I had my hardware removed Thurs June 30. My 360* multi level fusion (L4-S1) was in September. Until my surgery I have been on:
Neurontin 300 mg q6* a day
Percocet 10/325 mg 1-2 q4-6* a day PRN
as well as my regular meds for depression & anxiety (this injury has done a number on my sanity- I am sure NO ONE relates to that right?
Since my surgery the doc has kept me on the Neurontin, the Percocet is to be used for "breakthrough" pain management, and I am on Oxy IR 15 mg q3* and Soma. I was released the same day I had the hardware removed because the pain was under control (at the time) but returned to the ER that night because the pain got un-under control quickly. I called the docs office the following morning (mainly because I had had him paged 4 times and he answered NONE of them which irritated me) & his RN informed me that the doc has NO ideas as to why I am hurting and they are just going to send me to a pain specialist so this can be dealt with. Apparently MOST of their patients who have hardware removal surgery leave with Lortab and are fine within a week or 2. Yay for them? /:)
So we changed the dressings last night and I have a lot of drainage (none of which looks concerning to me) but my gf took a pic and there is insane bruising, swelling, and redness. It burns like crazy. The doc's RN says this is normal for me to have heat and pain and that is the way a incision feels when it heals. Um, ok. :?
I realize I am very soon out of surgery but I am tired of being treated like I shouldn't be having the pain I am having. I am still optimistic that this surgery will fix all the issues (back pain AND nerve issues alike!) but I feel like I am being blown off when it comes to my pain concerns. I hurt. A lot. I've been in major pain since I was injured in May of 2010. Due to the previous injury, the clinic I went to did nothing but throw pain meds at me so I have developed a kind of immunity to pain meds. I feel like saying this though makes me look like a "seeker". I work in the ER so I see people come in, laughing, smiling, chatting away on their cell phones, but their pain is a "9" or even better, a "12". I feel strange asking for people to acknowledge MY pain because of what it might look like to the docs & nurses involved. I don't know WHY I have this thought/guilt etc... but it's ridiculous!
Basically what I am asking is- how do I ask for relief when I know it means asking the doc for more meds, stronger meds, etc...? ~X( Between the pain, the disgust at the surgery issues anyway (that's a whole other story in and of itself...) & my irritation and depression- how can I approach my physician without him acting like MY pain is a joke? Bear in mind- it is common thought in the medical community that a patients pain is subjective and we are NOT to question their claims on pain level. It IS still a touchy issue however, especially with people my age (I am only 32) & because apparently I shouldn't BE hurting according to the doctor. #o
I write this after having been up all night, in major pain that I only recently got under control. I am laying on my cold water circulator, and was finally able to get myself propped up with enough pillows to have minimal pressure on my incision and of course my meds have helped. I am exhausted, maybe to the point of anger & additional depression. I just don't know what to do anymore. Please please help y'all!! I)
Thanks for taking the time to read my drama... >:D<