I have only very recently retired and my professional background is as a nurse but for the past 30 years I have worked as a health visitor so my clinical skills and knowledge are extremely out of date. I had heard of PMR but knew nothing about it. When the rheumatologist gave this crippling pain I was experiencing a name I was relieved and when he said there is treatment even more so. Like many of us on this journey pain makes us vulnerable and fragile and I didn't ask any questions and even if I had had the wherewithal I am not sure I would have asked the right things anyway. After 2 days on the 30 mgs of course I felt better but because I had no real knowledge I naively thought that is the way I should always feel on the steroids. Following the regime I was given and moving on 3 1/2 weeks and now on 15mgs with some pain I again didn't ask questions and slavishly followed the advice of the GP and went back up to 30 mgs. It was only the following day I thought, 'this isn't right', and started reading avidly so for the past week every spare moment has been spent devouring books, documents and every bit of research data I can find. I feel more knowledgeable but also trapped, enormously angry and frightened. I feel angry with the GP for his glib response of go back to original dose but mostly angry with myself for not taking control and making myself more aware earlier. I am also sympathetic towards the GP as my health visiting office was based in a surgery and I am fully aware of the pressures in the NHS and the practice at which I am registered is 2 full-time GP's down and can't recruit. However that does not make his response right. Having done all this reading I have every confidence the accumulated knowledge and experience of some of the members of this forum is far superior to many medics and I suspect I now know more than the GP. I am unable to think intellectually at the moment and find my responses are all emotional and I feel enormously let down again partly by myself. I so wish I had not gone back up to 30 but I am where I am and I intend to try and take the control in my hands. I don't yet have a way forward but I really am grateful that you responded so quickly and I will be on the ball with dose and think my best bet is to build up a relationship with my soon to be new best friend my village pharmacist.
At some time in the future I hope I will be able to respond in a clear knowledgeable and practical way to others on the forum when they are in need as you have done for me. Again enormous thanks. Judyliz