Help - Pain Relief!

Jason1972 Member Posts: 21
edited 4. Apr 2019, 09:28 in Living with arthritis
Hi all. I’m new to the forums!

I have osteoarthritis in my right knee and, following an MRI, am awaiting a knee replacement. I recently had a Bakers Cyst that ruptured, filled my calf and hospitalised me for a week. I currently have another Bakers Cyst that is slowly leaking- it causes my knee to look permanently swollen.

I also have Diabetes type 2 and a progressive, degenerative neurological condition called Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 2 (SCA2). I currently take Amitriptyline, Baclofen and Pregabalin for cramps and other pain associated with SCA2. I also have an overactive bladder which is managed with a suprapubic catheter.

I have tried Naproxen, Codeine, Cocydramol and Meloxicam for the pain. I cannot take Tramadol because of Amitriptyline. I have tried paracetamol, ibuprofen, deep heat spray & gel, ibuprofen gel, heat pads, ice packs and support bandages. Nothing has helped. The pain is constant and I cannot bend my knee very far (I certainly cannot kneel or straighten it fully). I walk with crutches because of the SCA2 (I am at heightened risk of falls).

I need to dos 9mething about the pain. The op is a long way off (averages a 23 week wait here) and I cannot go that long in pain.

Does anyone have any magical remedies? And sorry for the long post!


  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 3,635
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello and welcome Jason1972 to Versus Arthritis Community Forum

    I'm really sorry to read of the several problems you have or have had, you most certainly have a good mixture of issues. As you may know struggling with the many forms of arthritis is not good, trying to find the right medication that suits you personally is also difficult as what suits one doesn't sometimes suit another.

    You will get supported with our forum users who carry vast experience, help and advice, may I suggest also that you contact Versus Arthritis Helplines for a chat with one of the team, they also can offer some good advice.

    The Helpline number is at the head of the page.

    Good luck with the forum and enjoy.

  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,719
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Jason and welcome from me too :)

    I'm sorry to read that you're in so much pain and I guess the ataxia, at the very least, makes things much more complicated.

    I have RA and OA and have had three knee replacements. (It's OK. One just wore out after many years.) I've also had both hips replaced.

    Now, the 'magical remedy' :lol: Yes, we'd all like that. But, until it arrives.......

    Personally, I find two things help, assuming you're already on a sensible diet. My go-to remedy is distraction. Anything that grabs my attention and stops me thinking about pain is good. I love cricket but I also use books and computer games when necessary.

    But distraction comes second to exercises. I really don't know where I'd be without them. I'm guessing the ataxia will dictate, to some extent, which exercises you can do so I'd suggest you ask to see a physio because you'll certainly need to do some both before and after your operation. Without strong, supporting muscles, the new joint won't help much. You'll almost certainly be given exercises at your pre-op but the sooner the better so, if you could get started earlier, as long as it's with your doc's blessing, they would help. Bakers Cysts are nasty things and will have an impact on them but most knee exercises could be done with one.

    When it comes to plls, you'd just have to ask your GP what's suitable. I take as few as possible but, on one occasion, ended up on the real heavy duty stuff for a while. Not good. Some on here do take amitriptyline and pregabalin for pain but I don't.

    This might help.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I am so sorry you are in so much pain, it is horrid and makes things thoroughly miserable, doesn't it? Pain relief is a misnomer because it isn't and doesn't, it merely dulls the sharper edges. I have found the stronger the pain medication the more I am taken away from the pain rather than vice versa, and my cognitive abilities are severely compromised: over my arthritic years I have learned to prefer being in pain and aware so I can function, rather than dulled to such an extent I cannot. I keep to a minimum of four 30/500 cocodamol per day as that leaves me room to maneouvre when things worsen (which they do). I have psoriatic and osteoarthritis, with around forty affected joints: some have one, some the other and others both. Life became easier to manage once I was reconciled to the fact that I was never going to be pain-free, which, as the diseases developed and more and more joints succumbed, became easier to do.

    Like Sticky I am a great believed in distraction: time and time again I prove that if my mind is not focused on the pain I do not feel it as keenly. The trouble with having arthritis in only one or two places is it makes the pain stand out more, so it is harder to deal with. I think the secret is to take a little and often of the mildest thing you can get away with so the dulling remains topped up but that is something to be discussed with your doctors. I was referred to a pain clinic after a few years and it wasn't for me but others find them useful - that could be another avenue for you. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • JoeB
    JoeB Bots Posts: 83
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    You could try a TENS machine.

    Acupuncture may also offer some benefit but would probably need to be performed on a regular basis - experience suggests at least twice a week.

    If the pain is that significant despite the medication you are taking then I would be inclined to seek a GP review soon as possible.

  • Jason1972
    Jason1972 Member Posts: 21

    An update to this - it appears that not my operation has been postponed indefinitely. Totally understandable in the circumstances.

    I am now on co-hydramol but it doesn’t really work. I already take Amitriptyline and Pregabalin for my neurological condition but the pain is always there and now starting to wake me during the night.

    My question now is, can my knee get any worse and will it get to the stage where an operation is not worth it?