I have had to lock the previous thread and reposted your original post here in another thread. I hope that this thread offers you more advice than the previous one. You have my apologies for the way the thread was highjacked.
Let me welcome you to our forums, and see if I can help a bit. Have you consulted with either a board certified ortho or neurosurgeon who specializes in the spine? If not, I would start there. A bulging disc is just one that sits outside the normal boarders on the vertebra. You also said that you have some annular tearing as well? what levels would that be at ?
What type of doctor are you seeing currently?sta There is a standard treatment protocal that doctors follow, like a road map, when it comes to treating back or neck pain- it starts with the least invasive treatments, and then depending on the results, it continues to the next step, and so on......the first steps are usually the physical therapy and anti inflammatory medications, then injections, and then more invasive- but the doctors do have to follow this protocal. If PT and the injections don't work, they will most likely send you for a consult with a surgeon or two.
As far as the ER goes and going to be treated for pain- it is not recommended. First, because this is a chronic condition, they don't have access to your medical records, secondly, they are there to treat emergencies, car crashes, heart attau cks, and other, serious life threatening conditions. They don't have the staff available to run diagnostic testing(cost factor), and their job is to get you stable and send you to your regular doctor. Complaints of pain, in and of themselves are not considered to be life threatening, unless there are other things going on that make that complaint of pain sudden, and in addition to other conditions.
It sounds like you are experiencing common side effects of steroid injections. As Jon said, it can take a few days to see whether or not the injections are helping you or not. Hang in there. If I can be of any help, please feel free to PM me.
I have a lot of problems, the few of which cause the most problemse are as follows- from the "top" lol-
A pinched nerve in my neck, happened in August of last year. I woke up with severe pain, felt like someone was jamming a fiery rod down my neck and up and down my left arm! The pain radiated up and down, into my fingers...went to ER, where they basically laughed at me and sent me home, said I "must have slept wrong"....I came home crying, hubby called head nurse who told me to come back in if I was still in pain...went back in with a friend (who is a VERY well known presence in the community)...I was given an IV of something to 'ease' the pain...didn't touch it
Sent home with a prescription of vicodin...some-what helped, to where I could actually 'some-what' function....nothing other than this was done....I have issues with that arm to this day-my pinky, ring and sometimes middle finger are HYPER sensitive, but also pins and needles type numb also...if that makes any sense?! Have very degraded grasp and weakness...
When I was 18, pregnant with my oldest daughter, I went night hiking and fell, dislocating my right shoulder. It has since dislocated hundreds of times...I have severe scar tissue built up, but my insurance won't agree to the surgery, because it is not "life-threatening"...I can't wash my hair correctly, without feeling like it's going to 'slip out'...this is the "least" of my pain issues at this point!!
I have several bulging and herniated discs, and at least one or two tears...according to my MRI's. When I first got the MRI's, I was told there was nothing wrong but "some arthritis", until I went to see a pain clinic, where I was told those diagnosis...I have been suffering with these pains for YEARS...only recently getting somewhere with doctors!! I was told to start PT, but tried explaining to the doc that there was NO way that was happening while I'm in this much pain..I was referred to the pain clinic in my area, where I was put through a series of tests, and was told that the epidural shot was worth a try..??
I received the epidural steroid shot in my L4,5-S1 (?) on Tueday, the 21st of May...they gave me 2x the dosage of whatever sedation IV they use....and NOTHING...not even a little bit!! (Gave me one dose, then about 5 minutes later another since I felt nothing from the first). He gave me the shot and it felt like someone stabbed me in the back, it was horrific! I was crying like a baby by the time he was done, he apologized profusely, and gave me some pain pills to leave with...only 3 days worth..and when I called his office yesterday,(5 days past procedure) his nurse called me back and basically said "sorry, you're lucky you got what you got, go to the ER if it's that bad"...
I am in pain, and no one will do anything it seems...none of the doctors around here will give anything for the pain! I have been told by one that the ONLY thing she will say is PT, exercise and a healthy diet, that she wouldn't even refer me to surgery...another told me she's not risking her butt and her practice to give me any narcotics...(at a loss for words when I heard her actually say THAT to me)...the pain clinic can't prescribe anything because they go to several different hospitals and areas around here and aren't around MY area enough to monitor me...where can I turn!?!?!
They've seen my results, it's not like they can't see any reason....but because of people with (let's just say)issues around here, people that are actually in PAIN, can't get any help it seems....? I really think I'm going to find a doc that will recommend surgery and go forward with that...since the shot, I've gotten severe foot and leg cramps, that weren't there before; more pain; and facial flushing/hot flashes that are driving my hubby and I insane!! Thanks to any advice you can give!!