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Having a Bad day!

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:26 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I need to vent....

I am hag a bad day, pain 10/10

I am 3 months post 3rd surgery. I was feeling a little better, having stopped PT to rest my very irritible nerves in my back.
I got stuck in my car yesterday...nasty road crash diverted traffic and added an unforeseen 15 minutes on my journey.
I am gutted at how that has made my pain come back with a vengence, almost like pre-surgery.

I don'y have any disc's anymore so why does it hurt so bad? I know driving is bad for Lumbar spines but 35 minutes in a car isn't excessive.

I'm so upset. :''(

I have maxed out on all my pain meds again. One step forward and back again. Surely I will get my life back? I do nothing now, and as soon as I try and push the nothing boundary out the damn nerves flare off.

OK, rant over. Any helpful tips?


  • Sorry about your bad day. It doesn't take long for me to hurt from driving or even being a passenger in a car. I know all about the 1 step forward, 3 steps back dance. It never fails when it comes to back problems. At 3 months post op I started PT but it quickly went sour. Are you totally out of meds, and have you asked for a refill?
  • I have a pretty good regime going, I titrate the doasge and add is required but when it is like this nothing much helps.
    I have the insane urge to scold my back (Don't know why) and hit it, hard.

    I have been so patient, will it never end?

    Another question - My nerve thing in my back goes off really quickly. Like it is positional except I am not aware of exactly what I do to set it off. Has anyone else experienced this and any ideas how I could switch it off?

    Thanks fellow spineys - hope you all feel better than me.
  • I have a pretty good regime going, I titrate the doasge and add is required but when it is like this nothing much helps.
    I have the insane urge to scold my back (Don't know why) and hit it, hard.

    I have been so patient, will it never end?

    Another question - My nerve thing in my back goes off really quickly. Like it is positional except I am not aware of exactly what I do to set it off. Has anyone else experienced this and any ideas how I could switch it off?

    Thanks fellow spineys - hope you all feel better than me.
  • Hello Itsalongwalk,

    WOW do you ever bring back memories with that. Is it in your very lower back, almost your butt? That's where mine was. I had no idea when I would get zapped. I could never figure out what movement set it off. Mine was almost like an electrical shock. I remember that I basically had to slowly walk it off. Thank goodness it never went off when I was on the ladder finishing work on our windows.

    Physical therapy helped me. My therapist said I had like a big knot back there. She really worked on it.

    Sound familar?

    My thoughts and prayers are with you. Somehow I hope you get relief from your horrid pain.

    Take care.


  • someone described it as the ugly pain - both works well!!

    I have stopped the PT as that felt like it did more bad than good. This buzzing thing has gone on for ages. After each of my 3 surgeies it settles but comes back.
    I feel like the lid off a ressure cooker after surgery, dispite the immediate surgery pain. Then I go back to this...Like tinnitus in my back / leg. It is lower, coccyx and leg. But I get a winded feeling in thoratic spine area - I want to hit myself hard.

    Mine last for days. Deep heat helps for 2 seconds! LOL!
  • Hello Itsalongwalk,

    OUCH!!!! Lasting for days is totally different than my "zap". Have you sought out the opinions from several neurosurgeons?

    Take care.

  • Go to Bed, Bath, and Beyond and get yourself this thing called a Back Joy. It is not a cushion -- it looks like a scoop for your butt to fit in. You sit on the edge of the seat, get your butt into the Back Joy, then scoot back into the seat. It sort of holds you up so your posture is better and the bottom of your spine stays out of contact with your seat. My cousin, a nurse, recommended it to me. I thought she was a bit nuts, and I really didn't think it did all that much for me until I took a long drive (over half an hour) without it. I was in AGONY!! This thing really does work. Google it -- you'll probably find a video on it. The cheapest price seems to be BB&B.


    3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.
  • I know that I get so mad when I drive, and especially when there is a traffic delay. It's like I get mad at all the other drivers....don't they know I'm in pain and need to get home as soon as possible???

    I hope you can figure out what is causing this pain, and how to get rid of it.
  • I am there with ya. We are at the same point from our revisions. I don't feel a ounce different then before I went in or even before the first surgery.
    Guess I am stuck with it. I do not though have any leg pain or nerve pain anywhere.
    I just want to crack my back in half and ask for a brand new spine <:P

    Hang in there!! I'm going to pain managment on the 21st to get some relief while still healing!!! Oh and a used treadmill for this winter, as its turning out to be not such a great one...

    Keep us up to date on how ya feel!!
  • I know what you mean!! I get so much anxiety when I get stuck in traffic, even as a passenger. We have heated seats (on purpose!) and I keep them turned on to help with the back spasms.

    I rarely drive, but recently needed to pick my son up at work just a few blocks from home. He wasn't ready when I got there, and probably had to wait 15 minutes. I suffered for 3 days getting over that!!

    I haven't tried it yet since getting my SCS on Monday as I can't drive until after my stitches are out this Monday and the doctor clears me. Plus they say no driving with the spinal cord stimulator turned on. BUT, once I get home and that nerve pain flares, I will get to turn on the SCS and jack it up, hopefully blocking out the nerve pain. This things is so awesome and I really recommend it if your doctor eventually thinks you are a good candidate.

    Of course, there are tests (EMG for one) and others that patients go through before doctors admit "Yep, it's permanent nerve damage". They seem to prefer to just keep saying "give it time, nerves take time to heal". While we suffer. Ugh. I'll try not to get on my soapbox!!

    Do you feel any better today? I hope it calms down soon.

    ( ( HUGS) )

  • I feel really down when it is like this. I have been so darn good, patient etc and then right now, I wonder why I bothered having surgery at all?

    OK, so really the pains have changed now and I am sure this is all linked to my nerve issues.

    I wish I could switch them off. Its been 3 days now and no let up.
    I want to click it, hit it and scold it, all at once. Crazy huh!

    I wonder about the SCS...How long do they make you wait b4 considering you for it?

    Oh for relief.... :''(
    Thanks for all your support - it is SO needed right now. I could howl for us all!!

  • unfortunately, no advice as to relieving the pain, but I do hope that you can get your pain level down quickly
  • For me, it was never mentioned until I had my EMG that the docs were like "Oh, wow - Ack! You need an SCS". I was in full on denial at that point, so decided to wait.

    Then we moved and the new doc, even with my previous ns's referral, refused to do the SCS until I jumped through all his rules and regs. And I had to another 6 months of conservative treatment per his rules. And finally, I got my trial at the end of November and my permanent last Monday the 5th. But I felt like I had to beg and beg and it was almost the last thing this new doc wanted to do. (The more I brought it up, the bigger stink eye I got, but I kept saying "Do I need to go back to my former state and former doctor to get this treatment? Because I will. I've called, they'll do it, my insurance will pay for it." Once I made that really clear, the ball starting moving a little faster, I'll admit. These docs just make so much money on injections and such, even when you arne't an ideal candidate, that they seem to want to suck every last penny out of your insurance because once you get the SCS (which is no cheap procedure), you might go off and be happy, never needing so many appointments again, etc. No more "Cha ching".

    However, others I have talked to (quite angrily, in fact) said their docs pushed the SCS on them, even when they didn't want it. As if, do this OR leave my practice. And some of them had more back pain than anything else, which really isn't ideal for the SCS. (Radiating nerve pain is).

    So I don't know if it is regional thing, or not, but I wish I had lived where it was "easier" to get! I get angry sometimes because I don't know why doctors hold the power over our pain so tightly in their hands. Like making me do all the shots and everything over again when I had CLEAR test results, another doctor's opinion, had even already had a thoracic MRI in preparation for paddle leads to bring over here, and this doc, after finally agreeing to the SCS, refused to try the paddle leads until he had to. And my procedure was a nightmare and proved I need paddle leads, just like my former doc knew without ever going through any nightmare procedures. (He figured with 3 surgeries in 12 months, there would be a ton of scar tissue - Duh.)

    So now I have percutaneous leads that are working as we speak, but they already moved once and I feel they may have moved again. *I can tell by how much power I am having to use the get the same results as a week ago, where I feel the buzzing, which is a bit lower but still covering my pain area). If they keep moving, they will move out of position. At that point, I guess he will put in paddle leads. I haven't done a thing to move them, but if my back is messed up, has some anomaly, that could be causing a less than ideal percutaneous situation. Depending on what the doctor thinks, he may decide to go back in and do paddle leads. Only good news to that is I already have the tunneling wires and my implanted generator in my hip. Healing shouldn't be as bad overall as if I had them all done at once. (Paddle leads are sewn in place and don't move, but getting them is a much more major procedure than the simple percutaneous leads procedure because the doc has to do a laminectomy, which removes bone.) This doctor gives almost all cervical SCS patients paddle leads because there is such extreme movement at the neck area.

    And my doc is considered the grandfather of SCS, it's just that he is so stuck in his ways and if you have an opinion, even another renowned surgeon's opinion, you really hurt yourself in the long run. Dumb and stupid seem to work better. lol

    Anyway, I would ask your doctor about the full testing for permanent nerve damage (EMG, etc.) and then what happens after that. I found in our new metropolitan area, there are only 3 doctors who even do SCS, so that might be your problem - if your doc doesn't do them, he might try everything else first forever and ever.

    I'm so sorry you are down - it sometimes took me weeks to get over a nerve flare like you have and then just as I was feeling better, I'd do something else. Tears tears tears, let me tell you. My recliner has become my best friend, sadly. lol

    Many gentle ( (HUGS) )

  • Thanks Cherish. One needs something to grasp when I have been through SUCH an u/down rollercoaster, will the surgery work, yes....no ...maybe...damn another operation needed...this one....and so on.

    I will push for the nerve tests.
    I suspect my surgeon may be feeling a bit vunerable as he missed the complications (unless he intended to leave it, but that doesn't make sense either)that have left me here.

    I do have absolute faith in him but do worry, naturally.
    I am 3 and half months post revision and yes, not suffering madness and insanity on a daily basis in pain BUT am still trouble beyond a reasonable level and still very incapacitated by the current goings on. ~X(

    I am waiting to hear if my local area has agreed my taking Lyrica. Like you, we have policies and loop holes to jump through, all depends where you live.

    My thinking is that the surgeon will be very reltant to admit any "permanent" nerve damage. It takes it all to a different place when the "hope" element is removed.

    Still, It is good to know that my options are not exhausted, yet!

    I am only in my 30's - got way lots more life in me yet to be left here!
    Thank you friends.
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