S t a n d i n g S i l e n t (standingsilent) wrote in costochondrits,
S t a n d i n g S i l e n t

A Little Cry for Help

Hey there, my name is Heather and I'm 22 years old. Four years ago I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and six months ago, Costochondritis.

I like to think in the last four years since I've been diagnosed with FMS that I've made progress, but the past year has made me wonder if I'm getting worse. It seems that every few months I'm developing a new symptom or problem that ultimately makes my condition harder.

A year ago, I started having the feeling that I was having a heart attack; my heart would flutter dramatically and painfully, make me dizzy and sick, and even my left arm would go numb. I immediately was rushed to an ER, where I underwent a battery of blood tests, EKGs and eventually was put on a halter monitor - all the results came back negative, nothing wrong with my heart.

For a whole year, on and off, I would go through the agony of feeling as though I was having a heart attack. Until finally, it started happening on a weekly basis and now, everyday is a a full day of chest-crushing pain, hurting to breathe, distortions in heart rate and weakness. I had finally had enough of a doctor not giving me an answer, so I looked up 'fibromyalgia' and 'chest pain' one day and found an article about costochondritis. I realized that I not only fit the profile of those who usually are effected by it (60-70% of FMS suffers experience costochondritis symptoms), but my symptoms were identical to those listed.

So, I took the information to my doctor and hallelujah; I had an answer. Unfortunately, an answer is not a cure to the problem.

I started taking a different anti-inflammatory, started taking a higher dose of Lyrica and using a heating pad to alleviate my symptoms, but unfortunately it's not doing anything. And so far, the only information I can find on it says that the only other treatment is steroid injections.

Right now, I feel like I'm wandering around in the dark with no hope of ever getting better. Having the feeling of a heart-attack is scary enough, but when you add the anxiety which follows with the continuity of symptoms, it becomes life-threatening.

A month ago I was hospitalized because during a costochondritis flare, I was so absurdly pained that I had a panic attack and couldn't breathe. By the time paramedics got to me (I live 2 minutes from the ambulence barn), I had a diminished oxygen saturation level and I was barely coherant.

I cannot begin to explain how frightened I am, or how intense my pain levels are getting, but no amount of medication, narcotics or holistic treatments are giving me any ease. I'm scared for my life, I'm scared one day there will be a flare so bad that I won't be able to get to a hospital immediately or I'll continue to be in an amount of pain that makes going to school or work impossible.

Anyone, with any advice, would be greatly appreciated. I'm certainly at my wits end.
Thanks ahead of time.

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