The medications in question are Lyrica and Baclofen. Lyrica is helps with Fibromyalgia pain by calming the nerves and sorta helping the brain to not overreact as much. The Baclofen is a muscle relaxer to help stop the muscle cramping.
Her Lyrica dose is almost twice what is considered safe and it’s the same thing with her Baclofen.
He explained that these medications do work, but eventually, the body finds ways of working around them. It’s his opinion that they are not doing anything other than causing her harm.
We’re going to reduce things one at a time. The immediate goal is to get the both down to safe levels and once the dust settles, we can work on reducing them more or completely removing them. He’s not pushing for that right now. The priority is essentially, cutting the current doses in half.
Once these have been reduced and she’s adjusted, she should start to have a bit more energy than she’s had in awhile.
While the meds are being adjusted, we have to work on walking. He wants her to walk as often as she can. Fibromyalgia is now thought to be tide to reduced perfusion in the small vessels, limiting oxygenation and that leads to pain.
Exercise, over time, improves circulation and your body will perfuse more efficiently. This will help to naturally manage her pain.
This is also why Lizze was free from Fibromyalgia related pain during her pregnancies. She was on bed rest for most of both pregnancies. As a result, she was put on blood thinners and I’ve always wondered why that stopped her pain.
The blood thinners made it easier for blood to flow through these small vessels (capillaries) and improved perfusion.
Unfortunately, she can’t go on blood thinners but we can improve her perfusion through exercise. It’s not going to be easy and it’s definitely going to be painful but Lizze is completely on board.
The last part of this will be learning mindfulness techniques that will help to sorta keep her brain occupied and not interpreting so many things as pain. Her doctor explained that by distracting her brain, we can limit its ability to send out pain signals.
Maybe I didn’t explain that right or clearly enough. My brain is trying to shut off so I’m going to cut this short.
Here’s the bottom line and most important take away. The experience at Pain Management in the Cleveland Clinic wasn’t necessarily what we expected but it was completely positive. We have a game plan in place and goals to work towards. Lizze may even be experiencing a small but important resurgence of hope, for the first time in a long time.
We’re so grateful that things went so well and her doctor is so cool. We’re removing medications, not adding any and she was taken seriously. At this point in time, we couldn’t ask for more.
We don’t know how much improvement she’ll see overall but any improvement will be met with gratitude and added to the win column. ☺