Next step after injections have worn off
Hi there. I had the appointment with my surgeon's PA yesterday as a followup after my ESI and Facet Joint injections wore off. I'm having significant lower back pain and what feels like sciatic pain down the back of both of my legs, but just down to my knees. I also have pins and needles in both legs, but most noticably in my right leg.
The PA said that because the injections worked for five weeks that I'm a perfect candidate for RFA (radiofrequency ablation, aka nerve burn). She also thinks that the pain in the back of my legs is referred pain from my facet joint problems and thinks it will also be fixed through the RFA. The pins and needles are most likely from the diffuse disc bulge touching nerves, but it's not enough of a concern to consider any treatment now.
The first course of action will be a medial branch nerve block. If I feel relief from that for six hours or so, then I'll have to go back another day and get the RFA on those same nerves. Hopefully the RFA procedure will fix the pain for at least six months, hopefully more.
On a side note, the pain I'm having in my neck is due to movement at C6/7 that hasn't completely fused (it's the most difficult level to fuse) and she wants to revisit that issue in December to see if I'll need posterior surgery to secure that level. We'll also discuss the RFA at that time unless I need to see her before then.
She also changed my medication from Hydrocodone every 6 hours to Norco every 4-6 hours to lessen the amount of acetaminophen I'm taking because I've been having some stomach cramps. This will also lessen the possibility of having liver issues.
So, that's my update. I'm looking forward to having the RFA done because I'd sure like to not walk around with this back pain every day. I really love my doctors and feel very lucky to have found them.