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

still recovering

hotcoffee29hhotcoffee29 Posts: 327
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:46 AM in Recovering from Surgery
Hello everyone,

I have read some of your posts to try and catch up a little but I sure hope some of you are feeling better.

For those who know, I made my trip to England and spent quality time with my mum who was diagnosed with lung cancer. I celebrated with my grandad on his 90th birthday and he is such an inspiration to me.

I am now back at work and I do feel the pressures of work taking its toll on me. I have recovered well from the hysterectomy, but my back continues to bother me. I saw my surgeon about 2 weeks ago and I have made some good improvement, but he told me I will continue to have low back pain due to the fact that my back is degenarating and because of the curvature of my spine.

I was handling it until I went back to work and just the leaning and bending and pushing and pulling has created quite a bit of pain and the pain has returned down my leg, so I come home and ice every day and just pray it gets better. I know I must try to exercise more to strengthen my back and hopefully that will reduce some of the pain. I have to say I am really disappointed because I felt it was a successful surgery until this last week!! I don't want anyone at work to know I am hurting since I had to take time off at the end of last school year for the surgery.

I know its been a rough few months from my personal trauma and 2 surgeries, I get very tired....but I try so hard to keep up with everything.....sometimes it just gets me down. Hopefully as I continue on this road to recovery it will get better and I will adjust to being back to work. I hope all the teachers out there are having a good week. Take care everyone,



  • It's good to hear from you and to hear that your trip went well. Sorry that you are in pain after returning to work. Don't get too frustrated yet, you've really pushed yourself hard and your body may be pushing back a little bit. Hopefully it will calm down soon and then it will all be behind you and make for a great story.

    Holler if you need to.

  • Hi Sandra!

    I am a teacher too and can empathise with how much the job takes out of you. The advice I got on the boards was to try and think before I did something. Try and change the way you work to minimise the damage. Now, I know, from my experience, that that can be much easier said than done. The trouble with teaching is that once you are there you have to be there 100%.

    I certainly felt that going back to work delayed my recovery and I only work part time. However, once I reached the magic 6 month mark I did feel a lot better. I have since had a few spanners thrown in the works that have set me back again, but I think without those I would have continued to get better. So I suppose what I am saying is that it does get better but it takes (or feels like it takes) longer than you thought it would. Hang in there and rant at us when you need to!

    Hope you start to see the light at the end of the tunnel soon.
  • Hi Sandra! So happy for you that you got to spend time with your family in the UK! Welcome home!

    I am sorry you are having a hard time, I so understand! I know first handed what it is like to have to be back at work before you are ready! As much as you can, try to listen to your body and not push too hard. I still have to lay down when I get home from work, I just need to get off my spine...

    Hang in there! You have been thru so much! We are here for you and I have missed you! Wishing you the very best! :)
  • That's great you had a good time with your Mom and Grandfather and good quality time well spent for sure.

    I'm sorry you're still having a rough time at work and hope whatever way your students can help you out. Do you have a high stool to sit on while lecturing at the front of class? Take care and hope things are getting better each day for you. 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 is great to hear from you that you had a good trip over here to the UK. I hope that you have lots of very special memories from the trip. :-)

    Sorry to hear that your return to work has caused increased pain. I do hope that things will improve and your body gets used to the movements that you need to make.

    I am returning to work next week, on 1st September. I am also a teaching assistant. I am looking forward to getting back to work, but at the same time, I feel rather nervous about how I will cope.
    My physiotherapist has been working with me on strengthening my back ready for all the bending and other movements I'll need to do, including pulling open heavy fire doors.

    How have you been during the last week? I hope that things are settling down for you.

    Keep taking good care of yourself. :D

  • I haven't been on for a while, wish I was away dancing and celebrating or something like that, lol but nooooooo I have just been working alot, and working hard and I have been pretty much useless when I get home!!

    I am working 10 hour days as my bus route increased this year, 3 hours a day and the kids are very hyper and make it quite difficult. I have already been physically agressed on by one of the students in the classroom and that hurt alot as he just pulled and pushed me. I am trying hard to fight just to get my 30mins of lunch, so it's taking me a bit of adjustment and I am so tired each day, I have no energy and my family (especially hubby) is pretty fed up of me (always tired and hurting)!! :-(

    Just to clarify I am a ESE Associate for a school that houses children who are EBD, I am in the school based mental health unit and these children are very unpredictable and are the most aggressive. Part of my job is riding the school bus with them, 1 and half hours each way to and from school, adds up to 10 hour days and I start at 5:15am each day!!

    I am also experiencing a new symptom which has me concerned, I have right hand and arm numbness with neck pain, more numbness but my neck hurts at times and my low back is still bad by the afternoon and I occassionally still get pain down both legs, one day it'll be the right, the next it could be my left!! I just want it all to go away and I want to feel better and not so tired all the time.

    I am praying for strength and patience to get me through this adjustment and I am hoping that I get used to it and as I do my pain will minimise and my energy will return. I miss you guys and I will try to check in more frequently.

    Have a great weekend,
  • Haven't you ever heard, that when you pray for patience, you are given plenty of opportunity to practice it?!?

    Are you keeping track of your aches, pains and exhaustion, to see if there are any particular patterns to it?

    Please be careful and don't let your job become a threat to your health and well being.

    Hope you get a chance to rest up over the long weekend.

  • I am so sorry you are having a hard time! What long days you have! Bless your heart!

    Until your body adjusts and your pain gets to an acceptable level, try to be kind to yourself. I know you feel like your family is getting frustrated but I am sure they don't like to see you in pain! Now is a time to have quick and easy dinners~cereal, sandwiches, etc to allow you time to rest.

    It is so hard to come from home from work exhausted and hurting, only to lay down unil morning to do it all over again.....

    Hang in there. I would be sure to let your doctor know about your new symptoms. If something is going on and it is your neck, you want to know about it sooner than later!

    Miss you my friend and hope that things will turn around for you soon! Gentle hug!

  • Sorry that you are struggling to get used to being back at work again. Your day does sound very long and challenging so not surprising that it is taking its toll on you. :S

    I am also finding that being back at work is much more difficult than I expected. I had been warned by so many people, but as my recovery has been so good, I had hoped that my return to work would be too.

    I am struggling!!
    In the morning, I cope quite well, but in the afternoon my pain level starts to raise and by the end of the day, I find it hard to think of much else.

    As soon as I get home I have to lie down for at least half an hour. Then I try to do my walk and exercises. The washing, cooking and housework are really a struggle.

    I suppose that before returning to work, I had several hours to get all these things done, and could rest inbetween. Now I come home exhausted and hurting and then have to try to fit them in before bed.

    I seem to be getting worse and worse as the days go by. Today I felt really unwell and lightheaded with pain! Only one more full day to go, then just Thursday morning, before I can have a rest until the following Monday.

    It is strange as I can't pin point any particular activity to the cause of my pain, it just seems to build over the day. I suppose that I am doing lots of bending. As I say, at the beginning of the day, things go well and I move about and work without really thinking of my back. Then gradually, the pain builds until I can't help but notice! :<

    I do hope that things improve soon.

    I am seeing my physio on Thursday to see how my return to work went. Perhaps he'll have some ideas to help. His advice about opening the heavy doors was spot on and really worked. :-)

    Hope my spiney friends are having a good day :D
  • Thanks so much everyone for your support, it means so much.

    "C", you are so right and insightful. I know I can get through this and I like the idea of keeping track of what can be causing my pain, although it is always noted in the afternoon after work, so I know my endurance runs out by the end of my work day, but I am writing it down now and today I called my doctor to tell him about my pain and about my neck pain and numbness in arm, so I am waiting on a call back.

    Shari - so good to hear from you, I have been wondering how you are coping back at work now because I know how difficult it was for you when you went back. Has it got easier? I sure hope things are getting better for you. I wish my family would settle for the simple, easy meals but hubby is a meat and potatos guy and its a full meal each night but he has helped me out with the cooking. I am trying to cook up casseroles on the weekend and then I have prepared meals for the work week days. I have a call in to the doc to address my on going issues!!

    Jelly - I see we are in the same boat!! So nice to hear from you too. I believe we want to be our best and we started out with good intentions and feeling good but as the days go by it takes it's toll and gets harder and harder.

    I don't have the support you have at work, so glad to hear that the people you work with are sympathetic to your pain and have made the adjustments to help you, thats wonderful. My principal has never asked me how I am and the teacher I work with has made no provisions for me and if anything I do more to help her (I do all the heavy work) on top of everything else!! Today a student grabbed me again!!!! It was first thing this morning as I was bent over giving him a re-direction and a choice of how he wanted to handle it, he just grabbed my hand and yanked and pulled me, I screamed until he let me go. I wasn't majorly hurt, but the pulling and jerking hurts me and so my back hurt all day long! I won't complain at work about my back, it wouldn't do me any good anyway, so I keep it to myself until I get home, then I moan to my family!!

    I do try to get a little rest too before I tackle dinner, homework etc....I have so much going on because my kids are still young.....I am trying not to get too depressed about all this but it does get me down and I know that brings others down round about me, so I need to work harder on my overall attitude.

    I hope it gets better for you too, hang in there and heed the same advice...take rests, nap, easy meals and ask family members to help you with the laundry.

    What advice are you getting from your physio? I really hope things improve for you soon but I am thankful to you all here because atleast here, I am understood!!!

    Have a wonderful day :-)

  • Sorry to hear how your job is so physical and unpredictable like when the child pulled you today. I don't know if your back brace would help stabilize your back when working? Is there some way you could keep a cushion on your lap so the little one can grab that or keeping your distance somehow behind a desk. All that jarring can't be good for your back. I'm sure the little one is a big child.

    Shari and Jelly all three of you have similar issues returning to work and enduring so much..
    I hope each day finds you stronger and able to deal better with your job as you're still healing from your surgery. Gentle hugs. 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

  • Well, while in the shower this morning, I started to feel horrid pain in my thoracic spine. It made showering and drying myself very difficult.

    Even taking a deep breath was painful. I managed to get dressed and ready for work. I took some strong pain killers. I felt that after having 5 1/2 months off work, I couldn't take another day off.

    When I got to work, everyone who saw me said I didn't look well and looked like I was in serious pain.
    In short, the headteacher sent me home! She actually wanted to drive me home, but I said I thought I would be ok to drive myself.

    This afternoon, I've been to my doctor and been signed off for another week, and instructed to have a gentle phased return to work after that. (He actually wanted to sign me off for longer than that, but I thought a week should be enough.) At first, I felt awful about it, but now I am starting to realise that it will take the stress off, and hopefully enable me to slowly strengthen my back to a 'work fit' state.

    He told me that as my lumbar spine has been fused and no longer has movement at that level, when I bend and move about, the rest of my spine has to take the strain and because I have problems in my thoracic spine, it has caused a flare up in that area. I am waiting for an MRI scan of my neck (and maybe my thoracic spine now) so hopefully we'll have a better idea of why I am getting pain in so many areas now.

    This journey seems never ending!!

  • It does seem like we are in the same boat! I am so sorry you both are having a tough time.

    Sandra, I wish I had found this site earlier, before or after my first surgery....maybe I could have saved myself this fusion...if only I had known more!

    Known to take care of my spine at all costs. My surgeon said I was good to go and I believed him. So I went about my life and figured I was "fixed". I know now that I needed to protect my back the way I protect my child or my pets.

    Looking out for it, always thinking about what is best and stepping in and changing things if that is what is needed to protect my spine.

    I hope it comes across that I am trying to be gentle and speak out of love when I say that this position may not be the best for you, at this point in your life.....

    At the very least, I would keep a journal and record and report each time a child pulls, pushes you. A spouce would not be allowed to do this, so why should a child? One false move and you could have a serious injury.....

    Work is still difficult for me. I see improvements but they come so slowly that I guess I over look them. I have learned how to function on such minimal energy, I can't imagine what it will feel like when my thyroid levels are at normal.

    At work, it seems like I am doing well, and then all of a sudden, boom, the energy is gone and I am exhausted!

    Please see if there is a way to modify your job or even request a transfer! You don't want to look back, like so many of us do, and think, if only.....

    Hoping that you find some relief and a way to protect yourself~emotionally and physically! gentle loving hugs!
  • Thank you Charry and Shari for such well wishes and good advice. It really is good advice and I do take it to heart.

    Jelly, I cannot believe that you have been sent home due to your pain levels, I feel so bad for you tjhat it reached this point of being so bad that it came to this but thankfully you have great co-workers and a good boss who have insisted that you take care of yourself. I hope this week off will help you heal and that when you return again you will feel better for it.

    I have to say though, you ladies have been through more than me, I have not had a fusion so your recoveries and surgeries are way beyond what I have gone through. My concern is that if this level continues to detriorate, a fusion will be my next option. I am trying to avoid it.

    I know my job is intense and I was deliberately placed in this unit this year which has the most aggressive students, they act so fast, and its the same student on just grabs me without warning. I try t keep a safe distance and I do not participate with the crisis team so I do try to avoid any and all conflict with the students. My bus is more challenging, double the students, and less seats to work with so I am always changing seats to monitor different students, I believe this is what is hurting my neck. I wish I could transfer but there is nothing available and I would loose all my seniority, it's a tough call to make!!

    Thanks for all the concern and I pray for you both too, your still struggling, and it's my wish that we all heal and get through this phase in our lives. I will see what my doctor recommends and I will continue to make notes of my pain. I have done well on my diet, so I am happy about that, I feel it will be beneficial to me, I have lost 30lbs since Januay of this year. It was so important to me to take the excess weight off to help in my recovery, down to a size 6!! woo hoo I had to share some good news!!

    Well I must go, 4am comes quick....hugs to all xx

Sign In or Register to comment.