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does the pain really ever go away?

phyllis_gapphyllis_ga Posts: 27
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:23 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I guess this question is for those who are further out than most of us in the healing process. I'm 7 mos post PLF with BMP and I have good days but even on what I consider a good day I still have pain. So is this normal? And what point does it become less or better yet go AWAY?
I realize everyone is different but it kinda help to have a tentative time frame for encouragement.....:) I'm only take advil or tylenol for pain at the present time and occasionally Darvocet when I need something stronger.
I think at times I am just exhausted mentally as well as physically from this surgical journey....I'm sure most of you can relate.
Thanks for letting me vent.....:)
This forum has been great!
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Comments

  • ...at 9 months out yet...Hi Phyllis! I'm a little ahead of you on the the time-line, but yes, I also still have daily pain, altho nothing like b4 or even last year...
    But that dull achy-ness in the fusion site & above & below it, yes, it's still there. And my NS said to figure until next summer b4 it would ALMOST be gone...but he also said "You'll always have a reminder..." *sigh*

    I take asprin/Advil during the day, Valuim & a sleeper at night...occasionally a quarter of a 2mg dilaudid if things flare...so meds are still a part of my daily life too..

    I have a friend who's had 2 fusions over the years. She told me "you just get used to it" & that helped me a lot. She is always stiff/sore/tight in the AM's (me too) & aches when the weather is damp/rainy/stormy/ (me too) & still needs to pace her energy levels (me too) & watch her activity obligations so as not to get too tired (me too) & she is 5 years out ....

    So not to bring you down, but I think it;s just what's now our "new normal" after having so much invaded. And the mental exhaustion you mention has been, for me at times, worse than the physcial stuff. The constant pain just wears you out, mentally, I've found. I'm teaching again now, full-time, & it helps me keep busy, for sure! But the pain is a constant distraction & annoys me no end! Like a dog on a long leash, thinking it's running free then *YANK!* The pain pulls a person back to reality...!

    It will be 2 years on the 26 of this month that I;ve been in constant pain. October 26, 2006---I;ll never forget that. And like you, I wonder: will this every go AWAY?!

    Hang in there, fusion-wise, tho! It takes a full 2 years to heal...so we may end up better than we think we will! :)

    Thanks for the ear! You take care! This forum is a great morale booster! We all understand!

    ~Lakeside
  • For me, the pain never really goes away, it just "gets different". I learn to adapt to the differences as best I can and press ahead with my life.

    "C"
  • Hello Phyllis,

    I had fusion and laminectomy at 3-levels in mid-June, and still have symptoms. I've certainly improved (my wife needs to remind me of this occasionally - when I complain), but I still have variable back and leg pain and weakness/tiredness/fatigue (somewhat like a flu malaise at times). I'm attending PT now (not sure it helps); when I overdo it during the day, I pay for it at night - i.e., I get restless/achy leg symptoms, can't sleep as a result (get up and walk the floors), but then I'm exhausted all of the next day. I have been back to work for over 2 months (probably went back too soon), and I'm also teaching part-time. So I'm quite productive - just not feeling well....yet.

    Hang in there. I have a full understanding now that these things simply take time.

    Best wishes for a continued recovery,

    Mike
  • I am approaching 7 months post 3 level fusion with rods and screws. The best way for me to describe it is that I have exchanged certain sets of pain for others. And thankfully, I am much happier with my new ones! My over the top reason for deciding on surgery was that I could not walk more than a dozen steps before my legs were so painful I had to stop. My ankles were also being affected, all being attributed to my grossly unstable spine. The back pain was controlled fairly well with epidurals but nothing touched the thigh/groin and ankle pain, so I went with the surgery, with no guarantees it would even touch the pain I needed it to. Well after months of PT I can walk again! Not like I hope to some day, but I feel human again. Now, however, I do feel the pain around my harware, the nerve "bites" throught by lower extremities,but I was back to work at 9 weeks and off all pain meds at 6. I keep reminding myself that it takes time, and up to 2 years, so hang in there! We are all different ages and will heal differently.
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