My wife's a mess, where to start?
Hello, I am new to the forum, been reading the site for about 6 months.
Short version: 31, female, 5’2”, 135 lb. medically diagnosed with IBS w/spastic colon, fibromyalgia, insomnia, narcolepsy, GERD, PCOS, and ruptured spinal discs. Also experiences arthritic joint pain, migraine headaches, fatigue, muscle weakness, transient numbness. Where do we start?
My wife is 31 and has chronic health issues that are highly debilitating. She is in the process of getting disability with Social Security. The issues seemed to start 5 years ago with GERD that got worse and worse and didn't respond to medication. She got a Nissen Fundoplication and that solved the issue. Then during her pregnancy 3.5 years ago she had severe morning sickness and gall stones. She generally felt like crap during pregnancy. Three years ago she gave birth and then had her gall bladder removed a couple weeks later. We were thinking that these two changes would get her back to normal, but this is when everything went to hell. The gall stones (there were some residual symptoms) but other stuff got much worse and new symptoms appeared. In 2010 she has hundreds of doctor visits and tests trying to figure out what was going on.
In 2011 she had another pregnancy with hyperemesis, worsening back pain, sudden and severe depression and sleep problems. During labor she had a neurological event which has never been diagnosed/explained, but the effect was similar to a small stroke or a traumatic ischemic attack. Since that event, she has experienced intermittent numbness in her arms, legs, and face. After giving birth she was diagnosed with ruptured discs in L4/5, and L5/S1.
In 2012 she had a Selective Endoscopic Discectomy, which was not successful in relieving back pain. She was diagnosed with iron anemia, got infusions and is no longer anemic. She was diagnosed with hyperthyroid, which seems to have now resolved itself. She has filed for disability. We’ve seen dozens of doctors, and she’s (rightfully) fed up with their inability to help, as well as the fact that they are mostly assholes (going to 200 doctor appointments a year sucks triply because (a) you can barely do anything else with your days (b) it’s way expensive (c) you have to talk to a bunch of prick doctors). She feels like she's got the body of an 80 year old at 31, it's completely miserable.
Her situation has some many similarities to success stories I’ve read (Tons of Doctors and No Solution | Mark's Daily Apple, Brissia’s Story – How a Paleo Diet Helped Her Fully Live Life and Reduce Fibromyalgia Symptoms) so I’m hopeful something in this lifestyle can be of help. So here I am, hoping that someone can sift through this and help us imagine a nutritional/behavioral/primal plan of attack that makes some sense. Here are some ideas that I/we had:
1) Elimination diet: dairy (tried this for a week without impact, could try longer)
2) Elimination diet: grains
3) Elimination diet: fructose
4) Probiotic (she tried Align and felt worse, but could try something different)
5) Sleep in a different bed to eliminate disruptions (our youngest wakes once per night)
6) Wake without an alarm (this would be contrary to doctor orders and would require a big lifestyle shift since we share one car)
7) Exercise: water aerobics or evening walks, she's too weak for much else
We appreciate all your help and ideas, thanks in advance.
T. H. Wilson
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