Bob and I had both hoped that today would be the answer to our prayer. We arrived early for his appointment with the Neurological Spine Specialist, and were called back to the examining room early; and then we sat for over an hour awaiting the doctor.
I soon learned why we'd waited so long. Here was another doctor willing to give us his undivided attention for however long it took. He had a beautiful French accent and a great bedside manner, but alas he was not able to perform the miracles for which we had waited.
He informed us that he didn't think the Compression Fracture in the L1 was responsible for all the excruciating pain Bob was experiencing, because it was too small. Because the Multiple Myeloma attacks and weakens the bones, he thought that the pain was coming from the cancer. He suggested there is a possiblity that there are tumors in his bones. The MM weakens the bones to the point that the spine is unable to support the body, thereby creating and causing unbearable pain - especially when Bob is up and on his feet.
The doctor ordered a Flexation Extension Xray on the Lumbar spine, and a CT Scan of the Lumbar Spine just to ensure that there are no other issues. He suggested that a custom back brace might be in order, to help support the spine and help the spine support the weight of Bob's body. So, tomorrow he goes to be measured for a back brace. This will be another in the long list of "things we've tried" to appease the "Gods of Pain".
Dr. Benae told us that there was nothing else he could do. There were no surgical procedures that could be performed - no magic. If the back brace did not work he would suggest an Injection Specialist (Pain Management). Steroids could be injected into the bone, in the area of the pain. When asked how long the effects of the procedure would last, his answer was "3 months, 6 months, or 1 week". Knowing how bad Bob's back hurts, and how ineffective all the drugs have been ......I knew which answers his would be, and I didn't like it. We asked about a Nerve Block and he responded that there was nothing pressing on the nerves, so he doubted that would help.
Through all the Chemo, Bob has never been nauseated. Today, I had to pull over to the side of the road - and he was sick, for the first time. I knew that all the pent up emotions, and all the hope that had been focused on this day, had caused this. He could no longer hold it in.
He has had manageable pain since noon Sunday (after the trip to the ER, and the steroid injection). We have tried to "stay ahead" of the pain with the 3 Fentanyl patches and the 6 mg of Dilauded every four hours. Is there a possibility that his body is adjusting? Maybe the injection helped to break the pain cycle, and the drugs are able to keep up. Whatever the reason, please God .....let him have one more night without pain.
And, it's time to say "thank you" for all your thoughts, prayers, support, calls, and love. Without you, this journey would be even harder than it is.