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dece 1st feels so far away..

starswilldiexsstarswilldiex Posts: 2
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:48 AM in Lower Back Pain
here is the saga of my last 4 months: im 26 and a cna in a nursing home in pa. on july 27th i was helping to transfer a very large resident when he started to fall and i twisted my back in the process. i felt immediate pain. i went to a doctor on the pannel who was an ortho surgeon. i saw his pa first and she did xrays and said i just had a lumbar and thoracic strain and gave me 2 weeks off. she gave me nycunata for pain and flexeril and a prescription for pt. also she said i had scolosis but less than 20 degree curve.

i saw doctor 2 weeks later and i convinced him to do an mri. it took a while because of workmans comp but i finally had one on 8/24..almost a month later. i didn't see the doctor again till 9/11 but i had the disc and could clearly see the herination. i also got the report that said i had a small herination at l5/s1.

saw doctor 9/11 he blew off the herination and put me on light duty at work at this time with no prolonged standing and no lifting restrictions. changed my meds to tylenol 3 and flexeril and said to come back 10/25.

10/25 i was starting to feel like my pain was only around a 2 or 3 daily and he put me back to full duty no restrictions. said to come back after six weeks. what a huge mistake. first day back 10/27 and i was in extreme pain..only got worse. i called office and they couldn't fit me in till 11/5. in mean time i went to er and got stronger meds but the percocet weren't even helping. my back hurt and was so stiff. everyday after work i was basically crying and hunched over.

11/5 physican's assistant switched me to light duty and ordered more pt also switched meds to tramadol. i was done after this appointment. i feel like because my reflexes are okay they are dismissing me. also all my diagnosis' are lumbar strain..no mention of the herinated disc.

so 11/8 went to family doc. he refered me to neurosurgeon. on 11/7 i had woken up with pain in left calf and i could barely walk. i asked work to give me a sitting job but they refused so i had family doc take me out of work till neurosurgeon on 11/15. the leg pain went away after 5 days of being home but back pain persists and is bad.

neurosurgeon said not a candiate for surgery and so i saw family doctor on the same day and he set me up for pain management but that appointment isn't till dece 1st. he also put me back to work with no restrictions till then. he also gave me tylenol 3 again.

so now i am taking 2 tylenol 3 every 4 hours and 2 tramadol every 4 hours so i am basically taking pills every 2 hours. and im still having a pain level of 5 when not working and 7 when working.

any suggestions on what i can do to try to help myself untill pain management appointment?

i feel like i have been getting the run around for the last 4 months and i am seriously thinking about getting a lawyer.


  • I am so sorry for what you are going through. I am in a similiar profession so know what it is like. What was the surgeons reasons for you not being a candidate for surgery? You need to be careful that you don't make things worse, as I did , by contiuing the job that you are doing. Will your PA not put you back on modified duties?
    You are in my thoughts
    Welcome to Spine-health. I know you will get lots of support from the amazing members here.
    >:D< Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • thanks karen.
    i also forgot to mention i did have a cortizone injection done by the ortho. it did not help.

    the doctor thinks i can perform my duties and that this will be a chronic pain problem. i disagree but i just need to find the right doctor.

    also i am not a canidate for surgery because he said at this point i have not exhausted all of my consertive treatments which he is right. he said he couldn't say that surgery would help me at this point.

    i feel like the pain has gotten worse since returning back to regular duty but no one wants to do more imaging at this time. they want to wait till i start showing nerve damage. well i don't want to get to that point!
  • What I found when I first hurt my back, was that unless there is some outright trauma or signs of serious nerve damage, most patients go through at least a 6 month window of conservative treatments. Many patients, especially younger patients tend to heal very well during that period of time and are able to avoid surgery. Of course everyone has to be considered on a case by case basis, but it is pretty standard. I remember doing extensive research looking for answers, only to find that the initial 6 months was very common across the board. It didn't make me feel any better, in fact was very frustrating to me, because it seemed like that magic time line influenced how the doctors looked at (or didn't look at) and treated my pain.

    I doubt that any lawyer would be able to do much and it would wind up backfiring on you and possibly jade the doctors towards how you are treated.

    Another thing to be aware of, is that doctors will look at your pattern of behavior and if you keep jumping around from doctor to doctor trying to find one that will give you that magic cure, they will make assumptions that you are doctor shopping for either drugs or surgery. This is another thing that will cause them to be more hands off.

    It's a pain (no pun intended) to be patient when you are in pain. It's a necessary thing though. Give your docs a chance to figure things out and do their best to help you. December 1st is right around the corner and having a good Pain Management doc on your side is invaluable.

    Welcome to Spine Health

  • Stars, 9 years ago I severely herniated a disk. I also at the time didn't understand why they were ignoring me when the pain was so debilitating!

    But even though it showed up on an MRI as a severe herniation, within 6 months the pain was gone. If they took more time to explain that even herniations can heal, maybe people wouldn't be so upset with them all the time!

    If there is a chance yours will heal, your doctors want to give it that chance before doing any sort of back surgery. Your body does a much better job of fixing these things than doctors do when it can manage it, and without any rods, screws, etc. Surgical interventions are for people whose bodies, for whatever reason, are not fixing the problem.

    Good luck at pain management! Did you say you'd been in physical therapy? Although I know it's hard to find a good one, if you can they can be really helpful!
  • You have the some story I have that is how I hurt my back in 1991 it did get better it take a lot of time and no lefting at all, but then again in 92,93 and a tear in L 4-5 and two bad car wreck on my neck the other my t-spine which hurts the most.The T-spine is the the worse pain I have every had :''(
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