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32 yr old with several back conditions

lelellele Posts: 1
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:55 AM in Chronic Pain
Hello and I am very excited to have found this forum. I am a 32 yr old female recently diagnosed with Arthritis of the spine, 1 bulging disc and 3 herniated discs. This was confirmed with Xray and MRI. Its been two months of chronic pain. It all started one day when I twisted in the bed to get up. The first incident started 8 years ago. I went to the ER and was told it was muscle spasms. It continued to happen every year since but only happened about once a year or so and only lasted for approx. a week and I was still told it was spasms until about 6 years ago a doctor told me I had one herniated disc and it would heal alone. No treatment was ever given. I have had no relief now for two months and now its affecting my daily life and work life. I was given pain relievers (dont help too much) and muscle relaxers.It seems my only option is surgery. I am terrified to have surgery for several reasons. I have always been very active as a single mother of two boys who are very active in school, sports and band. I now find myself dreading activities, car rides or anything that involves standing or sitting. Please tell me there is hope and my only option is NOT surgery. Unfortunately , I can not file disability because I am forced to work to provide for my family but as the weeks go by, I am missing work frequently due to the unbearable pain of sitting all day and not being able to get up out of my chair. My best relief is laying down flat. Any advice , suggestions, direction and prayers are greatly appreciated.


  • Lele do you have STD available? Mine paid altogether about 70% of my wages, but I am married and my husband makes decent wages.

    Where are your bad disc's located? What surgery have you been recomended? Some can see you back to work in a few weeks.

    Have you tried any of the injections? They can sometimes buy you time. Some people report great relief.

    If you can't take any time off maybe you can get a plan from a Pain Management Doctor?

  • My advice is to do physical therapy for a year and get a good pain management doctor. Possibly see an osteopath to get relief sometimes disc can heal themselves. You can also do nerve blocks, there are many treatments available out there. Also do research and get some good books on healing. I wouldn't recommend surgery unless you're losing function. I had acdf surgery and hate it, feel so much pressure on my neck now, hard to walk. It is not better.
  • Hi lele and welcome to Spine-Health. It is a big decision whether or not to go for surgery. Who has told you that you need surgery? What kind of specialists have you seen, as in neurologist or surgeon wise (neuro or ortho)? If you're not comfortable with what one surgeon says, it is perfectly acceptable to seek additional opinions. It is your life, your health and well-being that is at stake. When coming to the point of having to decide on surgery or not, you really need to compare the pros and cons of it, and if there will be permanent damage if you don't go ahead with it.

    As for treatments, check out the Treatments section of the site, you can click on the tab at the top of the page, where you will find all sorts of different kinds of treatments and therapies available for all kinds of injuries and issues. Normally, all conservative treatment methods should be exhausted before surgery ever comes to the table, unless permanent damage is a possibility. I would ask your doctor for referrals to the appropriate specialists so that you can start a plan for healing and pain management. Good luck, and again, welcome to Spine-Health.
    APROUD CANADIANveteranButNOTa doctor, my thoughts are my own
  • I must agree with Jewel2005 that you have to give PT a try before you opt for surgery. I gave up on PT too early and had a physical therapist who had no idea what was wrong with me. Surgery is your last resort and you do not want to jump into it without exhausting all conservative treatments.

    My surgery resolved some of my issues, but some were not resolved. You have to look at your symptoms and the dermatone map of pain patterns. In my case, it was not so clear cut. I do not regret having my surgery, but I had been battling with this pain for over a year and had a quality of life issue. I wish you luck with you search for a pain free life! :)

    2011 ACDF C5-6 for Spondylosis with Myleopathy
    2012 L4-5 herniated disc and hernated disc at C4/5 2013 Taking Amitriptyline for headaches
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