Chronic Illness & Endometriosis Health

Searching for the Source: A Journey with Chronic Pain

Has someone stuck me in a time machine? I feel as though 2005 to 2010 is repeating itself, as  I am repeating the diagnostic process all over again for my chronic pain.

No one wants to believe the diagnosis in front of them, and just keeps pushing me to the next doctor. Nonetheless, the pain level keeps increasing with no relief insight, as no one knows how to explain what’s causing it.

Over the last week, I have seen different three doctors, one trip to the emergency room, one CT scan, two ultrasounds, three urine tests, and multiple blood tests. The highlight was on Friday when the nurse told me, while my husband was sitting next to me, that I would receive the results from the  STD test later that the hospital apparently automatically run, and that it would be my responsibility to inform all of my partners of the results. I looked at my husband and said “I’ll be sure to let you know.”

causespelvicpainWhen we went to the ER on Friday, the pain was beyond excruciating.  After going through my history for the umpteenth time, the doctor seemed to actually listen and take an interest in my condition. I felt relief that he believed me and was appreciative that I brought my previous test results with me. He immediately prescribed morphine and I thought that I would finally feel some relief.

The nurse came in with medication for nausea and the pain medication. And, while I felt a sudden rush of warmth after the injection, there was no relief of pain and none of the ordinary side effects associated with morphine administration. Honestly, I had morphine once before and immediately turned into a complete goofball… I felt relief… I felt relaxed and I slept. However, this time, I did not even think that the nurse gave me any medication.

After speaking with the doctor, he did give me another dosage, agreeing that my pain level may require a titrated amount, but even after the second amount only the top level of pain was relieved.

endofactsHe did suggest that my endometriosis may have returned and that a laparoscopy likely is necessary. He was so sincere and thorough in his prescribed testing that I fully appreciated the encounter even if he did not provide a diagnosis or complete relief.

Friday was spent with another doctor’s visit and more testing. I spent the majority of the day laying around taking my “break through pain-only” medication praying it would actually do something, wrapped in my heating pad, and being pampered by the husband. The gynecologist does not agree that that the endometriosis has returned, and believes the pain is more of a “gastrointestinal” issue. So, next week will be spent going to a GI specialist and potentially more testing.

I have no idea what to do at this point. Each time I go to the doctor’s I feel horrible for wishing that he finds something, but at the same time it would be a relief to have a name for what I am going through each and every day.

endodietA co-worker suggested a endometriosis diet that is similar to a gluten free/paleo type diet that is supposed to help manage the disease, and after this week I am willing to try ANYTHING!

The diet is similar to ones I’ve tried before that eliminate all inflammation causing foods. The largest issues will be mindset and advanced preparation. With planning, I will be successful. I will try this for two weeks and pay attention to how my body reacts. I was successful before when I cut out oranges after noticing the negative effects on my body, so I know I can do this… my biggest trouble will be ice cream… I LOVE ICE CREAM!!

I do want to stop having pain, though, and if this is how I can accomplish it. This is what I must do.

Have you tried an anti-inflammatory diet, or anything similar? Would you give up your favorite food(s) if it meant being pain-free?



6 Comment

  1. I’m already on a gluten free diet because I have celiac disease. I haven’t noticed that it helps any, but I haven’t gone with the full blown endo diet…not sure I would have the willpower! But I never cheat on my GF diet because the consequences are quite horrendous, given my experiences the few times I have accidentally ingested gluten.

  2. Thank you for reading, ribbonrx. I know remaining GF is tough, too, though… I have a gluten sensitivity (nowhere near celiac disease, but causes severe stomach issues) and struggle every day to avoid it. I eat frozen pizza almost every night with the husband right now, so I think he’s going to be the one who suffers the most… or benefits, depending on how you look at it ūüėČ

  3. After diagnosis of coeliac disease, healing and how long it takes to feel better on a gluten-free diet can vary. Some people feel significantly better within a few days of starting a gluten-free diet but some people may see more of a gradual improvement in their symptoms or that one symptom improves before another.

    1. Great point – while the diet is specified for endometriosis, it is very similar to a celiac diet, as it cuts out gluten and grains. The main purpose is to eliminate inflammation causing foods. Every person’s body (and gut) will respond in a different time-frame. Some may not see results for a few weeks, others may seem almost immediate results.

  4. Several factors are thought to be involved in the variable time taken for the gut to heal, including age and severity of gut damage at diagnosis. If your symptoms have not improved or have become worse since starting a gluten-free diet, speak to your GP, dietitian and or gastroenterologist who are best placed to monitor your response to the gluten-free diet.

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