Thursday, 26 May 2011

My life with fibromyalgia by Don Sorensen

I was very happy to see an article on someone with fibromyalgia in the Tribune. This ailment needs to be brought out of the shadows.

Don Sorensen
I am a 72-year-old man who has suffered with fibromyalgia my whole life. I fully understand how chronic pain can destroy lives. I have seen more doctors than I can remember. I have tried nearly every painkiller known to man, including morphine. None helped for more than a week or two.

I cannot remember when the pain first manifested, but I was probably 4 or 5 years old. The first diagnosis was growing pains, than it was bad arches, than shin splints, than an unknown back problem. I have had countless X-rays, MRIs and CAT scans. Every test has been negative; some of the doctors decided that it was all in my mind. When I was in my early teens a doctor told me that he did not feel the pain was life-threatening and that physical activity would be beneficial. I grew up a farm boy and since the doctors could find nothing wrong with me I worked as hard as any farm boy.

I have continued to search for relief from pain all through my life. It was during a physical at Mayo in the late 1970s that I first heard the word fibromyalgia mentioned. The doctor came into the room to discuss my test results and began this way.

“I have good news and bad news.”

“The good news is that what you are suffering from will not kill you. The bad news is that you may wish it would.”

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