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New here, and looking for answers

bigdaddy28570bbigdaddy28570 Posts: 5
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:58 AM in New Member Introductions
Ok, so here it is...Ryan here, 35 y/o husband, father of 2 boys, and 911 dispatcher. Had the pain and numbness about 3 weeks now. Finally got an appointment with the Neurosurgeon yesterday. He wants to try the injections before moving to surgery. I was against the idea of the injections, and from what I have read here, It has solidified my feelings about it. I am already overweight and neuro wants me to see bariatric also. I want to do something about my weight to be better for my kids, but does this mean I have to live with numbness/weakness/and pain until he feels Im ready.

He showed me the MRI, and I have herniation between c-4/5, c-5/6, c-6/7. Obviously the C-4/5 is the worst and is actually compressing on my spinal cord. Please help.......


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    I am sure you will soon find out how much medical information is available on this Site.

    The weight thing is also a concern for patients going into surgery. I have not heard of a doctor actually refusing to do a surgery because of this.

    Since you are really new to Spinal conditions, my best advice is for you to sit down with your doctor, have your wife present and discuss everything.

    There are always conservative treatments that need to be considered before surgery is an option.
    - Physical and Aqua Therapy
    - Traction
    - Heat/Ice Therapy
    - Spinal Injections
    - and more

    Don't be afraid of what you have read about spinal injections. If you were to read back through the years that Spine-Health has had these patient forums, you will find so many people who had good results. Over the years, I have had some where around 15 injections (Cervical,Thoracic,Lumbar plus in my shoulders and hips) I had decent outcomes with around 11 of them, 2 bad results, and the others didnt do anything either way.

    The biggest concern, and this is something that only your doctor can medically and correctly talk to you about , is the impingement of a disc on a nerve root.
    Many times, that can hasten the time frame towards surgery.

    I am sure everything is happening all so fast right now. That makes it very difficult to completely understand. Just dont go through this alone, make sure you get your family involved.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Thanks for your time, I am reading and seeing a lot of different stuff here. It is very reassuring to know that I am not alone. I feel like I am alone as far as my family goes. None of them have ever had anything like this before.

    Its nice to find a place where I can ask my questions to people who have been there and done that before me, and have been where I am now.

    I have wanted to do something about my weight before now, but one thing or another has always prevented me (Yes I know, no excuse). I'm just really hoping that the Neuro will do something to help me. I know I need to lose weight, and that losing weight would help relieve some pressure on my neck and back. I just dont want to live with the numbness and pain until he feels I have lost enough weight for him to help me.

    Its very frustrating right now, and Im sorry if I keep jumping topic. There are just a lot of thoughts and emotions going through me right now, and Im reaching out.......
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    Sorry for what you're going through. I know the options and decisions can seem overwhelming...but if you take it step by step with good communication with your doc, hopefully it will be a little smoother.

    It's good you are here for tons of info and support! :)
    But everyone is so individual, also. Like if injections are very successful for someone and they move on with their life, they might not be posting here for you to read. So, the info may not be an exact or balanced results to the effectiveness of the injections.

    For me, the injections for thoracic area...not so good. But the lower back for the trouble with my legs.. very effective.

    I wish you the best of luck as you find what is best for you. Please keep in touch..and don't worry about jumping topics :).. It's just conversation with new friends! ..Questions, venting, sharing your frustrations...whatever you need we are here!
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • thanks for the advice, i know i seem to be rambling, but this is a whole new experience for me. I have only seen what is posted here regarding injections. Maybe I should be more optomistic about it.

    I have notified my regular MD that I still think a 2nd opinion may be in order, with no response as of yet. I just want some relief.....So I can take care of my kids again. I feel so useless not being able to do much with my littlest again (1 yr old). I want to part of his growing up, but with the pain and numbness Im scared to get too involved as it limits my ability to do things.

    I have found something that has helped so far. My Neuro MD wrote me a script for Lyrica, and it has really helped with the nerve problems. It is normally prescribed to Fibromyalgia patients, and he wanted me to try it and not become so dependant on muscle relaxers and pain meds. I can honestly say I feel like its helping. I actually made it through 12 hours of work today with only some mild discomfort towards the end of my shift.

    I can say I would reccommend it, to others who may read this but not posting yet. Im trying to be optimistic and looking for the light at the end of the tunnel...Just hoping that light is not a train coming to run me over...LoL

    Guess thats enough for now. Thanks for your input Savage, I really appreciate it.
  • Welcome to Spine-Health.

    I can totally relate to what you're going through. I was having a wonderful life until April 2008 when I started having major pain in the middle of my back. My arms were also having strange sensations, so I went to my PCP and after an x-ray, it was discovered that my C4/5, 5/6 and 6/7 were a total mess. I tried PT, but frankly, it was too bad for anything to help. After an MRI, my PCP sent me to an ortho spine surgeon, fellowship-trained, and he wanted to do surgery ASAP.

    At the time, I knew nothing about spine and spine problems, and nobody I knew had been through anything like this. I found out through my spine doc that dropping things, numbness and tingling, and loss of the use and pain in my left arm were all signs of a very bad cervical spine with nerve impingement and bone spurs touching my spinal cord. He said it wasn't a matter of if I had surgery but when. So we decided to go forward with it.

    The good news is that when I woke up post-op, all the arm sensations were gone and I had full use of my left arm.

    The most important thing, especially being new to all of this and being so overwhelmed, is to have complete confidence in your spine surgeon. Getting a second opinion is always a good thing, although I didn't - I trusted my spine surgeon immediately and it turns out he's one of the best in the state. (He also did my lumbar surgery, even though he specializes in the cervical spine.)

    Don't worry about feeling like you're rambling. We have all been where you are and remember the beginning of our spine problems like it was yesterday. It's something you don't forget, so you'll get a lot of support here.

    Like it was said, most people who've had successful surgeries or procedures don't post in the forums any more because they're off living their lives and no longer need the support given here.

    Good luck to you and please keep us posted. If there's anything I can do for you or answer any questions, don't hesitate to PM me. I understand your situation and it makes me remember the start of my spiney journey.

    Take care,
  • thanks Cathie,

    Like I posted earlier, I have been taking Lyrica, and it has made functioning a lot easier, and I have currently cut back on my pain meds and muscle relaxers. It just really bothers me when it hits hard, and I cant even hold my son. He's 1, and he doesnt understand why daddy cant play with him. Thats the hardest........

    Gonna wait until after the holidays, and then make some more phone calls and see what I can get set up for after the first of the new year, and start 2012 off right.

    Here's to the new me, or maybe just getting the old me back to a functional state....LoL

    Merry Christmas to you and yours, and thanks for the encouragement

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