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Herniated disk and nursing

Shany8SShany8 Posts: 1
edited 11/12/2014 - 5:22 AM in Lower Back Pain
Hey everyone. I've been diagnosed with a large herniated disk at my L5/S1. I've been out of work for a few months and going back tomorrow. I guess you could say I'm very nervous to go back. I was wondering if anyone else is in here that's a nurse or nursing assistant that's in the same boat and how have you dealt with work again after injury
Shanna Haggerty


  • Apparently you are getting better. But bending, lifting, flexion and prolong sitting can aggravate your condition. It can take couple of years to fully heal such disc injuries. We all hate to see relapse at the middle of healing process as it will take the condition back to initial status.
  • Shany. Hi. I'm so sorry. I know it really, really hurts! I'm not a nurse but I've been a member here for a while now & we seem to get a lot of nurses having spine issues. It seems so unfair that a life dedicated to helping others can result in this kind of problem. Your job is so incredibly physical & I imagine not always predictably so....patients lunging unexpectidly etc. I don't know what your particular job entails. Some nursing is more physically demanding. All I can say is take it easy at the start. Always use correct lifting techniques & good posture. Have you been given core strengthening exercise by a physical therapist? I'd continue to do them even if you feel 'better'.

    I just wanted to say I'm sorry & wish you the best. Hopefully some of our nurses will log in soon.
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • Motor1MMotor1 Pittsburgh, PaPosts: 556
    I have been a nursing assistant for 30 yrs. In March of 2013, I was bathing a patient in bed & he became resistive. I ended up with a herniated disc at c4-5. I had ACDF in June 2013. After months of PT, I was still having major pain but my surgeon just blew me off. I ended up finding a different surgeon. He took X-rays & found out that my neck didn't fuse. So in March of 2014, I had PCDF. I am now battling nerve issues in my neck & down my left shoulder & arm. My surgeon told me that I will never go back to nursing again. That was really hard to hear! For the last 8 years, I was a Hospice nursing assistant. I loved my job! I still cry about it. My doctor has sent me to a pain clinic. He is now working on finding the right combo of meds to help with my nerve pain. He also sent me back to therapy. I haven't worked for over a year and a half. Thankfully, workers comp is paying me temporary disability but it's only around 70% of my regular pay. I have no idea where my career path will go? I'm 53 years old & I now have to decide on a new career? My advice is, take it easy on your back. I know in nursing, you are probably working short handed, but please get help with any lifting. Good luck!
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