Pain 1 year 4 months. Guitar RSI? Help. I feel frustrated.
by Sam Walker
(Grand Rapids, MI)
I did this to myself. I'll admit it.
Music became my favorite hobby when I was 15. I loved playing the guitar. (I say loved, because I don't play it anymore) After graduating high school / going to college, I continued to play it in my spare time. I even took lessons for about 4 months. Then, at the end of my freshmen year my wrists started hurting. (May, 2011)
I rested / iced, but proceed to take summer classes (thinking that 5-6 days rest would be enough). The problem got worse after classes ended (a quick 2 month semester). So I spent the rest of my summer seeing a doctor about my problem. He first said that I had synovitis, then tenosynovitis, then neuritis in my wrists.
He gave me a cortisone shot but it didn't ease the pain at ALL. I went to see another doctor, who eventually said (6 months ago) that I have flexor carpi radialis tendinitis because there are little bumps on my wrist right under my thumb muscle. Overall I've had x-rays, an MRI, and PT (2 months summer 2011).
I didn't rest enough when the problem first happened, but I did AFTER my summer classes ended and iced like a slave DURING them. I've also been wearing wrist splints ever since the problem started.
I had to write two long term papers last semester, and I've had to type here and there since the problem started because of my "residential humanities" major (poetry class: 2011 summer semester, international relations: 2011 fall semester, etc).
I used to like blogging my freshmen year of college too, but was that dedicated to that hobby. Now, I use this weird pen to study when I'm not typing.
This problem is affecting my ability to do schoolwork, so I'm angry at myself. I shouldn't have typed so much, played guitar w/out sufficient stretching, and overworked my wrists so much. But I have 2 more months of this summer (I took January off, and studied abroad February through mid-June) so I'd appreciate any advice...
I could type this, but sometimes my wrists feel tight. And if I type too much now they hurt (pain = 3-4, throbbing, or jabbing it just depends). I squeeze one wrist with the other when that happens. Sometimes, I feel a slight jabbing pain in some of my fingers too.
Also, it's been WAY too long. But I think my wrists looked different two years ago. When I squeeze them it looks like my wrist muscle is bulging out.
So what can I do? What do I really have (I'm afraid it might be tendonosis)? How can I fix this? Did I screw up the most important part of my body?
First off, it's important
to understand that Rest
doesn't fix tendonitis, whether it be wrist tendonitis, tenosynovitis, etc.
And your experience with Corticosteroid Injections
is a common one, unfortunately.Wrist splints and braces
are fine to get you through the day. Same with Anti-inflammatory drugs like Ibuprofen
Good news/bad news, you've gotten the 'standard of care' from the hospital world. This means, you get the one set of tools they have in their tool box, whether that tool set works or not.
You've probably been icing as they've instructed you to, 20 minutes on 3x/day. But you said 'iced like a slave', so maybe not. How exactly did you ice?
The fact is, you're stuck in a Pain Causing Dynamic
. That's 'what you have'.
That's just how Tendonitis
See: What Is TendonitisNutrition:
You, specifically, are also suffering from significant nutritional insufficiency/deficiency.
That's also just how Tendonitis works, especially in the scenario you describe, as is part of why you're now stuck in a pain dynamic.
Maybe you have some Tenosynovitis
. Maybe you have some Tendonosis
I wouldn't worry about Tendonosis, everybody has some, and it's not your prime concern, and it will get taken care of as you reverse the -source- of the pain and problem. Tendonosis is a symptom, not a cause.
Tenosynovitis is it's own unique animal with it's own flavor and behavior, but it still stems from the same basics that cause Symptoms of Tendonitis
Repetitive Strain Injury means that you have actual damage, specifically wear and tear rip and tear (microscopic but significant enough).
You definitely have some kind of pain dynamic that involves Repetitive Motion.
But the repetitive motion isn't the problem. The problem is that you're body can't handle the repetitive motion, nor recover from the negative factors it causes.
Just to save a step, I'm going to suggest that you get my Reversing Wrist Tendonitis ebook program
1. How did you ice?
2. Symptoms where, exactly? Details.
3. What other self care did you do? Specifically?
4. What makes it better? What makes it worse?
5. Any thing else possibly relevant or interesting?----------------------
Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.
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Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expertwww.TendonitisExpert.com