Long time, no chat. I'm 12 weeks post-op from a subtotal discectomy at L4-L5 (this was #2 for me). I just completed my 6 weeks of PT last Friday. I had some questions about meds...and working.
I'm currently taking Aleve 2x/day. As the day goes on, I notice breakthrough pain and take 8mg of Zanaflex every hours as needed to help with the discomfort in my left leg. Usually that works for about 2-3 hours and then I need to take a Percocet (10/325) (at that point its not just my leg but then my back bothering me as well). That usually does the trick for me. I write down my meds religiously (I have since I got home from the hospital) and I see that I need my Zanaflex and Percocet at least once a day and I'll take it twice if its pretty bad (usually the weather has a lot to do with it). I know that the burning and piercing pain in my leg is par for the course because of the nerve healing but I also get really sore muscles like I've been running or lifting weights (I'm doing nothing of the sort! LOL) but only in my left leg and particularly in my calf. I talked to my PT about it before I finished and he just kind of shrugged me off. Anyone notice any of the same sx?
I'm kind of concerned about the Percocet as well. Initially, on discharge my NS rx'd me 5/325 Percs to take 1-2 every 6 hours as needed. At my 1 month post-op visit, he refused to let me taper down to Vicodin since I was only taking "50% of the normal dose" of Percocet (I was trying to only take 1 pill per dose). I told him I needed a refill and he rx'd me 10/325 Percs to take 1 every 6 hours as needed (he was being a little sneaky with that one!). So I've been taking Percocet now for 3 months and I'm concerned about withdrawals. I notice go too long without one I start to feel "yucky"---sweaty, nauseous, hotflashes etc. I know my pills are big doses but I'm not taking them very frequently. Does this make sense?
Next week I am going to visit the NS (a new guy, my guy retired 3 weeks ago) for my 3rd post-op visit. I am still not working but I expect that they will release me back to work. I have to re-apply for my job and I will be required to submit a urine sample for a drug screen. How is that supposed to work if I'm still taking narcotics for pain? My former employer is anxiously awaiting for me to reapply as they have a position open for me...I don't want to mess this up.
Never mind how anxious I am at the prospect of running around for 12 hours shifts at this point in time. I'm still having issues with stamina. I'm doing much more around the house...I finally managed to use the Swiffer Wet Jet yesterday to clean the kitchen floor (I was quite proud but still sore afterwards...)
If anyone can offer me any insight into these issues, I'd greatly appreciate it!
I'm sorry I haven't been on too much since surgery. I've been trying not to get too depressed about the whole thing so I've been distracting myself with other things as much as possible.