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Am I losing it?

rasputin6948rrasputin6948 Posts: 8
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:50 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi all! I had 2 level surgery c5-c7 about 5 weeks ago. Went to the doc yesterday and seemed like the surgery went well but I am still in lots of pain day in and day out! I walk about an hour a day but sitting for more than 1/2 hour proves impossible. My family doesn't get the pain I am in and almost acts like i am wrong about how i feel. Am I nuts? Is it abnormal to not be able to sit for more than a half hour? There is no way i could drive to my work 45 min away then work then drive back! What should i do??? I have even taken myself off pain meds except for maybe once a day if that. I still take muscle relaxers. I just feel guilty because i have a 3 and 5 year old and i am also made out to be a wuss.


  • Hi Rasputin, just wanted to say sorry about your need for surgery and that your healing isn't coming along as quickly as expected. Having not had my surgery yet, I cannot let you know what time frame is normal for pain to diminish afterwards, but I can completely understand not being able to sit for more than a few minutes. I work as a computer repair technician and am currently awaiting on some advanced imaging and treatment for cervical cord compression. 30 minutes in a chair is unbearable...

    What type of injury caused your herniation/injury? It is quite possible the swelling is still prominant in the area after 5 weeks. Even though there isn't a lot of tissue right in the area that was worked on, there is a high level of stress induced through the surgical process and your body is probly still responding and trying to calm down. Just keep in good contact with the surgeon's support team and your primary and if the pain gets worse instead of better, get in there immediately.

    I'm sure some of the veterans here can help you further with expectations of time to become closer to pain-free asuming the procedure didn't have any complications. Hang in there and good luck with your family. This is a major, major surgery that takes time to heal, let them know its not going to be overnight before you're back up and moving well, I'm sure they understand!
  • Rasputin,
    Pain to some extent has to be experienced and only you know how much pain you are in, If you medication was prescribed you would be well taking it, it does you and those children no favours in not taking medication, we all had and have issues of medication use and it is for overall benefit that we continue taking them.

    I do understand that five weeks seems a long time and it is, changes of this magnitude do impact on our daily life and part of improvement is time itself. For chronic pain patients your experience is normal as we all stand sit and stand, until we can no longer then we lay down if possible.

    Rest assured you are not losing it or we all are, these are imposed changes not of you making or desire and they are never easy to accept or adapt. I had three young children when I had my spinal fusion and that took some 15 months to feel any semblance of normality.

    Managing your pain is an amalgam of new strategies, the only way to reduce the pain would be for you to do less than you are now, in conjunction with medication that inhibits those peaks and troughs of pain to a more acceptable level, do more of the things that make the pain less if anything and none of those that you think or know will make it worse. With young children that put all the responsibility on your partner and to some extent pain is a team event. We all feel guilt at time for whatever reason and it is important to address those issues and work through them

    I and we know you are not a wuss, it comes from ignorance that others think living in pain is easy, it is not.

    Take care. John
  • I am a little bit ahead of you as far as recovery is concerned. you are still very early in the recovery. That is what everyone told me at that stage. They are correct. Hopefully your pain should decrease. People on this site and others understand the pain. My family didn't get it either. Maybe they can read through different posts to help them understand.
    Walking definitely helped me. The weather was a problem along with the cold for me being able to walk. I found comfort sitting in the recliner with my head back. Sorry that doesn't help you.
    Driving is a real issue with me also along with being at the computer. Alot of that is posture. I need to drive 20-30 minutes to and from work. I wanted to go back before now, but knew it would b e impossible. 45 minutes is a long time. I am trying to go back on MOnday, but the OSS really wanted me to wait until 2/28, but I pushed the issue. I figure 1 week of work and then 1 week off as a teacher. As far as meds go. Take what you need to feel comfortable. The muscle relaxers are a real asset. I also take extra strength Tylenol when needed. Sleeping is still an issue for me. Do you wear a soft or hard collar? How are you eating and swallowing? There are no right answers as to when to go back to work, everyone was in a different place prior to surgery and the recovery is different depending upon your body, the surgery and your tolerance. Having little ones certainly makes everything more difficult. My son is 17 and drives so I am lucky in that respect. Good luck and keep me posted.

    ****************************************************12/9/2010 ACDF C5-6 C6-7 with plate, screws,
    BMP & bone fragment filled cages
    2/14/2011 trying to go back to work as a teacher
    2/17/2011 starting PT
    wearing bone stimulator 4 hours a day
    DDD, arthritis, herniated disks, pinched nerves
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