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Re: Ear Pain
Mar 3, 2005
Hi DOnte, thank you for your concern :) :

He did not say much about the ear pain and it has abated but he is concerned about the rib pain.

He sent me for a CT scan (went today) of my thoracic spine and chest. I have some pain in my back (normal for me) and he is concerned that the frequent rib pain may be due to a pinched nerve or disc problem in my thoracic spine. I also have some neuropathies and my right rib feels numb sometimes. Pain medicine is not very effective for the rib pain.

Who knows. Seems that I have unusual symptoms and many times there is no explanation except for either the lupus or FMS. I would imagine it is the same for many of us.

He prescribed cymbalta for depression and pain relief. Do you or anyone have any experience with this drug?

Thanks again for your concern.

Mere --
Re: Ear Pain
Mar 4, 2005
Hi Mere,
I'm so sorry to hear that you're flaring right now. I hope you get feeling some improvement soon! I just wanted to say that my ears bother me too when I am flaring. The outside cartlige gets red in one spot and it hurts to lay on it or to put a phone to my ear. I did find a picture once on a dermo site that had a red spot on the outer ear that was listed under "Lupus pictures" so after that I thought it must happen to some people. Best of luck to you, hopefully your new meds will be of benefit!
Re: Ear Pain
Mar 4, 2005
Hiya Mere,

[B]I am not medically trained, but share information I have learned from living and learning about lupus for over 30 years.[/B]

I too have the same symptoms as you. Don't let them say they are unusual, they aren't honestly. Push and push as I always say. One thing, I have trigemal neuralgia. I get horrid pain in the outer bits of my ear. I affects my face and head, and is extremely painful and makes touching my face or head or ears, etc. so sensitive. I am obviously not trying to diagnose you, but hope that it might be something you can think about. Maybe you could ask next time you go to the doctor if perhaps this is something worth looking into.

Be well.

goldenwings :angel:
Re: Ear Pain
Mar 4, 2005
Thank you guys :) . It would stand to reason that any part of the body that has cartilage will be suseptible to inflammation with lupus. That would be ears and ribs. My Rheum. prescribed lidocaine patches to put on my back and my ribs and they seem to help a bit.

Cymbalta is a brand new, antidepressant drug that is a 'selective seratonin and norepinepherine reuptake inhibitor' (thats a mouthful)! It has been approved for depression and diabetic neuropathic pain. I have also heard that it is helpful for FMS.

On the other hand, I have heard that it is Eli Lillys new designer drug to replace Prozac since the patent is due to expire.

We will see, I usually have terrible side effects from AD's but so far, I am just feeling a bit sleepy and my tums a bit upset. I really hope it works.

I don't know the results of the CT scan. The tech. said my doctor would receive the report within 5 days... must not be too serious then :)

Hope you all are feeling relatively well today. It is Friday and that helps.

Mere --
Re: Ear Pain
Mar 9, 2005
Just thought I would add my ear symptoms to the list. Ear issues were one of the first indications I had that something was wrong with me. Over a year ago, before I was diagnosed, my ears had started bothering me, and I was constantly trying to scratch or clean them, as they were continuously irritated. I had begun to think that I was developing some sort of compulsive ear fixation that kept them raw and wouldn't let my ears heal, when really, it was just Lupus that wouldn't let my ears heal.

What it amounts to is the inside of my ear stays kind of raw and inflammed and won't totally heal up. Then they try to heal up and form a scab over the raw part. There is sometimes a pimple or two. It gets to where debris collects (scab and gummy discharge) to the point where my ear gets clogged and I can't hear clearly. Had a horrible bout of this over Christmas/New Years and having a little bit of it right now. I can tell when I am on a lower dose of prednisone like I am now (12.5mg) instead of my usual 15, my ears start to act up, among other things. Just another reminder that Lupus is lurking behind the prednisone, lest I forget and think I can discontinue it.

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