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New here, could it be TMS?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Square Pemulis, Apr 28, 2022.

  1. Square Pemulis

    Square Pemulis New Member

    Hi everyone - My name is Dan and I'm 25 years old. I've spent the last few days researching Dr. Sarno and Dr. Schechter, reading some of your success stories (a few of which I have really resonated with), and trying to get an appointment with a provider here in Chicago who looks for TMS symptoms. I tend to be skeptical when navigating the healthcare system, and after having multiple unsuccessful (and uninsured) procedures done I am absolutely terrified of being sold false hope. But I am in a desperate situation and would like to share my story and see if anyone thinks it could potentially be TMS. So here goes.

    In 2019 I started my dream job in finance and it wasn't going very well. The previous couple of years I had battled bouts of depression, anxiety, nagging upper / middle back pain, and some mild off-and-on tendonits in my elbows. I felt fortunate at the time that none of these things had stopped me from pursuing the career I had dreamed of since starting college. They had, however, made daily life much more difficult. And I was exhausted working through these problems while still trying to make my career work. To make matters worse, stopping Lexapro and reading the book "Why We Sleep" months before I started my job caused insomnia. Basically, I couldn't fall asleep at night because I was so anxious about how I wouldn't be able to perform at my job the next day if I didn't sleep. This made the job extremely difficult as I was chronically sleep-deprived for the first 6 months.

    I was also working out every evening on top of the stress of the job. And one day while doing a triceps exercise I noticed the triceps tendonitis pain again. For 3 months it stayed like that. I tried PT, chiropractic techniques, etc. to no avail. And then, 6 months onto the job it got much worse. The triceps tendonitis began flaring up in my right elbow when I would type at the desk. Then 3 days later I felt it while typing in my left elbow. At this point I knew I couldn't make it much longer at work. Over the next year or so I would take 3 leaves of absence and ultimately retire due to disability. The pain had started moving around to different locations: knees, neck, shoulders, hips, achilles, etc. Always bilateral. Always RSI in nature. That pain would come and go, along with pain in many other places, but the elbow pain is still here today (painful to type this up, painful to use my phone, etc.)

    I've seen 5-6 rheumatologists, was diagnosed as a spondyloarthropathy patient, and have been prescribed everything under the sun: biologics, NSAIDs, cortisone injections, prednisone, anti-depressants, anti-seizure meds, etc. Nothing has worked to alleviate symptoms aside from temporary relief from physical therapy. I've had my elbows viewed on MRI, X-ray and ultrasound. No tissue damage or inflammation was found. In fact, the only finding on imaging so far has been mild arthritis in one of my toes, which was tested because I couldn't walk for 2+ months last spring. There are a host of other non-pain related problems I deal with, but I don't want this to get more lengthy than it already is. So, if you made it this far, is TMS a potential explanation for a lot of these problems?
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Dan, and welcome.

    Ultimately you have to answer this question for yourself, and if you can't do that, find a TMS/PPD doctor for a diagnosis.

    We're not medical professionals here and can't make the diagnosis for you. That being said, from my viewpoint of 71 years, and having been doing this work for 11 years, you're far too young to have so many things supposedly "wrong" with you, and your story screams TMS. I would urge you to start therapy ASAP with a qualified mindbody therapist. The PPD Association keeps a directory. You could also start one of our free programs - I'd probably recommend the Structured Educational Program (on the main wiki) first.
    Cap'n Spanky likes this.
  3. Square Pemulis

    Square Pemulis New Member

    Thank you for your reply. Completely understand this isn't a community of physicians, but I really appreciate your insight. I just finished reading The Mindbody Prescription and noticed the sheer quantity of problems I have (particularly with chronic pain) and the timing of onset is highly indicative of the syndrome. Looking forward to checking out the Structured Educational Program and getting to work!
  4. Will_Make_It

    Will_Make_It New Member

    Your story screams TMS to me honestly. I've successfully gotten over many of those issues (RSI, tennis elbow, golfer's elbow, etc) as it was all just TMS. Injuries generally heal after a few weeks -- they don't take years

    Read my post, I talk a bit more in detail if it helps you at all. Believe me, while I'm dealing with a different issue now I had probably 10+ TMS symptoms disappear -- how would that have happened if they were unfixable structural problems?
    Square Pemulis likes this.

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