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Two Microdiscetomies, 1 Lumbar fusion of 3 vertibrae

Mchurch01MMchurch01 Posts: 1
edited 12/04/2014 - 9:27 PM in Lower Back Pain
I had suffered from low back pain for about two years before finally figuring out what was wrong. I had a physical job and everytime I told my employer about my back pain he would sent me to the same urgent treatment center and the doctor would simply say " Advil and ice, you can go back to work tomorrow". So I saw this doctor four times in two years and never got an answer. One day on the job after moving a heavy item on my own (which is against company policy but I was instructed to do so by my boss even after explaining I did not have help or proper tools) I bent down to fold the lift gate up on the truck. As I bent down I felt a awful burst and immediately fell to the ground, after collecting myself I stood up and noticed a bad pain in my back and running down my left leg to where I could not even walk. I go back to work and tell them what happened, they say " oh you are probably just sore, sleep it off we will see you tomorrow". I did as they said and came to work the next day but left after about 30 minutes. As usual they sent me to the same urgent treatment center and the doctor said the same thing and to have a follow up in one week. He also stated that he does not take anyone off work because he thinks they are milking the systemI knew something major was wrong and tried to tell them but they did nothing. I went straight to the ER and they could tell I was in pain and that something was wrong but that theu couldn't not do an MRI without loss of bowells. The doctor gave me an injection and sent me on my way. Fast forward 3 weeks, 2 more ER visits, my follow up to UTC, I finally get into to an ortho surgeon. He orders an immediate MRI and withing a few days I was called back in and told I had ruptured my L5 disc and he showed me, after talking we agreed on surgery, a Microdiscetomy. Surgery Feb 20th 2013. pain went away for about a day but Prob just becsuse all the meds in the hospital. After 4 weeks recovery I started PT but quickly found out I could not do many task in the gym, after pushing me when I said I couldn't my disc re ruptured. At this point I have pain in my lower back, from my left hip to the end of my toes, as well as numbness and tingling throughout and my pinky toe and one to the right were almost comp numb. I tell the doctor and he orders an MRI, same
thing, ruptired disc and need surgery. 2nd surgery May 25, 2013. This time after surgery I now had pain in my right leg as well as my left and pain in my back. I do the recovery and PT in the pool, when I see the doctor again he tells me that I am as good as I am going to get. All while not taking me serious and not giving me medication that could cure a paper cut.
My workers comp attorney then recommended that I get a second opinion from a doctor he has know for 20+ years and trust very well. I set an apt and take him my disc of the MRI from after the second surgery. He was a very nice and understanding doctor and talked about my options. A) start pain management with proper medication and deal with the pain. B) Lumbar Fusion. As I forgot to add I am only 23 at the time!!!! We start pain mgmt while waiting for surgery, it helped a little but not much. Fusion surgery October 25th, 2013. After surgery it was pretty difficult to stand up, walk, get into bed, shower, dress myself, you name it. I waited about 3 months to start PT in the pool again, all while none of my pain had really gone away, just taking an abundance of pain medication. Oxycontin 60 Mg 2x daily, oxycodone 30mg for breakthrough every 4 hours as needed, ambien for sleeping, lyrica for nerve pain, and a 100 mg fentanyl patch. Fast forward to now, 13 months post fusion surgery, doctor put me at MMI exactly one year from surgery. Even after telling him I was still in pain and had the numbness and freq leg weakened. He never took an MRI after the fusion, just x Rays which I thought was odd. Thankfully workers comp ordered and IME and this doctor actually listens and orders an MRI which shows another ruptired disc and a test for an EMG. I am desperately seeking any advice someone can give me as I think I fall under "failed surgery syndrome" I am only 24, have been off work for almost 2 years and have to keep pushing back law school. Please comment with advise or similar situations!



  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • Honestly... You need to be using your brain. Beg, borrow or steal to get into law school. Wear a suit. Do yoga part time. Change your life. Physical grunt work is hard on spines. Take it easy as you're so freshly recovering. Give yourself time. Get good physio and strengthen up your core.
    You're young. Give yourself a good goal to look forward to. I wish you all there best in your recovery.
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