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MissMiaMMissMia Posts: 5
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:52 AM in New Member Introductions
Hi Everyone,

I've suffered from pain since I was 15. I took a bad spill while jumping my horse. I found out that fall caused a Grade1 spondylolesthesis in L5. I never let it bother me and continued to ride, dance ballet, row crew and windsurf as well as mountain bike. The pain wasn't too bad, just a nagging in the low back. When I over-did it, Motrin and a hot bath helped. I was warned that a severe blow or fall could cause further injury including paralysis. I refused to let it bother me and I did well.
In November 1993, I had a car wreck and that L5 broke off on the right side. All the MRI's and X-tays were unremarkable and I went to PT and my chiropractor not wanting to take pain killers or anti-inflamitories. I was lucky to be able to tele-commute to my job and if I was in pain, I re-scheduled appointments and meetings. I was in a fair bit of pain, but it wasn't until I was promoted to a job where I had to be in the city every day that things went downhill fast. Within 3 weeks of starting the job, I begain to feel more back pain, weakness and buring in my legs. I likened it to someone pouring hot oil down inside them. I had to walk 5 blocks to my office from the train with a laptop and briefcase and I was having trouble making it. One of my friends went out of her way to help me to my office, then walk the 6 blocks back to hers.
I saw a different orthopod who did flexion and extension X-rays. Something no one else even mentioned. As a matter of fact, the only one who felt there was more to the situaion was my chiropractor.
The flexion/extension x-rays showed L5 to be broken on the right side; slipping to a Grade3 in the front and a 4 when I bent back. The only thing supposedly keeping me from being paralyed already was the fact that my core was so strong.
This orthopeadic surgeon sent me to The Rothman Institute in Philadelphia where I was blessed to meet a physician who is now one of the most well-known spine surgeons in the world. He told me I might come out of the surgery paralyzed, but he would do his best to make me "functionally disabled" a term I never knew existed. We set up psych testing and the surgery for 7/14.
Thanks to this wonderful Dr., I came out of surgery functionally disabled and able to care for myself. I was told that I would have pain for the rest of my life, but I never thought it would be so bad.
I developed RSD/CRPS and Fibromyalgia as well as the nerve damage pain I deal with. I started on opioid therapy in 1993 and I had my first SCS implanted in 1995. Things got so bad by 2007, that I barely made it out of bed because of the pain. I was on ultra-high doses of meds and nothing helped. I had been through five pain management physicians but nothing helped. Finally, in desperation, I saw yet another Dr. who told me it was time for a pain pump. I knew this was an option, but I wanted to wait until I was older since I already had the SCS. I was in so much pain, I agreed to it. I had the trial in August 2010 and the implant in Sept. Unfortuanately, the implant developed an infection, landing me in the hospital for 10 days and forcing them to remove the pump. I had to wait two months in agony before we could re-implant the pump, which was done 11/12/2011.
I am doing well and thrilled to be off all those meds. We are still fooling with the morphine dose and planning to try Marcaine added to the morphine for some of the pain and numbness that isn't being covered.
I am hoping to start back to aqua-therapy next week and I've already. lost 7lbs in 9 days (I'd gained 80!)
Well, that's my story in a nut shell, thanks for reading!



  • Welcome to our forum Mia :)))

    Sending you >:D< You've been through more than anyone should have to.

    Hope you can get the morphine and Marcaine adjusted to where it'll cover your pain.

    I'm sure you'll enjoy getting back to aqua therapy again and meeting up with others doing their rehab there. When I used to go, it was very much a social thing as well as therapy.

    Well done losing 7 lbs so quickly. =D> It's very easy to put on weight when you can't get around and some of the drugs don't help either.


    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
  • Welcome to Spine Health!! You surely had a guardian angel looking after you!!! Sorry you had to find yourself here, but you've found the right place for support and understanding.

    Aqua therapy has helped me more than anything else! I figure in about another month, my above ground pool will be warm enough to be in. In-ground maybe around now?

    As for weight, I gained 45lbs on Lyrica, but it did what it what designed for - kicked my nerve pain like 85%...so I will take the weight gain any day!!! We get it around these parts. Again, sorry you had to come here, but too, a great place for support. Again, Welcome aboard!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • welcome, this is a great place to be, people here are very knowledgable and supportive! I too gained a lot of weight!cuz of meds In one month I gained 10lbs! Doc took me off of it! that was to much to fast, he said. I went from 115 to 120lbs to over 180lbs! yikes! that was sickening! Congrats on the weight loss! =D> :)
  • hi and welcome to the forum! :H we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. so glad you dropped in.. i am glad the pump appears to be a success once you get the meds adjusted.. it will work our for you i am sure!! getting into the pool is just great!! it is surprising how you will be pain free while you are in the water!! it is a wonderful feeling! good luck to you! once you get going in the pool, the weight will drop right off.. no need to worry about that.. remember to take it easy when you first start out!! it is easy to get carried away!! most of all, have fun!! Jenny :)
  • Hi everyone.

    Thank you for your warm welcome. It's nice to feel supported. It is just so sad that we need such a forum.

  • Hello, glad to be here, well, probably more lucky to have a site like this is more like it. I have a bad lower back where every now and then my lower spine goes south (actually to the right)and end up with severe spasms that keep off my feet for a few days and a bunch of anti-inflammatory meds. I've already posted a few times and have had some interesting replies.
    Thanks for having me.
  • You are right spasms are no joke. I have been getting them lately and they can be awful, especially without meds. I have found heat helps as well as the "Back to Life" machine. I've been using it for about 3 weeks and I have to say I am noticing a difference. Hope you find relief soon.
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