1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Day 10 Progress report

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Mitchell, Sep 17, 2022.

  1. Mitchell

    Mitchell New Member

    I am now on day 10 of the SEP, and am mostly finding it helpful. I still experience neck and back pain, and in fact it was especially bad today. I did not have an overly stressful day, so I am struggling to figure out what the cause of the spike in pain might be.

    These last few weeks have been overall very good though, with the pain rarely getting above a 1 or 2 out of 10. I find it helpful to remind myself when I feel that familiar burning ache that there is nothing physically wrong with me, this is a normal sensation. I also find it helpful to write down all the evidence that my pain is psychological, not physical.

    I have a surgery coming up in November, which I scheduled before I started learning more about TMS. I am considering cancelling it, but am on the fence about it. If the surgery could potentially help, I don't want to miss out on my spot as the waitlist is very long. The worst case is that it doesn't help at all, and that result would just help me to focus on the mind-body work exclusively and stop any physical treatments.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi @Mitchell, and welcome!

    I love that you are reporting an increase in symptoms on Day 10 - because this is super-common, and it's proof that you are dealing with the TMS brain mechanism - so congratulations are in order!

    Dr. Sarno called this the Symptom Imperative - where your primitive brain is freaking out and fighting back with more (or different) symptoms, because you're accessing repressed emotions and you might lose focus and not pay attention and you might not notice the sabre tooth tiger behind the tree AAAAAAAAAAHHHHH! (CHOMP).

    Seriously - this is great news. And we all know how frustrating it can be, but the whole fact that symptoms can recede and then flare again for no reason other than reading and and practicing some mindful writing, means that the symptoms are being created by our brains in the first place. Which, of course, is where ALL physical sensations come from in the first place (phantom limb pain finally convinced everyone of this).

    As for the surgery, check out Dr. David Hanscom, MD - who quit his back surgery practice a couple of years ago to devote the rest of his career to his Back In Control program (just google his name, you'll find the BIC web site). He developed this program in response to his own failed back surgery and learning about Dr. Sarno's work. He encouraged all of his pre-surgery patients (he was at Swedish Hospital in Seattle) to do the program, and at some point just before leaving he achieved a 40% rate of patients canceling their surgeries and getting on with their lives without pain.

    Even Consumer Reports - the magazine for the average American consumer of goods and services - has developed a policy of not recommending back surgery because of the high rate of failure (unlike hip replacement surgery, and some knee procedures, by contrast).

    Good luck, and keep us posted!

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