PHN 9 years this month

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Hi, I'm in my mid 40s.... Had a wicked bout of Shingles down my right arm in sept 2008 (I'm also right handed, if that ain't part of the joke.). I had the pain about a month before any rash appeared. I swore I had a pinched nerve, so I was seeing a chiropractor... Man I had this guy stumped... nothing he was doing worked. Hell, he put me in one of those traction machines that yanks on your neck. After 3 weeks of torture from the chiropractor?, I finally started getting a rash. Blisters on my forearm, fingers, and palm. Finally diagnosed I was in absolute agony... The rash cleared up after about 3 weeks... but the pain has remained ever since... I've been taking Gabapentin or Lyrica... I can't take Cymbalta... I suffer Serotonin? Syndrome when given SSRI or SNRI antidepressants?. Elavil... and don't forget the freakin narcotics.... Those were pure evil.

The pain clinic I was going too, told me that I'll probably have this the rest of my life.... that it self is utterly depressing...

?For the last 5 years, I've been taking methadone, Gabapentin?, and Elavil and it works enough to get me through a day. Some days are tolerable... and some days really, really suck.


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  • Posted

    Hi danmiller

    I understand your problem, as I have been a PHN sufferer since early 2015.

    Like you I suffered terrible pain initially, but found a reliable topical cream that relieves most of the pain, and eliminates the need for pain relieving drugs that can cause long term harm to the body.

    I have posted my mixture many times on patient, but repeat it for the benefit of new sufferers. Try this cream if you have a need for pain relief:

    250 grams of Aciclovir Vitamin E Cream ( it does not form a skin with continued use ).

    Two 5 gram tubes of Aciclovir Cold Sore Cream ( It also treats the Shingles virus ).

    65 grams of Dencorub Heat Gel ( 26 percent Methyl Salicylate & 7 percent Menthol.)

    Mix thoroughly, and apply sparingly to the pain areas as required for pain relief.

    This treatment is inexpensive, as this quantity should last for 2 to 4 months, depending on frequency of application.

    It overcomes the need for expensive long term drugs that normally cause harmful affects to other parts of the body. 

    Try this treatment if you need long term pain relief.

    Kind Regards , Ray.


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  • Posted

    Hi Dan,

    You might try Wellbutrin (bupropion) for an antidepressant. It is far more effective than Elavil and does not have sedation as a side effect. It is not an SSRI, it's an atypical antidepressant which is in a class of its own. Years ago it was thought to be not as effective as SSRI's. Subsequent research debunked that, showed it to be every bit as effective, but many docs are not aware of that and still bypass it. I don't know what side effects you had with Cymbalta, but the most common one is a sexual side effect. Wellbutrin does not have that side effect. 

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  • Posted

    Hi Dan, well, I guess you've been the one appointed to make me feel better because "someone" has got it worse than me! Do you think there's been ANY slight improvement? I'm only about 9 months into my PHN and I can tell that there's been slight and slow progress. But if it's connected to your right arm and hand, unless you decide to become left handed I imagine there's not much you can do to avoid irritating those nerves. Hang in there!

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  • Posted

    Thank you Ray, I rarely have issues with my skin... It's sensitive and in some places unbearable? to touch, but my pain is more internal... My symptoms consist of shooting pain down the arm, throbbing pain, shocking (like electrical shocking), and the grandmother of them all: I feel agonizing pressure moving from my forearm down to the tips of my fingers... so much pressure that it feels like my fingertips are going to blow off!.

    ?Thankfully, I don't get that sensation too often...

    And thank you charlie58834, I actually just stopped taking Wellbutrin recently. I had been taking it for almost 10 years and it doesn't seem to do anything for me anymore.

    ?I take the Elavil at night time, It's a good substitute from the Zopiclone? that I had been taking for the last 8 years. also Elavil helps with nerve pain.

    Cymbalta also helps with PHN related nerve pain as well. however I get symptoms of Serotonin Syndrome, Basically I get extremely sick and have a hard time functioning with simple day to day tasks...

    ?Now I do take Methadone daily, Methadone has the same nerve pain qualities that Cymbalta has, but without the debilitating side effects...


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  • Posted

    Hi babs, I was told at the pain clinic I was going to a few years ago that I would probably have this pain the rest of my days. And being on my dominate limb, I have learned to my limits. I was in my mid 30s when this all went down, so learning on my left hand ain't gonna happen.

    ?I definitely have a better handle on this than I did after the first couple of years... I had my bout while my wife was pregnant with our daughter... my biggest fear was that I wouldn't be able to hold my little girl... but after she was born, there was nothing that would keep me from doing just that....

    We bought a house shortly after and with one bad limb I finished my basement! Of course it took me 4 times longer than it should've....

    ?Basically what I am saying.... sadly, I still have pretty intense pain in my arm... but I've learned my limits, I've learned how to live with it...

    ?I sincerely hope your pain clears up... hell, I hope all of our pain clears up... I don't wish this on anyone! ??But it does get a little better.

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