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Introducing Me, My Spine & Other Fun Stuff...

BekcisBBekcis Posts: 3
edited 09/05/2014 - 7:25 PM in New Member Introductions
New here, age old questions & desire for direction, cheer leading or any wisdom to get me out of my far too long post surgical slump. Want to get to a place where I can ride & drive my horses on an almost daily basis. Needed to retire in 2012 (58 yrs.old) due to overwhelming pain. Have lived with slow primary progressive multiple sclerosis since age 12. Worked 45 + hrs/wk for over 33 yrs. Osteoarthritis in both shoulders required bilateral arthroplasties in March for rt shoulder, August (left) in 2013. Before I could completely rehab the new titanium shoulders, developed screaming memie radiculopathy in left leg. ER visit with subsequent hospitalization, yada,yada,yada had Level 5 spinal fusion with t-lif from L2 - S2 in November 2013. Dural tear during surgery, despite best efforts to repair, then spinal drain, had severe postural headache that wasn't resolved until January 2014. In April 2014, fell on my walker & fractured left tibia. So way too long debilitation & unable to stand or really do too much with arms. Recovery is long, depressing and frustrating. Walking with walker now very slow, driving car - one "outing" per day exhausts me. Am on no pain relief meds other than Rx NSAID, meloxicam & duloxetine for depression & osteoarthritis (now only in both knees). Prior to these surgeries, I rode at a therapeutic horseback riding center as well as on my own land and horses. Will resume therapeutic riding in 2 weeks. For past 2 weeks have been doing water walking (in, not on) in cool water outdoor pool. Gym & rehab pools too warm for me - causes ms to turn me into wet noodle & fatigued after 5-10 minutes - then useless for next 24 hours.
Question: does increased exercise cause enough pain to have to become chair/bedridden for hours later? Is this a too be expected thing this far out from surgery? I still walk with walker if going more than 5 steps and have varying degrees of difficulty getting up from chairs. Very frustrated with this ever so slowly course of recovery. Any tips for easing anger, frustration, and working on pain relief - am trying to meditate daily- this is a hard thing to do.
I would appreciate anyone's input..


  • sandisandi Posts: 6,342
    edited 09/06/2014 - 6:22 AM
    Welcome to Spine Health. http://www.spine-health.com/forum/announcements/spine-health-announcements/welcome-message-resource

    The rehabbing part of recovery for you has been complicated by your other medical issues, so it is going to take you a bit longer than it might have otherwise.......that being said, the best way to rehab is to take it slow and steady. Pushing too hard, too fast , can result in fatigue, reinjury, and increased pain.
    You have several recoveries going on at one time, and your body has been through a lot in the last couple of years, so working on rehabbing each area is the goal, and to slowly increase both your stamina, strength and endurance.
    Do you work with a physical medicine and rehab doctor? If not, it is something to consider finding out about.
    I am not sure about the return to horseback riding, given the extent of your fusion and it is one thing that I strongly suggest you discuss with your doctor before starting up again. You want to be steady in balance. and be able to sit upright for riding.
  • Thank you Sandi for some wise words. I have trouble knowing what is pushing too hard or fast. I am so used to needing NOT to pay attention to all the false messages I get from my neurological short circuits that I don't know if I should pay attentention or push through it. I don't have a relationship with a single doctor - all the surgeons don't want me"on their hands", my gp is useless, my neurologist is in Chicago (I'm in MI) and it takes forever to become anyone's new patient. I am NOT blaming "Obamacare" (I like our President-don't mean to insert politics here, just didn't want to get into that here) - our healthcare community is fractured & not patient friendly, despite their tv ads. So what kind of new doctor would I try to see to get some coordinated PT?
  • sandisandi Posts: 6,342
    edited 09/06/2014 - 12:39 PM
    I would start by finding a physical medicine and rehab physiatrist. You can even find them in pain management practices, but I have found them to be the best when it comes to working with the patient to help them get back on their feet, while treating their pain conditions as well.
    I have had mine since 06 and I simply adore them. They can arrange therapies with other specialists that they work with.
  • Thank you Sandi, I will be looking for a physiatrist to see if I can get all my broken body issues under one doctor. Makes a lot of sense - just hoping there is one in my area!
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