" to be random. For example, I just started a new, very stressful job. My first week in the position, I had no testicular pain at all.

    I also had some very stressful days where I had no testicular pain at all. For example, one night I could not fall asleep at all, had an interview the next morning and a busy day at work. I had no testicular pain at all that day/night. I've also had days of multiple rounds of interviews where I had no testicular pain at all.

    Interestingly the pain does not appear to be attached to stress/anxiety. That is not to say I have not had non-stressful weeks (e.g. vacations) where the pain was not present. Any random work week I can have up to 3 days of testicular pain.

    I believe that I do not get testicular pain during very stressful times because my brain is focused on conscious stressors.

    I also believe that I get testicular pain during non-stressful days because my very obsessive mind is scanning for something and it hits on the topic of testicular pain.

    It should also be noted that I have had tension headaches in the past (almost daily for up to 3 months). My headaches disappeared for good in 2006 when I received the all clear based on an MRI performed by a neurologist. (Another note: my brother died of brain cancer).

    I am completely convinced that this testicular pain is TMS.

    So my question is, how do I knock out this intermittent testicular pain, that has been a part of my life since 2014?

    Thanks everyone.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi there Chris, and welcome - I'm pretty convinced by your story that you're in the right place.

    That being said, it's likely that you've got a lot of emotional roadblocks to get over. The first two being two serious cancer traumas in your family! You're obviously aware of these, but apart from your intellectual knowledge of the toll that fear and worry can take, I wonder how much of the actual trauma has ever been addressed at a deeper emotional level?

    You don't say how much you know, or what you've read, about Dr. Sarno and his theories - or whether or not you've done any emotional work, either using one of the growing number of TMS-related resources that are available, or in therapy - psychotherapy, that is.

    So I'll assume you've read at least one of Dr. Sarno's books - but if you haven't read The Divided Mind, I also recommend that for you, because he goes over his theories pretty efficiently in four chapters, then turns the book over to six other professionals (five of them MDs) in the field of the mind-body connection.

    The next step is to start one of our free online programs, which introduce you to the actual techniques you need to start engaging in, in order to work on your repressed emotional issues. These are the issues that we all have, that our primitive brains our repressing, because we might become distracted and stop paying attention to the outside threats that our primitive brains are convinced will kill us if we aren't always on the alert. The things that are being repressed might be significant or not (or both) but they definitely exist.

    When I was doing the work, the things I discovered were not earth-shattering, but they clearly revealed old childhood incidents that started with guilt or embarrassment and led to my brain repressing all kinds of related fears and interactions in adulthood. The result of this awareness was revealed when my youngest (and favorite) brother died suddenly and too young, about two years after I started doing this work. I was amazed when I opened myself to my true emotions, and realized that I felt intensely abandoned by him. My old brain would have repressed that emotion, but now I was able to recognize the emotion, accept it as natural and normal, and forgive myself for being self-centered. I really found and really felt the core of my grief, which was astonishingly freeing.

    From tmswiki.org, under Our Programs:

    The Structured Educational Program (SEP) was compiled by Forest and early volunteers, designed to introduce techniques, exercises and resources in small chunks, easy to do one day at a time (over however many days works for the user). The program is on the main wiki site, and users are invited to track their progress with daily posts on the forum.

    The (Multimedia) Pain Recovery Program has been generously donated to the wiki by Alan Gordon, LCSW, who is a long-time friend of tmswiki.org. The program is on the forum, with pre-determined forum threads devoted to each day, and comments by users. Here's a great line from Day 5 ("Changing Your Brain") which I believe you can relate to:
    If your mind has the tendency to gravitate toward fear, that pattern will continue until you do something to change it.

    It's been a while since I did the SEP, and I haven't done Alan's program yet, but it seems to me that you could start out by doing them concurrently on alternate days, and see what grabs you. The main thing to understand is that there is no one way to do this work, because we are all different.

    Good luck, Chris, and keep us posted!

  3. Chris GR

    Chris GR New Member

    Thanks so much Jan! I’m going to try the SEP program. I have read The Divided Mind a while back but will re-read since you mentioned it. I agree with all of your assessments and will also look into psychotherapy.

    Best Regards,
    JanAtheCPA likes this.

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