Chronic Neuropathic Pain, the reality.
A thought came to my mind the other day about disability. Not just the kind that we are all familiar with, but one which is hidden, innocuous, but soul destroying by its very nature.
The name is ‘Chronic Neuropathic Pain’. You can’t see it, but it is so disabling, it makes simple things like having a shower nearly impossible.
The pain is 24/7, and increases with stress, emotion. and leads to a life of isolation.
Neuropathic pain often seems to have no obvious cause although it is a complex, chronic pain state that usually is accompanied by tissue injury or trauma. With neuropathic pain, the nerve fibres themselves may be damaged, dysfunctional, or injured. These damaged nerve fibres send incorrect signals to other pain centres. The impact of nerve fibre injury includes a change in nerve function both at the site of injury and areas around the injury.
In the case of trauma, the same principle applies.
For some unknown reason, the normal ‘open gateway’ – that is the route by which the brain responds to pain – is shut. Simply put, a fire breaks out, this sends a message to the brain to send a fire brigade, but nothing happens. What has occurred is that for some unknown reason, the brain has decided that this fire/pain is normal and requires no response. Sounds crazy, but it’s a fact!
Unfortunately, neuropathic pain often responds poorly to standard pain treatments and occasionally may get worse instead of better over time.
Well I have suffered from this condition for many years; in my case it’s called ‘chronic perennial pain’, (a pain in the butt), and it has resulted in a lifestyle beret of any social contact these days. And remember, I am a journalist who has to sit for hours to work!
Yes there are pain clinics, pain management clinics, but these only work for a few. They didn’t for me. Drugs, forget them, they don’t work, and only make you sick. I have have been given Ketamine injections, categorized as a “dissociative anaesthetic", It is used in powdered or liquid form as an anaesthetic, usually on animals. It can be injected, consumed in drinks, snorted, or added to joints or cigarettes. At high doses, users experience an effect referred to as “K-Hole,” an “out of body” or “near-death” experience.
Due to the detached, dreamlike state it creates, where the user finds it difficult to move, ketamine has been used as a “date-rape” drug. It literally blows your mind!
I have also used Dura Trans patches, an opioid pain sometimes called a narcotic. It is used to treat moderate to severe chronic pain around the clock. It is not for use on an as-needed basis for pain. It comes with a warning, ‘misuse of narcotic pain medicine can cause addiction, overdose, or death’, especially in a person using the medicine without a prescription.
The pain clinic also gave me an epidural, no effect.
These are just some of the treatments; I have had many other different drugs, pain management programmes, none worked.
This is a hidden condition, usually involving a person spending years undergoing multiple hospital tests, procedures, until it’s diagnosed.
People, and I count myself one of them, will try anything to ease the pain, alcohol, drugs, or as an American friend said to be a while back, “If there was a fungus growing on the ground which eased your pain, you’d eat it!”
Due to this condition I have lost nearly everything I had, which was a life. Thousands around the world are like me.
We are not dead, but are the walking dead for sure.