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Thread: Depression

  1. #21
    Sort of nice to know that I am not alone in my misery. Sort of because I don't want to have this misery and I don't want anyone else to have it either. My injury (T-5/6) happened 3 1/2 years ago. Every day since then has been an absolute struggle. Depression and a ring of pain right at the injury level makes it hard to get through each day. The pain is 24/7 and I really believe that I could live a reasonably normal life if I could get a large amount of relief. I do drive, I go to work part time, I can get around ok. But the severe pain just beats me down every day. Add in full body spasms, dry mouth and grogginess from meds, having to stick a tube down to my bladder to urinate (and having to take oxybutynin to reduce the number of "blow outs"), having to stick fingers you know where to have a bowel movement, having little trunk control, waiting for the next issue to rear its ugly head (UTI, pressure sore, autonomic disreflexia?), burning sensations in my bottom and legs and shocks down my legs. Plus the band of pain has its own wonderful sidebar manifestations: periodic stabbing events, the band of pain will suddenly tighten for about 15 minutes, hypersensitive skin on my chest. Sore shoulders from wheelchair use. I know I have left something out. Oh and I'm paralyzed from T-5/6 down.

    Not to mention physical insecurities. Where once I had strong, muscular legs and a stomach that wasn't a six-pack but wasn't a keg either. Now a "quad-belly" that shakes like the proverbial bowl full of jelly and skinny legs make for a wonderful combination. Boo hoo woe is me!

    So depression should be considered the norm for us. And I have it. I've seen psychologists (who, by the way, cannot write scripts) and have taken various anti-depression meds (currently on a combo of zoloft and buproprion) but some days I just don't want to get out of bed. Especially for someone who led a very active lifestyle (I'm 57) - jogging, softball, golf, working out, etc. Now PT, weights, a hand cycle, therabands. Doesn't even come close to comparing to jogging outside, playing softball, golfing etc. Was looking forward to retirement, going on long walks with my wife, camping, hiking, visiting anyone with stairs. I'm told to "focus on the things I can do". I get a good laugh out of that, though it makes the band of pain worse to laugh. I know there are lots of wheelchair activities like basketball, softball, golf, etc. but mostly those are for the "lucky" paras that have injuries at T-11/12 and have some measure of trunk control.

    As for the pain, I have tried just about everything. Meds - lyrica, cymbalta, oxycontin, morphine, a pain pump trial, a spinal cord stimulator trial, acupuncture, essential oils messages - none of these worked. Things that have worked: radio frequency ablation (which did stop the skin sensitivity issue for a few weeks) and a combo of dilaudid and gabapentin, which reduces the pain from a normal of 8 down to a 6 (for a few hours).

    So you are not alone in your depression or any of the reasons why you should be depressed.
    Last edited by MikeRobison; 01-20-2016 at 07:46 PM.

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