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UrsweetpamUUrsweetpam Posts: 8
edited 07/18/2015 - 4:06 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hello everyone! My name is Pam and I am 45 years old. I had a laminectomy / microdiscectomy for spinal stenosis, herniated L5-S1 on the left side and degenerative disc disease on 4/22/15. Also I have a pending surgery for a herniated C2-C3. I have had back pain for many years but recently it has gotten a lot worse. I think I may have hurt my back about 20 years ago at work but blew it off as muscle strain. My PCP just kept prescribing the same combination of therapies ,Physical Therapy,muscle relaxers and a short term pain med along with a weight restriction slip for work . Funny thing though was that she never ran any tests to be sure just blamed it on over use and misuse. It seemed to help at first but then it only helped while I was on medication. I made many trips to the PCP with the same problem, sciatica and lower back pain. I really believe she thought I was just drug seeking when really I was relief seeking. I have tried the Chiropractor, TENS, every core strength exercise I could find. Because I live in very rural America, there isn't many options out there. Lat summer I had a pretty bad bout of pain where I couldn't get out of bed for a few days, which also caused me to lose my new job. I slowly got back on my feet my by then my back just hurt all the time. I know my family was getting sick of hearing me complain all the time "I can't my back hurts too bad". Just seemed like I was making excuses and I missed out on a lot of good times. Last winter once again I was in bad pain. i thought maybe I shouldn't have shoveled my door out so I could let out my dog. Being that all my children are
grown, no one was likely to come help. Once again for about the hundredth time I visited my PCP and we had an ugly conversation that didn't end well relationship wise but she was so eager to prove me wrong that she promised to set me up with pain management, to schedule an MRI and to get me an appointment with a Neurologist in my hometown. It needed to all be pre approved by my insurance so I waited a month. It took me calling my Insurance co.and letting them tell her how it was going to be to get me all three appointments. Pain management told me that I had the herniated discs, the neurologist says "no you don't, follow up with pain management. So I looked else where for a second opinion in the city, about 90 miles away. Finally I felt validated but also felt so rushed. The new Neurosurgeon spent just a few minutes checking me out then spent the rest of the time talking to his assistant. he never gave me even a minute to think. Suddenly I was told I needed surgery right away and was wisked from room to room signing papers and such,still not clear what was really wrong. The next week I was having surgery. I must admit that I considered just not showing up. Friends who had similar symptoms and surgeries tried to assure me that I would feel immediate relief but that wasn't what I felt at all. When I woke up I couldn't feel my left leg at all to touch it but it hurt like nothing else on earth and I have had many kidney surgeries. I was told that the Dr scraped my dura so I had to lay flat for 24 hrs and the pain meds I was given was less than my usual 10 mgs.oxycodone tid and Ms CONTIN 30 mgs bid. I gave his office all that info before i had my surgery so I was totally unprepaired for only dilaudid 2mgs every 4 hours when all I could do is lay there and cry. All my Dr could say was that he was sorry but he didn't change it. Come to think of it, that was all he could say to my family and to me about what he found out. He told my family that my sciatic nerve was shredded that he had to put it back together. Wouldn't that show up on the MRI? When they tried to get me out of bed that first time it hurt so bad and I had a lot of pain in my left leg. It has only gotten better to the point that now I need a cane at 3 months post op. I have finnished with my post op pt. I want to be able to play with my rowdy grandsons again or walk my dog. oh I tried to walk some with the dog yesterday since I was feeling a bit better only to find that I have a really hard time getting back home because of the pain. The dog had no problem me on the other hand wasn't so lucky. I have looked up every article I could find about nerve damage but I am wondering if I'll ever be ok with stairs again or if this will ever go back to normal. My back still hurts just in more places .Tonite i am starting to get pains down the other side now. I had an EMG last week so hoping for some answers. At my last appointment the dr put me on 300 mgs of Neurotin tid but i swelled up like a balloon. Bummer too because it seemed to help the stinging in my foot. Does anyone know if this neuropathy is something that goes away? Can't seem to find any clear answers.
Welcome to Spine-Health

One of the most important things that need members can do is to provide the rest of the community with as much information about themselves as possible. It is so very difficult for anyone to respond when we do not have enough information to go on. This is not meant that you are doing anything wrong or violated any rule, we are just trying to be pro-active and get the information upfront so that people can start responding and your thread is more effective.

So many times we read about members who have different tests and they all come back negative. The more clues and information you provide, the better chances in finding out what is wrong, The fact that your test results are negative does not mean that you are fine and without any concerns. Many times it takes several diagnostic tests and procedures to isolate a specific condition.

Here are some questions that you should answer:

  • - When did this first start?

    . Year, Your age, etc
- Was it the result of an accident or trauma?
- Are there others in your family with similar medication conditions?
- What doctors have you seen? (Orthopedic, Neurosurgeon, Spine Specialist, etc)

  • . Which doctor did you start with? Ie Primary Care Physician
    . Who are you currently seeing?
- What Conservative treatments have you had? Which ones?

  • . Physical Therapy
    . Ultrasound / Tens unit
    . Spinal Injections
    . Acupuncture
    . Massage Therapy
- What diagnostic tests have you had? And their results (MRI, CTScan, XRay, EMG, etc)

  • . Summarize the results, please do not post all details, we cannot analyze them
    . How many different tests have you had over the years? Similar results?
- What medications are you currently using? (details, dosage, frequency, etc)

  • . Name of Medication
    . How long have you been using this?
    . Results
- Has surgery been discussed as an option? (If so, what kind)
- Is there any nerve pain/damage associated?
- What is your doctor’s action plan for treating you?

Providing answers to questions like this will give the member community here a better understanding
of your situation and make it easier to respond.

Please take a look at our forum rules: Forum Rules

I also strongly suggest that you take a look at our FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) which can be found at the top of the forum menu tab or by going to FAQ There you will find much information that will

  • - Help you better utilize the Spine-Health system
    - Provide pointers on how to make your threads / posts
    - Tips on how to create your avatar (your picture), posting images, etc
    - General pieces of valuable information

Please remember that no one at Spine-Health is a formally trained medical professional.
Everything that is posted here is based on personal experiences and perhaps additional research.
As such, no member is permitted to provide

  • - Analysis or interpretation of any diagnostic test (ie MRI, CTscan, Xray, etc)
    - Medical advice of any kind
    - Recommendations in terms of Medications, Treatments, Exercises, etc

What could be good for someone could spell disaster for another.
You should also consult your doctor to better understand your condition and the do’s and don’t’s.

It is very important that new members (or even seasoned members) provide others with details about their condition(s). It is virtually impossible to help another member when all the details we have are

I’ve had this for years, it hurts, I cant move my shoulder – what could this be, what treatment should I get?

Diagnosing spinal problems can be very difficult. In many ways it’s like a game of clue. Especially, when the diagnostic tests come back negative – no trouble found! Then it’s up to the patient and the doctor to start digging deeper. The doctor is like a detective. They need clues to help them move along. So, you as the patient need to provide the doctor with all sorts of clues. That is like it is here. Without having information about a condition, its impossible for anyone here to try to help.

Specific comments :

Personal Opinion, not medical advice :

--- Ron DiLauro, Spine-Health System Moderator : 07/17/15 21:12 est
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