The Northern Virginia
Support Group

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August 2001

New Group Phone Number and Mailing Address
Save on Prescriptions
Drugs & Sun
Double Check Those Medical Bills
Joint Pain Tips


Welcome to a CFSupport Newsletter! Please visit Group Newsletter Directory, Home, or About Us for more information.  To receive our emails and news items, please join our email list and Yahoo! Group at

As a member of our CFSupport Yahoo group, you would be able to browse and search our archives, use our Calendar of local and national groups, download files, use our rideshare database as well as receive current updates of interest regarding CFS/CFIDS (chronic fatigue syndrome), FM (fibromyalgia), ME (myalgic encephalomyelitis), OI (orthostatice intolerance), and more. We keep the number of emails to less than one per day on average.

New Group Phone Number and Mailing address

Northern VA CFS/FM Support Group
14404 Brookmere Drive
Centreville, VA 20120-4107
(703) 968-9818

Remaining the same:
Email: aka "Email Us" link
Web1: aka "Home" link
Web2: aka "Subscribe" link
Alternate phone number (410) 647-7578


"Don't dwell on what you can no longer do; instead focus on what you can."  - Gregg Fisher

Save on Prescriptions

If your current health insurance does not give any coverage for prescriptions there are supplemental low-cost plans to meet your needs.

The People's Prescription Plan is only $7.95 a month and covers your entire family. After enrolling in this plan you will receive a card that you present to any of the 40,000 participating pharmacies when you drop off your prescription. This plan also allows you to save up to 50% on eyeglasses, contacts, and hearing aids. To receive more information call 1-800-566-0003.

Update 06/06: $5.95/month. See

Drugs & Sun

Use caution when taking prescription drugs and getting sun exposure.  Some drugs can cause increased sensitivity to sunlight resulting in rashes, hives and other skin eruptions. Some of the most common culprits include: medications that treat pain, inflammation, depression, arthritis, and insomnia. If you have any uncertainties about the prescriptions you are taking, consult your pharmacists or doctor. The following are tips to protect yourself from the sun especially if you are taking any of the above medications.

Wear protective clothing: wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses and long-sleeve shirts and pants.

Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes prior to venturing outdoors.

Avoid sun exposure between the hours of 10am and 4pm when the sun's rays are most intense.

This info was provided by Arthritis Today Magazine, issue July/Aug 2001, pg. 24.

Elly adds: If medications or your condition allows, you may want to get vitamin D from sunshine at midday. Just a few minutes can help mood and physical health. In that case, try to expose much of the body and go out close to noon. See

Double Check Those Medical Bills

You could be paying more than you should on your bills. First you need to request an itemized bill and check it for errors such as double charges, services or supplies you never received or used and being charged a price that does not seem to be equal to the item.

Be wary of items that are mysterious or unknowns. Do you know what a "disposable mucous recovery system is?"  It is a box of tissues. Or how about a cough support device? In one heart surgery's patient's case, the cough support device was a teddy bear he pressed against the incision on his chest to relieve the pain when he coughed. The teddy bear cost the hospital $10, the patient was charged $57.50!

When questioning your bill ask the nurses, rather than the billing department, to explain confusing items. "Go up the chain of command if you do not get the answers you want", suggests Palmer author of The Medical Bill Survival Guide (Warner Books 2000). The book is excerpted at

When you find overcharges notify your insurance company; they will be a great advocate for they do not want to be overcharged either.

This info was provided by Arthritis Today Magazine, issue July/Aug 2001, pg. 21. 

Joint Pain Tips

Herbal supplement Glucosamine

Aqua Exercises

Drink plenty of fluids

Use an egg crate liner on bed (Wal-Mart)

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Updated June 15, 2006