I live in pain. Constant, never ending, debilitating, and any number of adjectives that don't come near to describing any of the ways I feel on a daily basis. Clinically speaking, it would be called acute chronic deep pelvic myofacial pain.
From early puberty onwards, I had been afflicted with on again off again pain in my lower right abdomen. It has been diagnosed over the years as everything from growing pains to Irritable Bowel Syndrome (which seems to be a catch all doctors use to explain away anything happening in the gut they don't understand at the moment). It wasn't until the fall of 2001, when the condition turned from sporadic to chronic, that a doctor took the time to try and find out what was going on.
I had been admitted to hospital for the fourth time in six years because of the pain and, after keeping me in for a week of observation, they as usual had released me. But this time the surgeon kept following up. He ordered out patient after out patient test; some of them saw me having to travel out of town because otherwise I would have been waiting a year. But after undergoing every single gastro-intestinal (G.I.) testing torture (procedures they call them, but if you've ever undergone G.I. testing I think you'll agree with my assessment) and finding only one thing physically wrong, he was as stumped as he was when he started.
About five years prior, it had been discovered that I had a slight pouch in the wall of my colon on the right hand or ascending side. This pouch, or diverticula as they are called (when infected they form the basis for the disease diverticulitis which can lead to severe bleeding in the bowel and, if left untreated, is potentially fatal) are most often found in Westerners on the left hand, or descending side, of the bowel and are usually caused by a low fibre diet resulting in stool that literally pock marks the bowel because of its hardness.
Due to the nature of my pain, presenting in the lower right abdominal cavity, and the fact that the diverticula was in an almost identical position in my colon, my surgeon said, if I wanted, he could remove that part of my colon and see if that helped. He said the chances of it being able to resolve my problems were low. But if I wanted him to do so, he would perform the surgery.
I was willing to clutch at any straw offered by that time, so I of course said yes. It took about two months for my body to settle down after the surgery. The post-surgical infection hospitalized me for another three weeks before we could conclude that the pain had not diminished.