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New to SH...Seeking advice/ input/ suggestions

Perry_JohnPPerry_John Posts: 6
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:52 AM in New Member Introductions
Hi all, Names john (obviously).

So i have myself a dilemma here, not quite sure how to start this but, here goes:

I am twenty years old and have been into skateboarding for about 8 years now. Aside from throwing myself down countless sets of stairs and ramps, handrails, etc.. I was in a car accident about 5 years back. My mother and grandmother were with me in the car ( I was in the front passanger), front end collision on my side, car was totalled. My mom was treated for mild whiplash and grandmother had other serious anxiety issues resulting from. I never had myself checked out, thinking i was 15 and invincible. About a year ago, i started doing some tree work as a grounds man, not only did this consist of lifting huge logs and hurling them into a trailer, but also climbing ladders and dragging large loads of brush to the trailer, just to make it short. I took a few spills trying to prove my strength to the other guys. I had gotten involved in the heavy use of oxycodone. That lasted about 8 months, which i then quit the "blues" cold turkey (I know this is quite drawn out, but i'm trying to see if any of this might have anything to do with what i'm experiencing). Coupling this with moving from town to town with my mom as a single parent over 14 times, 3 months ago in the midst of one of these moves i fell off the back of a pickup going about 20 mph, straight onto my back, again under the influence of alchohol probably numbing the real injury.

So i decided after struggling with back pain while working out, skating and fishing, i went to the hospital. Upon first inspection of the x-ray, nothing. Sent me home with naprosen and flexiril. The pain, about a week later, became nearly intolerable, returning to the ER, they gave me a shot of hydrocortisone, percocet apap 7.5 and methocarbam 750 mg. It helped, but low and behold here i am 3 months later with severe pain.

I had an MRI of the T spine and L spine, both of which came back with no abnormalities. So 2300$ later (un-insured) and on my own i am at a crossroads. I'm so sick of self medicating, and my doctors (even the ER staff) just treat me like a junkie. I know that opiates are not a long term fix, they help the pain, but make me feel horrible if i don't have the money to pay for them, or can't get a hold of them etc... very very sick of this vicious cycle. I saw a spine specialist, him treating me the same way as the hospital, I don't know what to do.

The pain is in my mid-lower back above my L1 but right in that general area. I've gotten into the habbit of popping my neck and back, scared that trying to releive the pressure is creating more problems. I can't stay asleep through the night, waking up every 3-4 hours, sweating like crazy, restless and irritated the next morning. I've alternated ice and heat for the past couple of weeks, helps with muscle tension, but is back as soon as the ice melts or the heat fades. If I look straight down (bringing my chin to my chest) it severly hurts my neck. The back pain resonates from above my L1 internally. My muscles on either side of where the pain originates, get stiff and shoots up the left side of my back under my shoulder blade. It's becoming a struggle to even do minor chores and i don't want to become a slave to opiates and pain killers forever. (yardwork, Household cleaning, any bending over, or sitting in one position for prolonged periods of time).

I'm very tired of just being told that i'm making this up or that it's psychological. I know myself better than doctors or nurses and it truly hurts. Can anyone offer me any insight on what i might do??

Thanks guys, John.


  • Hard to get up and be mobile. Much less have the motivation with this pain. Severe headache, not sure as to the cause...Layin' in bed listenin to music trying to feel better. ugh... =\
  • Thanks for sharing your story and for your candidness. I think you should try to see another spine specialist to see what other options are there for you. Sometimes an MRI can miss the problem and there are others tests such as a discogram and ct-myelogram. If you feel your doctor doesn't take you seriously then you should see another specialist. Make sure that you follow their advice and take whatever meds they give you exactly the way it's intended. Meanwhile continue using ice packs and heating pads, and taking a hot bath helps too. When it comes to back problems, sometimes it can take a long time to figure out what is wrong. Most of us have had to endure a difficult journey in order to get to the right doctor, the right treatment, and also the right combination of meds to manage the pain. I hope things work out and that you feel better soon.
  • Thank you very much meydey, will do. I do appreciate the support and input.

    Will keep my fingers crossed and hopes up.
  • hi and welcome to the forum! :H we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. i use music alot to help with my pain control as well with sleep.. it can really help in both areas!have a good look around the different forums and make yourself at home.. we are a very friendly group of spineys!! good luck to you! Jenny :)
  • Thank you Jenny, I am actually making dinner now listening to Symphony No. 3 in C Major. Lol. Yes i had noticed an absence of music is a major factor in my depression and anxiety. Thanks again. =]

    Anyone know any good doc's in Portland, Oregon, or Vancouver, Washington??
  • I think that i broke a rib a couple years back in the mid section of my rib cage on the left hand side, the side that the muscle pain shoots up under my shoulder blade, might this have something to do with the pain i'm experiencing?

    Also, for about 2 months i was undergoing some pretty strenuous workout regiments with a freind of mine. Being that he has no back pain, it pushed me to try and work harder, i feel as if this strengthened my core, shoulders arms and possibly even my back. Due to financial problems and the ongoing pain (especially from squats) i have ceased for about a month. I still try and do pushups and core excersises, but i'm wondering if possible muscle degeneration due to complete halt of my workout has anything to do with this as well...

    Any input is greatly appreciated.
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