I am 29 years old, and I have suffered with chronic back pain for 8 years.
I have no diagnosis - the closest that anyone has come is degenerative disc disease, but health professionals agree to disagree. I have had 4 MRIs, 9 xrays, 12 rounds of physio, 2 consultant rheumatologists, 3 acupuncturists, 1 laser acupuncturist, 3 chiropractors, 4 osteopaths, and 1 medical herbalist.
What I do have is a huge amount of pain. Sometimes it is so debilitating that in order to turn over in bed I have to use the headboard to lever myself over. Sometimes it is so painful that I cannot breathe.
There is no point to this post really, except that this is the first time in my life I have ever been able to speak to a group of people who also suffer from chronic pain - either in person or over the internet. And the relief to know that there are other people who feel the way I do is astonishing.
I am not yet 30, but sometimes I walk like I am 90. I have given up on the NHS, because every time I ask to see a pain management specialist, I am told I have to start the process again. I am not willing to waste my time, the doctor's time and the taxpayer's money on YET ANOTHER xray, MRI or round of physio. I used to work for the NHS, so it breaks my heart that I have no faith in them in this, the most important health issue of my life thus far.
I think that, realistically, this post is expressing relief that I can be open and honest about the amount of pain I suffer, without either a) worrying my family and b) making people believe that I am exaggerating or making it up - as I have been told numerous times, "you are too young to have a back problem" - like that is supposed to make me think "ah yes, you are right, I am too young, and therefore I am miraculously healed"!!