Let me hit you with a situation to see what you all would do;
* I currently work 2 miles from my house. I have an agreement with my medical director that if I have to take my pain medicine while on duty, I will not make ANY calls for assistance (I'm management, not hardly on truck anymore anyway). Our service is being outsourced to a private company. Essentially, I'm losing my job.
* Since I'm in a government retirement pension, I have to finish three more years to get full benefits. The only place I can do this is 60 miles away. So, I will be driving 120 miles a day round trip.
* As things are now, I take 7.5 Percocet as needed for pain. Usually take 2 sometimes 3 a day. My pain is progressively getting worse as time goes on despite PM efforts. I'm probably getting to the point of needing an ER medication. I have been given a 25% PPD rating after my last surgery in 2007.
* In KY, if you get pulled over or are in a wreck, you WILL be charged with DUI even if you have a perscription.
* Do I take the chance of driving 120 miles each day while on pain medication or finally throw in the towel and look at disability? Typically, my pain meds do NOT mess with my head. People at work don't even know when I've taken the medicine other than when I tell them I'm off the truck for a while. Being in emergency services, I feel somewhat like a hypocrite by telling people not to drink and drive and here I am taking narcotics and driving. My pain level can swing anywhere from a 2 (not bad) to a 6 or 7 (IMHO anything over a 7 means you should be in a hospital).
What are the thoughts out there?
Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2