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Hello friends

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
Hello all,

I have been going through major Sciatic pain on my right side for the past 9 weeks. Got an MRI done , reveals L5/S1 to be badly herniated. I started by some rest and then physical therapy for about 5 weeks. Just got Epidural injections on 8/29/09 and waiting to see if this would help. I am so depressed, have 2 young kids and cant do much with them at all. Waiting to talk to others with similar experiences and trying to learn to see what I can do to get my life back


  • Welcome to SH :H I'm sorry you suffered this condition and believe me, I know all too well about this. I have chronic lower back pain and nerve pains with muscle spasms in both legs. This all stemmed from disc herniations at L4-5 and L5-S1 (see below).

    How are you feeling after your ESI? It can take up to 5 days to know if it did any good. They never worked for me and all that happened was that it made me feel worse. If your back is really sore from the injection, you can use ice packs to reduce the pain.

    I hope this brings you relief for a long time. I understand how frustrating it is when you can do anything with your kids and it can be so discouraging. Don't give up, there's much more your doctor can do to help you. Are you taking anything for the pain? Feel free to ask any questions and we're more than happy to help. Take care
  • thanks Meydey. Its just about been 72 hours now since I got the shots. For the first 2 days I had more pain with fever. But now the increased pain/fever is gone. I am not sure if the injections worked yet but I was told it may take time for them to work. Sitting, standing and walking for me is a torture. It has been better than it was 2 months ago but no where near normal. My question is should I try to walk etc or should I continue to avoid anything that causes pain.
  • Hi Raj, Welcome to the forums..I had L5 S1 herniation and was taken right into surgery. Fully recovered and am doing great...some right leg soreness ocassionaly...do you experience any numbness? I had that for about 10 months after surgery but that as well has left..Wish you the best with your decision.

  • Hi Cynthia, why were you taken right away into surgery? Wouldnt they advise other treatment options first?
  • For me, the BEST part of the ESIs would be during the actual procedure and that afternoon/evening. That's when the effects of the numbing agents are still in play.

    While I didn't get much relief from them, keep in mind that there are some people who benefit for MONTHS from ESIs. HOPEFULLY, you'll fall in that category.

    I too have kids - they are 19, 17 and 12 now. But my back problems started about 5 years ago. Its rough at first - feeling horrible when your activities are limited, and then trying to adjust. You will find that place where you are doing just enough to be a part, but not too much where you create more problems.

    It's a balancing act that is just one more aspect of parenthood. Good or bad - we love our kids and will do what we can to be sure they will always feel that love.

    Take care. Don't over do - no matter how good you feel!
  • Raj, MRI showed fragments too large to ever shrink back into disk. No regrets.
  • I see. I hope you are feeling better. are you able to join the chat room?
  • Thanks jeauxbert

    I just hope to live to be normal and pain free again. There is a lot I want to do in life before I hang my boots, I am only 32. I hope these shots work, on my knees begging to God :)
  • I didn't know you had fever. Are you sure you didn't have a spinal infection? What did your doctor say about this? I'm glad it went away. I hope the ESI kicks in really soon and you get relief. It's been over 3 years since I've sat without pain. I spend my time in bed surrounded by much needed items such as meds, drink, remote, wireless mouse and keyboard, extra pillows, etc. It's boredom that gets me- you can watch tv or surf the net so much. My husband took me to the library and I came back with a stack of books. I'm a voracious reader and can read a whole book in a day nonstop if it's really good. Anyway, let me know if you need anything and I hope you feel better. Take care
  • :D Don't give up hope! I know it's depressing :''( to have your life turned upside down, especially with kids in tow.

    I have had severe to moderate sciatic pain for the last year. I am finally, I think, turning a corner to being much better.

    I agree with MeyDey that ice seems to the thing that really helped me the most with the acute pain in my leg. What medications are you taking? You didn't mention if the doctor had given you something to cope with the pain. I'm on Lyrica (for nerve pain) and tramadol. I also take advil or alleve with it to help the inflammation.

    I would walk when you feel up to it. I'm just now ready to start a real walking program again. Also, I highly recommend massage therapy. I went to the chiropractor probably 20 times in the most painful months and I can't tell you whether it really helped me or not. I don't have a herniated disk, just a bulging disk. I got an inversion table on the recommendation of my doctor and I hang like a bat. I enjoy it as it takes the pressure off the discs. I don't know if that is recommended for a herniated disc.

    You know when I started this whole mess almost a year ago I was told it could take 1 to 4 years to heal. This weekend will be the year mark and as I said, I am finally starting to feel like my old self again.

    Not to say you will endure pain for that long, every person has different circumstances. I know you just want this OVER. I know you're stressed about it, I certainly was too. But I can tell you to try to take one day at a time - do what you can -- don't beat yourself up each day for not doing what you normally do. You might find friends and family just don't get what you're going through -- let any unkind comments they make roll off your shoulders. They haven't walked in your shoes. It's important for you to try to relax and let your body heal so listen to some music, light a scented candle, take a hot bath, rub on some icy hot or bio freeze, get on your comfy pj's and prop yourself in bed with your ice pack or heating pad. Also remember to stay hydrated, it helps when you're taking meds and also your spine.

    Okay, enough of my chatterbox, too much coffee today. Good luck to you and PM me any time if you need to vent.

  • why not try getting on the floor and crawling around with the kids. if i were your child id love it. seeing those happy kid faces might break up your gloom. as for walking i would do a few steps just so youre not sitting so long. sitting puts the most strain on disks....pete
  • Thanks all very much. After about 80 hours of the 1st injection, it does seem like it did work a bit. However, strange that the other side seems to be hurting now which never did ;). Maybe I need a Psychiatrist lol. I have been resting since Saturday and just trying to walk a little bit. Thanks again for the advice, I guess I'll post changes everyday to see how I progress. Also if anyone has any other advice, please feel free, I will be so thankful
  • Also, has anyone tried the Swopper chair (swopper.com)
  • Severe right side sciatica pain since June 09. I could not even walk more than 5 steps.
    Here's what I have done so far, I am mentioning so if anyone else has L5S1 large herniation can try to benefit:
    1) Medrol dose pack
    2) Complete bed rest for 21 days ( I kow a lot of websites say rest for more than 1-2 days is not good. At this point I disagree!). I bed rested until all the inflammation and pain came down.
    3)4 weeks of Accupuncture, massage and electric stem (3 times/week)
    4) 1 ESI
    5)Swimming since the last 2 weeks.
    6)More intense McKenzie's since the last 2 weeks.

    2 weeks ago, met a neurosurgoen, who wanted to operate me the next day. I asked if I could by 2-3 weeks. I left his office, went to the pool and started ths excercise regime with an Indian therapist. I am glad to say the situation seems to be a lot lot better. If any of you know how to swim, please please go into the pool. DO gentle and light swimming.
    Please let me know if anyone has questions that I can answer. I had/have according to my MRI one of the worst herniations and this helped me. I hope it can help some of you friends who are in pain. I say NO to surgery until I HAVE tO.

    P.S: thIS worked for me. May not work for anyone else. Please consult your doctor before trying anything new.
  • just curious about the kind of exercises the therapist gave you. thats so wonderful. i would keep it up and maybe you should swim for the rest of your life. what a great way to keep the back strong....pete
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