round &round they go, please help?
I came here out of desperation. I'm now 57, it took almost 2 decades to get diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis; my chronic pain, weakness, fatigue etc was chalked up to depression. I admit to depression but it IS secondary to living daily with debilitating pain. Even so, I put myself thru college, worked full tie 25 yrs and threw in the towel in 2010.
So here's my question...I see a rhuematologist, who diagnosied me first as having rhuematoid, then noticed the psoriasis and after 5 yrs we found Humira is the correct med. I took prednisone for 4 years at varying doses and currently trying to wean off at .5mg.
I am now taking meds to sleep/meds for fibromyalgia (neurologist test diagnosed this) Thmeds for psoriatic arhtritis/med for IBS and then in 2010 I woke up to find I had no ability to use my legs from waist down.
Reported this info to dr. she didnt seem impressed, said insurance wouldnt cover another mri at that time. after 7 days I gradually was able to walk but the pain in lower back never left and it radiated to left hip and now its in the groin. In fact I can actually press deeply into my thigh and locate the pain, pushing and kneading the area bringing out the pain, almmost is a relief-that may sound weird-it loses its vagueness and become a pain with place, definition.
So finally 2 MRI were done, the first showed nothing so I was sent for a 2nd. Let me preface the findings with a note that I am now 5'.5 (was 5'.7 in 2008) and weigh 282lbs. I try to walk every day, but when I do I need hours to recuperate. The fact is I live around my pain,, which is very limiting.
So here is some:
Significant loss of disc height and signal noted at T5/T6 T6/T7/ T7/T8 consistent w marked disc dessication and endplate degenerative type change.
Exophytic large right paracentrl disc extrusion compressing ventral aspect of the cord at T10/T11.
To my face Spine Dr. said, you are a large woman, it was very hard to get a reading.
then he showed me on the computer screen that my spine is compressed. A quarter sized circle became a pinhole.
No surgery, come back in 6 months for a recheck.
In the meantime, I am in excruciating pain and rhuematologist suggested an epidural. I am alone and have a pet, really isolated and do not want to have a procedure that will leave me bed bound in a hospital.
I read here many of you have had epidurals that have proved of little help. Has anyone been told they're too big to get a decent MRI reading???
Last question...I'm actually trying to wean off prednisone after 4 yrs..rhuematologist said cant stay on it forever! Each attempt to wean off means a backlash of agonizing symptoms, your input on how to handle would also be appreciated, maybe just bite the bullet.
Thank you to whomever has the time and interest to post.