On December 22, 2014, I had a microdisectamy for a far lateral herniation at L4-L5. After surgery, surprisingly, my back pain was almost immediately gone. However, I still had a minor amount of sciatic pain through my buttocks and down my right leg. I attributed this to swelling and figured it would go away. About a week and a half after surgery, I developed an infection in my insicion and was put on antibiotics. The first round of antibiotics didn't work, so the put me on a second round, and that did seem to work.
After three weeks, I went back to work as a teacher. I was still in some pain, but I figured that it was normal. After a month, I went back to the doctor because I felt it wasn't healing correctly. (I still had a scab on at the insicion site. It finally fell off after 7.5 weeks.) He said everything looked fine, but was concerned that I still had sciatic pain. I wasn't that concerned at that point. At my two month check up, he said everything looked good, but he was sending me to PT because I still had pain, and I was having pain in more locations then I started with. (At this point, I was having sciatic pain, hip pain, and pain through my groin and down the side of my leg, as well as pain in my foot.) At about three months, I begged for a few days off from work because I was popping Tramodal like they were tictacs at work and my brain felt like oatmeal by the end of the day. I was given a few days off, which now turned into a month off. My pain management doctor has uped my prescriptions from just tramodal (4-6 per day) and hydrocodone (1-2 per day) to more tramodal (8 per day) , oxicodone (1-2 per day) plus Neurontin (1-2 per day). The medication helps somewhat, but it turns me into a zombie If I take it all.
I am concerned about WHY I am in all this pain. It seems that the more time that passes, the more pain I am in. I can easily say that I am in pain most of the day. It seems to "travel" when it hits. The pain will shoot through the groin, then that will stop, and it will start down the leg. Then that will stop and my foot will start to hurt, and when it finishes, it will come back to the leg. I will shift myself and the pain will ease or go over to my hip or buttocks and back of the leg. Sitting for any length of time or walking distances (even shopping at the grocery store) causes pain. Laying in bed propped up where I am able to adjust myself frequently, seems to be the only thing I can do to keep the pain manageable.
I have an MRI scheduled for tomorrow and I am terrified that it won't show anything and the doctors will think that I am just making this up. Any ideas on what is wrong and how to ease the pain without turning into the walking dead?