I have severe degenerative disc disease(DDD);L 4-S1 spinal fusion with hardware 2/2011 & C 3-C 7 spinal fusion with hardware 2/2012. The rest of my discs are degenerating but my surgeon says I am not a surgical candidate because it would be very extensive surgery. He referred me to pain management 11/2014. Since starting pain management I have had 2 lumbar injections & 3 cervical injections. I also take tramadol 1-2 tabs 3 times per day & cyclobenzadrine 1 tab 3 times per day as needed. I also eat 1/4 of a marijuana cookie every evening & as needed.
Due to chronic headaches from occipital neuropathy, my life has changed dramatically. I am no longer able to work ( I was a nurse for 30 plus years & loved being a nurse). I sit in a recliner with a neck pillow & crochet 90 % of the day. I walk a mile 5 - 7 days a week & stretch several times a day. The only time I don't have pain is when I lie in bed & refuse to be bed bound. I can shower & dress but can no longer perform household chores , drive, shop. My social life is pretty much non-existent.
I am 59 years old & per my surgeon I my spinal x-rays look like an 80 year old spine. My DDD stems from genetics on my father's side & I watched my uncle & grandmother suffer with pain & deformation of their backs. My uncle had severe curvature with scoliosis( he had a 70% curvature to the left) & grandma had severe kyphosis( she has a 70% curvature forward)
I receive social security disability & started on Medicare this month. have a very supportive husband who has taken over the the household chores & grocery shopping.
I have a very strong spiritual faith which helps me go on with life.
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~ spine-health moderator, savage