Joint pain

I have arthritis in the base of my spine and coccyx area, I also have joint pain, the worse is my knees and shoulders.

In the past 5 years I have had surgery to reattach my right elbow tendon, after it was damaged from steroid injections, I have had 4 different steroid injections into my lower back and coccyx area, and had my coccyx nerves burned, and nothing is helping, if anything the pain is worse.

I feel really down as I am 51, I work full-time as a front line worker, am on my feet all day, and even on loads of different medication, the pain is always there. I feel and walk like I'm 90.

I have no energy, am constantly tired, and a bit overweight, I am now desperately trying to lose weight, but don't know what exercise I should be doing so I don't damage myself.

Sorry for going on.

Comments

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,669

    Hi @Madmactouche , I'm sorry you’re having such a tough time at the moment, this is the right place to come for a moan. If you’re feeling really low you can also call the lovely people on the VA helpline.

    There’s a very good section on this site for pain management, so do have a look through. There is a whole raft of techniques, some will work better for you than others, but I find it’s good to have a number of weapons in my arsenal when battling pain.

    but it also sounds like you’re burnt out, both physically and emotionally. Sometimes you really need to stop to allow your batteries to recharge, to allow the inflammation in your body to settle down, and to nurse yourself for a while. It will only get worse if you keep trying to push through it - arthritis is pretty unforgiving like that. Can you take a short spell off work? if not, try to reprioritise things for a while to give yourself more rest time, both in the evenings and on your days off, try to find different ways to do things you find really challenging, or simply ask for help.

    Have you reviewed your pain meds with your GP lately? it may also be worth requesting a referral to a pain clinic.

    it also sounds counterintuitive, but some gentle exercise may also help you, both physically and mentally.The Let’sMove with Leon exercise programme on this site is as gentle as you want it to be but also quite good fun. I think there’s also a Tai Chi class recently started on this site, aimed at people with arthritis, so do give those a go.

    i hope these help. Sending a gentle hug (())

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 28,211

    Hello @Madmactouche

    It's good to meet you, but l am sorry to hear you are struggling so much. It sounds really tough. You have definitely come to the right place to get some support and talk to people who understand.

    You have a lot going on; pain in lots of places, probably each making the other worse, (I presume because you are early 50's) needing to work and feeling as though the bits you should be able to control (like your weight) are getting out of hand.

    Best thing is to try to break some of it down because taken as a whole it's huge isn't it?

    So what can you do? You can look at your pain and medication as @Lilymary suggests. Maybe a referral to a pain clinic.

    Work - can you take any time off? Can you afford to cut your hours at all? Can you be relocated into a less physical role?

    Health (weight and exercise) now these might just be in your control. I read that losing weight is far more about what we eat than what we do so that could be a start. Choose how you are going to change your eating habits for the better. Some people on here have done SW others WW others the 5:2. You could start a weight loss thread and we would support you as your weight drops.

    I am presuming since you have had so many procedures that you have also seen a physio? I bought a fitbit a few years ago and walk every day. I have back issues too in spite of surgery and find walking daily helps. I may not be fast or do 20,000 steps a day, but I go out. It does me good mentally too for some reason and my joints really do appreciate the effort. I have also done the Let's move with Leon programme on here which was good. https://community.versusarthritis.org/categories/letsmove It wasn't too much you just did what you could manage. I definitely do not think it's good to go all out as that could make things worse you're right there. Building up slowly and taking some control can help a lot.

    It's amazing how much better we can feel when we actually do something about a problem. Just coming on here and talking was the first step.

    Take care

  • Thank you all for you lovely comments and helpful hints.

    I have been under the chronic pain clinic for 4 years, and after the last procedure which was 10 weeks ago, the burning of the nerves in the coccyx area, which seems to have irritated it, they are saying there is nothing else they can do.

    As for my GP, as much as he is good at listening, it seems I am talking to myself when it comes to getting different pain meds.

    I'm on Co-codamol, pregabalin, Diclofenac and amitriptyline, and they take the edge off a tiny bit.

    I just feel like I have come to the end of my tether, and I might as well put up and shut up.

    I do try to walk, I live in an area where I have a lot of green, and fields, but it's getting the energy to get up, when I have time off I try to relax as much as possible.

    But thank you all so much.

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 28,211

    Thank you for your thank you @Madmactouche

    By the way we have a pet's corner thread I see you have at least one cat.....?

    If you're interested? Distraction is always good. In my case either first thing like now while waiting for morning meds to kick in or after I have done my daily walk as a reward!

    I am so sorry the nerve ablation (I think that was what you had?) didn't help you. I bet you were so hopeful.

    If you can do try the walk - it is hard to motivate at times and was really hard just to start in the first place, but l am always so glad I have been and then feel I have earned a nice rest.

    Keep talking to us it is possibly what has helped me most

  • Jona
    Jona Member Posts: 406

    Hi madmactouche,

    Welcome I know exactly how you feel I too worked on the front line and cut my hours as I couldn’t go on with the pain which distracted me somewhat from the job at times was all consuming I was working, taking pain meds and sleeping that was my life and trust me it isn’t a life.

    its not just dealing with the pain it’s the toll of stress it takes on you too cutting my hours left me in poverty trust me I would rather work and have a life my car was 19 years old when it finally gave up so had to get into more debt just to get to work so I had to take a lease car as I’m 62 so classed as too old to get a loan one doctor actually told me at my age arthritis is expected basically stop moaning and get on with it not so easy on 2 hours sleep a night getting up at 6 travelling 40 minutes to get to work would have been 2 hours and 3 buses if no car, battled to get pip but refused and humiliated not to mention taking sick leave from work again guilt ridden and very low self esteem plus snide comments from management

    I guess what I’m saying is in my case I’ve found no one really cares old age and arthritis expected but I’m too old to get a mortgage or loan but not too old to work but I’ve decided I matter and people need to look outside the box quality of life is important not quantity

    good luck

    love Jona