I woke up this morning. Which is always a handy way to start the day, and took stock of the pain relief options.
At the start of June I didn’t need any. At the start of October I’m rattling around with the number of pills inside me trying to work out which ones are helping, which ones make me sluggish and which ones s nod me loopy and should only be used as a last resort.
I gave been quite successful in blending my four medicines together in a way that maximises pain relief and allows me to recall the time fans needed between drugs. My Friday night pain meltdown was, however, the end to this.
My hospital stay brought another drug into the equation. They weren’t interested in my naproxen. But they did introduce me to oramorph. And I have seventeen doses left!
Morphine packed with sugar. Four doses a day maximum. It’s effective quite quickly too. Interestingly, it doesn’t seem to last long as a form of pain relief. A couple of hours before things start hurting again. But it has transformed the nature of that pain. Or at least it has coincided with that change.
Pain can be hard to describe. Friday night’s dash to the hospital was inspired by what I’d describe as a flaring pain changing in frequency that bloody hurt. It improved through the day in hospital. But I prefer to compare the night pain. Cancer pain, apparently, likes to dance the night away.
After watching a scarily good Manchester City win at Chelsea I played the game of defer my medicine. If it’s only going to benefit me a couple of hours I’ll take it as close to sleep as possible. Despite spoon, I swigged an estimated 5ml from the bottle. Spillage unacceptable! Down it went followed by paracetamol and tramadol. I quickly found sleep.
But only for a couple of hours. I woke a little confused. There was quite severe pain, but not flaring. More a constant “the horse kicked me here” kind of pain. Less fluctuations in how it felt. I downed two naproxen and hot back to sleep.
This morning I’ve taken no medicines. It’s a chance to reset the clock on some and I’ve also completely forgotten what time I took others. My pain levels are also relatively low and, other than heading downstairs for the kettle, I’m planning an inactive morning.
I also need to plan my scripts for Monday’s medical appointments. Oncobabe needs to get me settled on my next cancer drug before I get to Australia in seven weeks. Assuming my cancer type qualifies for the drug. The bone biopsy that I may need isn’t even booked yet. Hopefully last month’s blood test has given me a favourable answer and the biopsy isn’t needed.
I need to have a proper pain discussion with my GP too. What has worked in the past is less likely to work now. What are the alternatives? My hospital nurse was quite surprised that tramadol made little difference to my wellbeing.
Once I know where I’m heading medication wise I can contact airlines and hotels for special assistance getting around Australia. Disabled bathroom access is now important to me. There is also a little fear that I might have to cancel the whole trip.