Hi Everyone, my name is Belinda. I don't really know where to begin, nor what topic to put this under, so please bear with me. I am 59 yrs. old, and haven't been able to work since 2005. I am very nervous because I have an appointment with a government othopedic doctor tomorrow. I really don't know what to expect, and I wondered if anyone could please help me?
I was in a head on collision in 1991 where I sustained a concussion, a large cut completely across my forehead and neck injuries. As time went on, I began having severe migraines with auras, and eventually had disc surgery on my cervical spine in '96. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia about this time and took part in a study for botox injections in my neck and head (not face-still have my wrinkles). These seemed to help somewhat, so I've had the injections off and on again (as insurance would allow it) since then. I began having severe neck pain again and was told I needed more areas fused. I now have almost the entire c-spine fused, with steel plates, screws and a basket to hold the cadaver that was bending in place. I'm embarrassed to say I really didn't ask the C numbers? but when I called and asked, the office attendant put something on my record about my 'memory problems'. It is somewhat true, as fibromyalgia has me foggy a lot of the time; however, I really didn't get much info from them other than the next disc under all this apparatus is the L spine? The surgeon did mention at that time that the disc holding this up usually would only be good for a couple of years? That was in 2004.
Recently, I've had such pain in my lower back and left hip, along with the chronic pain and stiffness in my cervical spine. A visit to a regular othopedic doctor said that I had a large curve in my lower back (scoliosis) and it was the cause of my hip and leg/knee pain. He also did an MRI of my cervical spine and said basically my back was a mess. I'm not medical in any way, and now that I have applied for SS benefits, I really don't know how to explain my situations tomorrow morning? I have a lawyer who has sent papers from the appropriate doctors, hopefully he will have readings of the C-fusion and the scoliosis. All of you have numbers, etc. knowing what was done on your spines, and again I'm embarrassed that I didn't ask nor do I really know. I only know I'm in constant pain. My neck is so stiff and achy, I have dystonia in the upper muscles on my chest because of it; I have costochondritis that squeezes my chest? I don't know if that's from the upper or lower back. Then the scoliosis causes pain in my lower back and my hip, knee and leg. I still have migraines from either the cervical fusion or the concussion? fibromyalgia in my muscles plus OA and pain in my joints. My left arm always falls asleep during the night, and my hand hurts so in the day.
I'm really embarrassed about coming here and dumping all of this on you. I only want to know about SS. That is something I said I would never do, as I know many others who are in need of it. BUT, our insurance has gone up so much because of me, it takes my husband's full pension and then some, he works to make enough for us to live on. If I could at least get help with medical insurance, I wouldn't feel like such a burden on him. He is four years older than me, and I don't want him to have to work so hard for 7 more years, just to pay for my insurance and medications. Can anyone help me with some advice or suggestions? I worked as a secretary with a computer/phone and before that retail. I can no longer sit, stand, or get comfortable very long, I just cannot work. I never dreamed I'd get to this place. Thank you so much, Belinda