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COPD – the beginning. Pain – the end

COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) is not painful.  We simply cannot breathe easily.  Some of us are on supplement oxygen – others chug along noisily, some less noisy.

“Question: Is having pain in the lung typical of COPD?

Answer: Chronic lung pain is not commonly associated with COPD. However, pain can come from the wall of the chest and not directly from the lungs – this in fact can be seen in COPD. Pain in the chest can come from coughing very hard and straining the muscles of the chest. Pain in the chest can be due to a rib fracture from coughing hard. Pain in the back of the chest can come from osteoporosis, or thinning of the bones. Check with your healthcare provider to find out the cause of your pain. If you have new chest pain, or have pain that frightens you, call 911 to go to the emergency room at the nearest hospital.”

 http://www.nationaljewish.org/healthinfo/conditions/copd-chronic-obstructive-pulmonary-disease/faq/

The problem for some of us is that COPD leads to other stuff – some of it painful – none of it desirable.  That is where I am – I have gathered a bunch of other stuff since my 1997 stay in Harrison Medical Center.

Do to inattention at putting on my stockings when I needed to – timing is crucial – the Cellulitis/Lymphedema is back and trying to heal.  It should have healed by now.  A brief stay in Harrison gave a great jump-start of healing my left leg but the healing has been set back and that means the pain is unrelenting.

A problem seems to be that the long homemade brush had an end tied cord that caught in the bristles of the soft baby brush and ripped the half healed sores open when I was in the shower to gently cleanse the wounds before my husband wrapped them again.

I did not know why it was so painful until I lifted the brush to rinse it and saw the cord end stuck in the soft bristles. I have recut the length of the cord so it cannot happen again.

Pain overtakes a life – it has taken over mine…and no blame except to me.   It has been over a year since my legs got bad and lymph fluid wept and the ‘blame’ is my own doorstep.  I let other stuff get in the way of getting my stockings on. I dropped the ball – as it’s turned out – on my own left foot.

I have never liked taking pain pills for any reason but for a lung patient – it is harmful.  Trouble is, right now – I do not care.  What good is saving your lungs when pain keeps you awake and in agony?  Crying in pain chokes off my airway and I still my mind to focus on deep breathing.  I take a pain pill to sleep and I take a pain pill to endure being awake waiting for my leg to heal.

Should I be afraid of becoming a drug addict?  At this point, I’m more afraid of not wanting to wake up to another day of the same pain.

Funny how drug abuse by drug addicts shut down pain relief for people who medically need it.  Doctors become afraid to prescribe pain pills for fear their patients will become addicted….and patients become afraid to take it.

Read the latest policy by the state – to track:

““Having a patient’s prescription history gives prescribers a more complete view of patient care when they prescribe or dispense controlled substances,” Washington State Secretary of Health Mary Selecky said in a press release. “This new service is another tool for patient care and safety.””

Read more: http://pugetsoundblogs.com/kitsap-crime/2011/10/14/state-to-begin-monitoring-prescriptions-for-pain-medication-in-2012/#ixzz1cT5a9dJ1

Josh Farley’s “State to begin monitoring prescriptions for pain medication in 2012” article is timely.

The only people tracked here are medical patients and their doctors.  The druggies and drug dealers remain in a dark, untracked place of anonymity.

If doctors are leery of writing scripts for pain medications for their patients – what will happen to those patients forced to endure unrelenting pain?

Yes, Josh – I think this is an invasion of people’s privacy.

Thanks for reading…. Sharon O’Hara

2 thoughts on “COPD – the beginning. Pain – the end

  1. I am sorry Sharon, I guess I am following in your footsteps. The VA gave me a chest x-ray and it had a white spot on my lung. They told me to see my health provider (Group Death) I mean Group Health. They put a clip on my nipple to rule out the phantom shadow on the lung. Too bad the clip and the white spot both showed up in different areas. Group Health never diagnosed it at COPD. But a couple weeks ago when I went in Urgent care and underwent a breathing treatment the noted COPD in my health chart. I had another chest xray because of the pain you stated in your post. I guess it is just the muscles that got strained. I guess there weren’t any fractures or they would have been noted. I hope you take care of yourself Sharon, I enjoy reading your post on Kitsapsun.com. I would like to learn more about COPD from someone affected by it. I wonder how much longer I will be able to work. I am just a young guy at 52.

  2. Gosh Sharon I knew you had COPD but until I read this I never knew how bad this is. Curious about all this Pot for pain stuff going on. Do you think it might help you? Have you tried it? Just curious!

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