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RSI

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by jipavl, Sep 6, 2020.

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  1. jipavl

    jipavl New Member

    Hello,

    first please excuse my English and the somewhat chaotic structure of my post. I am not a native English speaker and am currently in a very bad state of mind not able to fully concentrate.

    My issues started about 5 years ago. Since then, it is a vicious cycle of physical issues and depressions.

    August 2015 I fell from my bike, developed chronic inflammation in my hip and had to give up cycling - a great hobby of mine. Since then, I have piriformis syndrome in that hip. Normally it does not bother me much, but it becomes painful with any demanding physical activity.

    So instead of cycling I tried swimming. I over done it and developed a tendonitis in my wrist. That was beginning of 2016. I eventually healed but it took 1.5 year, 6 months of that time I was off work. I am a computer programmer so problems with hands are a major issue for me. Looking back, I think the healing took so long because tms made the injury more serious than it really was.
    During my struggle with the wrist tendonitis I became very depressed and was put on antidepressants.

    After I healed the wrists I went back to work, but was very disabled by a severe fatigue. I think the fatigue was due to the antidepressants I was on even though at that time my psychiatrist insisted that it was not the case.

    Due to the various physical issues I could not do any sport and due to the fatigue not even anything requiring any mental effort (I was barely able to function in my job) and so I devoted my spare time to gaming. I never played games before, but then it became a mental escape route for me.

    Anyway, I somehow functioned till summer 2018 when I again noticed problems with my wrists. I stopped all gaming and tried to heal the wrists by icing. Then my elbows became painful. I think the icing did more harm than good to them. October 2018 I developed back pain.
    My doctor thought it was not a big issue - just a slight blockade that should go away. He thought my issues were psychosomatic. But to my anxious, depressed mind it was a major injury or a sign of a serious disease. I became very depressed again and basically was home bound and even bed bound for most of the time. My whole body was aching from stress and lack of movement. I developed major depressive disorder and was thinking I must be dying. That went till December 2018 when I realized what a wreck I am and that some major intervention is needed. I asked to be hospitalized in a psychiatric ward. They really helped me. I was there for 3 weeks. They put me on anxiolytic, antidepressants and after those 3 weeks I was mostly ok.

    Since that time I was mostly ok. Still, some lingering issues that I have for my whole life, but I was able to function normally.

    But recently I am on a downward spiral again. I think it was in April and May, during lockdown that I began experiencing problems with the hands again. My right index finger became somewhat stiff and painful, then a left wrist. At that time I did not want to panic. I did not want to end in the same whole as in 2018 and I thought my issues were due to stress.

    But I am not that sure anymore. During the lockdown I was spending more time in front of computer than normal. Either working or gaming again, so I suspect overuse injury.

    Since then things went downhill. I developed De Quervain tendonitis in my left thumb. I took 4 weeks off work, and was not using a computer unless necessary. Things did not improve, but became even worse.
    My elbows are now painful. The right thumb also became painful. I got tingling and shooting pain in the hands. My old hip injury is awake again and I get pain in my ankle after lengthy walk. Probably due to bad gait caused by the hip issue.

    My time off ends after the next week and I more or less resigned myself to the fact that my programming career is over.


    What's worse I got MRI of my cervical spine that shows stenosis and bulging discs. My hands were examined by ultrasound and tendon overuse confirmed.
    So I cannot write these issues off as just another tms episode.

    Needless to say I am complete wreck again. Future is bleak, what job I can do when I cannot use computer? Or even possibly my hands?
    I was able to write this message only after I suffered through some pain. I don't want to try this approach as I am not sure my issues are due to tms and I'm afraid of hurting myself even more.

    I went to a clinic that specializes in psychosomatic medicine (that is basically what tms is called over here).
    They have programs that I could take part in, but currently have no spare capacity. They said it would take 2 months before I could enroll. Now, I am not even at all sure that they can help me. Maybe they could help with the stress and anxiety, but my physical issues seem very real to me, not tms.

    Thank you for your patience if you read all this.

    Jiri
     
  2. TG957

    TG957 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Jiri,

    What you are describing sounds like a textbook case of TMS. I myself have gone through a very similar experience with my hands and was diagnosed with RSI. Prior to that, I had migraines and various issues with lower and upper back, all suspects for TMS. I was a computer programmer myself for 25 years before I moved on to other things, but am still very dependent on the use of a computer professionally, so I know the nature of the work you are doing. I am fully convinced that a high occurrence of RSI diagnosis among computer programmers has very little to do with typing but has everything to do with the stressful nature of the job and the personality types that are drawn to this profession.

    I went through the same desperation that you are in, due to the threat of disability and subsequent loss of profession and income. I was at the point that I could not write my signature, lift a cup or turn a door knob, let alone work 8 hours a day. My pain was spreading up my arms and shoulders. Yet, I fully recovered and am doing much better now than before the RSI diagnosis, both physically and mentally. I ignored my doctors' recommendations to get steroid injections, I did not take any of the prescription strength painkillers (including opiods) that were offered to me.

    Now, I put whatever pressure I wish on my wrists. For years, I had problems with my lower back. Guess what, I exercise with weights and go backpacking in the mountains with a 30+ pound backpack. I live a life that is free of the limitations that were prescribed to me by various doctors over the years, thanks to Dr. Sarno and other TMS practitioners.

    You are on right track and you are in the right place. You don't have to wait for the clinic enrollment. You can start now. This forum is a godsend and people here are fantastic. There are free resources available. You can work through any of the Pain Recovery Programs developed by Alan Gordon. I highly recommend to start with reading posts under the subforum Success Stories, it will help you build up your confidence in the chosen path.

    Best of luck,

    TG
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2020

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