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Derek S. Don't have a TMS physician in my area

Discussion in 'Ask a TMS Therapist' started by walllc643, Oct 24, 2014.

  1. walllc643

    walllc643 New Member

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    Question
    In the absence of access to a TMS physician, how can one be reasonably assured that symptoms are in fact psychosomatic? I feel very confident that none of the physicians in my area would even be aware of TMS.

    I've been to countless doctors and heard all the go-to explanations for my back and lower leg/foot pain: disc bulge, arthritis, short leg, spinal misalignment, pelvic obliquity, muscle imbalances, poor posture, improper gait mechanics and more. Meanwhile my pain does not behave in a manner consistent with ANY structural diagnosis. It appears directly tied to my mood and my expectations. I also have most of the risk factors for developing TMS. It seems exceedingly likely to me that my pain is psychosomatic, but doubt is a powerful thing to overcome.
     
  2. Derek Sapico MFT

    Derek Sapico MFT TMS Therapist

    Answer
    Thanks for your question, walllc643.

    Your description of the manifestations of your symptoms and their triggers, along with the lack of any truly significant structural findings, seem pretty close to a slam dunk to me. However, I am familiar with how the TMS brain tends to work and understand how hard it can be to find certainty.

    You seem to be compiling evidence for a mind body diagnosis very successfully. That said, I know how hard this final step can be. Your brain will tell you things like "what if you're wrong?" or "maybe the doctors missed something."

    There is inherent risk in embracing a psychogenic approach to your pain. I cannot argue this. I can however point out that there is also risk in not accepting TMS as the cause when you have ample evidence to support it. You risk your quality of life and your overall physical and mental health.

    If you cannot make the leap of faith via the rule-out method, I would implore you to book a flight to a city where you can see a TMS physician who can give you an official diagnosis. It may set you back some but what is more important than your health? In my opinion, it is a no-brainer if it could potentially provide you with the certainty that you seek.

    With TMS, ambivalence equals pain. It is imperative that you find the confidence to proceed with your recovery. It's ok if you have periods of uncertainty that you work through but you need a foundation of fundamental belief to build on.

    I have worked with many clients who have travelled to see a TMS physician and got their diagnosis. For many, this was the final piece of the puzzle and the beginning of their recovery. For a few, their brains still tried to devalue or dismiss the diagnosis. I guess what I'm saying is that ultimately, it has to be your choice and your belief. It must come from within.

    I wish you the best in your journey and I hope that you find the certainty that you seek. I strongly believe that when you do, it will be the launching point for your sustained recovery.

    Best,
    Derek


    Any advice or information provided here does not and is not intended to be and should not be taken to constitute specific professional or psychological advice given to any group or individual. This general advice is provided with the guidance that any person who believes that they may be suffering from any medical, psychological, or mindbody condition should seek professional advice from a qualified, registered/licensed physician and/or psychotherapist who has the opportunity to meet with the patient, take a history, possibly examine the patient, review medical and/or mental health records, and provide specific advice and/or treatment based on their experience diagnosing and treating that condition or range of conditions. No general advice provided here should be taken to replace or in any way contradict advice provided by a qualified, registered/licensed physician and/or psychotherapist who has the opportunity to meet with the patient, take a history, possibly examine the patient, review medical and/or mental health records, and provide specific advice and/or treatment based on their experience diagnosing and treating that condition or range of conditions.

    The general advice and information provided in this format is for informational purposes only and cannot serve as a way to screen for, identify, or diagnose depression, anxiety, or other psychological conditions. If you feel you may be suffering from any of these conditions please contact a licensed mental health practitioner for an in-person consultation.

    Questions may be edited for brevity and/or readability.

     
  3. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Walllc. Derek hit the nail on the head in his reply.
    Total belief that TMS has caused your symptoms is essential to healing.
    That isn't easy for many people. It wasn't for me. I withheld about 10 percent that my
    back pain was structural because of aging (I'm 84), but Dr. Sarno says back pain is
    just "gray hairs of the spine." I finally convinced myself 100 percent that my pain was
    from TMS, from repressed anger going back to childhood, and constant financial worries.

    Sarno says we don't have to solve any of our problems, just recognize we have them.
    Then our subconscious stops the pain.
     

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