We went to a rheumatologist today to see if she could help us figure out what is wrong with my hubby. First, it turns out the receptionist's husband has the same first and middle name as my husband, and their families come from the same area of the country and there were a couple of other odd coincidences. How weird is that? It's not like "Tracy" is a real common name for BOYS anymore.
Anyway, the doctor was very nice. I caught myself admiring her skin through the entire exam. I felt kind of weird about it but man, her complexion was this almost blue black ebony with a slight mahogany around her eyes... and absolutely as smooth as possible. Normally I react that way to very translucent porcelain skin types... because I've always loved really pale skin but sometimes you just gotta give some props to high quality skin of any shade.
Eh, that was a weird tangent to go off on, lol. Sorry.
So, anyhooooo.... we talked, he brought out his list... she wanted to draw blood to rule out a few other things... then she made him take off his pants and put on a paper gown (HAHAHAHA!!! afterward he asked if I wanted to keep it, lol, because I always keep his socks they give you in the hospital, the ones with the tread on the bottom). Then when she came back after letting him change she checked all these pressure points. He hurt in all but one of them. Turns out those tender points are one of the only ways to diagnose fibromyalgia. The only ones that didn't hurt him were the ones on the top back of his neck.
The blood tests she took are to test for other things that can cause his clusters of symptoms and if he comes back without any of those then it's pretty much as diagnosed as this syndrome can get. So she gave him a med that helps with some of the issues that the drug out doctor gave him doesn't address and we will see if that helps. If not she will try Lyrica next. And now I am on the hunt for things like diet and exercise and other methods of minimizing the symptoms.
Fibromyalgia isn't life threatening but it sure as heck can make you feel like dying. You won't die of it, but chances are you will live with all your life. The other meds seem to be helping some, it can take a full 6 weeks for them to reach full effectiveness but he seems to be doing better mood wise and energy wise after less than 2 weeks.
So, the short symptom list:
* Body aches CHECK!
* Chronic facial muscle pain or aching CHECK!
* Fatigue CHECK!
* Irritable bowel syndrome CHECK! CHECK! CHECK!
* Memory difficulties and cognitive difficulties CHECK!
* Multiple tender areas (muscle and joint pain) on the back of the neck, shoulders, sternum, lower back, hips, shins, elbows, knees CHECK!
* Numbness and tingling CHECK!
* Palpitations CHECK!
* Reduced exercise tolerance CHECK!
* Sleep disturbances CHECK!
* Tension or migraine headaches CHECK!
* "Fibrofog": Cognitive or Memory Impairment CHECK!
* Cold Symptoms CHECK!
* Skin Complaints CHECK!
* Depression and mood swings CHECK!
* Morning Stiffness CHECK!
* Fatigue CHECK!
* Nausea CHECK!
* Dizziness CHECK!
* Jaw Pain CHECK!
* sensitivity to odors, loud noises, bright lights, some foods CHECK!
* Changes in weather, cold or drafty environments, hormonal fluctuations (premenstrual and menopausal states), stress, depression, anxiety, and over-exertion can all contribute to fibromyalgia symptom flare-ups. CHECK!CHECK!CHECK!
So we finally get some idea of what might be wrong and... it's this barely even understood set of symptoms. *sigh* But it sure does seem to fit the troubles he has!