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New and confused

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:31 AM in New Member Introductions
Hi everyone, I am new to the forum and hope to be an active member. I am 44 and have suffered with back pain for around
20 years. I have been told it was muscle spasms more than
i can remember. I started on pain meds about 3 years ago and
I am currently taking lortab & morphine combination. This
past month things took a turn for the worst and no amount
of medicine is working. During this time, my left knee has
become increasingly painful. Finally they ordered an mri.
Results came in and basically my probelms start at L1-L2 and get progressivley worse as they progress to L5-S1. All the discs are bulging and show facet hypertrophy which progresses downward. Canal and bilateral foraminal stenosis. Ending with a large diffuse bulge with lobulated components far laterally on both sides of L5-S1 and a right paracrentral protrusion indenting the thecal sac in the same area. Just starting to understand what some of this language means, lol. Basically the doctor told me yesterday that my problems were too diffuse for surgery to be an option and that I should mentally prepare myself for disability. I'm having a hard time comprehending all that at once. He is going to try a procedure where they burn some of the nerve endings???? I am scared for our financial future and having to live with chronic pain for the rest of my life. Any advice is greatly appreciated. Lisa


  • Hi,
    I hope before you let that Doctor do anything you get a second opinion from a NS or Orthopedic Surgeon. Don't settle for what you aren't comfortable with.
  • Thanks for the advice Julie. I do have an appt. Friday morning with a nuerosurgeon, to get his opinion, and another MRI scheduled for my knee. I am just kinda in shock. I work full time as a counter manager for Estee Lauder at Dillard's. The doctor wants me to start with one month leave of absence and go from there. I haven't even called work yet, still wondering if I should just keep taking meds and working in pain, like I have been. That would be going against doctors orders though.
  • I know the shock you talk of. He sounds like a very abrupt doctor in his delivery of news. Friday is just around the corner and you will have another opinion and hopefully it will give you a better picture of what is really happening to you. You have been in pain for a long time just dealing with it so just stay patient and think all this through. You do have time. Don't be hurried at this point, even if the doctor is pushing. Think it all through because you are too young as I am to be disabled. If you need someone to throw ideas off of I am just a PM away.
  • I strongly encourage you to give the nerve burn a try. I have arthritis in my facet joints and it is the only thing that gives me any kind of relief. Just do not expect immediate results as it will tak some time for the nerves to completely die. Good luck to you and please keep us posted.
  • Good luck with your Neuro appt. I haven't had the nerve burn yet but would like to try it. Take care now. Charry
    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
  • First of all, welcome to the board. You will find many supportive people around here who want to help you get through your "journeys in chronic pain management".
    I am glad that you are going through with a second opinion. Don't just assume that your current doctor knows what is best for you. (Especially since disability and nerve burning is a serious step) You might go to multiple doctors who all say the same thing, but at least you will be at peace with your decision since you got more than one viewpoint.

    Take Care
    Jackie :)
  • Do you know of any good articles on the web concerning this procedure? I am having a difficult time finding any that are very informative. I am one of that people that needs to research everything, lol. I am curious as to How the procedure is done and what are the possible downfalls?
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