Author Archives: Zyp Czyk

About Zyp Czyk

Until I was disabled by the progressive pain and fatigue from Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and Fibromyalgia, I was a high tech IT maven at Apple and Yahoo. I live in a rustic cabin in the redwood forests of the Santa Cruz Mountains just up the hill from Silicon Valley with my wonderfully supportive husband and two 4-legged kids. I use my remaining energy to run an informational blog about "Living with Chronic Pain from EDS & Fibromyalgia". I publish daily updates with selected excerpts of news, research, treatments, tips, support, and personal stories along with my own notes.

Pain Minimized or Dismissed as Catastrophizing

Our Pain is being Minimized or Dismissed as Catastrophizing

When does normal concern about relentless pain become excessive and catastrophizing?

Who has the power to make this decision?

I’m exasperated and offended by the recent over-promotion and over-simplification of the latest popular theory about chronic pain, which uses the derogatory term “catastrophizing” to describe our well-founded concerns about our pain.   Continue reading

Chronic Pain Among Suicide Decedents

Chronic Pain Among Suicide Decedents, 2003 to 2014 | Annals of Internal Medicine | American College of Physicians – Sept 2018

The CDC finally looks at suicide and chronic pain:

“increases in opioid availability are not associated with greater suicide risk from opioid overdose among patients with chronic pain.”

During 2003 to 2014, the NVDRS identified 123,181 suicide decedents aged 10 years or older, 10,789 (8.8%) of whom had evidence of chronic pain. The percentage of decedents with chronic pain increased from 7.4% in 2003 to 10.2% in 2014, but the percentage who died by opioid overdose remained low overall (<2.0%).   Continue reading

Low Risk of Opioid Use Disorder in Primary Care

Low Risk of Producing an Opioid Use Disorder in Primary Care by Prescribing Opioids to Prescreened Patients with Chronic Noncancer Pain | Pain Medicine | Oxford Academic – March 2017

This study shows what pain patients have been saying all along: prescribing opioids for patients with chronic pain very rarely causes problems of drug abuse.

Objective: 

To examine the risk of developing aberrant behaviors that might lead to a substance use disorder (addiction) when prescribing opioids for the relief of chronic noncancer pain in primary care settings.   Continue reading

Does EBM adversely affect clinical judgment?

Does evidence-based medicine adversely affect clinical judgment? | The BMJ

For practical and theoretical reasons, says Michel Accad, evidence based medicine is flawed and leads to standardised rather than excellent individualised care, but

Darrel Francis argues that it protects patients from seemingly rational actions that cause more harm than good.

This is an interesting conflict arising when EBM, which is population-based, runs into individualized medicine, which is mostly based on a doctor’s judgment.   Continue reading

ADHD Linked to Fibromyalgia Syndrome

ADHD Linked to Fibromyalgia Syndrome in First-of-Its-Kind Study – Pain Medicine News – by Michael Vlessides

In one of the first-ever studies of its kind, a team of South African researchers found that nearly half of patients with fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) suffer from concomitant adult attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

People suffering from both disorders also reported worse scores on the Revised Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ-R) and greater cognitive impairment.

Well, this certainly explains a lot. The study also showed that over half of the fibromyalgia patients were depressed and 90% were anxious – no surprise there.  Continue reading

Genetics controls vulnerability to opioid addiction

Why genetics makes some people more vulnerable to opioid addiction – and protects others – 2018

From a scientific standpoint, addiction is a disease. And, as researchers who study opioid addiction, we’re hopeful about where epigenetics, the science of how DNA code is regulated, can lead us.

Just as genetics can affect a person’s risk for heart disease, cancer or diabetes, it can also make them more or less susceptible to addiction.

A great deal of research in the last decade has focused on tiny differences in a person’s DNA – termed single-nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs. These SNPs can indicate whether you have a higher or lower rick for addiction.   Continue reading

Role of Stress Gene in Chronic Pain

Researchers Elucidate Role of Stress Gene in Chronic Pain – from NIH – Posted on  by 

For most people, pain eventually fades away as an injury heals. But for others, the pain persists beyond the initial healing and becomes chronic, hanging on for weeks, months, or even years.

Now, we may have uncovered an answer to help explain why: subtle differences in a gene that controls how the body responds to stress.

In a recent study of more than 1,600 people injured in traffic accidents, researchers discovered that individuals with a certain variant in a stress-controlling gene, called FKBP5, were more likely to develop chronic pain than those with other variants.   Continue reading

Feds Battle Opioid Abuse With A Circular Firing Squad

Feds Battle Opioid Abuse With A Circular Firing Squad – Henry I. Miller and Josh Bloom | 08/29/2018

our government’s inept attempts to control the opioid epidemic. The most recent evidence was an article in the August 22 edition of the journal JAMA Surgery.

Following the Drug Enforcement Administration’s bumping of hydrocodone-containing medications into a more highly regulated classification — specifically, in order to curb opioid use — “there was an immediate significant increase” in the mean number of initial postoperative prescriptions for opioids and that that effect was sustained for a year.

And this is no secret. Everyone but the DEA knows that tightening restrictions on a drug only pushes it to be more profitable on the black market.   Continue reading

FDA Investigating Misuse, Abuse of Gabapentinoids

FDA Investigating Misuse, Abuse of Gabapentinoids – by Joyce Frieden, News Editor, MedPage Today – February 15, 2018

Gabapentinoids such as pregabalin (Lyrica) as well as the original agent gabapentin (Neurontin) are approved to treat a variety of conditions, including post-herpetic neuralgia, fibromyalgia, and neuropathic pain associated with diabetes, and

“some literature suggests that clinicians may be prescribing these drugs off-label … as alternatives to opioids, outside approved indications,” Gottlieb said.

Desperate times call for desperate measures.  Continue reading