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Long Term Neck Pain - Losing my mind

Hi to any who reads this

I have had neck problems since 2003 with a 2005 C6-C7 Fusion, and a 2010 C5-C7 Fusion. The pain never went away. I dealt with it for awhile without any help, then got the surgeries. They never really told me why the pain didn't go away and to just stay in pain management. I have been on Morphine for 3 years now and it helps, it doesn't go away. The doctor allows me one Norco for the morning for breakaway pain, it helps. My biggest problem is that most of the day I can't find any posture or position that is comfortable. It (neck) basically hurts as soon as I raise my head up. The pain is hard to explain, it's like when you bang your elbow and you get that bone pain, dull and uncomfortable. The bottom line is that I'm losing my mind, it has been 13 years now of the same pain, day in day out.

Am I normal, as far as chronic pain goes. Is this happening to anyone else? If I tell the doctor (Pain) that I just make it through the day without breaking down, he may take me off the Meds. When I mention to him about increasing the Meds he says he would have to remove one of them. That doesn't make sense.

I just need to know that I'm not alone in this, there has to be someone else that lives like this.

I'm 55, male, electronics, X Navy, Disabled, Tired. It's been a bad pain day.
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Comments

  • I'm so sorry that you're dealing with this for as long as you have. This might be a stupid question but, have you met with more than one Dr and if so, did they all have the same response?
    ACDF C6/C7 on 05/20/15
    ...and it was the best decision of my life :-)
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,940
    .....about the comment doctor made...but my thought is, if increasing one med, you may need to remove another med, so you are not overloaded in pain meds.
    And your comment about...he may take me off all meds....seems like you don't really know.
    Giving the doc benefit of doubt, have good communication with doc so you're on same page.

    I've also learned to just give my symptoms and let doc guide me into increase or change of medication.
    It would seem since you are on pain management that the surgery was not successful....as you also said you came out of surgery with same pain. So I would think your treatment now is for long term ..lessening the pain.

    I was not candidate for surgery, so my situation is to have the edge taken off the pain and to keep me out of the ER
    I have very limited life..but I've learned to cope...or continue to learn to cope.

    What is your daily activity level? Do you over do ? Do you have limitations or restrictions? Making my pain more tolerable, I need to lay down quite often during the day. I too am disabled from the spine issues and chronic pain.

    I was wondering if wearing a soft collar would help support your neck and offer any pain relief?
    You would need to double check, since it's possible it could do damage. I don't know.

    Please know you are not alone...hang in there!
    Sue
    Spine-Health Moderator
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • wstoneswwstones Posts: 9
    edited 05/30/2015 - 3:19 AM
    Thanks Denise and Savage

    I know yesterday was a bad day for me. My Pain Management doctor is the best and I do communicate with him about my symptoms and my daily pains and routines. he is just doing his job to keep me at what he feels is a safe and maintainable level. I was encouraged ( and sadden) yesterday to know many people with multiple surgeries are still having pain. My daily routine is probably too much, but I am caring for my wife who is sick and can barely walk. Some days I just need to walk it off and get my mind on something else. I have had multiple Neurologist, and as they do, they say to maintain your PM. No more surgeries. I am fine with that. None of the Meds I take make me feel sick or dizzy, which has taken years to accomplish. You can't believe what the others had me take. Sometimes the non-narcotic drugs can be the worst, Cymbalta/Lyraca and high doses of Gabapentin. As far as a neck collar goes, that will not work. My problem is the vertical gravity push on my spine/neck not side to side. I sleep in a reclining chair at night, because a bed hurts too much, and I do get 6 hours a night.

    Again thanks for answering
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,940
    ....or disability means on Disability?
    Either way, with your wife being ill and unable to walk....and so sorry for that....there may be resources out there to help take the load off. ...resources for you and possibly your wife also.

    I have a social worker who brings to my attention resources available to me. Some have been quite helpful...some I do not need at this time, but it's good to know they are there.

    Are you aware of the post on this site re coping......the blend?
    You mentioned getting your mind on something else and this post has some good ideas...some I never would have thought of on my own.

    Again, you may already know, but the ....search....on this site, right upper on page...very useful to type in your concerns and be led to different posts, articles videos....even in typing in resources may help

    I wish you the best..and to your wife also.
    Sue
    Spine-Health Moderator
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • MayaMMaya Posts: 7
    edited 06/01/2015 - 3:58 AM
    Have you considered some sort of manipulative treatment? or maybe changing your chair, bed, mattress or pillow? after all, we DO spend most of our time in bed :)
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