I have lurked around this site on and off when I get procedures or medications and need information and reassurance, but I'm ready to share my story with ya'll and hope there's others with similar situations that can relate and offer support!
I am a thirty year old woman. As long as I can remember as a child I've had problems with straining my neck and back from little physical stress or no known reason at all. My family didn't have a lot of money so we couldn't afford routine doctor vists. I was always extremely clumsy and had a sway when I walked that people have always chalked up as me shakin my butt! Very frustrating when I knew I was not! During my teenage years I experienced three major car accidents, but didn't have insurance, so I never seeked medical advice other than an emergency room visit and cat scan for a possible head injury.
In my mid twenties I tried to become active and started running regularly and doing weight training. I began having a lot of knee and hip pain on my left side, as well as constantly pulling my neck and back out. I always just pushed through the pain.
At 27 I became pregnant, and at six months into pregnancy I started having serious back pain. At the time I thought this was normal pregnancy pain and considered myself a wimp. By nine months, I couldn't walk more than a few feet without having to stop from the pain. My OB/GYN prescribed 5/325 Norco but I refused to take it while pregnant.
After having my son, I did began taking the medication. I started dieting in hopes that maybe the pregnancy weight was just adding stress to my back, but no positive changes. I decided to go to a chiropractor and he decided to do x-Rays before beginning treatment. It was then that I discovered I had an S curved scoliosis spine. I tried a few months of treatment but only hurt worse and felt like I was throwing money away. I went to my primary care doctor who refused to even look at the chiropractors x-Rays, made me pay for new x-rays, and didn't even want to x-Ray my full spine as I requested. He continued to tell me I was too young and was just out of shape. The x-Rays however confirmed my scoliosis and he recommended physical therapy. At this point I was in too much pain to even think of therapy and felt lost and alone with my pain. All I knew was that I finally had a reason for that left hip and knee pain when exercising and the sway that everyone accused me of shaking my butt, the scoliosis of my spine created one leg to be significantly longer than the other, putting strain on one side of my body. I still had no real answers for all of my back pain though, because from my research, scoliosis causes no real problem for some.
I began researching an decided to try a PM doctor in my area. They ordered an MRI and sent me home with Tramadol and Flexeril. The Tramadol didn't help at all, made my heart race, and the Flexeril made me too sleepy to even tend to my child. The pain at this point kept me from doing anything. My mother in law helped with my son as much as possible. I couldn't sleep, stand for too long, or sit for too long. I called my PM doctor and told him that I needed something stronger for pain. I came in and got my MRI results and did some auto immune testing. The findings were scoliosis, degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis, an annular fissure, and two bulging discs. I was also diagnosed with sciatic nerve pain and fibromyalgia. The blood tests showed no findings. I was placed on 5/325 Norco 3x's a day which still didn't help with the pain, so I am currently taking 10/325 Norco 3x's a day and 200mg nuerontin at night. I have done three epidural injections into my spine, the first caused migraine and helped for one day from my lower back down but didn't help any pain between my shoulder blades. Second caused migraine but relief lasted for about three days. I just received my last one yesterday, no migraine so far, but this injections hurt immediately, felt lidocaine and medication injections. I had sharp pains from my lower back and pressure from standing on my left leg triggering in my back/butt area. My pain is worse still, currently on a heating pad, I've taken my medication. My doctors office is closed till Tuesday. I've done steroid injections between the epidural injections and only get about a day of help, but nothing has removed more than about thirty percent of the pain. Today my doctor told me that I'm too young to stay on narcotics and If this last epidural doesn't provide relief he is sending me to a surgeon for a discography and possible spine fusion or removal of discs. I am terrified from what I've read about this test and tear surgeries and do not want to end up even worse than I am! I'm also worried about coming off narcotics because I really don't know how I would function at all without them anymore. My anxiety and pain is through the roof this morning! Is this normal procedure or is my doctor giving up on me?
Thanks if you managed to take the time to read my long story! I look forward to getting to know ya'll and learn your stories.
2 Bulging Discs
Flexeril as needed