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Re: chronic pain

Posted by Cass on July 12, 1999, at 16:25:02

In reply to Re: chronic pain, posted by Elizabeth on July 12, 1999, at 15:13:34

Hi Elizabeth and everyone,

I have also had many negative experiences with doctors regarding pain. To this day they don't know the cause of my chronic foot pain, and, therefore, do not treat it. The best any doctor has ever done is to grudgingly admit that the pain may somehow be associated with my autoimmune disorder (which is a Mixed Connective Tissue Disorder with Lupus variants and other associated illnesses). But the cause of the pain has never really been diagnosed. Many doctors have been very skeptical of my claims of pain. Since a lot of medical tests have been negative, the issue of Deppression always seems to give doctors a way out. It seems like most doctors do not want to go out of their way to diagnose something that is unusual. Once, many years ago, when I was pursuing treatment for my undiagnosed autoimmune disorder, I saw a GP who simply refused to beleive anything was wrong. He kept on saying, "You're young." In his mind, my being young seemed to preclude the possibility of having any serious illness. His generalization rendered him incapable of helping me. I ran into him years later and told him the diagnosis, he brushed it off irritably, saying, "Well, that's not fatal." What's more, the disease is fatal for some.

Over time, chronic pain erodes one's capacity for joy. It has greatly contributed to my suicidal urges. I find it disheartening that many doctors, and people in general, will not believe that something exists unless it is visible or conspicuous. It makes me feel alienated. I was lucky that my autoimmune disease was diagnosed. (It took a long time.) These days when I see a medical specialist of some kind, I do not always include the diagnosis of Depression, because I feel that it subjects me to discrimination, i.e., jeopordizes my chance of receiving quality health care.

My sympathy goes out to everyone who lives with pain and Depression, especially when the pain is undiagnosed. Thank-you for sharing your experiences.





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