My Name is Narelle and I suffer from a condition called Pudendal Neuralgia for which there is no current cure. This is My Story of how Chronic Pain can change your life in oh so many ways:
My Story – Part 2
I was told that it could take up to 12 months for the pain to subside following the surgery and that some medication would still be required with the aim of this decreasing throughout this time. As I wanted to give my body the best possible chance of a positive outcome I took time off work, and at the 5 month mark I was told I could begin reducing my medications. That was in April of 2010. I returned to work part-time as an Exam Invigilator, which was a one-off position for a few hours over 3 days over a two-week period. Following this success I interviewed for an Online Educator, teaching Cert 111 in School Support, and obtained this position. This was a 9-5pm office job, I thought this would be an easier position even though the pay was nearly $30,000 per annum less that I was previously earning. The position was also located in my suburb which originally meant I could walk to work, but before I left I was having to drive to work in an attempt to reduce my pain levels. My employers were not aware of my diagnosed condition, although I had let them know of a previous back injury, for which I had set up my desk ergonomically.
By the end of August, the pain had begun to reach unbearable levels. I was undergoing Osteotherapy at this time and taking significant amount of opioids, neurotin etc at this time. The Professor that I was under called me stating that the Osteopath had called him regarding the high level of pain and he booked me in for a Nerve Block the next day. It had become difficult for me to sit, even on an ergonomic kneeling chair, and I would have to kneel on the floor and continue my work at the computer station that I worked on. I was encouraged to talk walks as often as was needed by my employer. There were days were the level of pain was so extreme and I would be in bed by 5.30-6pm trying to rest so I could be at work the following day and would have to spend most Saturdays in bed. In early December 2010 I was rushed to hospital in acute pain. The surgery has not been a success. I was admitted for a week while my medications were adjusted accordingly. The end result, there is no solution for my condition. I was consoled by the Professor and his team but no one was able to offer any alternatives other than taking the following medications and praying for a future cure. Medications include – MS Contin / Gabapentin(Neuroblockers) /Morphine sulphate/Endep/Valium/Solutions for the constipation caused by the medications. I have taken by ambulance or had to attend the Emergency Room several times since December. I spent more time in hospital throughout January which became increasingly frustrating for my employer as they only employ a small amount of staff and one employee missing was significantly noticeable. An ambulance had to be called to my place of employment as my pain was again uncontrollable by medications. When ambulance is required it is because I am unable to move in my current position, due to chronic pelvic, and other embarrassing pain, such as vaginal and rectal pain. The Ambulance Officers that I attend in my area often remembered me and would quickly begin medications for pain relief, usually the “green whistle” and morphine injections before transferring me to the Emergency Room. My emotional and physical ability was exhausted during the next stays in hospital. I terminated my employment at the end of January as my condition had deteriorated to such a point that any movements including sitting and laying was not providing pain relief. I underwent a trial of a Neuro-Stimulator in March. Unfortunately the trial was unsuccessful due to elevated Blood Pressure, nausea and significant increase in pain.
I was then referred for further treatment to the RPA Pain Clinic and at which I am still a patient. I have had two nerve blocks since July, a ketamine infusion and also had Pulse Radio-Frequency to the Pudendal Nerve. Only one of the two nerve blocks was successful, which is sometimes the case.
I currently see my GP, a Psychologist, Pain Psychiatrist, Specialist Pain Doctors at my local Pain Clinic, Physiotherapist.