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Life Expectancy w/ Chronic Pain

clarencediggscclarencediggs Posts: 23
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Chronic Pain
Just wondering...
I've had a 'bad back' as long as i can remember, but have only been in constant pain for a couple of years (I say 'only' because I know many of you have suffered much longer). Mine really became constant after an injury in March of '07 and my L4-S1 fusion in Nov.'07. Surely all the meds we take are taking their toll on our bodies. Has anyone read anything credible that relates life expectancy to narcotic pain meds? I'm on the Fentanly patch, Lyrica, and Cymbalta daily with Lortab, Flexeril, and/or Tramadol as needed. I may very well be retired now, involuntarily, but retired nonetheless. I'm wondering how quickly I should try to get my 'retirement' projects finished.



  • If I knew I was gonna make it to 48 I would have taken better care of myself.

  • I see you're quite new to S-H. Welcome. I don't know the answer to your question. I think, though, the specific matters that may reduce our life expectancy have to do with the fact that most of us do ot get enought cardio-vascular exercise. I don't know what part suicide plays but I believe most of us have given it some thought on those really, really bad days, weeks, months. Let me ask you, what kind of life expectancy would you want? (If it were entirely up to you?)
  • I still do my elliptical machine two or three times a week, and have maintained the same weight for 10 years. I like to think I'm in decent shape, it just takes me all day to do what I used to do all day. As far as your really soul searching question: I'd like to live longer than I hurt.

    "experience is what you get when you don't get what you want."
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    This topic has been discussed many times in detail on the old Spine-Health site.

    There have been studies and documents on this. In fact one of our members had posted some statistics, but honestly, I do not remember them.

    But, overall the impact and factor that could alter the
    Life Expectancy of someone with chronic pain is the potential lack of exercise and other life prolonging actions.

    There are so many other critical factors is life span (ie diet for one) that are probably more important.

    I am not saying that exercise is going to make you live longer no matter what medical situation you are in. But the benefits of exercise is clearly known.

    For chronic pain sufferers, the lack of exercise can speed up the decline of physical functions of the body. That in turn can lead to other problems that may shorten life span.

    Just as I have always stated there is a 'blend' of medications and treatments that chronic pain folks need to do in order to manage pain, the same is true for ways to ensure a longer life span.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • I agree totally with that statement,and to be honest it is where I am most lacking in my life.I've tried so hard at everything to be a better,more openminded,eat healthier,and just a good and honest person.I quit drinking totally last year-Aug 2nd,08 was the last time even a small glass of wine crossed my lips,but I have NOT started the excercising yet.I've changed in ways that I thought were going to be impossible for me,so I know that I have only myself to blame for this..and as I search my soul for a reason,there is only laziness.I plan on doing something about this,but until I do I probably won't talk about it again..it makes me feel terrible to talk about it if I'm not doing it.lol.

    Thank You though for the reminder *thumbs up*

    PS~Where have all the smilies gone?
  • I'm in the same boat, as I guess are many others who just have to constantly medicate to sleep and get through the day.
    What other option is there?
    Exercise is very beneficial if you can do it. I aim to take a 40 minute walk every day as my main exercise. Can't use neck and shoulders much.
    I think you have to consider your liver, as it has to deal with all of the meds. You may be able to do some research on what effects your meds have on the liver.
    I've just cut out alcohol entirely as I thought it is only adding to the liver's workload. I need the meds more than I do alcohol.
    Must be getting old to say that!
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    Robin, to correct the smiley alignment problem, the smileys are now are a clickable. When you post, look for the right arrow/carrot next to the word Smileys. Click on that and they will all be there =D>
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Yes-I hear that Paul and Peter.....too bad no Mary posted..lol.Peter -Paul and Ron will have to do :D ,and I did see the smilies Ron,right AFTER I posted the question.

    Well,my feet are bad,so I can't walk much,but I CAN walk some.If I walk too much they will turn a nasty black & blue,and then I'm inable to walk any distance at all for several days..so I won't be pushing that.My PCP wants me to see another specailist.The surgeon who took care of my feet before was an OS and is located in Pittsburgh(way too far now).There is no way I would see a podiatrist,and they simply are not qualitied to treat my problems,and I dread the search for a new OP in this area.A good one.I used to travel back to PA,but I just can't afford that anymore.

    Between my neck & feet I do have pain,but certainly I could/should just do more.I use my bed to do sit ups (not often) because I can't lay on the floor-it's too hard on my body-lol.

    Congratulations Peter for giving up the alcohol =D>
  • Hey buddy,
    What about exercising in a jacuzzi?? Yes I know very pricey. Only asking because I saw the commercial on T.V. If I win the lotto I will buy one for ya!!!! :D :D :D
    Does the gym have a pool??? I know how much pain it has to cause on your knees dude I really do, I don't even want to imaigine it.
    I don't know guess I am throwing things out there as I am not one to talk or give advice because when I hurt I lay down and stay there. :B :D

    Ok back to orginal question.
    If we are able to get into a exercise routine and good eating habits. Well I say go for it.
    Us with bad backs most likely a "professional trainer" at a gym will know what exercises you can do at the gym or at home with your own equipment. Plus you don't have to buy those pricey things. There are so many things around the house that can be used.
    There is no right or wrong or even correct answer on life expectancy. Not one person will have the correct answer not even a Dr.
    If you do have to be on pain medication and other meds your whole life makesure to get bloodwork done every 3 months. Makesure you always check in with your dr when there is new symptoms.

    Example: My mom does not have chronic pain but did have high bp and diabetes. Well she in no way wanted to be on medication. So she changed her whole lifestyle around. Was it easy? NO it took alot of dedication and work. It still does to this day. She is 61 and walks around better then me!! Plus she keeps her health issues under control by diet and exercise. My father in law in his late 70's is the same way. He has osteoporisis, arthritis, DDD, fused from L1-S1, has had fractured hips, fractured ankles, now a fractured wrist. Also diabetes. He keeps on truckin!!! He does not give up the things he likes to do. Yes he rests during the day, but is always on the move!! He is on no pain medications. Mabye its the generation with that one, not sure....
    So it can be done, its whether you want to do it or you don't. I know I sound like I'm rambling which I probably am this early in the morning. But I wanted to throw in some things Ron mentioned about health..

    As for myself I suffer everyday 24/7. But I am going out to by a used treadmill and making myself get on it everyday or even mabye 2x's a day as I have lost so much muscle tone in the last few years. I can feel it when I walk in a mall, my shoulders tighten up, shoulder blades and I want to curl up on a bench.
    So I know I will feel much better when some of the TONE comes back. Will I be perfect ?? NO probably not, but I also don't know. It could happen. Will I have to be on pain meds for years?? I do not know that either.
    It all comes down to what life is going to throw at me and what I am going to do about it when it does.

    I mean I'v worked in a nursing home and seen this first hand.
    There have been people Iv known that could barley drag their feet with a walker and alot of times would not eat their food (which i don't blame them some of it was nasty) and outlived the others that had nothing wrong with them at all.

    I was once told by a dr 2yrs ago that pain medications were much safer then taking say 4000mg of tyelnol everyday.
    Thats why when I am RX'd meds I ask for the lowest dose of tylenol or motrin in them. Or ask for something without anything in it/
    As like your on fentynl patches. I will be going back on those FINGERS CROSSED Wednesday at my PM appt. But that will be the only thing I am on as my PM will not give out breakthrough pain medications.
    I basically only want to stay on them till I get my body strength back up and go from there..
    Will I always have back pain?? MABYE I don't know, I cannot predict that far into the future. I will worry about that when I get there.
    So I see this topic as a catch 22. Its what you put into it, and make out of it that will get you through..

    HANG IN THERE!!! Your certainly not alone in this world for sure..

    Terri O:)

  • i believe i posted this in the old site
    my pain dr stated that there is no evidence that meds or chronic pain in itself shortens life. there has been a lot of research. gaining weight due to lack of exercise is one problem, however i also take blood pressure and cholesterol meds with my pain meds. both are under control. the only problem i have is not being able to exercise due to pain and not being able to walk effectively.
    i plan to live a long life even if i am in pain.
    cholesterol is 166 and blood pressure is 120/60
    so -live long and prosper
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • It's hard for me to believe that the chemicals we gladly put in our bodies are not doing massive damage. But then again, I suppose you guys that have been doing this chronic pain dance for 10 or 20 years are proof enough of that. I'm still lucky enough to be able to use my elliptical machine 'every' day, so I'm in decent shape. I even roll dumbbells into position, lay down flat on the floor and do butterfly curls and such for a little upper body work out. There's a gym close to my house that offers under water treadmills that would be a great exercise for you guys with poor knees. I used them during Physical Therapy my last couple of surgeries. If you could find something similar, it's a LOT of exercise with no impact and no traffic. In the mid 90's I started an exercise routine and have stayed faithful, my back surgeries started in '01 and I have been able to maintain some amount of exercise. Now, after my fusion, and my introduction to pain 24/7 it's much harder to do 20 min on the elliptical, but I'm still trying.

    In God We Trust-everyone else needs a receipt.
  • I'm going to do some research.All of my life I've had healthy bloodwork~cholesterol,sugar,etc.,and my BP was always good(about 110-120/55-65).Even at times when I was in pain or going through stressful times in my life I managed to maintain healthy numbers.I suppose it was genetic.Now,just within the last several months my blood pressure has been up to 158/96 and my cholesterol,which was always at or below 163,is now over 200.

    I realize that I'm getting older (48),but I've also made healthy changes,like no alcohol or fried foods.I was never one to eat fried foods anyway,unless we stopped at a fast food place on the run-but that would be so rare it's not really worth mentioning.I do have a weakness for ice cream,but it's not an everyday thing (lol).

    My concern is that everything seemed to change at once.I see my PCP every 3 months for bloodwork & routine maintainence and both my cholesterol and BP are up within weeks of the other.The BP was caught at the PM appt weeks after the cholesterol.Maybe my BP was up because I was worried about my cholesterol(LMAO).

    What I'm wondering is if it's all of the ESI's and now the TPI's,or something in them rather,that may have caused this.It's the only thing that I have done really different other than age.

    Well~it's something I have been wondering about,but only just recently.
  • chronic pain can cause rise in blood pressure and getting older can affect cholesterol counts. it is part of the aging process, but as i said earlier, research shows that meds and pain in itself does not shorten life span. this is why i see dr all the time, to get blood pressure anc cholesterol readings plus any other problem i might have.
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • Here is some info that I've read about that concerns life expectancy living with chronic pain. A person who is in chronic pain has more stress due to the pain itself, that increased stress is bad for the heart. We all know that any stress is bad for the heart but for many of us this makes it even higher and worse. The other important finding that I want to mention is about the pain meds. Pain meds such as Oxycontin and others that are made for long term use are really not as bad for you as someone may think because they are not laced with other pain meds such as Aspirin, Ibuprofin, Acetomethopin, (excuse the spelling please) etc.. But if you are under-medicated and in a lot of pain, you may choose to use OTC pain meds to help get through the day. The OTC pain meds are very dangerous used for a prolonged period of time. That's where your liver and kidneys will end up trying to process all of this and it can cause damage. I personally use too much Aleve and I know that it's bad for me. And of course as everyone above above has mentioned, the lack of cardio excericise will have an impact also. I hope that this is helpful to someone?
  • I wanted to chime in on this subject.

    But, first - KUDOS to Paul - you are as tall as my husband and weigh roughly what he did when we met. He is now pushing 230 (well that's what he tells me, but I know it's more like 235-240). He can't walk 10 steps or perform an activity like putting on his shoes without becoming extremely out of breath. I worry about his health - diabetes, the whole nine yards. So I am impressed that you weigh what you do even though you live in pain and cannot exercise much. By the way, the only physical problem my husband has is his recently broken ankle with internal fixation back in September due to on the job injury. WC was great, as was his employer and he will be back on full duty in 2 weeks. So KUDOS to you Paul! What color was your cuda?

    JJ: You've learned to deal with your pain after suffering all these years, and I am equally impressed with you that you are managing to exercise in spite of your pain. That's great! KUDOS to you as well.

    Robin: Would "Peter, Paul and TERRI" do? :))(

    SUICIDE: I believe I stated in one post a while back about how I feel about suicide; and have regretted letting that cat out of the bag. I'd never told anyone about that before. I have considered the option. The ease of which I could do it. The delightful thought of no longer being in pain... BUT, even though just the thought of living like this for 20-30 more years (maybe more) in this shape (and possibly worse, because no matter how bad I feel today, I know this is the best I will ever be, so I try to enjoy it while I can), the fact that I have kids and want to be around for the grandkids I am sure to have one day keeps me going.

    Chronic pain sucks. But once you learn your limits and stay within them you can manage (My opinion only, not scientific proof) to be productive. My problem is that I know my limits yet continually push beyond them - for several reasons. I have a family I must deal with; I have a job I love doing; I have parents who are ill and do not want to go to a nursing home/assisted living facility/retirement home and finally, because I am pig-headed. Don't tell me I can't do something (anything) because my inner self will push my body, spirit, soul and mind to prove that oh yes I can! And that's a fault I seriously need to work on. That, and I hate to ask anyone for anything (except for rocks) - especially help. Therefore, I tend to do everything without asking for help. But, if I see anyone (and I do mean ANY ONE) struggling with what ever, I am the first to jump in and help. It's gotta be my cajun upbringing. We are a mighty tenacious bunch (not sure if it's cajuns, my family or just me!).

    That, and... well, never mind. I've contributed more than 2 cents or one opinion.

    Hang in there as long as you want to JJ. And when you think you may want to check out because you can't stand it any more, do like many members here have done - reach out - to someone, anyone, professional or otherwise. This group is a great group to reach out to. There's always someone here who has been there, doing that, and will reach out to catch you at a moment's notice.

  • I also agree that additives like tylenol causes more problems than the narcotic itself. The thought of living out the rest of my days with pain does suck, but I rather be around and take meds than pushing up daisies. I take comfort in the fact that I'm not the only one putting up with chronic pain and I am so grateful for this community of fellow spineys is here for moral support and information exchange. I couldn't bear being isolated and suffering all by myself.
  • I've never seriously considered suicide. I've seen it and it's too messy for those left. I consider myself truly blessed, and know there are many, many folks who hurt more and have less insurance. I'm still having a hard time getting my head around the idea that this is it. I'm at my Maximum Medical Improvement. Mine is a Workers' Comp case, so my meds are paid for and Social Security considers me a total wreck. I'm drawing SS Disability now. That's a whole issue with me as well. Yes, it's my money that I paid into the system (SS has records of me back to 1973-I was 12), and yes, I am grateful, and yes, many people don't have SS to make a mortgage payment. Having said that though doesn't make it feel any less...'unmanly? That's a poor choice of words but I don't know how else to say it. I've always worked and though I would 'till I dropped dead in a refinery somewhere. My wife and I were at Sam's Wholesale store the other day. I bought a new set of stainless steel pots and pans. And I was excited about them.
    I think you guys and gals have changed my thinking about OTC versus prescription meds. I've been guilty of overdoing Advil, Aleve...for years and I am (was) scared of a little Lortab. They are more like Skittles now anyway. Yesterday was a really bad day and I took the max Lortab, Tramadol, and Flexeril with my Fentanly and Lyrica. I still hurt. Today was just as painful, but I cut out everything but a few Lortabs. You know what, I don't hurt any more than I did yesterday and I'm not the Zombie I was then. This is kind of a rambling post, and I apologize but y'all know how I feel
    Since November of '07 I've been writing down how I feel each day with notes of exactly what hurts and how bad. I've also kept up with my daily meds from that time. I just recently asked my wife to read at least some of the thirty something pages and maybe she understands me a little better now as well.
    Ok-that's gotta be enough for now. Thanks for listening.


    "experience is what you get when you don't get what you want"
  • I can understand where you're coming from because I have a husband who would work himself to death also. But, there is NO shame in having to resort to SSD. It takes nothing away from you as a man whatsoever. Yes, yyou have earned that money and yes, you deserve it. Please for your own sake try to come to terms with this because there is nothing bad or shameful about it and it doesn't diminish who you are in the least. Are you a good husband? Are you a good man? A good father? That's what counts, what's on the inside not what your paycheck is or how you come by it. You're not a drug dealer ( I would assume) and you aren't committing crimes to get by. That's where another big difference comes in. I would rather my husband flip burgers and Jack in the Box then to resort to criminal activity. And if he ever goes out on SSD, that's fine with me because I happen to love him and want only what's best for him. I'm happy to read that you are more aware of how damaging OTC pain meds can be. I too abuse Aleve and am trying to cut back as much as I possibly can. It's sure not easy though!
  • I agree to certain degree that people who leave with CP and with a lots of medication daily may have more health issues than people who don't know what CP is.
    I used to be very physically active person before my injury and spinal surgeries. Gym was my second home. I am still very fit, trying hard to stay this way, but i know that all the medication I am taking affects liver (especially meds like Percocet which contains mega doses of Tylenol) and many others. Even though I am very lucky not to end up with being depressed, I know many people leaving in pain and suffer from depression on top of it.
    I can't exercise anymore, I am lucky if I can walk on most days, and this causes heart problems for me plus high cholesterol. I eat right as always, but luck of activities causes problems anyway.
    I strongly believe in body-mind overall health. Very important to keep your mind healthy as well. I bought meditation tapes, i try yoga only positions i am able to do. I meditate every day, try to relax and positive thinking, concentrating on happy and positive things in life.
    I had my tough times when instead of getting better I heard from my surgeon: "I think you should go on disability, since you will not be able to go back to work". It was very hard to hear; I had a wonderful job, I worked so hard to achieve what I achieved and now my life changed completely. In the beginning I did not see the light at the end of the tunnel. But I realized I can get even sicker if I don't change my thinking and try to make the best I could from this situation.
    With help of my wonderful, supportive family and friends, reading a lot of books about people who went through same thing I realized that this just a new chapter in my life, I have to turn the page and go ahead with it.
    Honestly, I don't think about how many years I have left. I am only 53 now. To me quality is more important than quantity. So I try to do what I have to do, take my meds to make me comfortable to go on every day and try to enjoy every little thing in this life. I believe in staying positive, I believe in NOT feeling sorry for yourself, in not asking "Why me?", and I always say: could be worse as bad as this is for me. I try this for my mind, for my loved once who worry about me enough. And I know this attitude very healthy (at least something healthy about me LOL) and hopefully will take me through many years ahead!

    Wish you all the best and many happy years ahead of you!
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    I really liked your post and the upbeat tone it had. So many people dealing with chronic pain for years for it hard to stay positive.
    I do have to say, one comment I can not agree upon. You said you were 53 and didnt know how many more years you have.
    I am 58 and have been dealing with chronic pain for over 30 years now. I am not giving in and I am going to do whatever it takes to continue living and enjoying life. Sure, because of all the surgeries, I have had to make adjustments.

    Quality of life is so much more important than Quantity

    I totally agree with that, but for probably 90% of spinal patients is more about quantity, since we have accepted the loss of some items. Of course there are always stages when the quality issue comes up. But to me thats at deaths doorstep. There are so many conservative treatment snd support groups that cn help you get through almost anything.
    I hope things work out ok for you
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • So much I've already,and continue to think about.Through the last 3 posts on here I thought,shook my head in agreement and laughed out loud at JJ's use of the term "skittles"-that just cracked me up.I was not & would never laugh at a person in pain,but I do find humour in the way people use their words to express themselves.Actually-that is my main reason for being here at S~H,to read other views and hear how others get through the tough times AND the good times too.

    I liked what TFF said about SSD and how it's what's on the inside that counts.I always believed that to be true myself.

    Positive thinking and meditating is a way of life for me.I don't even know how to live my life without meditation anymore.I've learned that listening can be better than talking.

    I never take the OTC pain medications anymore..but I do take the vitamins,fish oil,and a few other things that my Dr advised to help bring down my cholesterol naturally.

    JJ~I do understand your feelings on the SS.I've been on SSD since 1996 and I am 48 yrs old.I started working part time when I was only 14 yrs old and was always pretty independant.I'm not ashamed at all,but there have been plenty of people that have made remarks over the years-not directly to me-but to people close to me,and it came back to me.I think these are people that have just not been in my place,and that is one of the lessons that I've learned..admittedly,a recent lesson.

  • I've been reading SH posts for a while now, but never really got into posting much 'till this thread. Chronic Pain really does change a person. No..I won't speak for anyone else; chronic pain has really changed me. It affects everything I do or can't do. There's always some part of my brain doing nothing but saying "Ouch!". Some days it's just a small part, some days it seems to be a labor to breathe. But it is pretty cool swapping thoughts and opinions with my CP brethren. Here's a random thought; the word-brethren-doesn't cover both sexes, does it? So is sisthren a word? Does it seem like anyone else's brain jumps from topic to topic? I think we called this something like 'stream of conscienceness(sp) writing in school.Yes I think I am a good husband and father, my wife and I will have our 30th anniversary in March! My kids are wonderful, both are professional upstanding members of their respective communities. My son's a Marine and doesn't have to see me hobble around much. My daughter, son-in-law and GRAND DAUGHTER live in the same town and I see them everyday. On a good day I even get to keep my GRAND DAUGHTER. She's three and can already operate a computer mouse to play her Elmo games (yes, I'm a geek). As a matter of fact, my two real hobbies are computers (building/minor programming) and handguns. However, one should have ones' wits about them when participation in either. It's a very rare day these days when I feel clear headed enough to go to the range and shoot. It does give me more time to improve my gunsmithing, but even that requires some attention to detail.
    Anyway, thank y'all for writing and thank y'all for reading.

    "never cuss a man riding a mule"
  • I truly believe that meditation can help relieve the stress that the CP puts on our hearts and would be so healthy for all of us to participate in. My question is, how does one get started? I would LOVE to do this!
    I would also like to learn yoga. I'm sure that I wouldn't be able to do all of the poses but many of them would benefit me also.
    The CP naturally puts stress on our hearts and anything we can do to help relieve this I want to know about and learn. I happen to come from a long line of heart disease from both of parents side of the family and this is something that I need to improve upon. I can't excercise hardly at all, way too much pain, and I'm scared of what that is doing to me. As to quality over quantity? I have no quality of life. Again, another burden. I need to learn to do more positive things for myself to help improve both quality and quantity. All in all I'm a happy person but the CP still takes it toll and the fact that my life has changed so much makes me sad. Talk about rambling...........
    I guess my real point here is............How does one get started with meditation and yoga? Any help would be deeply appreciated.
  • I really like you. I like the way your mind works. I used to wonder "since I was a tomboy as a girl and I now possess all the same qualities that made me a "tomboy? am I now a "tom-man?". I also agree that when I opine I usually speak to my own personal experiences and thoughts (at least when it comes to the current topic). If quantity of life were to be the most important thing to me, I wouldn't assume that that were true for 90% of people. Who knows. I remember when my dog, Betty had cancer and I elected to have her spleen removed (we didn't know it was cancer at the time). One cantankerous misanthope at my office kept asking me "You don't want her to suffer, do you?". I often wanted to reply, "Yes, I do. She's been nothing but trouble. Worst dog I ever had". But I worked with this man. I knew he loved dogs. He just had a different view of things than I do. Its rather like some folks commenting that if they got cancer they would never go through all the treatments that so-and-so is going through. We don't know what we'll do until we're in that situation. I firmly believe that. I wouldn't dare to presume what would be the right decision for anyone other than me. But I do believe quality of life plays an important role in the life/death decision. By this I am not necessarily referring just to chronic pain patients. And I certainly don't mean to step on any religious toes. Look at the decision Christopher Reeves made. I don't know if I could have lived like that. But, today is a good day for me. Its been a whole string of good days and I am happy and glad too be alive. I painted the bathroom over the weekend and it finally matches the adjoining bedroom. Today, I went shopping and bought some new clothes I don't really need and, afterwards, my legs aren't hurting. So, as Tiny Tim would say, "God Bless us Everyone". Susan.
  • Meditation can help CP.It helps to center you,and relaxes your mind.

    TFF~When you say that you have no quality of life-Are you are weighing your quality of life on societies base scales?That is why so many people in CP become depressed.

    So-With meditation you start at a new place.Set a new bar and make it your own-in your mind I mean.You have to find an inner peace,in any position comfortable for you.Then you expand on this until you start feeling peace within yourself.You'll know because everyday things become easier to manage.Stresses become less stressful.

    A subject to study and learn from is most helpful.

    This doesn't happen in a day or even a week.I suppose it could for some people,but it took me a long time and a lot of discipline-until it was just a way of life.I don't mean that it was like work,but in the beginning-TRYING to concentrate was what I had the most difficulty with.So..try not to try too hard,don't do anything that feels weird is what I mean.Just relax and rest your mind.

    A person with CP-or a handicapped person can still have a great quality of life.Sure you have some things that may disturb that quality,and make it more of a challenge from time to time,and of course the pain,but everybody has challenges to overcome.

    How does a person measure success?
  • Clarence (as well as all the other men out there on Disability who may feel their man-hood is diminished because of not "working")

    You worked all those years and paid into Social Security for retirement (or disability - whichever comes first). The fact the disability came first should not matter - would you feel less of a man if you were not working, and drawing retirement? You worked all those years to provide for your family - in the present as well as in the future. Just so happens that today's present is the future you planned for 10 years ago (albeit, maybe not the future you expected, but planning for the unexpected is always a good thing for a man - or woman - to do).

    You ALL take care of yourselves. I hope you have many many pain free moments (hopefully all together in a row) today!

  • I am glad that meditation topic is "hot" here... You asked how can you start. You may go to a book store and buy tapes. They have a nice selection of them. You use your ear phones, nice dark room and just get into this...Than you can do early am in a nice sunny room, make sure not dogs, no kids running around :-) You seat in yoga position with your hands on your knees with fingers locked (you know this position, right?) close your eyes, find a focus and picture something very nice and let it go, let your mind wonders... So relaxing, so great!

    thank you for your reply to my post. I was talking about myself regarding quantity and quality. And even though I am 53, I have MS, RA and Arachnoidities(do you know what this is?) I have serious heart problems too and taking 15 pills a day, walking around with pace maker, Tense Unit and once a week Enbrel shot. I hate to get into details but you asked me to :-) LOL
    So my poor husband before we have to leave my house to go somewhere, has to tell me to get ready one hour before to be able to hide all the wires, check if enough batteries... Let me tell you! You have to have sense of humor with all this. If you would see me trying to dance with my grand kids; my daughter takes many pictures to show them when they grow up how crazy their grandma was.

    So I am very realistic about my own condition and for me quality is very important since my Dr's predictions about my near future's quality is very poor. And no way I feel because of CP I feel I lost years of life. I spent many years (all together) in hospital bed due to 11 different serious surgeries I had in my life, but I don't feel I waste it. Every day is a present, every day is beautiful no matter what. It what we make of it. Some people don't leave with CP but they are still miserable, and you can leave with severe CP and other serious conditions and still find beauty in every day of your life...
    As you know all my conditions I mentioned are not treatable and not staying the same. That is why I am saying this, sweet heart, regarding Qality and Quantity!
    And one more thing: pain is pain no matter what. The thing is: some people handle with grace pain levels of 8-10 and no pain medication helping it and some people making their own life and life of loved once miserable with a lot of less pain. We all so different!

    But No Way I am giving in either! I have too much to leave for. I have 2 wonderful, very young grand kids, I have great family and friends, I am a very big reader, and I can't go without reading another 10,000 books. I am planning to dance in my wheel chair on my grand kids weddings, you can come and join me!
    And please don't forget no matter what you always be older than me, I am still younger!! LOL

    To all: have a better day today/ tomorrow! Take a deep breath, meditate and smile... We are still here! :-)
  • one of the problems with back pain is that no one can see it so others thinks that we are putting it on.without me going into a rage about how i have been treated by others .all i will say is .let them walk a mile in our shoes
    .genuine sufferers of intractable back pain go through hell 24 hours a day and no one in there right mind would choose to do this .people that fake back pain to get out of work and other things are just sick in the head!regarding life expectancy constant drug use lack of exercise and weight gain smoking will shorted life...but on the other hand a healthy person could be run down by a bus tomorrow who knows what will happen.i am not a religious man {and i don't have a problem with people who are} but i do believe that when your time is up ..well then its good night!!
  • Well, let's see. Maybe it would be a Tom-Wom? How about that? I really agree with everything you wrote in the message above. I too would never or could never presume to know what someone else is going through, thinking, feeling, etc.. And you're right, we also never know what we would do under certain circumstances until we were faced with it ourselves. We are all different and personally I think that's one of the things that makes everyone so beautiful, their individuality. Life would sure be boring if we were all alike wouldn't it?
    BTW, my dog also passed from cancer some years ago and we were given the option of surgery but it was so extensive and risky, plus they really didn't expect a good outcome, that we chose not to put her through it. I couldn't even handle the idea of losing her but really had no option. She was a precious dog, a furry human really. They only gave her one month but instead we had her for over a year. In that year she was the most spoiled little girl ever! She ate better than we did!
    So you were a tomboy too when you were little? I'm still a Tom-Wom but I also have my very girlie side indeed. I'm the best of both worlds, LOL!
  • Your Grandaughter must be very intelligent with only being 3 and a computer wiz even if it's just a game!
    Having hobbies help us to have fun and have some interest in life. That's great you have your hobbies. Being able to do some excercise is very gratifying too as well as a balanced diet. I'm learning small things can make me happy during my cp day including our little hobo cat we took in that was left behind from a crackhouse. He's a little unusual sometimes and wonder if he was exposed to drugs, anyhoo he's a good companion for us. I'm just trying to live in the moment and one day at a time. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
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