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How I was freed from fibromyalgia, peripheral neuropathy, and chronic back pain.

Discussion in 'Success Stories Subforum' started by Dasgo218, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    I am a 52 year old man. I started having back pain when I was a teenager. I “sprained” my back when I was 15 years old, and was temporarily paralyzed. I spent 3 weeks in bed and another 3 weeks on crutches. You have to understand that I was an otherwise healthy kid. I was very athletic and was playing on multiple school team sports, at the time. I started having sciatic pain and episodes of muscle spasms in my late teens. I had a ruptured disc, and had back surgery, when I was 25 years old. Over the next 25 years, I just learned to live with a “bad back”, and went to physical therapy when the pain would become more acute. Over this same time period, I also developed severe environmental allergies, to the point that my allergist prescribed prednisone to treat the symptoms. I also had frequent and chronic canker sores that were extremely painful, and would last for 2 weeks at a time. There were times when I would have multiple sores, up to 8 sores, and I could barely eat, drink, or talk for a week. Once I had a sore that was so big in size that my dentist thought it was a cancerous lesion!

    Then, in my early 40’s, I started to notice that my feet and lower legs would feel really sore after walking for 20-30 minutes. And, when I would do any strenuous activity, like working in the yard or painting a room, I would have really sore muscles for 3-4 days. Then, in 2009, I started noticing a pain in the back of my right heel, whenever I would apply pressure to it. In early 2010, I started having burning pain on the bottom of both feet. I would feel the burning pain anytime I touched my feet to the floor, even if I was just sitting, and it would get progressively worse over time. Over the next 2-3 years, I went to many different specialists to try and find out what was causing my feet pain. I had about every diagnostic test you can think of, tried many different treatments including medications, but nothing cured the pain or even helped to diminish the pain. One of the treatments I got was a steroid injection, into the tarsal canal of my right foot, under anesthesia. I ended up with more pain than before. I’m not sure exactly what happened but, apparently, the injection caused nerve damage that took about 18 months to heal. More pain! Two different doctors recommended foot surgery. Thankfully, I did not go through with the surgery. I was diagnosed with idiopathic peripheral neuropathy and referred to pain management. (Idiopathic means the cause is unknown.)

    During this same time period, my “sciatic” pain also flared up pretty badly. I started getting epidural steroid injections, under anesthesia. I had about 10 injections over the course of 2 years. I had a spinal cord stimulator trial done, as well as a continuous epidural pump trial, to see if I was a good candidate for either a spinal cord stimulator implant or a continuous epidural pump implant. Neither did anything for the constant burning pain in my feet, so I did not get the implants.

    Also, during this same time period, I started getting multiple sore spots or trigger points, all along the back of my neck and back. I also started getting numbness on the top of my forearms, and daily migraine headaches. I was anxious, depressed, had mental fog, and insomnia. (Although, I struggled with all of these conditions since I was in my teens and twenties.) I worked from home and would work while laying on a mattress, on my stomach, typing on my laptop. I went out and bought a wheelchair so that I could go out into the community, because my feet would hurt too much to stand. I researched online if there were doctors who would amputate my feet. When I couldn’t find any, I researched if there were doctors who would sever my spinal cord, at the waist, so I couldn’t feel any pain below my waist. I was in my late 40’s but felt like I was in my late 80’s! I felt like I was dying, and I wanted to die to make the pain stop. I started researching about how many sleeping pills I would need to take to end my life.

    In the summer of 2012, I was officially diagnosed with fibromyalgia (FM). I started doing some research, online, and found a local doctor who claimed to treat the underlying cause of FM. He did blood tests and said that I had many food sensitivities, including gluten, dairy, corn, etc., and that’s why I was having so much pain. I changed my diet and felt 90% better after about 6 months. Then, a few months later, the pain came back 100%. This was in early summer, 2013. For the next 2 plus years, the pain would get better but then get worse again. Finally, about 4 months ago, the pain was worse and I was so frustrated because I was doing everything I was supposed to do: following a strict diet, stretching and exercising (about 2 hours a day), monthly visit to my chiropractor, and massage therapy every 2 weeks. Why was I still in pain, I asked myself. That’s when I went back online and found Dr. Sarno’s book. I ordered the Mindbody Prescription and Healing Back Pain, right away. While I was reading the Mindbody prescription, the pain in my mid-back went away! This convinced me that I had TMS. It’s been 4 months since I first read the book and I feel about 90% better. I also can eat anything I want. I hardly ever get canker sores anymore. Even my feet pain is a lot better. I am working out regularly, and swimming daily. I am going to Costa Rica next week. I am going white water rafting, hiking, and rappelling down waterfalls. Three years ago I was practically bed bound, using a wheel chair, and thinking about ending my life. I have my life back! Thanks to Dr. Sarno!
    laugiss, Livian, Shakermaker and 26 others like this.
  2. wonderwoman

    wonderwoman Peer Supporter

    Dasg0218, what an inspirational story. Congratulations on your success. I am sure your story will be very encouraging to many people. Thanks for sharing it.
  3. tgirl

    tgirl Well known member

    Thanks for posting your success story. I read this one because I too have nerve sensations that seem to have no basis. Best of luck!
  4. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Thank you wonderwoman and tgirl for your comments. I appreciate it.
  5. Misha

    Misha Peer Supporter

    What am amazing story and am amazing achievement to heal yourself. Thanks for sharing :)
  6. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Thank you for your comment, Sara.
    Misha likes this.
  7. mdh157

    mdh157 Well known member

    Great Story, thank you for helping to inspire the rest of us! Talk about an amazing recovery.
  8. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    I am happy to share my experience, mdh157. I sincerely hope that it can give hope to others who are experiencing similar issues.
  9. KatieDid123

    KatieDid123 Peer Supporter

    Hi Dasgo218,

    Such an inspirational story. I'm so happy to hear you're doing so much better. I'm in a very similar situation. My main thing is severe, nerve-like pain in one foot. It also burns as you've described. If you're comfortable, can you please share if you used any particular techniques in healing. I'd love to hear a bit more about your recovery the past four months.

    Thanks so much.
    Joyfulme likes this.
  10. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member

    Great post ....I also have same issues
  11. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Hi Katie, the only thing that I did was to follow the instructions in Dr. Sarno's book. I spent 15-20 minutes, every day, meditating and repeating, to myself, the statements from his book. To be honest, I don't remember which book they are from, or what page. I bought both The Mindbody Prescription and Healing Back Pain, so it's in one of them. (I have lent both books out to friends, so I don't have them here to look it up.) But, here is a link to a you tube video that shows them. So, as I said, I would spend 15-20 minutes per day repeating them to myself.

    A few other things that I think have been helpful was to keep checking-in with myself to notice when I was feeling anxious or stressed. I would try to identify why I was feeling that way. Then, I would remind myself that I needed to be in the moment, and not be thinking about the past or the future.

    But, I think the most important thing that has helped me is that I believe, without a doubt, that my physical pain is due to TMS. And, I stopped ALL physical treatments for my pain, and returned to normal physical activity. Dr. Sarno stressed these things in his book - that we need to "acknowledge and accept" that the pain is due to TMS and not due to any structural issue. To be honest, it took a few months for me to work through my doubts, especially when it came to the burning pain in my feet. What helped me, I believe, is that I experienced immediate relief of some of my back pain while I was reading Mindbody Prescription. Then, over the last 4 months, my feet pain started to slowly improve, along with other body pain, which gave me encouragement. However, there were a few times when my pain got worse or I would have pain in new area's of my body. When this happened, I did not freak out and run to a doctor. I just would keep repeating the daily reminders. And, I also realized that I had stopped doing the daily meditation/reminders. I came to the realization that TMS is a life-long condition, and that I would have to do the mental work, every day, for the rest of my life. I also have to work, daily, on not being a perfectionist and a "goodist".

    I am not completely pain-free. I would say at least 90% better, though.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if there is anything else I can tell you about my experience. I am happy to share it with anyone.
    JanAtheCPA, Fabi and KatieDid123 like this.
  12. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Hey Boston Redsox. I hope that you are feeling better. By the way, I grew up in the Boston area, and am a big Red Sox fan! Another thing we have in common.
    Boston Redsox likes this.
  13. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member

    Thx for asking ....I have good days I have been following Fred Amir program based on Sarno but more focus on gratitude and moving on with one goals and dreams ...I know I enjoy doing it. He as a lot of energy and makes healing a little more enjoyable
  14. Susan1111

    Susan1111 Well known member

    I'm a New York Yankee fan!! We don't have that in common....but wow wow wow! Dasgo what an inspiration!! Bravo for you!
    Enjoy Costa Rica!
    Boston Redsox likes this.
  15. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Thank you, Susan1111. I had an awesome time in Costa Rica!
  16. KatieDid123

    KatieDid123 Peer Supporter

    Thank you so much Dasgo. I really appreciate your reply. I think I tend to complicate things in my mind, when it's really quite simple, as you explained. Congrats on the healing. I'm sure that 10% is right around the corner :)
  17. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Your welcome, Katie. I can relate! I tend to overthink things, too. I guess that's one of the traits of people with TMS. Good luck with your recovery!
  18. brendan537

    brendan537 Peer Supporter

    I can completely relate. Thank you so much for your honesty. I became addicted to pain pills and ultimately heroin when they got to expensive. I have been pronounced dead 4 separate times from fatal overdoses and been revived by the grace of god. I started on the path of addiction because I to was practically crippled for 3 years and in crippling agonizing pain 24/7. I couldn't hold a job, my girlfriend left me because I brought nothing but misery to the relationship. I wanted to end my life hence why I would use heroin in the amount of fatal pre portions. I have been on this journey with reading "HBP by sarno" now im reading the great pain deception by Stezen ozanich. The pain goes away for a day or two and comes back for 5 days im not sure why maybe I am having a tough time 100% accepting the diagnoses. I have tried everything.... back procedures, shots, epidurals, nerve burning, chiro, massage, PT.. if anyone has some inspirational advice please let me know. I just want to be a normal 21 year old man, im trapped in an 80 year old body. This book is my last chance before I give up on this messed up cartoon I call life.
    Lizzie 1234 and Mermaid like this.
  19. Dasgo218

    Dasgo218 Peer Supporter

    Hello Brendan. First of all, I am truly sorry to hear that you are struggling so much right now. I know what that feels like. I sincerely hope that you are able to get relief from your pain, and quickly! Being in constant pain is horrible! Secondly, I appreciate your honesty, as well. That being said, the last sentence of your post makes me very concerned for your safety. If you are having strong feelings of ending your life, I strongly encourage you to get help. I don't know what resources you have available to you where you are. Please tell someone you are close to and trust, if you haven't already. If you are seeing someone for counseling, please call them and tell them how you are feeling, if you haven't already. If you feel that you are in immediate need of help, you can call 911 or find the nearest hospital that has an inpatient psychiatric unit, and admit yourself. That being said, if you think it would be helpful to you to talk on the phone, I would be happy to talk with you about my experience and what has helped me. Let me know and I will give you my cell phone number. I mean this sincerely. However, if you are not comfortable with that, then I will be happy to share whatever information I can with you, about my experience, using this format.

    You asked for some inspirational advice, so here it is. Brendan, you matter!! You are unique. There is only one you, in this world. Just based on that fact alone, makes you infinitely valuable. I know that it's hard to see past the present moment, especially when you are in a lot of pain, but it can, and will, get better, but only if you believe that you are worth it and are willing to fight for your happiness, which includes your emotional and physical health. You will need to face this head-on and be willing to challenge what you believe about yourself and about what's going on in your mind and body. Please don't give up on yourself! I believe that if you engage in this fight, 100%, you will get better.

    Please let me know that you got this message and that you are ok. Thanks.
    Mermaid likes this.
  20. brendan537

    brendan537 Peer Supporter

    i don't want to end my life. I am currently 10 months sober, in regards of my last sentence I meant I would go back to using drugs because that's the only relief I get from this 24/7 pain which ultimately would probably be the end if I go down that road again.
    Kateshewishes likes this.

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