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Healing without surgery 2

KeytanKeytan Posts: 41
This thread's original post was deleted by it's creator, therefore, in order to preserve the thread, and all of the helpful suggestions and ideas in it, the original post was edited only to add this information, and to restore the subject matter of the thread.
Also deleted were the original thread starters' posts within the thread, at her descretion, by her hand.



  • Keytan, it certainly sounds like you have got the bull by the horns now and are actively trying your best to stay out of pain. Thanks for sharing your good news.

    Will the pain now move to the other leg? Will it come back? Who knows? A major part of our anxiety stems from not having a clear understanding of our own path forward, the available options and risks. As has been recommended here by a number of members previously, can I suggest you find a really good neurosurgeon (or orthopaedic surgeon), who specialises in spines and seek advice / guidance. It's not about discussing a surgery, it's about understanding your exact situation and options available to you. Possibly, a lot of what would be discussed would be similar to the content on http://www.spine-health.com/video/sciatica-causes-and-treatments-video, but tailored to you.

    As you have indicated you have already done, this site has very good information that can be researched. There are also good books in stores and online.

    Some members may live near to you and be able to help with their experience of nearby surgeons via PM's.

    Wish you well in remaining relatively pain free and away from surgery. You may now have a good incentive to reduce that 30 lbs :) (I've have the same amount too and have started this week.)
  • enjoyed your post very much! So do hope you can put offf surgery since you have a two year old. it is not
    Easy with children and dealing with back issues.. Losing some weight does make a difference.I just kept off 20
    Pounds in the last year and did have surgery month ago and I feel it made it easier afterwards.
    Stay strong and there is a lot of good help on this sight! best of luck to you!
  • DaveFusionDDaveFusion Posts: 476
    edited 10/30/2012 - 5:20 AM
    Keytan, When you go to the neurosurgeon, it is highly probable that an MRI will be the first thing that is required. If you can wangle one in the meantime, you can take it with you and he will probably be able to show you why you suddenly improved and what may happen in the future. You will save some precious time.

    A useful tip my wife showed me was asking the surgeon's secretary to keep you in mind if they have a cancellation. We got lucky and was able to see the consultant quite quickly by dropping everything and filling the cancellation. A win-win.

    Personally, I like the book, 'I've got your back' by N Tindel. I downloaded it to the kindle app on my iPad. It's light on detail of PT but its written by a doctor who appears to be quite forthright in telling it how it is. There are lots of PT type books. This site has recommended exercises for various conditions too.
  • KevculesKKevcules Posts: 89
    edited 10/30/2012 - 2:04 PM
    Hey Keytan....... I know how you felt when you posted, everyone feels like that. Desperate for someone to talk to and really "hear" our story. This site is awesome for that.....lots and lots of discusion and advice. I know one thing about having severe back pain is that the people around you can't relate. Unless they have had some serious pain , they don't see how it can be so bad. I have never, and hope I never will, gone through such pain before. I'm 44 , fairly fit (170lbs) and struggled with back pain for many years. Finally after not being able to sit or stand for very long at work and on the couch all day on my days off , i had to do something. I had spinal fusion at L5 S1 in July of this year. I'm still not pain free or back to work , but feel I am on the road to little or no pain!
    It's hard to recommend a doctor especially where you are so far away but my advice is to ask lots of questions and more questions. I hear you on trying to get an MRI, the waiting list is a joke here in Canada! I was expected to wait for 2 years when I was off work crying in pain!! If you have money though , things suddenly open up??
    Dr. Abraham in St. John NB was my surgeon, I'm convinced he is the best around. Very experinenced with over 5000 backs done to date.....Very well spoken, very helpfiul, regardless of my outcome , I highly recommend this fella.
    I hope you find someone that can help you. The biggest thing you HAVE to do is don't take no for an answer. Demand tests and bring lots of attention to yourself. The doctors don't seem to understand the pain we are in, so you have to let them know......hard!! :)
    Good luck with your doctor's visits and keep us posted! Take Care....

    Different degrees of back pain since 1994
    Cortisone shots Jan/09
    Discectomy and lamenectomy April/09
    L5 - S1 spinal fusion July.13th/12
  • KevculesKKevcules Posts: 89
    edited 10/31/2012 - 7:29 AM
    lol.......that's Ok KeyTan.....lol.....that's what this place is for! Rant all you want, we know exactly how frustrating it is!
    Your doctor is like mine.....gives you some drugs and then pushes you out the door. They get paid for each appointment ,not talking to people so all we are to most of them is "appointments" ! I've said before, if a doctor loses compassion, he should lose his job! I know their job is difficult but come on!
    I found out how pathetic our health care was too when I needed it......It's terrible what people have to go through and it's all about money....... Rant stopped! lol
    Take Care....... :)

    Different degrees of back pain since 1994
    Cortisone shots Jan/09
    Discectomy and lamenectomy April/09
    L5 - S1 spinal fusion July.13th/12
  • And that you feeling much more positive.

    I encourage you to succeed in shedding those 30 lbs and strengthening the core muscles.

    Many people are able to exercise their way to recovery and dodge the surgeons knife. Hope you will be successful in the long term too.
  • KevculesKKevcules Posts: 89
    edited 11/18/2012 - 8:51 AM
    Great news Keytan ! Glad to hear you're doing better! I'm almost in the same boat as you now where I'm off the pain meds all together but stil have bouts of pain down my leg and lower back. I am wayyyy better just being off the pain med crap!
    We all have had our "dark thoughts" when dealing with this dreadful pain we suffered ,but like you I'm happy to be far from that place now....... Life is starting to be interesting again! :)
    Take care

    Different degrees of back pain since 1994
    Cortisone shots Jan/09
    Discectomy and lamenectomy April/09
    L5 - S1 spinal fusion July.13th/12
  • Very pleased that your both still making good progress and off the heavy stuff.

    I encourage you to keep making positive posts about the rest of your recovery. How your doing it, where your up to, how your weight is going, what exercise your doing, what work you are able to do, how you overcome new challenges during recovery,etc. This would be helpful to others here to hear.

    Key tan, have you fully settled in yet after the move?
  • beepsbbeeps Posts: 15
    edited 11/20/2012 - 7:19 PM
    I had a similar condition 2 years ago (L5/S1) and was bed ridden for almost 4 weeks, not able to sit or walk. I was an inch close to getting a surgery done, the pain was so unbearable. But I decided to do one more try with conservative measures. As soon as I the inflammation subsided, I started going to the swimming pool for gentle swim work outs. Over the past 2 years I can say with honesty that swimming has saved me from surgery and helped avoid pain/new breaks. I started with easy freestyle, then as my back got stronger I added backstroke and breastroke. I recently tried butterfly, but decided it was not safe for my condition now, but maybe later. about 1 year ago, i took up Yoga. I did my first 10 K swim this week, and somewhat thankful that L5/S1 brought me into this amazing sport. It is indeed the best one for someone over 35: no pressure effects on your joints, strengthens your upper and lower body muscles, including lower/mid/upper back and core, and great aerobic training/weight loss program, especially if you do interval training. So to many sufferers out there: it IS possible to forget about sciatica and your bulging disk problem through conservative approach. I was writing on this message board 1.5 years ago seeking advice while laying in bed in pain. Swimming has done wonders for me. I have not had any outbreaks despite my daily bending, lifting, carrying kids etc. If your condition allows you to take up conservative approach, I'd recommend swimming as the entry way to strengthening your body.
  • I agree swimming is probably the best excercise for anyone with a joint issue. It feels so good floating in the water with having no weight on the joints..... It's surprising how it alleviates some of the pain so quickly. It's a natural form of traction which feels great also.....
    I suffered with varying degrees of pain for almost 15 years. I tried every known remedy to no avail. When spinal fusion surgery was mentioned , I welcomed it. I could no longer do my job which was not acceptable to me. I have a family to support for a few years yet..... :)
    So I waited and suffered 15 years or so for my body to heal itself and it wouldn't co-operate.....so I made it work with me! :)

    Take Care...

    Different degrees of back pain since 1994
    Cortisone shots Jan/09
    Discectomy and lamenectomy April/09
    L5 - S1 spinal fusion July.13th/12
  • Swimming has helped me tremendously too. What's not to like, it's low impact and covers both cardio and vascular. I suggest this form of exercise over any other form, even those without back pain as a way to prevent any form of injuries in the future. So, sorry, I love swimming so much. :)
    Sharing what I know about sciatica @:
  • JakeJoh10JakeJoh10 Posts: 1
    edited 11/24/2012 - 6:44 AM
    Stay motivated, and if you keep working as hard as you are, your pain will be gone in no time!

    Yeah, like the others said, swimming was a great way for me to exercise pain-free.

    Keep fighting!

    Link removed, solicitation not permitted
    Post Edited by The Spine-Health Moderator Team

  • DaveFusionDDaveFusion Posts: 476
    edited 01/06/2013 - 12:52 PM
    Keytan: your body has given you some subtle hints, are you listening to it?
  • Good you have that equipment. Now to make sure it's used.

    Me, slow but steady recovery. Not sure if fusion has started yet. Find out next visit consult.

    Take care.
  • Sosick23SSosick23 Posts: 25
    edited 01/28/2013 - 3:21 PM
    Me too im afraid of having surgery :( but my spine doctor says that's the only solution. Been thinking about it for 5 days now. Its been 5 days since i had a relapse and i didnt get out of bed. I literally live in my bed. I do everything here. My husband took a few weeks off to take care of me and our 9 month old. I hope we can get rid of this pain without surgery. Good luck to us!
    Microdiscectomy scheduled on May, 2013. With L5/S1 disc herniation. Scared but im going for it!
  • After 4 years of been in constant pain every day and night, numerous
    injections, epidurals ect, pain meds tramadol, diclofenic, co codamol,
    bu trans patches they decided to operate, i had the surgery in August
    2012, decompression on L4/L5 i followed there instructions not to lift
    anything n take it easy for 6 weeks, the first 4 weeks was great
    had a few niggles but thought it was just the healing procedure plus
    i have arthrities in my spine, 1 morn i went to get out of bed and was
    in agony i tried 4 over 2 hours eventually i phoned 4 my daughter 2
    come and help me, Doctor came out and told me to carry on with the
    meds and then i saw the consultant who said it looks as if it hadn't
    worked and was to have another MRI scan which i did on the 2nd Jan
    2013, my results have come back stating there is persistant stenosis
    at L3/L4 but there is also a disc prolapse at L5/S1 I see the
    consultant again on the 8th Feb 2013 to discuss the issues but the
    last time i saw him he said i may need more surgery, has this
    happened to anyone else??? and looking at the results on my MRI it
    looks as if i have more problems than b4 i had surgery!!! at my
    wits end now HELP!!! ty Marian
  • mazzababemmazzababe Posts: 24
    edited 02/10/2013 - 11:11 AM
    as everyone says hun only you can decide wether to have it or not, i had it on L4/L5 in August 2012 as i stated above but it didnt work and now have L4/L3 and L5/S1, I saw my consultant on the 8th and he says i need more surgery, he done a few tests on me and i failed them all example leg stretches i screamed in pain and he only raised my leg less than 6 inches, walking unaided i failed, he asked me if i go over at times on my ankle which i do said the muscles there have weakened, so if i dont have surgery its gonna cause more problems there, and even walking with a walking stick im in constant pain day/night get a lot of cramp takes ages to massage it away then get pins and needles, ,y leg is numb from my buttock to my foot. he said i will be getting surgery within 6 weeks time, im going to have it again as i carnt carry on like this some days its that bad i carnt get out of bed keep me up dated Keytan and i hope you make the right decision
  • I'm right there with you Keytan. I continue to have the same feelings on cauda equina as well! I avoided surgery for 13 years, from the time I was 13 years old until now. I finally identified a ruptured disc by MRI last month and then after trying injections cannot get off my couch for the past two weeks. My microdiscectomy is scheduled for tomorrow.

    I think if this is your first occurrence of pain the physical therapy and conservative measures should continue to help. I definitely know how good it feels to have a 'good day' with very little or no pain, to think you are finally turning the corner, only to have it come back. I also spent many many years drug free but sometimes a little bit is needed to just so you can move on with daily life. If you haven't tried it yet I would consider going to a chiropractor. I found a great one that kept me pain free for many years.
    If you haven't been icing it I would give that a try to, especially before you try getting out of bed I would try laying on an ice pack for 10-20 minutes. One of the best "home made" ice packs you can ever make for back pain is to take a dish towel and wet it, then freeze it in a ziplock bag. It is very thin and stays cold for hours. I have found that very helpful recently. I also blame myself for being 20-30 pounds overweight. I'm still working on that one. I hope you feel better. I'm keeping a thread going on here about my surgery, with day by day updates of how it is going. It might offer you some insight. Best of luck.

  • well got word back from my consultant today stating a new prolapse at L5/S1 on the right is jamming the S1 nerve root, stating this is where most of the symptoms are with right buttock pain, also has difficulty putting weight on right leg and numbness on outerside from buttock to foot, right ankle has a depressed ankle jerk, says she needs to have a microdecompression and a discectomy at L5/S1.......there is also notes on the report that the stenosis at L4;L5 is worse, looking at doing surgery within 6 weeks, But on my MRI scan it showed that the L4/L3 disc was the problem unless the surgeon has made a mistake and put L4/L5 instead of L4/L3 either way need it sorted cos pain is unbearable :-(
  • Mazzabe: please make sure that the scope of work is clearly defined and you agree with it. Go through this again with the surgeon ASAP. Write it down during the consult and get him to agree to it. With a bit of thought, this can be done nicely and naturally.

    It would be terrible to have all the dramas of spinal surgery and not achieve a good outcome due to a lack of communication and an unclear understanding of what was proposed to be done.

    Take care.
  • thanks 4 ur comment dave, i went and saw my doctor y/day she explained it throught with me and has also 2 have a chat with the consultant again when i go 4 my assessment before the surgery
  • ty dave well travelled 3 hours there and 3 hours back for my 2 hour pre op assessment at the hospital, i was in complete agony when i got home grrrrrrr , surgery is going ahead i have to travel 2 same hospital again on the 3rd march for surgery on the 4th, Dave i had a good chat with my consultant and he has more or less said if i dont have the surgery im just gonna be like this or even worse 4 the rest of my life, even could end up in a wheelchair with my other problems i have also, so a microdecompression and a discectomy is going to be done, L5/S1 is the main problem but need L4/L3 done also, last time i was in intensive care for 5 hours because of my breathing problems, so they have said there will be a intensive care bed and a 1 to 1 nurse 4 me again they have said there will always be pain in my back due to having ostreo arthrities in my spine and ostreo phyties spelt them wrong lol, ty 4 listerning 2 me :-)
  • My story is very similar and I have a surgery date on March 5 for left sided herniated disks. That are pinching my nerves on the left. I've fallen twice because my leg is so numb. Basically doing this alone very frustrated and a lot of pain with numbness. I've been out of work and on short-term disability since early January. Tossed from Dr to Dr. Finally found the right one. Still scared and could really use some friends. ANYONE out there?
    Thanks Terri
  • terrim215tterrim215 Posts: 45
    edited 02/24/2013 - 12:45 PM
    Dear keytan I did have cancer 2 years ago and this is worse. Then people were tripping over themselves to help me now there is no one. Because they think this is all part of growing old DEAL WITH IT. Trust me I know how you feel.
    Thanks Terri
  • Thanks for being there you're right it's beyond words and frustrating. My breast cancer is gone. Then it was bladder surgery. Now this. I've had some pain in my back since the chemotherapy but nothing bad. Late November I tossed and turned and it felt like a knife in my back. I ignored it and just moved on my job in the mailroom is very physical so of course it got worse. I finally saw my Dr she gave me some muscle relaxer and said rest. Something I can't do I live alone so I have to work. The pain increased and my left leg and butt became so numb that I started falling down. On my back of course. My Dr sent me for an MRI and as I said was tossed from dr to dr. I even got shots in my back that made it worse. Then I found this Dr and he knew immediately what is wrong and how to fix it I'm 51 and only have a few friends I can really count on but they're fed up with my PROBLEMS so they think this is just a cry for attention. I'm so lost
    Thanks Terri
  • One friend is my cousin and her life is very stressful and now she HAS TO TAKE CARE OF ME AGAIN. So we're fighting the Dr and hospital is. 2 hours away she hates driving so far so we keep fighting she insisted on meeting the Dr to make sure I'm not lying my boss isn't happy because I've taken SO much time off since my cancer. And I was forced to work while going through chemotherapy because I couldn't afford Not to. I'm on short term disability until 4/11 they're taking $100 out of my paycheck each week I'm on disability and after 4/11 they'll take another $100 I only make $300. Sorry been holding this all in
    Thanks Terri
  • Its so good to know someone REALLY understands thanks for listening
    Thanks Terri
  • You have no idea how much the word FRIEND means to me right now. Then again maybe you do my friend
    Thanks Terri
  • terrim215tterrim215 Posts: 45
    edited 02/25/2013 - 1:09 PM
    You truly are a blessing. I live in a small town in the state of Massachusetts. I'd love to come over for coffee but it would be cold by the time I got there. Haha!! I'm holding my own for now but sitting here staring at these walls while the bills roll in is very difficult. I'm extremely independent and even thinking of needing help kills me. Before my cancer I biked hiked at the gym 6-7 days since then I've been fighting to get back. This year I joined a gym and took spinning classes. I always wanted to do it and it's very hard but I jumped in and I was just getting really good when all this happened. Now standing or sitting is close to impossible right now. But I will do this because I have a real friend. Only family is a sister in California that I'm not close with. I guess friends are more important than anything else thanks
    Thanks Terri
  • Hey girl they do say time heals all wounds. Sorry to here the news. Why do you think surgery will make it worse? I was told if I don't have it this will get much worse. So I'm getting it dome. Can't live in fear every minute. Hope things get better for you. I'm here if needed.
    Thanks Terri
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