Tina P, 57: Hysterectomy, endometriosis, interstitial cystitis, chronic pelvic pain, fatigue, fibromyalgia
My name is Tina P., and I am fifty-seven years old. In the fall of 1995, I underwent a total hysterectomy to rid my body of severe endometriosis and hopefully move forward without pain. However, when the pain only intensified, I was diagnosed with interstitial cystitis in early 1996. Even though I had been negotiating painful living prior to this time, these events marked the beginning of my journey to find real answers. In the beginning, I had to find ways to alleviate the pain in order to be functional. To my dismay, the allopathic community, including urologists, knew very little about interstitial cystitis and how to treat it. Elmiron was a new drug that had helped some patients, so I began that right away. Also, through my own research, I learned that a very small amount of Elavil, taken at night, was helpful for pain. I obtained that prescription from a family physician after explaining my situation.
While I was thankful for these medications, after several years of use, the side effects became too troublesome. I determined to find more holistic answers, and I discontinued the drugs. By this time, some natural supplements had been developed to accomplish what the Elmiron had been doing artificially. I began natural supplementation and was thrilled with the results for several years. Then, in about 2003, the pain level began to climb again. At this time, I was working full time and had gone back to school to pursue a degree in fine art. I just didn't have time to begin negotiating intense pain again.
One thing an IC patient learns early on is that what you eat affects your pain level. I had already learned what foods to avoid, but I was finding that new foods began to bother me. I started taking OTC Azo when the pain became too dominating. To make a long story shorter, I had to discontinue more and more foods as time went on. I saw physicians and healthcare professionals of many kinds, spending thousands on those covered by insurance and others outside the allopathic community. I read the latest literature on IC late into the night and also kept up with the latest information through online resources. By 2009, the year I completed my degree, I was experiencing relentless bladder pain, and many other symptoms were developing. This included extreme fatigue and fibromyalgia type pain. At that time, I decided to stop all my artistic pursuits and concentrate on getting well.
During the years since, I had to accept the fact that this disease process might eventually take my life. By 2013, my diet had dwindled to a few organic vegetables and meats. I experienced many ER visits in the middle of the night just to control pain. A urologist taught me to use bladder instillations at home and gave me a precription for narcotic suppositories to help keep me out of the expensive ER. As you might relate, I would get up in the morning wondering how to get through the day with this great amount of pain.
That same year, I read about PainShield MD on the IC-Network website. Due to the fact that I had spent so much money in the past, I was hesitant to purchase the unit. In the fall, after much encouragement from my husband, we ordered the ultrasound device. I was pleasantly surprised when I received a call from Dr. Wiseman, inquiring about my condition and how the PainShield unit might help. He informed me that I should experiment and apply the patch at different locations in order to achieve the most pain relief.
After the first few uses, I noticed a sense of calm in my body. I realized that the pain level had diminished. At this point, I was overwhelmed with thankfulness. This small development provided hope. I began to use the unit every night and then during the day for added effect. The ultrasound application was making a difference and without drugs!
During the past year, I began seeing a naturopath who is working with me on my highly allergic condition. She has been very supportive in my use of PainShield. When I feel the pain becoming unmanageable, I've been able to reach for the unit and know that by the end of the first cycle, my pain level will be calmer. In one instance, PainShield kept me out of the ER after the use of the narcotic failed to manage the pain. That event showed me just how effective the unit is.
Thank you, Dr. Wiseman and those at KevMed, for developing this technology. For me, it has been an answer to so much prayer. For me and others, thank you for caring about those who live with the challenges of daily pain. (9/26/2014)
UPDATE (10/29/15) Tina has been using PainShield MD for nearly two years. She believes that it is what has kept her out of having to go to the emergency room for severe pain. She typically would need to go 1-2 times year, and since using PainShield MD she has not needed to. Her pain is more certainly manageable than before PainShield MD.
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