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I have had PHN for five months. I have stopped hoping that the pain will somehow go off and I am trying to face up to the prospect that is may be years before it does, and that I may have it for the rest of my life. I dread the start of every day when I wake feeling comfortable in bed but after a few minutes the agonising pain starts up and I don't know whether to try to get up and about which is like having a demon with a pitchfork stabbing me and making it impossible to think. If I get a phone call that I have to answer I can't be sure I am answering sensibly. I take Naproxen with Omeprazole and Lyrica (pregabalen) three times a day, and Versatis (Ludocaine) patches applied either in the evening and taken off late morning, or in the morning and taken off at night. The only things that really work, I am sure, are the Naproxen and the Ludocaine, but the best I can get from all these is a period of calm in the afternoon and early evening, and then I feel exhausted and sleepy, so the amount of the day when I am functioning properly is just two or three hours. I work from home so I must somehow do better than this. I have been prescribed first an anti-depressant (amytriptiline) which simply knocked me out so that I slept in a drugged haze, and an anti-convulsant (Mirtazapine) which was similar in effect. My GP says that he wouldn't want to try opiates (I agree!) and that maybe I should go to a pain clinic. I thought this might involve having nerve-numbing injections, but apparently it is likely to be just talking about how to live with the pain.Another problem is that eating comforting warm and sweet food seems to bring a bit of relief. My weight has gone up by 20 lbs in three months and I find that hard to control.
I feel I ought to be able to cope somehow by structuring my day but I can't make that work. If anyone had similiar problems and has found better ways to cope than I have, please tell me!! Whatever I do leaves me too little time between agonisingpain and exhaustion and sleepiness
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