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How many people are still working full time?

spinaltapsspinaltap Posts: 50
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:26 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I'm wondering how many of us are still able to work full time? I don't see myself ever stopping working, but I'm wondering if I am being realistic.


  • Not I. I practice my typing skills on SH. I can't work at all, so I'm a domestic engineer for now. I admire all who have to work in their condition.
  • I had a TLIF on November 20 08 and I am positive I will be back to work by 2-17-09 if not weeks sooner.
  • I'm off work for 11 months now.
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • i have been out since June.I am a special ed teacher...very physically demanding job (as well as mental!),
    I am attempting to go back this week..that would just about 6 months home..I am realistic knowing how my job is. my goal is to find a transfer so that I can continue to teach and not kill myself..will see how it goes! Think of me wednesday please!
  • But I only manage to make it there sometimes. I'm not sure how that would be viewed.
  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 805
    hey spinaltap,
    I'm still working here, not as good as I once was, but I keep pushing. I average 6 twelve hour days at my business and I work even harder at home but not like I used to. As an admitted workaholic my Dr's and wife have finally convinced me I have to take it back a notch and not work so hard. I like to keep busy as it keeps my mind off my health issues but I look at myself and see that I'm not as productive as I used to be. These surgeries have really taken a toll on me. Maybe I'm getting old too? Nah, not me!
    Take care,
  • 6 twelve hour days!! I admire your willpower. Keep at it. I can only hope to have that much get up and go.... =D>
  • I have been out of work since March of 2006......I can't imagine working now
  • I went back to work after my first neck fusion dec. 2006 (4 weeks after) I then worked full time until my 2nd neck fusion March of 2008, I was off work 8 weeks and only made it 2 months before the pain got to be too much, plus, finding out I herniated above my fusion and below so now Iam done with working.... I gave it my best shot but couldn't handle to excutiating pain anymore. I have applied for SSD because my Doctors say Iam done. I have been denied once and am in the middle of appealing, wish me luck...
  • Jeanette....I too was denied SSD the first and second time. After that I got a lawyer and won my case in July 08....only took 2 yrs!!!! I am now getting my monthly pymts (took 3 months to get that once approved) they still owe me 22 months! Whenever I call they tell me it's "being processed"...they did pay the lawyer in Sept. Wouldn't you think that I'd get my $$$$ first?

    GOOD LUCK!! Don't give up.
  • Only because of the need for health insurance. No one else would take me, or if they would it would cost too much. I just pray I can make 4yrs and 8 months until I can retire. But with 3 more bulging discs, probably not realistic.
  • I worked full time up until my surgery, taking a few hours off here and there when I was in a lot of pain. I took a little time off after my surgery and went back to work part-time 13 days post-op. By 1 month I was back to full time. We cross-trained our receptionist prior to my surgery, so I did a lot of her duties for the first several weeks back. Once my weight restrictions were lifted from 10 to 50 pounds, I've been able to return to almost all of my prior duties (except wrestling rank horses).
  • Hmmmm. Im working full time, at a desk all day as a loan officer. But I have to pop the pain pills to get by in the late afternoons. Often times I dont sleep well at night due to pain that keeps me tossing and turning trying to find a pain free laying position.

    Lots of numbness in the right side of my hands, much grinding and crackling and crumpling sounds in my neck.

    Things are falling apart.
  • I am working full 8 - 10 hour days. Most of my day is sitting in front of the computer. I was pressured into going back much too soo ( i believe) by my employer, 2 weeks after acdf c 5-6. I started with 1/2 days for about 2 weeks then right into full time. I regret it much. I really have a hard time. I do have to take my meds throughout the day. I couldn't do without them. I am honestly thinking how much longer can I do this? I am seeing a pain management Dr. in 2 weeks. Maybe he'll have some answers. I feeil that I have only gotten worse since surgery & I'm sure my working has a lot to do with it. But if I don't work I don't get paid & my bill wouldn't get paid either. What to do?
    I wish you luck!
  • I run my own gardening business - so no work no money. I work at Target stocking shelves overnight during the winter months. Both phy (gardening way more) - but financially our family cannot afford me not to work. i tried to delegate more to my employees, but I still make most of my money on my own labor. Thank goodnes for meds, couldn't do it otherwise.

    I am hoping to improve my condition before the 2009 season begins, we will have to see, though
  • Haven't worked in so long i don't know what i would do anymore if i went back. :/ i was off work at home raising my three kids,had just got my youngest into kindergarden and had planned on going back to work when i started having neck troubles,the pain was so intense most days it was an effort to get myself out of bed and it all went downhill from then on. Five years of doctors telling me not to lift or bend so many restrictions i was just ready to pull up the rocking chair and sit in it all day and night.I was told not to do anything because my spinal cord was flattened at three levels and everytime i moved my head half of my body would go limp and i would fall down.Five years waiting for surgery.Now i'm eight months out,and have endoured two more falls and a car accident. 8} Fighting with whiplash on top of everything else.I really wish i could get back to a job but i fear right now thats the least of my worries.
  • I am scheduled for an ACDF (c4-c7) with hardware on January 13th and am still working full time 8 hours a day. I plan to go back to work in 6-8 weeks I will let you know what happens with that!!
  • I had 2 months off for L-5 laminotomy/discectomy in 2002 as pharmacy tech. Then had 5 weeks off as salesperson/shipping and stocking person for retail clothing store for artificial disc replacement surgery Sept '08. Working part-time now and will probably continue that because more than 6 hours in one day gets very painful. I can't see ever stopping completely but sure wish that I could..when I have a few days off work, I can really feel the difference in the way my body does NOT ache.
  • I've been off since 10/27 -- I'm scheduled to go back next week on the 12th. I'm very nervous about going back to work, I spend 7+ hours on a computer.
  • I have been off work since 11/05/07. After two cervical surgeries in 4 months, the doctors may leave me do something in 2 to 8 months, then again I know that my old job is not a option, Plumbing and HVAC work just don't do good things to ones spine. Good luck to all of you that are working.

  • I had ACDF (c5-c7)with hardware on December 8, 2008. I left the the hospital the next morning, three hour ride home, and went to a basketball game that night. On day 3 I started walking a mile a day. On the 4th day post op went into the family hardware business for a few hours to do bookwork. On the 8th day I went back to work full time. That week I took a few pain meds to make it through the day but not bad. We were busy people getting ready for christmas and a huge ice storm. The next week I was pain free until late afternoon then went home took pain meds to finish the day and get my one mile walk in. I am 4 weeks post on now and doing great. I have to limit my activities or I feel it about six hours later. :H
  • I took about 8 weeks off on STD, and came back to work part time (mornings) on Dec. 15. I'm a graphic designer for a company so I spend a lot of time on the computer. Not a good thing. Not a good thing at all. Although my company is fantastic and very supportive, hubby and I thought I should go back at least part time due to the economy (don't want 'em forgetting I exist). They're very understanding and sometimes I can make it 5 hours and sometimes only 2. I'll be doing that for a while and see how it goes, week to week.

    It sure is good to be out and seeing friends and the world again - loneliness and cabin fever sucks.

  • My leave has been extended to Feb 2 now, I've been off since 10/27. I stopped by the office to help out my assistant, 45 minutes at the computer was about all I could take.
  • Good for you! That is such an encouragment. =D>
  • since the first of september. Get along much better now than when I first went back. I feel I am all the way fused by now. Still doing PT trying to get my muscles back in my left shoulder blade. Coming along good. Making gaines. Just slowly. Must have patience with this healing and everyone heals at a different pace. Keep drivin on with the mission.
  • it's been 3 years now. The permanent S1 nerve damage makes it impossible. I am a professional recliner sitter nowadays, spending up to 23 hours a day reclined. I really only can get up to go to the bathroom, do short activities and occasionally run to town. I have heated seats in our van and a pillow and stay reclined in the vehicle as well.

    S1 nerve damage requires you to "stay off your tail" as my doctor calls is. Just got my permanent spinal cord stimulator, so don't really know how much of my life I will get back. I have to lay low for 4 to 6 weeks while the leads scar in so they don't move.

    Just starting the process of filing for SSD - been in some serious denial over that. I also have permanently 40%+ hips to toes, so I have real balance issues.

    I was a high-energy real estate agent and there is no way I could do that now. Not much I can do but type from my fully reclined day long position. But I have this cool adjustable laptop caddy/desk that rolls right up to me over the arm of the recliner and allows me to "live" online and stay distracted as much as possible from the 24/7 burning nerve pain. Any activity causes a flare that takes days and sometimes weeks to get over.

    Prior to my few years in real estate, I was a stay at home mom, so we had been accustomed to living on one salary, thank goodness!! And I thank God for decent insurance, as well.

    Crossing my fingers that the SCS changes all that!!

    Take care everyone,

  • I work 9 hours daily not more than that.... but its full of mental stressed work which makes me too tired...
  • I am still working full time, some 12 hour days and some 10 hours. I sit at a computer all day, no strenuous activity at all. The only way I can survive is running my TENS unit, usually all day long. I also take some of my meds, but not anything that will make me loopy. (I still work in the 911 field and don't want to miss something or do something wrong.) My work is pretty cool, if I need to get up and move around some I can do that any time and have been able to leave any time I am hurting too much or have a doctor's appointment.

    So, I deal with the pain during the day and take my pain meds when I get home. Sometimes I can get some sleep but it's always poor. Between my back and the sciatica which is returning I wake up regularly.

    I wouldn't know what to do with myself if I wasn't working, I'm frustrated enough already!!
  • i went back to work 5 weeks post op light duty. Its rough but we can't pay the bills without my income. If I had to go back full duty which requires me to lift 60 pounds, it would be impossible. Thank goodness i work for a good company.
    After I start and finish therapy they talked about some sort of evaluation to see what I am capable of doing. I don't know what it's called. Anybody know how they evaluate what you can do ?
  • Wow! It occured to me while I read some of these...wouldn't it be nice if we could get paid for being 'recliner sitters'...evaluate the quality of recliners for recliner manufacturers and get paid good for it! lol.

    Anyway, I've been off since June 2nd of this past year. I am seeing a 'second opinion' surgeon today. I was referred to him by my neuro. I have osteophytes from C-3 thru C7, herniated discs from C-3 thru C-7, central canal stenosis throughout my cervical spine. I've had severe arm pain on my left arm especially for almost 3 years. Now its spread to my right arm and gotten worse.

    My DO's take on it after seeing the MRI's was I'd need ACDF C-3 thru 6 and maybe 7. Don't know yet but will let everyone know when my surgeon finally decides.

    As far as returning to work, I'm 57 yrs old, diabetic, hypertension, sleep apnea, pretty severe foot pain chronically. My primary care doc as well as my claims manager think I'm going to end up on permanent disability. Don't know. We'll see.

    Ken GreyEagle
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