Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Anyone in the same boat?

Mandalina07MMandalina07 Posts: 22
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:31 AM in Lower Back Pain
I thought I might ask this forum if anyone feels the same way I do. I am in a constant annoying nagging but tolerable pain in my back and legs. (the sciatica is off and on) When I am in bed or I have rested I tend to be okay for a few hours of mobility. If I push myself too hard or do too much I wind up in pretty bad pain (probably a 7-8). I haven't been in 10+ pain since the onset of my injury. I am still in pain, I just don't always show it. I don't like people to feel sorry for me!

My problem is everyone around me who sees me when im functional thinks im fine, or that I don't show signs of injury. My boyfriend is with me 24/7 since he works from home but sometimes he is like "you're doing pretty good today" and I constantly have to defend my pain and injury and I find it annoying. Just because im not in debilitating crippled over walking hunched over pain doesn't mean I am 100% fine. I don't know, I tend to overthink things and care too much about what other people think. Does anyone else experience this?


  • i hear what ur saying, i go through the same thing every day at home and at work, so fed up coz if i say im in pain i get the "heard it all before look" and if i say nothing i get " u must be getting better you not moaning today" cant win really, only people who have been in this situation GET IT. hope u have a pain free day tommorrow
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,875
    You just posted what so many people here have experienced. Its one of the more difficult things to deal with. For the most part, people living in chronic pain really don't show it. Sure, in severe cases, there are the wheelchairs, walkers, canes, etc..
    but to many, you look and act like anyone else. They dont know how much pain and suffering you are in. And as you said, even those close to you dont even know it all.
    I know I have heard "Oh you look good, you must be feeling good" over a million times in the past 30 years and I still hate to listen to that.
    One member suggested that chronic pain members should have written across their foreheads, "YES I am in PAIN"!
    I just hope as years go by your spinal problems can be reduced so that you do not always have to be in situations like you described.
    Keep positive, always say to yourself that no matter what others say or dont say, you know what is happening and you know what you need to do to take that next step. And if you have doubts, tell us, this member community here always tries to help other members.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • I know exactly what you are talking about. I live with pain almost everyday, I am going to dr tommorrow to get my very first results from Lower MRI scan. I really dont want anything wrong with me, but I do want to know what causes the pain I am in. Its very frustrating to say the least. Im not looking for sympathy from anyone, just believe what I say. No one wants to be in pain, especially every day. Thats just it, It just is, Pain..
  • ha ha did that even make sense..LOL.. I felt like it did when I wrote it..
  • Most of my friends and acquaintances don't know I have severe lower back problems.
    I have kept it a secret. I don't want people to know I am "damaged goods".
    It sucks. I have to avoid lots of situations.

    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • Wow thats horrible Paul, I have told my friends but they still don't get it. I have a friend who had planned to come to Vegas and stay at my place but we dont talk too often. The last two weeks shes been asking me "hows your back" etc. like every few days. It's sad that shes only doing it to make sure she still has her trip to vegas set. =( Being young with all this kind of sucks because obviously other people our age don't get it. Oh well..
  • I know EXACTLY what you are saying. I feel (hurt) the same way you do. Its constant...doesnt leave me. I'm 5 months out since my ALIF surgery. My surgery helped me some, but now I have this achy pain. I hate being on pain meds..but I'm scared to ask about going on some kind of disability....I think I would qualify. I am not working at the present time...and I think if I got a job, and took a drug test it would show that I am taking pain medication. My husband had both his knees replaced about 1 year ago, and he's doing great. I keep thinking maybe I will be feeling better after about 1 year from my surgery date. Thats what I'm hoping for. Hang in there my friend...you are not alone.

  • Yep, I'm with you. Because I'm not always whinging about it, people every now and then say...oh are you still in pain, or do you still have that problem. i would like to brain them :)

    Yes i am always in flipping pain, but i am trying to reduce it every way possible, the only thing differing from one day to the next is the degree of pain.
  • I can relate to what you're saying. My leg and back pain started in November 2007 and I was still able to work taking platinum Robaxacin and people at work would see me rub my leg and back often and say I should get it checked out. Finally in February after my MRI and rough work assignments I was unable to walk completely for a few days. It's only been after the epidurals(caudal) and facet joint injections for facet joint arthropy(arthritis) I've got some relief. But after 16 months I'm still at a 5-6 level of pain. I'm going for a 3rd opinion with a NeuroSurgeon to see if I can have microsurgery. I can't stay living like this. I don't think I'll be able to attend my cousin's wedding in Sept. Life is sure passing us by when we miss out on so much. Sorry to talk about me so much but I hope you can get some relief with your ESI's. Take care. 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
  • It does get annoying and frustrating when somebody asks you "how are you feeling today?" when the answer is always "I'm always hurting". I have not had a minute that I DON'T have pain in over 3 years- it never stops, even with strong medications. So I honestly can't say I'm doing fine. A person doesn't have to cry to show they are in pain. Many of us try to suffer in quiet, but the pained expression in our eyes gives us away.
  • I too find it so hard to answer when asked "how are you feeling?" because in all honesty, I'm in constant pain on a daily basis, too. Some days are better than others but the pain never goes away. I get sick and tired of family members saying "It's because of depression" or You're just focusing on your pain too much" so I resort to saying that I'm fine now when the truth is that I'm not. I've even had a well intentioned family member give me a book on "feeling good-the new mood therapy" like I can change my pain by thinking differently about it...It really would be better if I had a scarlet P for pain branded on my chest so people would know what I'm going through.

  • wow,i cannot belive me eyes! ive been in pain my whole adult life since i was 18 in now im 31 it sucks so bad when yuor wife thinks your gonna die from all the pills (oxys) and the rest of the family thinks our a crack head because other family members do the stuff to get high!

    thank you people!! very encouraging(spelling)
    to here your stories
  • Maybe i'm negative but i think the majority of people are just thinking of themselves.
    So many people over the years come over to this person (me) on crutches or wheelchair and ask how you are. 2 seconds later they are talking about their own physical problems. Them asking how you are is just an excuse to talk about their own troubles.
    After 40 years of fighting pain my moto is keep your answers short. "hanging in there" "OK" "Not Bad" "can't complain" "beats the alternative"
    If the person asking how you are is close to you don't feel guilty being honest, even extreme like "worst day of my life" or "terrible!" To be even more honest and positive add: "but i'm still doing battle!''
    Boy are we doing battle but "that's life!"

  • I have been in pain since my teen years, I have even had doctors tell me IT'S ALL IN YOUR HEAD. Not something you need to hear when you don't understand what is wrong with you, and seems like many docs want to pass it off as something not worth their time and effort.

    What I have done is come to terms with it, not everyone will understand, nor will they even attempt to. It's their problem, not yours. Live your life as best as you can and forget the ignorance of others.

  • Still I think no matter how people ask,We are our own worst friend,We look in the mirror and what do we see?I see a man that is in no pain-nothing wrong,yet i know that to be BS,Ive tried to go without my morphine after i lost 55 lbs.Not a chance in hell!!!!When money gets extra tight (more than normal)my family turn to me everytime and insist that i find work.I would love to!!!!!!!!But being on time everytime isnt going to happen,working full shifts everytime is a passing dream,and how many employers are going to hire you when you take morphine 10 times a day?I used to be an employer and even now i wouldnt touch me with a 10 foot legally binding pole.Yet the answer is simple,get rid of the insurance companies (i.e)workmans comp.if you work then you pay for this "insurance"yet when you need it they bankrupt you and your family in the process.Only to get substandard medical.If i was some professional athelete the surgery would have been done right and the stress over bills and family future would not be an issue.
    Yet now due to the back i will never be a father,who will pay for that?My wife and i might as well be friends since its been 7 years and our anniversary was last week,our 11th Soooo there"s not much going on that night!so where"s the compensation ?I get to play video games all day and night when i can afford to buy a used one,no one moes my lawn or takes care of my home or waxes my car,I still have to do all of those things,what used to take an hour now takes 2 days.Where is the help??I have asked this question for over 10 years now and have yet to get an answer.With the Billions of people out there you would think someone would have a solution,
    But im still up right,it sure beats the alternative.
    Now im off to take another morphine.
  • i know its probably on here somewhere, but, how long can a person be on pain killers before your body shuts down??

    every night, i have heart palipitations, i hope its from my poor diet and not from the pills!!

    i have had a echo cardigram done all looked ok.
    but i just feel something is not right.

    my blood presure spikes every night.

    i think , think! its from all my muscles spazzing out and choking my circulation.

    i am a young father and i would like to be here for my family. thanks for the support.
  • Yes, we all face this. My daughter has severe M.E. but outwardly looks fine and normal, and tries to be pleasant around others. Naturally they assume she is perfectly well or getting better.
    Don't ask, just assume. You have to look ill to be ill.
    Wonder how they think of mental illness, then?
    One thing that I've noticed as a chronic pain sufferer is that I can tell instantly if someone I meet is also in pain.
    The eyes are the giveaway.
    I always ask if this is so, and they respond with a high degree of thankfulness that someone has noticed and bothered to ask.
    Hard to know what to say to family, as one day I can be quite good, the next awful.So if I say I am one of these, they must assume that is continuing unless I say otherwise.
    If I have a really bad day, I usually just say so now. The good ones I keep to myself!
  • I didn't let on that I had issues except some good friends & my boss. All was good until I started having balance problems and fell flat on my back at work, right out of the blue! (That sure caused a stir! lol) Now I use a cane to help me keep my balance. Works good for that but there's no hiding things now. It didn't take long for everyone to get used to it, not a big deal. Now I get asked how I'm doing on a daily basis, some days are definitely better than others & everyone at work is pretty supportive.
  • Wow, I couldn't have stated it any better...the hardest part about the chronic pain is that usually when I see the doctor, I feel ok at that moment. Its' when I clean my house or carry my babies (I have no choice) or drive 2 hrs round trip to work daily or try to exercise that I am in excruciating pain.

    I look normal and go to work everyday. I take care of my family and my home. I refuse to let life pass me by...this is WHY I have soooo much pain.

    I am considering surgery right now and of course, workers comp is denying it. At this point, I do not care, I will use my own insurance. I am praying for recovery, I am praying for relief from the pain.

    Good luck , at least here, we understand
  • Comment: "You don't look like you're in pain"
    Response: "You don't look stupid either"

  • I was in a jetski accident last year and had a triple fracture of my mandible and just sucked it up the best I could while it was wired shut for 8 weeks. It was tough and my family went through a lot to support me.

    Now this week I got back surgery for the second time, and almost feel like I need to just move past it immediately because I don't want people to feel sorry for me. I feel like I've put everyone through enough with my jaw. In fact, I'm probably going to work tomorrow after just having a discectomy/laminectomy on Wednesday. It was so unexpected that I'm trying to ignore it even happened.
  • quote from a friend:

    Comment: "You don't look like you're in pain"
    Response: "You don't look stupid either"
    Oh, that's a good one! Am going to remember that response, LOLOL! =)) =))

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • I'm totally with the poster on this one.

    My back felt horrible for about 4 weeks, then improved markedly overnight. Now it's just this incredibly cranky pain that comes seemingly out of nowhere and lasts for days before going away again overnight.

    I call it the "ever-changing pain of Eigenvector (you didn't think I'd use my real name did you??)" because it seems to affect a random muscle in my back - and never the same one twice.
  • I think unfortunately it's quite a common problem. For a start, my pain scale pre-and-post injury are not really comparable. Before my idea of 10 was no where as bad as what I since experienced! After experiencing such acute pain the reduced but chronic pain is always seen as relative. However the daily grind of chronic pain and the lack of any decent sleep inevitabley gets you down.

    There is no clear line when explaining your pain to friends/family is crossed and becomes seen as whinging and constant complaining. There seems to be an allocated time slot for tea and sympathy and then you are expected to get on with life.

    I don't know the answer any more than you do. My husband regularly asks how many painkillers I am taking a day (it varies), as he uses this as a bit of a guide to how I'm doing!
  • hello all, I can relate to each and every one of you. I began to have chronic pain in 1974 while in the Army. Constant trips to the doctor got me plenty of muscle relaxers and anti inflamitories plus 24 hours bed rest. So i learn to suck it up and hid it deep inside. I went on to retire from the military in 1994 without ONE medical profile on my record. I currently work as a government employee since retiring from the military. I hid my pain again for the past 15 years. But last year i could not take it any more and sought the much needed help i deserved. I was lucky enough to find a REAL GOOD pain management doctor who knew i was not trying to lead people on about my pain. After many months of experimental drug theraphy,and numerous trips to Mayo Clinic for second opinions, she finally realized that the only hope i had(besides opiodes) was a spinal cord stimulator. We did the trial in June 2009. After the third day, while visiting her office, she said she could tell it was working. I asked her how? She stated that in all my visits to her i NEVER smiled once. That day i was. After years of waiting for the answer, i had my permanant SCS done last Wednesday(July 8th).Although i am in alot of discomfort from the procedure, it has to be one of the happiest days in my life. I finally know what the future will bring. 20 years of military service and many battles with the VA, and it takes a regular down to earth doctor to treat this veteran with the respect he dedicated to his country. SAD NOTE....
  • Sadly, no one can understand living with chronic pain unless they have it. I talk about it all the time with my hubby and for the most part he just brushes it off with a "I hope you feel better". He should realize that I can hope all I want but I'm not going to get better without a lot of help. I sometimes wish that just for one day he could feel what I feel and then maybe he would understand. Boy oh boy though, if he gets hurt or sick the whole world has to stop....lol. He means well though.

    Unfortunatly with sciatica pain, the more you move around the worse it can get. I've actually limped throughout a mall cause of sciatica. Mine comes and goes as well, and of course I prefer it to just stay gone...lol.
This discussion has been closed.
Sign In or Register to comment.