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Pain management

AFvetAAFvet Posts: 2
edited 09/22/2015 - 4:30 AM in Lower Back Pain
History: I have had numerous rhizotomies and nerve root block injections following being injured while in Iraq in 2008. I am 30 years old. My doctors keep telling me that I need to have the fusion surgery but that it has limited results and will limit my ROM. I have done my own research and there is little data about people having it done in the L5-S1 area (my problem area).

First, has anyone had the surgery? And what have your results been?
Second, I am trying to switch up my medication. I have been on various doses of oxycodone, oxycontin, MS contin, and every non narcotic there is. I found that the Oxycontin 20mg ER worked best but the VA does not prescribe it. Does anyone have any recommendations for me to try something else? I have a federal job and cannot go the medical marijuana route or I would at least try it. (never smoked before) I take 800mg of motrin 3x a day and have for the last 6 years. So I am looking forward to getting off that if possible. I have weekly Torodol shots that I LOVE but sadly only works for about 12 hours.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

Welcome to Spine-Health

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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 : 09/22/15 10:30est

Adam pollock


  • area of the spine doesn't effect your range of movement as much as you think it might. That area of the spine is located in between your posterior pelvis and there isn't bending and twisting at that level as there is higher up in the lumbar spine. That particular segment doesn't rotate as higher areas do, so fusion at that level really doesn't effect your ability to bend or flex.
    As far as fusion goes, mine was done at a higher level . Fusion surgery isn't really done for pain relief as much as it is done to fix a mechanical problem in the spine, and the recovery process can be long and drawn out.
    I suggest a second and third opinion with at least two other surgeons to see if they agree with the one you have seen.
    As far as meds go, only your doctors should advise you on which medications they feel are best for your condition and medical history.
    What works for me may not work for you, so I would discuss options with your doctor.

  • sandi123 said:

    What works for me may not work for you, so I would discuss options with your doctor.
    Not only is effectiveness different between different people, but so are side effects which can play as important a role. Your Dr would be the one to have this conversation with.
    L5/S1 compressed disc, DDD
    Current med: Hydrocodone 10/325 5x/day
  • Mrs Old LadyMMrs Old Lady Posts: 5
    edited 09/22/2015 - 9:42 AM
    I have the most problems in that area of my spine as well and my pm dr wants me to try the fusion surgery as well since I'm only thirty. I'm terrified! I have a two year old as well so I would really like to put off surgery a couple more years and do more research first. From the few that I have talked to fusion didn't work, or made them worse.
    2 Bulging Discs
    Annular Fissure
    Neurontin 300mg/2x
    Hydrocodone 10mg/4x
    Flexeril as needed
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