As most MSers, I have a lot of trouble sleeping. So, I do a lot of channel surfing and reading.
A couple of weeks ago as usual, there was very little on that I wanted to watch. Flipping over to the movie channels, I found that Anaconda was on. Now don’t get me wrong – I am NOT a snake lover! I am scared of them and do everything I can to make sure that our paths do not cross. But this movie is fairly entertaining and silly enough not to scare me.
If you have not seen the movie, a HUGE Anaconda (not that they all aren’t huge!) wrecks havoc with a film crew on the Amazon River. Eventually they blow it up and go on about their business, after several of them are killed. Of course, there is a sequel where more of them hunt down another group of people and the tale goes on.
Those of us who have had bouts with the MS hug kind of know how those people who came across those snakes feel. The MS hug will take your breath and make you wonder if you will be squeezed to death. It is scary and painful.
There are tiny muscles between each rib, called intercostal muscles which basically hold the ribs together, but also give the ribcage some flexibility; it's when these muscles go into spasm that we get the MS hug, a friendly description of an extremely uncomfortable and painful condition. People have described it as crushing, burning, a tight rubber band, a boa constrictor, and excruciating.
There are several treatments doctors prescribe for this condition. Diazepan, Ibuprofen, analgesic cream, Lorazepam and heating pads or a hot water bottle are the most common treatments. Many doctors do not recognize this as a symptom of MS and do not offer any type of treatment.
As anyone who goes through the ups and downs of MS can tell you, there are more symptoms by far than any one web site, medical journal or doctor can wrap their heads around. Not all MSers have the same symptoms and not all have “textbook” symptoms. The biggest thing that most of us would like to have besides a cure is more understanding from our doctors. These pains and feelings we have are real and whether it is normal or unheard of, they pose a problem to us in our everyday lives and need to be addressed.
Until that happens, we will try to do the best we can to live as good a life as possible………..and stay away from the Amazon!!!