Thursday, 9 May 2013

Dealing with neuropathic pain

I had a useful visit to the pain clinic on Tuesday. Val accompanied me and I was interviewed by a pleasant team of three: a doctor (physiologist sort-of-person), an acupuncturist and a psychologist. They all agreed that they could help me and were impressed by what I was already doing to help myself. It was also agreed that the pains may or may not be anything to do with PD and that I might have something quite different - fibromyalgia was mentioned, with which I am familiar - as well as this odd parkinsonism, but that it didn't really matter what it was. Their job is to help me manage my pain, not to diagnose what's causing it; a very pragmatic approach which appeals to me.

The upshot is that initially, I will have a course of four 'Westernised' acupuncture (i.e. with an understanding of what is being done in terms of the nervous system rather than just traditional acupuncture points) treatments starting after my June holiday, since I has never tried it and was very open to the possibility that it could help. Thereafter, I will be supported according to my needs and what works. Mindfulness could be another helpful pathway which the psychologist will undertake, aided by 'guru' Val (who is very keen on meditation). And the doctor explained that, among other things, I can have small injections of anaesthetic into my principal aching muscles which can give relief for a while.

So all-in-all, a very positive and worthwhile visit. Well done the NHS!