- CASE FILE
Musculoskeletal conditions causing chronic pain for many years
ABOUT THIS CASE FILE
My musculoskeletal problems run throughout my body. There is pain in all of my joints. I have a hard time standing for any amount of time. I have great difficulty walking. I cannot sit on a floor or get up from the floor without assistance from a family member or a piece of furniture. My body tends to flare up with any kind of activity I try to do. My joints have impacted me in such a way that I cannot cook and prepare meals for my family without help from others or I will have to sit and stand repetitively to make a meal happen. I am currently unable to do anything I love. I was a water skier, kayaker, hiker, swimmer and cyclist. I loved doing yoga, zumba, and fit camps. I was incredibly active and loved my active lifestyle so much. Currently, I do a home Pt program and I just left land therapy for aquatic therapy because the land therapy was not impacting my joints in a healthy positive way. Plus, I had approximately 200 visits and I was still unable to walk more then 4/10 of a mile due to my joints having tendonitis’s, osis’s and opathies that would not go away. I still use a 3-in-one chair in the shower. When I go out with friends and family, I have to use my wheelchair because I cannot stand or walk the distances with everyone else. This has not only impacted me but my entire family because our lifestyles have had to be drastically altered.
It is debatable as to how long I have been dealing with these conditions. When I was younger, my back became a big problem and eventually I needed reconstruction. During this surgery, my surgeon found a harsh palpable defect that needed to be corrected along with vertebrae that needed to be fused. I am not 100% sure if it was really a sports related injury from gymnastics or some underlying problem. A few years later, my shoulders really started giving me problems and I did a series of cortisone injections, PT and had some treatments from a chiropractor. I was given titles such as MDI (multi directional instability), impingement syndrome, and thoracic outlet syndrome. There were times when the pain and inflammation would subside and I thought I was better and then out of nowhere, I would have the pain again. This has gone on for years and I currently have been working through frozen shoulder on the right side and I have problems with my left shoulder, but no diagnosis at this point in time. In 2000, I developed HELLP Syndrome with my pregnancy and it was an all out attack on my body’s organs and systems. I believe that from having had this syndrome, my body has been dealing with musculoskeletal problems even more so then before. A year after Hellp, I lost my gallbladder. Shortly thereafter, I lost my appendix. During this same time frame I started having internal pain along the vaginal wall and uterus. I had a laproscopy to remove adhesions and lesions that were found. But I still had internal pain. I tried numerous things to help, but none of them worked and eventually I had to have an oophrectomy/partial hysterectomy. During this time frame, my left foot became quite painful and I went through a series of injections but they didn’t help. I ended up having a neurectomy so I could walk without debilitating pain in my foot. I noticed after having Hellp, my body never seemed the same. I always loved working out and trying to stay in the best shape I could, but I struggled developing muscle mass while others around me were getting consistent results. My results were microscopic in comparison. I also noticed that if I stopped being active for just short periods of time, my muscles would become achy and twitchy and would start to atrophy rather quickly. I also noticed that after some of my workouts, within two to three days later, my body would flare up and my muscles would hurt so bad that I would have to take time off from exercising to feel better. I would go to my doctors and they would check my joints that were bothering me and do manipulations but they would be confused by what I was describing I was feeling, as to how my body was actually responding to their evaluations. I remember my doctor saying that my body was acting like it had been hit by an Eighteen Wheeler. Three years ago I had an ACI procedure done on my left knee due to a lesion that was found under my kneecap. My knee had hurt for years and finally I had an MRI taken and the lesion was found. Now, since this surgery, I cannot seem to recover. My muscles have atrophied so much and it seems that no matter what I do, I cannot build up my muscles in my legs. This inability to progress is just alarming to everyone around me. Since I am so weak, my right knee has acted up and now I have learned that I have lesions in this knee. I also have ruptured discs throughout my c-spine. I have issues going on again in my lumbar spine. I have developed osteopenia and have hip dysplasia and problems with my feet and ankles. My primary doctor has told me that this last surgery I had, the ACI, “was the straw that broke the camels back.”
As far as treatments I have tried, I have done one year of IV therapy consisting of Glutathione, Amino Acids, BVI, Magnesium, Myers Coktail, PTC, H202 and MJMVI. I have had cortisone, prolozone, prolotherapy, amniotic allografts and PRP injections into my most painful joints. I have tried a vibe plate to build up muscle. I have had infrared laser therapy, shockwave therapy, chiropractic treatments, knee traction, back traction, the Rebuilder, electric stim and Trigenics performed on me. I had approximately 200 visits to a PT clinic but now I have moved over to aquatic therapy. I tried Brain Mapping. I tried a diagnostic injection into the saphenous nerve to see if a platinum iridium rod into my thigh would help. I did a super scapula nerve block into my shoulder. I see a massage therapist once a week. I just got approved for the Levitation Knee Brace to see if this will help me to be able to stand and start walking greater distances without stressing out my joints.
Some of my current “labels are:” left saphenous neuralgia, right frozen shoulder, left and right chronic knee pain, failed back surgery syndrome, left acetabular undercoverage, diffuse osteopenia right and left, medial femorotibial 2mm. focus of impending chondral delamination central weight bearing surface femoral condyle and lateral femorotibial internal development of a 2mm region of cartilage delamination weightbearing surface femoral condyle of right knee, patella tendinopathy of left knee, right shoulder adhesion capsulitis, T2 lesion in the midpole of the left kidney probably a renal cyst, L4-5 disc bulge without spinal stenosis or neural foraminal narrowing, possible L5 pars defect, mild marginal spurring at multiple levels, slight curvature of lumbar spine convex to the right, slightly narrowed L4-5 disc space height, L3-4 minor disc bulging
I have been seen at Stanford with their Pain management team. I also saw an orthopedic specialist there as well. I have seen a Chiropractor that specializes in neurological issues. I have seen a specialist for Lyme disease and autoimmune conditions. I have seen a specialist in Orthopedics through Sutter Health. I see 3 different specialists under one roof for regenerative medicine, homeopathy and integrative and nutritional medicine. I have seen a rheumatologist, gastroenterologist and a neurologist.
I do not take prescription pain medications as they make me very sick and I get all of the side effects from the drug along with allergies. I have a history of having parodoxal effects from prescriptions medications and really weird and bizarre adverse reactions. For example: my eyes dilated fully from scopolamine patches and I thought I had gone blind and while trying Norco, I had uncontrollable tremors. I do take natural supplements to work on gut health and to try to keep inflammation at bay.
I am seeking help because my doctors do not know what I am dealing with. I am 48 years old with a body that seems to be falling apart bit by bit. They say my symptoms are all over the board and never represent one condition over another. They say I represent several conditions all at the same time but they cannot even pinpoint what they are. I have heard doctors say: “I do not know what to tell you. This is out of my hands.” “I know you are in pain, but I do not know what you are dealing with.” “I do not know how to help you. This is out of my area of expertise.” “You are 48 years old but with the body of a 90 year old.” “You are a medical anomaly.” “You are right; you have pain, but there are underlying conditions causing them.” I would love to know what is causing my body to be like that of a 90 year old and what these underlying conditions are. There must be some “root cause” that is making all of these things happen to me. I feel if I knew what was going on within myself, I would then be able to start reversing conditions and healing. I do not like my body being like the "domino effect" with one thing after another going down. This has gone on for too long.