The purpose of this blog is to keep track of my illness and progress. If someone else can benefit in any way from my rambling, even better.

Saturday, March 31, 2012


Over the past few weeks I've been gardening a lot, sometimes for several hours each day. At first I was very careful about wearing waterproof gloves and sneakers, but since we live in the south (SC) I got lazy a few times and then a few turned into a lot. I'm also a huge fan of sandals and don't like wearing closed shoes anytime the temperature is over 50 degrees. Plus, I had the busiest week since starting the treatment and it just turned out to be more than I could handle. Since I was feeling so great still, I just assumed it wasn't a high enough level of salicylates to block the guai from working. I was wrong.

Today I woke up in more pain than I have been in since the awful beginning. Muscle aches everywhere, a migraine and the strangulation feeling in my neck had returned. I had forgotten how difficult it is to function like this and ended up resting much more than usual. This week my plan is to double up my guai doses to hopefully rid my body of the recent phosphate build-ups as quickly as possible, wear only sneakers or rain boots outside and get plenty of rest. I also missed my chiropractor appointment this week and I think that is really affecting several areas of my body more than usual.

Another thing I plan to do is email Dr. St. Amand and ask about outside protocol since it's not covered extensively in his book and we have a lot going on at our house between our gardens, chickens and bees. I cannot imagine spending the summer inside so I'm determined to learn the correct way to do this and will update everyone on what he says.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Treatment: 9 Weeks

I just triple checked my calendar, nine weeks! How did this happen? In the beginning I was counting days and time seemed to slow down. Now I passed the 2 month mark without even knowing it.

I've been feeling great lately! As long as I rest (a seated activity) for a little bit in the afternoon, I've been able to keep up with life and even add in a few things I haven't been able to do. It really feels like life is starting to get back to normal, I'm so excited to see if I will be back to 100% in another few months.

A few updates:

1. I stumbled across a second book about using guai to treat fibromyalgia as well as several other problems, it's called "The Guaifenesin Guide: For Treating Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, Irritable Bowel Syndrome" by Greggory K. Penniston. I haven't read it and don't know anything about it, but thought I'd pass it along.

2. I just visited my rheumatologist who was thrilled to see me looking like a new person and quite proud of herself-until she found out that I'm not taking any of the pills she prescribed for me. She was still very nice and professional, but I could clearly see she was doubting the treatment. She also said she had never heard of it which was very surprising, as when I researched the topic it was the only method that seemed to work for most people.

3. I've been doing a LOT of gardening and yard work the past few weeks and have a suspicion that I might be blocking the guai sometimes from the salicylates in the plants. I'm planning on doubling my dose to hopefully account for any blocking times I might have, but when I tried this two weeks ago it was still too painful to do so. Not as painful as it was the first few weeks on the guaifenisen, but more pain than I wanted to tolerate at this point.

4. All of my food intolerances are gone. My illness had progressed to the point that refined sugar and dairy both made me extremely sick. I eliminated both from my diet for several months and tried to rework them back in slowly without any luck, I couldn't even tolerate a few grams of sugar without intense pain. Now I've been able to reintroduce everything successfully, although I still choose to put honey in my coffee and cook with it when I can in place of sugar since it is much healthier. But even when I've indulged my sweet tooth with a rich dessert or eaten a substantial amount of dairy, I've experienced no pain from it.

5. Sometimes my husband or I will wonder if the guai is still working for me since we saw such drastic changes early on and there are no visible changes now day-to-day. But then I remember where I was just two months ago and I remind myself that there is no way that it couldn't be working, progress is just slower now.

I am so thankful that I finally found a doctor who diagnosed me correctly so that I could begin this treatment, without that I would never have started the gaui. God is good! I'm also grateful there even was a solution, since I know for many chronic illnesses there isn't. I know guai doesn't work for everyone and not everyone will have the motivation to stick with it, but for anyone battling fibro it really is worth a shot (what do you have to lose?) and I hope by sharing my experience someone will consider giving it a try.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Best Price For Guai Pills

While picking up my prescriptions this month at Kroger, I decided to ask the pharmacist if she had ever heard of using guai to treat fibromyalgia before. Actually, it wasn't a conscious decision, it just sort of popped out of my mouth as I was paying for the medicine. She hadn't heard of it but was really interested in the details (because her mother has fibro) so I told her the basics of what Dr. St. Amand says in his book and how it has made such a difference for me and is the reason I've been able to come off of three medications. She was very surprised and told me that Kroger has a very low price on guai, just a few dollars per box. I checked it out and she was right, after several thorough searches for the lowest price the best I was able to do was $8/mo. and I had to order 16 months worth to get this price! Kroger has 30 ct. boxes of 400 mg. pills for $2.67, which would make it only $5/mo. So if you're in the market for some guaifenesin and have a Kroger near you, I highly recommend getting it there.

PS-Another thing this pharmacist mentioned sort of off the record is that she has many people come in with fibromyalgia and often times they are overmedicated and the prescriptions can actually make things worse. I definitely experienced that when my rheumatologist added cymbalta and a couple of other medications to my already long list.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A New Perspective

I would say I've defnitely turned the corner and have more good days than bad lately, but I still find myself getting frustrated. Why can't this go faster? When will I be completely better? Will I ever be able to run again?

Then I took my guai pill this morning and realized it was the last one in my bottle-my first bottle. Thus far I have only taken one bottle of 100 pills (300 mg. each) of an over the counter medicine and it has done more for me in a month and a half than everything in the past year combined. Once I took that perspective it was easier to see and be grateful for the progress I've made and be hopeful for the progress to come. So here's to my first bottle down, and hopefully hundreds of more bottles in my future...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Treatment: 6 weeks & 3 days

The past week has been different, not really good or bad. I've concluded that I would probably be feeling pretty good if it weren't for the fact that my husband has been out of town for two of the last three weeks and I'm just drained from taking care of my two toddlers. But the good news is that there is no way I could have done what I'm doing now even two months ago-I know because my mother came to help me when Chris was out of town and I still didn't get much done. I'm able to do multiple activities with them each day now, take them outside for several hours and keep up with most of the cooking/cleaning. Two months ago I would have had to put a movie or two on each day and laid down on the couch with them, it would have been too much. I wouldn't have had the extra energy to take out the paints like we did today or the playdough like did yesterday (for 4 hours). The pain would have been too much, and while I'm tired right now it's bearable. I'm looking forward to having my husband home for a couple of weeks to see what progress I've actually made when I'm able to sleep through the night again or take a break from the kids for a few hours and rest.