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My Story -

Trisha68TTrisha68 Posts: 32
Hello everyone! I'm a 43 year old mother of 3 (two mine, one his) and wife. I worked in EMS until a year ago when I had to retire my 15 year career due to my back finally going out and not getting better. I'm not sure when I injured my back but it could have happened when I took a fall, landing on my rear-end in 2006. I'm fairly sure I fractured my tailbone but went to work the next day anyway for a 24 hour shift. Hurt like heck let me tell ya! About a year later I started having lumbar pain that would come and go the next 3 years, treat with prednisone, flexeril, and vicodin. In Sept, 2010, I lifted a 25lb bag of dog food and pivoted. Horrible pain followed so I went to the Dr. who gave me the regular treatment only this time it didn't go away. It got worse and worse. I retired my job because I knew in my heart there was no going back to lifting patients and my husband makes a good living so I don't have to work, thank God. I went though several rounds of steroids, never got any better. In Jan. 2011 I knew I needed more aggressive treatment but I'm horrible about going to the Dr. so I was putting it off. Pain meds weren't helping, no position alleviated it. I knew I was a candidate for surgery and I didn't want it. My left leg went numb then 2 days later I woke up numb from my hips down. Took an ambulance ride to the ER, neuro came in and I was in the OR within an hour of my arrival. I have seen people say that in their case surgery is an "option". I didn't have an option, it was emergent. Had a microdiscectomy/laminectomy that day and then a repeat in June 2011. I've been referred to pain mngt, have had two injections under sedation. The last one was was yesterday and the injections were in the facet joints at the L3 though S1 levels. Today I still have pain but I can lean backwards without making it worse so I guess the inj. did some good. I take 2 Norco, 3 x's a day, Flexeril and Lyrica. I hate to say it but the Norco isn't cutting the mustard anymore and I'm not sure what's next.. Would love to hear from people!


  • P.S. I do have days when I get in a rut with the whole "poor me" thing but I refuse to let myself get depressed. Yes I have pain, no I don't like it but there are plenty of folks out there that have it worse than me. I keep myself busy with a little candle/scented product business I own. I formulated my own wax, pour my product by hand. It's very therapeutic for me. I go out into my shop and work...makes things better for a little while. :)
  • HI Trisha,

    First let me say welcome to spine-health. Have a look around and you will find many in your situation, and gone through surgery. Sounds like you have the right attitude and drive, but still dealing with pain. I take it your in pain management? Is that whom is prescribing your meds or just doing injections? AS far as what is next there are lots of options depending on your condition. Your best bet would be to talk to your pain management doctor and discuss your pain and your lack of relief from the medications. You might want to check out the medication forum, and see what others in your situation are using. I see your using lyrica and depending on the dose, maybe you could move that up some. There are also other muscle relaxers out there, if flexeril isn't doing the trick any longer. One thing many of us do is keep pain journals to track the type and kind of pain where having to give the doctors the best information possible. Have you tried doing that? Of course if surgically they have done all they can do, and your no longer a surgical candidate then there is the spinal cord stimulators, that have helped some. But it will all depend on what your doctor feels would work best for you.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health. Keep us posted on what you do. If there is anything I can do don't hesitate to pm me. Take care.
  • Good to meet you but sorry to hear about your situation. Im an ex cot monkey myself. im no longer working as a paramedic due to adr flexicore in l4-5. still having problems with nerve pain and muscle spasms . I had to retire from the field for the same reasons. anyway look forward to talking to you again. once again welcome! :)
  • Yes, I'm in paint mngt. The Lyrica dosage is going to be touchy thing because I take the lowest dose and feel like I've had 10 glasses of wine. Running into walls, etc. My body doesn't want to get used to it. I can only take it at night so it does nothing for me during the day but at least I can sleep. He gave me a dvd to watch regarding the stimulator. I don't know, I've read good and bad stories. As long as pain meds help me to live a semi-normal life I think I'll stick with that. I've never thought of making a pain journal. That's a great idea. Do you list what type pain you get with certain activities? Great to meet you both and look fwd to hearing from you!

    @ Michelle - "cot monkey" - Now there's a new one! LOL!!! I laughed so hard when I read that. Good to see another of "my own" on here. :)
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