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Hi... So sorry to meet y'all here...

NaprawdeNNaprawde Posts: 1
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:55 AM in New Member Introductions
Hi... My name is Gene. I’m a 45 year old male in generally good health (other than this #@$%$#%#$ pain I’m in). ACK!!!

For starters, in 2008 I had an artificial disc inserted in C5-6. I think that’s working pretty well. That’s not why I’m here...

At the end of April I hurt my blower back in karate. D’OH!!! An initial MRI showed two bulging discs L3-4 & L4-5. Advil/Tylenol/etc. by the handful hasn’t touch the pain. Nor did a course of steroids. Nor have three cortisone epidurals (my third shot was 25 July). Physical therapy hasn’t helped.

Since I hurt my back I’ve had to cancel a vacation to Poland, a long weekend in PA for the 4th of July, I missed a Stone Temple Pilots concert and I don’t feel up to seeing the Blue Angels this weekend. All I have done for three months and three days is work and be in constant pain. ACK!!!

The pain started in the low back and has gone into both legs. Thighs, calves, ankles, toes, tops of feet, behind the knees, etc. ACK!!! The pain/tingling/numbness/heaviness/weakness seems to move around. Some days are bearable. Other days I want to suck on the “business end” of a shotgun.

Physical therapy has been somewhat of a joke to me. I feel like a quick buck for the therapists (I’ve seen three). “Were does it hurt? Oh... do this stretch. We’re done for today. See you in two days. Be sure you make your copay on the way out.” Pffffft!!!!

I finally got into see an Ortho Surgeon early in July. He did MRI #2. Said things look about the same, but he is kinda scratching his head a little bit (because both legs are in play). He asked me if I wanted to try PT again and try Cortisone shot #3. I agreed. Well, as I have written, it’s not working.

While I haven’t been incapacitated (I’ve continued to work... I’m an engineer), all I do is work and try to deal with the pain and other symptoms. After three months and three days and $1,000+ in copays, nothing/no one has helped me.

So, I’ll see the Ortho on 10 August. I think it’s time for the knife (he mentioned microdiscectomy). I don’t know what else to do. I’m tired of everything. I want to start living again. I want my legs back. I read so many horror stories about back surgery. I wonder how many successful surgeries there have been. Maybe the lucky ones are back enjoying their lives and don’t even think about posting on a forum.

Sorry to see there are so many people out there who have back problems. I feel like a big sissy reading what others are going through.

Life is pain...


  • Hi Gene,

    First let me say welcome to spine-health. Have a look around and while you will find plenty of post that sound terrible if you follow some of those post as the member recovers from surgery they get better. I might also mention those whom get better no longer post as they are out living a normal busy life.

    Look in the FAQ section and there is a link to article of 38 questions to ask a spine surgeon. I think it would do you good to create a list of questions for the doctor, to help ease your mind some. Surgery is a very personal choice and yes it is scary. But you have to trust the surgeon and his/her skills and sometimes just go for it. I might mention that while you wait this out, I would seek a second opinion. You might want to make that appointment now, so your not waiting to long. Which that should also help ease your mind.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health. Keep us posted on what you do and how you get along. Take care.
  • hi and welcome to the forum! :H we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. i am sorry to hear you are suffering from chronic back pain.. good luck on your upcoming doctor's appointment..i hope he is able to work out a pain program for you even if that means surgery! be sure to visit the forum during your recovery..it can make a long day go by alot faster.. be sure you have exhausted as many conservative measures as possible before you consider surgery.. stop by the forum anytime! Jenny :)
  • Hi Gene,
    Welcome to spine health, it's a great place for info and support. From what you've said, and that you've tried everything else, it may be time for surgery.
    There are many good dr's, and if you have one that you like and trust, go for it. Your back will never be 100%, but it will be better than it is! I also tried therapy and shots, and it did nothing but cost money, so I hear you on that one!
    Discuss this with your dr, see what the odds are and exactly what surgery he thinks would be best. You must remember to never sit for very long without breaks as changing positions is very important, and will continue to be...
    Best wishes and let us know how you are doing!
  • Hi Gene,

    Just wanted to say hi and let you know you are not alone. I am where you are at but only it is my neck and arms and some weird feelings in the legs. Good luck on your decision!
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