Saturday, November 18, 2017

Celeste’s Saturday Salutes to Chronic Pain, 2nd Issue


Celeste’s Saturday Salutes to Chronic Pain honors the collaborative spirit of fellow bloggers, advocates, and the many friends who share this journey. Your encouragement is an inspiration to me.


In healing,,Celeste



SATURDAY SALUTES

Comment: Fair and balanced reality
Comment: Decisions at the top are being made by special interest. Make no mistake.
Comment: "We are relief Seekers."
Comment:  An honest account is necessary to turn trials into triumph.


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PREVIOUS SATURDAY SALUTES

Celeste’s Saturday Salutes to Chronic Pain – Maiden Issue



Thank you guests and fellow pain survivors
October 2017 blog visits - 13,269   website visits – 14,820



~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."


Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.

All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Celeste’s Saturday Salutes to Chronic Pain


In 2012 and early 2013 I published KaleidoPain News: Changing Colors of Chronicity, a monthly blog newsletter that highlighted articles of particular interest to me. I started the newsletter because I believe in the power of collaboration, I believe our perceptions are based on what we know and that considering other points of view can motivate and educate. I believe embracing change sustains relevance. So change it is.

Thanks to the collaborative spirit shared by fellow bloggers and advocates who share my work, I was motivated to create Celeste’s Saturday Salutes to Chronic Pain.

 In healing,,Celeste



SATURDAY SALUTES





Sarah Anne Shockley @ThPainCompanion: Why Loving in Little Ways is Big in a Chronic Life



CELESTE’S TOP TRENDING BLOGS






THANK YOU TO MY GUESTS AND FELLOW PAIN SURVIVORS

October 2017 blog visits - 13,269

October 2017 website visits – 14,820



"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.


All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Update Oska® Pulse – PEMF for Chronic Pain and Cellular Healing


In May of this year (2017), I posted the following blog on my review of the Oska® Pulse Pulsed Electromagnetic Field (PEMF) device. You will find a plethora of information in that blog, too.

Since that time, a lot has happened for Oska Wellness and for me.

I have seen continued improvement in my pain and I am committed to using Oska every day! I learned the value in this when my pain started to escalate again this summer. As always, I asked myself, “what am I doing, or not doing?” It didn’t take long to find the answer. I was busy because my pain was better and I THOUGHT I could decrease the frequency of using Oska, wrong. I have come to accept that I happen to be one of the folks who are more resistant, most likely because of the many years I have lived with chronic pain from multiple sources. So, I got back to my previous routine and my pain diminished significantly. That is when I made the decision to become an advocate for Oska®.

I will not say anything outlandish or misleading. Oska works by helping our body heal itself and we are all different. But, I will say it is valuable tool for me. I shared my experience with my 91-year-old father; the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree when it comes to spinal disease. He was eager to try it for his own back pain. On MRI, his lumbar spine looks like a spiral staircase. I was blown away when he told me he has significant improvement in his pain and mobilization in a short period of time. In my experience, I have no doubt, Oska Wellness PEMF technology works!

I am not surprised that Oska Wellness is one of the fastest growing startup tech companies for developing a PEMF device that can be used directly by consumers, or that Consumer Technology named Oska Wellness as one of three tech startups that are “changing the world”. The technology has been used in the medical field for years, and now we have a device that works and we can use it at home.  

The folks at Oska Wellness focus on consumer satisfaction. Use Oska Pulse for 30 days and if you’re not completely satisfied, you can return it for a full refund. If you have questions, you can contact them online or by phone.

Should you decide to try Oska, you will get $55 discount if you apply my code, CCRN60 at checkout.
 



My readers know I promote integrative care, and I am so excited that I can share this with you. 





Blog review May 18, 2018


"I have been given this product as part of a product review through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company."

After reading the testimonies of others about how well Oska® Pulse was working for them,  I was excited when my device arrived.

I had already gotten some background information and this is what I found. Peer reviewed studies show pulsed electro-magnetic field (PEMF) therapy works for a plethora of conditions. And, since I used to write for Sharecare, I was glad to see Dr. Oz  say, “PEMF therapy is FDA-approved to fuse bones and has been cleared in certain devices to reduce swelling and joint pain.”  

How does it work?

The Oska Pulse is a PEMF devise that acts by massaging inflammatory cells causing them to dissipate. It doesn't move and there isn't an electrical current like that of a TENS unit. 

Features

An important feature of the device is that it turns off in 30 minutes after it completes four cycles of different pulse electromagnetic frequencies. You don't have to think about it. When it turns off, it will make three short beeps. You can’t feel it so if you don't hear the beeps, you know its off when the pulsing light it emits during operation is off too. If you find the light distracting, you can put it in a sock. Skin-to-skin contact is not necessary for it to work. 

The shape and size is perfect. It fits nicely in the palm of your hand or cradled on the neck, or if you prefer to set it next to you, put it on the flat side. It works in an eight inch radius of the device, period. 


It comes with instructions on how to use it and illustrations of how to use the strap so you can wear it.

The device has a rechargeable battery, so all you have to do is charge it like you would your cell phone. 

My experience

After three weeks, I noticed for the first time in a long time, I didn't wake up in pain from rolling onto my left shoulder. But, there is more.

I have experienced restless leg syndrome for many years. I even had a sleep study that confirmed significant periodic limb movement (PLM). And while my sleep study results was proof for my husband that I wasn’t purposefully kicking him during the night in retaliation for his snoring and it was a confirmation that I have a contributing factor to non-restorative sleep, this information did not solve my problem. And, neither did the medications to specifically treat PLM; I did not tolerate the side effects. But, that was about to change.

About one month in, I “awakened” with the PEMF device still sitting (unattached) on my left shoulder where I had left it the night before. I hadn't moved one inch! No covers in disarray, no complaints from the spouse. I had not changed a thing in my routine or in my medical treatment. The only thing different was Oska Pulse!

Compliance

The most important thing is using it enough. It won’t work if it stays in the nifty box it came in.

Reduction in inflammation and pain might be immediate. But, if a problem has been long standing, your body may take longer to respond. Many things can contribute to the way our body reacts. As an example, we have different reasons for experiencing chronic pain, or we may have another health problem that contributes to how our body heals. 

It's important to know that you might feel worse at first. This is because the Oska Pulse PEMF device works to release cellular toxins that have accumulated around inflamed areas, so don’t give up. Do as the instructions say and drink plenty of water, just like you would after a massage. 

The literature says the majority of people see significant improvement in 3 - 4 weeks and difficult cases respond in about 4 - 6 weeks. I am still on my healing journey, but there is a noticeable difference in my shoulder pain and joint range of motion. My periodic limb movement has greatly improved, an effect that was totally unexpected.  I consider myself a more difficult case because I have significant arthritis throughout my body. Knowing this and already seeing improvement, I expect it to get even better with time. 


I give my friend, Oska Pulse, five stars. 

  In healing,,Celeste

"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.

All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  

Monday, October 23, 2017

Chronic Pain Disease and the Opioid Crisis: Myra Christopher Changing the Narrative


If you are like me, you are upset by the reporting of the opioid crisis by mainstream media. I have found myself screaming at the television because of the skewed reporting. Make no mistake, there is an opioid crisis and it breaks my heart, but how in the world will we ever get those addicted the right treatment if we don’t look at the problem with eyes wide open? How can we blame and abandon people living with incurable diseases that keep the body at constant war with homeostasis because of the disease process that potentiates the disease of chronic pain?

“We must have balanced policy—policy that addresses two public health issues—untreated and inappropriately treated chronic pain and the opioid crisis—without unintentionally harming one patient population or the other. To get there, we MUST also have balanced media coverage.”

~Myra Christopher, Director of the Pain Action Alliance to Implement a National Strategy (PAINS, an initiative of the Center of Practical Bioethics)

Maybe you have read some of my blogs or visited my website where I share information on my personal opportunities as participant in PAINS and PAINS-KC. One of the pleasures of my own advocacy is getting to know and meet with Myra Christopher and the many other advocates and chronic pain citizens who share my journey. Following is Myra’s voice published in the PAINS Member Update, October 17, 2017.

By Myra Christopher


Sunday night, I watched 60 Minutes on CBS as they interviewed Joe Rannazzisi, former Deputy Director over Diversion at the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Rannazzisi was portrayed as a “whistleblower,” and he blamed drug distributers, unscrupulous physicians, and members of Congress for fueling the opioid crisis. The week before, NBC did a week-long series on the opioid crisis, and the week before PBS did one also.  I could go on—week by week by week—there is not a major news outlet (print, blog, television, radio, or web) that I could not list as well.

Before proceeding, I need to make two disclosures:

·        I have met and worked with Joe Rannazzisi.
·        We have worked with the DEA closely in the past—with Rannazzisi’s predecessor and colleagues at the DEA for whom I have great respect.

In 2008, we worked with the DEA, the National Association of Attorneys General, and the Federation of State Medical Boards to measure the impact of physicians diverting prescription pain medication. That study was published in the journal Pain Medicine (Vol. 9, No.6). I tell readers this to assure you that PAINS is very concerned about the opioid crisis and respects the role of law enforcement in protecting the US population from illicit drugs AND assuring that an adequate supply of medications is available to maintain the health and well-being of all Americans. My concern is about the irrefutable lack of media coverage of a related but separate public health issue, i.e., inappropriate and untreated chronic pain management.

On Friday, October 13, PAINS hosted a roundtable in Washington, DC, that included top officials in the federal government, leading pain care providers, people living with chronic pain and their advocates, academics and a handful of media representatives to discuss the need for more and better reporting on the “chronic pain epidemic” and the unintended consequences that pain sufferers are experiencing related to federal policy attempting to contain the opioid epidemic and the media frenzy around it. This is critically important because it is our view that media shape public perception and public perception leads to votes, which leads to public health policy – interestingly the foundation of the argument made by Joe Rannazzisi in his 60 Minutes interview.

·        For years, PAINS and others advocating for better chronic pain care have called for “balanced policy.” More than a year ago, PAINS decided to move upstream with our No Longer Silent initiative that led to last week’s meeting in DC. We must have balanced policy—policy that addresses two public health issues—untreated and inappropriately treated chronic pain and the opioid crisis—without unintentionally harming one patient population or the other. To get there, we MUST also have balanced media coverage.

“If it bleeds, it leads!” is an adage often repeated about media coverage. Granted, the chronic pain crisis is not as “sexy” as the opioid epidemic. However, both of these issues are critically important to our society’s health and well-being.

I will be honest that there are many days I feel pretty discouraged about ever accomplishing our goals, then I see a report like this one that appeared on the front page of the Worcester, Massachusetts paper which highlights the plight of Lauren Deluca and quotes PAINS Advisory Committee Member, Cindy Steinberg, who also lives with chronic pain. I encourage you to read this article and ask you to share it with your friends and colleagues via social media, email, carrier pigeon!

[Insert from Telegram.com, Worchester, Massacusetts]
“Ms. Steinberg noted that legitimately prescribed painkillers weren’t the main source of the opioid crisis. The majority of fatal overdoses were associated with illegally obtained substances.”

SHARE
Many with chronic illness denied prescriptions in fight against opioids 
by Susan Spencer 

We will ask you to do the same with the report from last week’s No Longer Silent meeting when it is published in mid to late November. Until then, let me share just a few “take-aways” from that meeting:

Improving chronic pain care in America will require culture change. More specifically:

·        Changing the public narrative about chronic pain as a disease
·        Removing the stigmatization of those who live with chronic pain and those who care for them
·        Better education of physicians, nurses AND patients
·        Reimbursement models that support comprehensive chronic pain care, not just prescription opioids, interventional procedures and surgeries
·        Better data and more research

It’s a tall order but what one of my colleagues calls “worthy work.”

Comprehensive chronic pain care will improve the lives of millions of Americans, save billions of dollars and reduce opioid prescribing.

My conclusion

Will people be left to chew off their limbs like wild animals to escape pain? Will we continue to read about suicides because of untreated or undertreated pain? Will the public continue to blindly trust those in authority who have a political agenda? Can we make informed decisions based on unfair, unbalanced reporting? Are we ready for the consequences of staying silent? Your voice is only a click away.  Please join the PAINS Project initiative...



Additional Reading:


In healing,,Celeste 
"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.

All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  


Sunday, October 15, 2017

Your Life/My Life with Chronic Pain #MakeItVisible


Throughout the month of October the U.S. Pain Foundation is teaming up with Healthline to bring awareness to invisible illness. The request: share a photo or video on Instagram with the #MakeItVisible hashtag and make your chronic condition visible. For every submission, Heathline will donate $5 to U.S. Pain Foundation.



The following are excerpts from an interview I did for Melissa Swanson and the National Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Association.

My life before fibro was not without pain. I had my first cystoscopy at age five, and I have had migraines and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) since puberty.

During my school years, I ran track, bowled on a team, and played intramural volleyball. As a young adult, I was a competitive racquetball player and instructor, and a competitive downhill skier. [All my life] I enjoyed physically active sports. Having joint hypermobility, I experienced some significant soft tissue injuries, [but] I thought I was invincible, and I wanted to fit in. It never occurred to me that what I experienced—muscle symptoms and recovery time, feeling sick to my stomach after activity—was anything different from my peers.

I worked all my life with chronic pain, but it wasn’t until my brain turned to mush that my life really changed. I knew I would not be able to continue my nursing career or continue my work as a Legal Nurse Consultant… By age 50, I had to face a harsh reality. {As] I walked out those hospital doors for the last time as a healthcare provider, I had no idea what was ahead of me. I only knew what I was leaving behind. I was terrified. 

Melissa is founder of Fibro Warriors Living Life and author of Ravyn’s Doll: How to Explain Fibromyalgia to Your Child. You can read the entire interview here.

What I have learned from interviewing others is that my story is not unique. We all struggle with the stigma associated with invisible illness, especially chronic pain. Discrimination against certain groups of people, women being one, is increasing, not diminishing. I write about this in my Health Central article, Women, Bias, Discrimination, and Chronic Pain. And labels affect everyon as I share in my ProHealth article, Pain and Prejudice: Surviving Fibromyalgianess. Discrimination against those of us living with chronic pain doesn’t stop there either. Many patients are not only forced to live with the stigma of chronic pain, they are also suffering physically as the opioid crisis grows. Last resort medications are being withdrawn. Some patients are forced into withdrawal, and the suicide rate is growing because of untreated pain. Pain warriors are now living in exile. It’s time for the tide to turn, but it won’t happen unless we…

#MakeItVisible

Healthline is encouraging us to share our story. Help the world understand that we might be battling chronic pain and/or illness even though we don't always look sick.

In healing,,Celeste

"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.

All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  





Sunday, October 8, 2017

Lymphatic Massage, Clogged Drains and Fibromyalgia Pain


In 2015 investigators Yuan SL, Matsutani LA, and Marques AP noted lymphatic massage as the most helpful type of massage for fibromyalgia. So what is lymphatic massage and why is it important to our health?

The lymph system

To understand why manual lymphatic massage is beneficial for those of us with fibromyalgia, we must first understand how it works.

Courtesy PrintableDiagrams.com via Google
The purpose of our lymph system is to maintain fluid balance in our body’s tissue. Lymph vessels carry lymph fluid around our body and through our lymph nodes where cellular trash is filtered and collected. Special blood cells, called macrophages, then digest the cellular debris before recycled lymph fluid is returned to circulation as plasma, the liquid part of blood.

Unlike our blood circulation, our lymph system is passive. This means circulation of lymph fluid depends solely on contraction of surrounding muscles during exercise, body movement, deep breathing, and properly functioning organs. When movement is disrupted, excessive lymph accumulates leading to swelling, called edema, and a buildup of toxins in our tissue. 

As a nurse and a patient, I know the important role of the lymph system. I have idiopathic edema—a fancy way of saying “yes, you are swelling, but we don’t know why”. In 1994, Deodhar AA, Fisher RA, Blacker CV, and Woolf AD concluded that rheumatologists should be aware of fluid retention syndrome and fibromyalgia. I couldn’t find any recent data on this. But, I suspect this type of swelling in fibromyalgia could be due to immune system dysfunction as identified by the FM/a® blood test. Because of this long-standing issue, I had to get creative when recovering from skin cancer surgery on my leg. I knew I needed to optimize my already damaged immune system so I could heal.

For any number of reasons, our lymph system sometimes needs help to reduce swelling. That’s where lymphatic massage comes in.

What is lymphatic massage?

Lymphatic massage, also known as Vodder Lymphatic Massage, was pioneered by Dr. Vodder it in the 1930’s for treating chronic sinusitis and other immune disorders. The therapist manipulates the body externally through massage, which opens lymphatic ducts and helps reduce stagnation and generalized swelling. Lymphatic massage encourages the flow of lymph fluid through muscles and tissues and into the lymph system for circulation. 

Manual Lymph Drainage (Vodder Technique) massage requires special training. You can find a therapist at Dr. Vodder School of International.

*There are some health conditions where massage should be avoided.

Additional reading:
Exercise and the Forgotten Lymph (from my website)

In healing,,Celeste

"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.

All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  



Thursday, October 5, 2017

A Fall Lesson on Mindfulness: Brain, Body, and Busters


Our mind shifts without provocation, taunted by thoughts of something real or imagined. Neuroscience can't tell why this is per se, but it does show us our thoughts can affect the way our body feels. This is especially important for those of us who experience chronic pain. There's little doubt between us that we experience "chronic background noise" which surfaces to our conscious mind when it finally screams out for attention. As an example, I often experience a sudden tightening of muscles in my buttocks, hard as a rock. But when I examine the experience in my conscious mind, now called to attention, I realize it's been tight for a while, it's been running in the background. It takes intentional relaxation methods to calm things down. But, that’s the wonderful thing about our mind, we can bust through harmful thoughts with intentional mindfulness.

The Still Rippling of Sunset©
Biofeedback gives us physical evidence that our mind does have an effect on our body, and we know mindfulness boosts our defenses against the myriad of problems living with chronic pain and illness can create. So, what can we do to calm down the brain when it wants to take on a mind of its own?...  We can learn to be mindful. 

“Mindful awareness expands my being
and encourages me to live consciously, without judgment.”
~Celeste Cooper, Broken Body, Wounded Spirit, Fall Edition

Our pain is not the villain here; it is the result of a bad character invading our body. It doesn’t want to exist anymore than we want to experience it. So, being hard on it isn’t helpful, it won’t make it go away, and it won’t make us feel better.

If we cultivate mindfulness in our life, we see everything has value… Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, Professor of Medicine Emeritus and creator of the Stress Reduction Clinic at the UMMC Center is the author of Full Catastrophic Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain and Illness, and numerous other books to ease suffering by reducing stress and pain through meditation. He tells us we may not always like the sensations we are experiencing from pain, but by acknowledging our pain without judgment, we bring ourselves to a higher level of self-awareness…

Think of a bright fall day, briskness on the edge of arriving, leaves a colorful artist’s pallet, and migrant birds are flying overhead in the backdrop of a crisp blue sky. These are examples of being mindful. All we have to do is be present and aware in the moment admonishing our role as critic.


Excerpt, Broken Body, Wounded Spirit: Balancing the See-Saw of Chronic Pain, Fall Devotions, Day10, Being Mindful of Our Thoughts and Body


Available on Amazon and all major outlets.




We can learn to be mindful of our pain without judging it. After all, it is our body crying out for attention, love, and caring, not ridicule and disturbing dialogue. Learning to be mindful can redirect our thoughts to create an environment that is appreciated fully.


Other articles you might find helpful:


In healing,,Celeste

"Adversity is only an obstacle if we fail to see opportunity."

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Celeste Cooper, RN
Author—Patient—Freelance Writer at Health Central & ProHealth Advocate

Celeste’s Website: http://CelesteCooper.com

Learn more about Celeste’s books at her website or find links here on Celeste's  blog. Subscribe to posts by using the information in the upper right hand corner or use the share buttons to share with others.

All blogs and comments are based on the author's opinions and are not meant to replace medical advice.  



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