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Posts Tagged ‘doctors’

From the second Lyrica commerical -- the only one with someone who doesn't look like my grandma. (Not everyone with FM has grey hair!)

The Lyrica commercials help promote Fibromyalgia awareness. But the second spot is the only one featuring someone who doesn't look like my grandma.

When commercials for the Fibromyalgia drug Lyrica started airing on network television, my friends and coworkers started saying, “Hey, I saw a thing about that condition you have.” At first that doesn’t sound like much, but when people can’t see your illness and dismiss it as hypochondria, simple things like this help.

There are even some doctors who don’t “believe in” Fibromyalgia. (I still don’t understand this.) The press that has come as a result of the Lyrica launch and marketing has really helped the FM community. I was pleased to read last week that Pfizer, the manufacturer of Lyrica, is going to devote marketing dollars to promoting Fibromyalgia’s legitimacy. The more people who have heard of our condition, the easier it is for us to be open about our issues and needs.

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The normal ways to get Vitamin D aren't cutting it.

The normal ways to get Vitamin D aren't cutting it.

Everyone gets the standard “vitamins are good for you” talk at their annual check-up, but this time around my doctor had a new idea. She wanted to run blood work just to make sure my Fibromyalgia wasn’t masking anything. (Make sure your doctors do this. Often we attribute new aches to chronic pain, when in actuality they may be from something else – think thyroid.) Anyway, in addition to the standard battery, she wanted to check my Vitamin D levels. Turns out, several of her other Fibro patients had low levels. Always looking for a solution, I let them run the additional test.

Sure enough, when the results came back my Vitamin D level was incredibly low*. Less than half of the low-end of normal. Eek. My doctor prescribed some heavy-duty Vitamin D supplements. Two months in, and I feel a difference. I don’t think I’m into the normal levels just yet, but I’ve noticed I can go longer between taking pain medication and I have more energy. My doctor has reported similar affects for her other patients. Other physicians have noted similar results.

There are plenty of reasons to fix low Vitamin D levels, including research saying you’ll die sooner. Perhaps there is a link between this deficiency and part of the Fibro pain? It has been linked to Osteoporosis, but more recent research finds the lack of Vitamin D connected to “unexplained muscle and bone pain.”

I’ve read a handful of articles where researchers and doctors surmise that this must be the cause of Fibromyalgia. I don’t buy that, but I could see it be a contributing or exacerbating factor.

Has anyone else tried the Vitamin D supplementation? If so, please share your experiences.

One quick note before ending: You can have too much Vitamin D. So, don’t go nuts with the stuff. Check in with your doctor and have him or her run a blood test. If you’re actually deficient, the over-the-counter stuff won’t make a considerable difference anyway. You don’t want to feel worse, do you?

* Just to make things clear to those of you thinking that I’m an anti-milk lady – I drink my organic vitamin D milk three times a week and have a silly affinity for Blue Bell ice cream. (Our freezer is always stocked.) Though, I am very fair skinned, so I don’t get my vitamins the ol’ fashioned way (the sun).

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