Mobility Restored

Bye bye ….. garage bound!

I had been using a pretty pink walker that was a bit too short because I couldn’t stand up when rising out of bed for quite a long time (2015) and needed the support until my legs got started walking.  I switched to this one when I had the walking accident last year.

My first post about leg pain and a drug called Simvastatin was on May 9, 2015.  There is nothing that can alter my thinking that all those struggles were caused by this drug. I FINALLY am free of the thigh pain that had me feeling like I was wheel-chair bound.  The research reads that it can take years before the debilitating effects of  Simvastatin subside and it did take years!  I praise God I wasn’t one of the unfortunate ones for whom the side effects are permanent.

If you have odd physical struggles, find a doctor who will listen to you and WORK with you to find the cause and solution.  Be your own best advocate!

Life After Simvastatin

This is the final entry on my story about Simvastatin (part 11).

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Day 1:  A couple of hours into the day I noticed I had less leg pain and thought “This is a remarkable difference in pain level.”

Day 2:  Half way through the day I noticed even less leg pain and thought “This is a significant improvement.”

Day 3:  A minimally painful day … more than yesterday but not as much as usual.

Day 4:  WOW!  Am I almost walking normally vs. my usual-of-late waddle/hobble/limp?  But wait … this new hip pain … maybe I need to lower my shoe lift and I did (from 10 mm to 8).

Day 5:  I can’t believe this … just an ache.  I’ll take a couple of Advil instead of 8.  Think I’ll try a good walk with the dog, and I did.

Day 6:  New hip pain when I walked the dog, and it hurt so much I had to stop and lower the lower lift from 8mm to 6.  Voila … pain gone!

Day 7:  Am I starting to sleep better?  I think I actually fell asleep promptly without dizziness and though I awoke mid-night … I did fall back to sleep rather quickly.  Minimal leg pain today.  Somebody at work told me I looked pretty today.  I thought “Gee … makeup and hair the same.  Wonder why today?”

Day 8:  Feeling like I can walk again, and so I head out with the dog.  OOPS!  Short leg is too high again and I lowered the lift to 3 mm.  Am I noticing greater clarity and brightness in my vision today?

Day 9:  Went to a happy hour with ladies I haven’t seen in a while.  They told me I looked “glowing” and my eyes appeared clear.  They asked if I had a new man in my life and of course I chuckled at that one!  I am walking soooo much better without pain although I still have to manually lift my leg to cross it.

Day 10:  Feeling some pain today which was resolved with a couple of Advil.  I also decided to try reducing the shoe lift again to not using one to see if that might help as well.

Day 11:  WOW!  Just an ache on the side of my thigh … praise God because I think He has put me on the track of restoring my health and wellness!

Day 12:  TODAY!  I am sleeping better and feeling better when I get out of bed in the morning.  My wobbling at that time takes only a few steps to resolve.  NO MORE KNIFE-LIKE STABBING PAINS IN MY THIGH, and I am walking normally without shoe lifts (glad I didn’t toss my flip-flops prematurely).  I can cross my left leg slowly with focused intent with some tightness and ache but definitely without pain.  My blood pressure numbers are good and my morning fasting glucose numbers have dropped 20-30 points.  I haven’t had a dizzy or drowsy spell nor a leg cramp since off Simvastatin.  Naturally my mood has improved, and I am looking forward to starting other projects I have been thinking and talking about for a couple of years.  All this is just 12 days!  God is good, and I thank Him for the dizzy spells that took me to the cardiologist who let a light bulb go off in his head to help me.  I’m continuing to hope and pray that I am one of the lucky ones who will not suffer with Simvastatin side effects for the rest of my life.  Thanks to my friends who have prayed for me because now I think I’m off that “long black train”!

 

There is no doubt Simvastatin and all statins (according to the research) saves lives.  There is also no doubt that the side effects can cause death (according to the research) for some people.  Don’t just believe me.  Do your own research.  Take charge of your own health.  Doctors are great and to be respected; however, they are also human and therefore imperfect.  I’m probably going to fire the first 4 physicians I consulted during these past couple of years about my leg pain.  I’m also going to research supplements to help me maintain my own health issues without resorting to statins in the future.  So far I am learning a lot from mercola.com and drsinatra.com … both renown physicians in the field of health and wellness.  Any suggestions from readers of this blog are welcomed!

 

This is my story, and I’m sticking to it!  HA HA!  As for YOU … never make decisions to change or stop your medications without first consulting your physician.

 

I wish you all health and wellness in your lives, and remember to share what I’ve posted with others you know who have a decision to make about cholesterol medications called “statins”.

 

 

 

 

Finally Help With Simvastatin

This is a continuation of my story about Simvastatin (part 10).

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Like I wrote early on, I have struggled with side effects of Simvastatin for years.  I consulted 4 doctors about my leg/muscle pain.  Not one of them picked up on the possibility of a bad drug interaction for me.  Not one of them advised me to take COq10 with Simvastatin to protect the heart and muscles from this drug.  And of course as time went on, my symptoms increased in type and intensity.  I was truly suffering.

 

After a scary dizzy episode, it occurred to me to check with a cardiologist because after all, this could be a symptom of a heart problem, and I had not yet researched Simvastatin.  So I made the appointment and I’m glad I did!  He scolded me for not monitoring my blood pressure and glucose on a regular basis (anymore) and confirmed that dizzy spells COULD be either heart or glucose related. He told me to monitor both for a month, get a blood test, and return with my notes. So I did. One month later my blood test showed an AC1 of 6.5 (not bad for D2) and solid blood pressure reading in the safe zone, so he ruled these possibilities out of the equation.  We started brainstorming!  Not a blood clot because I’d be dead by now because it would have traveled for sure.  Not a cancer because something would have shown on blood test.  Then he lightly put his hand on my thigh, and I winced in pain.  How about a side effect of a medication?  He shared information about Simvastatin and advised I stop It and see what happens because after all …. It’s the only way to know and besides, my cholesterol numbers were very very low so much so he said it’s worth the chance for a few months.  OK!  I’ll do it!  Of course by now I’m willing to do ANYthing to feel better and maybe get my life back.

 

This is when I started my research, and I just don’t know what I was or wasn’t thinking to have not done it sooner.  Unfortunately the research reports that some people improve with discontinuing the drug, and others do not.  As a matter of fact, I read countless reports of symptoms continuing to worsen after not taking Simvastatin which sounds like a death sentence to me based on my own experiences these past years. I could only hope and pray I would be a lucky one. We’ll see what happened to me next in my final post about his topic.

 

More stories …..

http://www.peoplespharmacy.com/2014/02/06/statins-irreversible-muscle-damage-als-like-syndrome-and-myositis/

http://www.drugs.com/answers/how-long-does-it-take-a-statin-get-out-of-your-471204.html

Short Leg and Simvastatin

This is a continuation of my story about Simvastatin (part 2).

thCAWFNT70
The only relief I could find for all of my lower body pain was in Ibuprofen, stretching exercises, and rest as much as possible after work and on weekends meaning basically loafing on the sofa with my affected leg propped up.  My life consisted of pain and how to manage it, and even so, these approaches were minimally short lived.  Five months ago I finally broke down and went to see a chiropractor who was reported to me as having helped a few people I know with their aches and pains.  I felt instant pain relief after the first adjustment, but it didn’t last longer than an hour.  In fact, the back, hip, and leg pain got worse!  After 3 visits, I asked for an image test of some sort because what oh what is the source of this pain?  So off for an X-ray I go!  The resulting impressions:

(1) Degenerative disc disease most severe at L5-S1. (2) Mild apparent limb length discrepancy (10 mm).  (3) Mild right and moderate left osteoarthritis.

leg length

Leg length discrepancy?  Really?  Since WHEN?  Dr. Chiropractor said LLD sets in by adolescence and because we are young and strong then, our bodies compensate for the differentiation and we do fine until mid-age but certainly (get this …) by YOUR age people show significant lower back pain.  He said this is the reason my adjustments are not sticking; why my back and hip are hurting so much; and the resolution might possibly be quite simple: shoe lifts inserted into the shoes.  He said it will take a long time for my body to straighten itself out.  Well this sounded reasonable to me, and so I tried the lifts.  My hip and back pain significantly decreased, and I noticed that being barefoot for any reason at home brought on tremendous pains which disappointed me because while not a barefoot princess per se, I do luv my flip flops during warm weather months.  I knew I had to say good-bye to them.

BUT the stabbing pain in my thigh continued, and while on one hand some of this made sense, I was still feeling we are all “missing something”.  I still felt wheelchair bound and starting to think my active life as I had once known it to be had taken a turn towards a slow ending of pain and immobility.

TBC but first …. read this article I’ve included.

From articles.mercola.com  …

“Muscle pain and weakness is actually the most common side effect of statin drugs, and is thought to occur because statins activate the gene atrogin-1 gene, which plays a key role in muscle atrophy.

In severe cases, a life-threatening condition called rhabdomyolysis, in which your muscle cells break down, can also develop.

However, muscle pain and weakness is often downplayed as a minor side effect of statin drugs, and one that typically goes away within a couple weeks of stopping the drugs.

In reality, as this new study points out, if you’re experiencing any muscle pain when taking statin drugs, it could be because structural damage is occurring, and this damage may occur even when tests for a protein thought to signal injury are normal.

Further, the damage may persist even after statin use is halted, meaning these drugs may cause permanent muscle damage.

Folks, this is in no way a minor side effect or nuisance. Muscle pain and weakness may be an indication that your body tissues are actually breaking down — a condition that can cause kidney damage.

One thing is for sure. You should NOT ignore symptoms of pain and muscle weakness if you are taking statin drugs, as they can deteriorate into even more dangerous conditions, including death.

What makes this extreme risk even more unacceptable is the fact that statin drugs are almost always unnecessary.”

FYI from Wikipedia:

Muscle atrophy is defined as a decrease in the mass of the muscle; it can be a partial or complete wasting away of muscle.

Muscle Pain and Simvastatin

This is the beginning of my story about Simvastatin (part 1).

leg pain

I was prescribed Simvastatin in 2012 because my cholesterol reached a new high of 220 which is a number some would laugh at in regards to “high”.  My PCP explained that since I have high blood pressure, Diabetes 2 (both managed), and have a significant family history of these diseases that I am at high risk for a heart attack.  At that time, I was a primary-care giver and under a tremendous amount of stress on all levels.  During the time I cared for my twin sister who struggled with Alzheimer’s common to Down Syndrome, every time I went to the doc for a check up I returned home with a new diagnosis  In addition to being disgusted with my family genetics, I was scared for my own mortality.  So I started the drug.  I didn’t connect the dots at that time but shortly afterwards, I started to notice lower back and hip pain and soon left leg (thigh) weakness as evidenced by my leg sometimes giving out on me.  I wrote these symptoms off in my mind as having injured my back lifting and moving my sister as needed at the time.

As time (weeks, months, and years) went on, the pain intensified to the point that nine months ago I frequently could not step on my left foot. The weakness changed to stabbing pains that felt as if a butcher knife had been inserted into the front (anterior) of my thigh, and my leg would buckle so much that I would stumble and lose my step.  This began to occur daily and then several times during the day.  I found myself leaning on walls to support myself as I tried to walk.  I would crawl on all fours to get around.  I would use chairs with wheels as a walker-type support to get from place to place.  These symptoms grew worse during the night so much so that I would writhe in pain for hours.  When I awoke, I had to hold on to anything available before I could gain any sense of mobility.  I felt as if I was heading for a wheelchair-bound lifestyle within a few more months.  However, at this point in my story I did not know WHY this was happening, and although I had reported this pain to 4 doctors and had 3 MRIs no conclusion was attained.  So NOW my DEDICATED quest for answers began … this HAD to be more than having injured my back years ago!

TBC!

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/08/06/statins-cause-muscle-damage.aspx

“Muscle pain and weakness is actually the most common side effect of statin drugs, and is thought to occur because statins activate the gene atrogin-1 gene, which plays a key role in muscle atrophy.

In severe cases, a life-threatening condition called rhabdomyolysis, in which your muscle cells break down, can also develop.

However, muscle pain and weakness is often downplayed as a minor side effect of statin drugs, and one that typically goes away within a couple weeks of stopping the drugs.

In reality, as this new study points out, if you’re experiencing any muscle pain when taking statin drugs, it could be because structural damage is occurring, and this damage may occur even when tests for a protein thought to signal injury are normal.

Further, the damage may persist even after statin use is halted, meaning these drugs may cause permanent muscle damage.

Folks, this is in no way a minor side effect or nuisance. Muscle pain and weakness may be an indication that your body tissues are actually breaking down — a condition that can cause kidney damage.

One thing is for sure. You should NOT ignore symptoms of pain and muscle weakness if you are taking statin drugs, as they can deteriorate into even more dangerous conditions, including death.

What makes this extreme risk even more unacceptable is the fact that statin drugs are almost always unnecessary.”