My mom is in severe pain

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Hi,

My mom, 70, is suffering from Ankylosing spondylitis since 5 years. She is in a lot of pain. After MRI, we came to know that her 6 vertebraes are effected. The doctor has suggested operation but because of her age, we are not going for an operation. She is diabetic and has high blood pressure. How can she get relief from pain? She finds walking and sitting for long periods very difficult. Please help. Thanks.

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  • Posted

    Hi Payal,

    Take her to a good rheumatologist who will help her with pain. Do not rush into any operations before consulting a few docs . They will put her on nsaids maybe some others as methotrexate or biologics. So make sure you go to one asap. All the best ! 

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  • Posted

    Hello, I agree to her seeing a really good specialist and if one does not suit then try another one. Keep trying until you find her a Doctor who understands AS. and all the pain that goes with it. My advice is try hot packs to relieve pain in the areas most affected, either a hot towel or you can actually make your own hot pack by using a large cup full of rice inside a sock ( half fill it ) tie it up very tightly and put it in a microwave,for 5 minutes with a small half cup of water, do not wet the sock of rice or it will be ruined.It will stay hot for a long time. I also have severe pain but live in a remote area of Indonesia and a visitor from Australia suggested this for me.  She had heard of other people using this method. So I tried it and it really does help. Of course your Mother will need the right medication too. I have ten vertebra damaged in my spine and am mostly confined to a wheelchair now. The nerve damage from this type of anomaly to the spine is hard to bear. It goes from the neck to the lower back,down my arms and down my legs even into my hands and feet. So I will try anything to get a better day. I have been taking Tramadol for extreme pain until recently when it was not enough. My Doctor put me on morphine but I didn't like the side effects. So then he gave me a Fentanyl patch which worked so well I could even smile again. But here it is very expensive and no National Health Insurance so my funds cannot stretch that far to have Fentanyl every three to four days which is what is recommended. I do hope that you can find what you need to free your Mother from such pain. I wish you luck and love. G

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  • Posted

    I'm sorry to hear about your mom. 

    As others have suggested, I think that you should take her to a good specialist too. I would suggest an internal medicine specialist since she has others conditions as well. That is my case and I've been seeing one who's been of tremendous help. Their advantage is that they take into account the whole picture and not just one illness they're specialized for. He'll evaluate her diabetes, cardiovascular state and AS.

    In the meantime I'd suggest , if your mom is up for it, some changes in nutrition to fight inflammation and alleviate the pain. There is good advice on this forum on how to eat for AS.

    Hope she'll get better! Hang in there!

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  • Posted

    So sorry to hear of your mom's condition and extreme pain. Others have given great advice. 

    I do not know how much she can move around. With AS, being sedentary can make the pain worse. And I know when I'm in severe pain I don't want to do anything. However, exercise can provide relief. I like aqua exercise, because I can move easier and it hurts less. A good PT with experience can be helpful. 

    AS can be very frustrating. What helps one person may not help another.  I do many lifestyle habits and different meds to help my inflammation and pain. 

    A great doctor makes all the difference. Many are NOT experts on AS.  And it is unlikely they will tell you. Immediate help is first priority. An excellent rheumatologist for the long haul will limit pain and frustration. 

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  • Posted

    Finding a good Dr, Rheumatologist, and a Pain Dr is most you can do for your mom. At one point, I could barely walk or stand up from kneeling position. Dr placed me on Fentanyl patches and I was able to walk and function. After couple months my joints and body was in better condition and Got off Fentanyl to much less opioid, tramadol. Pain meds are a bandaid to AS. Biological or DMARD medication, walking, diet, etc imperative to better quality of life. Hope your mom finds good Doctors help her manage AS.
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  • Posted

    I have lumbar back pain. I'm trying to avoid surgery also. I get regular procedures for pain. Talk to a pain management specialist and see what he or she says, and maybe a physical therapist if she's willing to do the work.

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  • Posted

    AS is one of the most unknown medical issues there is. It’s so hard to diagnose and when it is it’s often to late to do anything apart from pain killers and more pain killers.

    It took years for my doctors to work out what was wrong and as others have said keep trying different ones. Sadly for me I have had spinal fusions which has restricted my mobility and I am on fentalyl which helps. The biggest help that I have found is Simponi one injection a month has helped me no end it took a while to kick in but once it does it’s magic you can notice the difference. I can now sleep at night and more importantly do a full days work all the stiffness has gone shame about the pain but the damage was done. I truly hope you find some thing or some one that can help your mother. One thing I have found is that it runs in the Familie my mother has it we only found that out when she went in to Hostpital after a fall she is 93 her sister had it she was literally bent double that’s the trouble with the older generation they just put it down to arthritis and think no more of it. I have had my two kids checked out and thankfully nothing as yet has been found.

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  • Posted

    Thank you so much everybody. This was very useful. I will show these suggestions to my mom. Thank you.
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