Monday, 17 August 2015

Pain and more pain!

I am writing this in an effort to distract myself from the pain I am not enjoying. I used to think that when it came to pain I was "Mr Tough Guy"!  Sometimes when asked at the dentist, prior to a drill session, if I wanted an injection I would say "No, just get on with it"!  Then I felt I had coped OK with pain after my large hernia op and when I had the TURP procedure.  My shoulder rotator cuff operation was a whole new ball game, that really hurt!  Once the pain blocker injection wore off it was hell, but as the days slipped by things improved and 3 months later I was glad I had the op.

Currently I am suffering three types of physical pain (please don't feel obliged to read on). The cancer in my right lung means that it hurts a bit like I have broken several ribs. This pain is always there but if I keep still and don't try to breath deeply it becomes bearable and I can get to sleep. 

The "killer diller" pain (I have no idea where that expression came from) is one that has developed in intensity over the months I have been ill. It started as an irritating pain over my right shoulder and down my arm. Sometimes it would go away for a few days, hurrah! Sadly recently it has increased in intensity and as well as affecting my shoulder has moved down into high level in my back. 

So what have I done in order to fight back? Well I rigorously follow the recommended pain control regime suggested by Bernie the nurse at St Christopher's Hospice. This involves 2 paracetamol tablets 4 times a day at 4 hourly intervals, plus a 10 mg OxyContin tablet twice a day (8am and 8pm) this is the 12 hour dose. Then as top up I have 5 ml of OxyNorm in liquid form if the other stuff is not coping. They are both oxycodone hydrochlorides.  Sadly at the moment I am not coping!  I have also tried lying, sitting and standing in every conceivable position (except on my head, although that has been tempting) to relieve the pain.  Hot shower water directed at my back helps for a while.  A heated bean bag filled with wheat (I think) masks some pain if it is hot enough.

The third type of pain I experience is from the urinary catheter I still have fitted. This was fitted some months ago as the morphine I was on for pain relief was inhibiting my water works from functioning. The catheter does its job but it does painfully irritate my penis forcing me to wriggle or walk about to release the pain.

Last night after I had vomited twice (not sure why but was I glad I had really chewed up the bacon sandwich I had for supper) I managed to get to sleep before midnight. Sadly I woke in a lot of pain around 3am.  I put my bean bag in the microwave and heated it up and returning to bed decided to check out a couple of blogs recommended by one of nurses at the Marsden. So now I have visited Mavis Nye's blog and also looked at Mesothelioma Warriors web site. This led me on to find out about the Medical Innovations Bill that Lord Saatchi is trying to get through Parliament.

24 Jun 2015 - Lord Saatchi's Medical Innovation Bill passes first hurdle. A bill which will offer legal protection to doctors who try out innovative new techniques or drugs on patients when all else has failed is a step closer to becoming law.

I think this is a move in the right direction, it won't help me but I would not mind being a guinea pig if it helped other souls. In the meantime I battle on supported by my loving wife.

I got a bit of a surprise at my meeting with the doctor at the Marsden last Thursday.  She told me that the consultants had reviewed my case and decided to give me a break from chemo for a month. Then I would have a CT scan to see if the chemo was working and based on the findings they would decide the future course of action. So there was no chemo on the Friday and I had a goodish day.  Then on the Saturday the pain really kicked in!

A big thank you to all the people thinking of me, praying for me and contacting me, it does help. Watch this space!

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