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Symptoms different from what I've read

jkr2020788jjkr2020788 Posts: 3
edited 09/30/2015 - 4:52 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
First, hello. I've been reading on this site for a year now since my first micro. Anyway, a year, 3 micros, and a L5S1 fusion later, I'm having some weird symptoms in my opinion. I am a nurse and also in nurse practitioner school, so I am very familiar with causations of pain, and this one is baffling me. I will break it down by events.

1) 1 week after my fusion, I felt what I would consider "normal" pain.
2)At the two week mark, I was still on meds q4 hours, but the pain was gone.
3) I decreased my amount of meds to about twice a day
4) At three weeks I noticed increasing pain to my lower back mostly while walking (no pain in legs)
5) At week 5, SEVERE pain with every step on right foot. - Pain is described as somewhat like a muscle spasm (as in it makes my whole back feel as though its about to crack in half at the fusion point) The pain is so intense that I have to brace myself against the nearest wall or railing. It is incredible how much pain occurs while trying to stand from a sitting position every time. Again, it is mainly on right side only. What has me baffled is the fact that it hurts this bad despite being on my max dose of pain meds again....I'm back to taking it every 4 hours. I am currently in Hawaii, and I called my doctor prior to leaving to let him know. The secretary refused to let me talk to him because he was busy. I told her to let him know. When I called back, they said that we will deal with it when i get back in a week. When I got here, I had to be wheel chaired off the plane. I even wound up at a urgent care where they gave me muscle relaxers, toradol, a steroid shot, and steroid pack. Nothing will make the pain go completely away.

I would like to hear what you all think is going on. Are these symptoms of a failed fusion? A broken screw? A broken rod? Nerve pain from scarring or hardware? I am 27 years old, and these symptoms should not be present in this degree in my opinion.

Welcome to Spine-Health

One of the most important things that 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 to indicate 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 : 09/30/15 10:52 est



  • I just wanted to make something clear, as I read what the moderator included under my post. I'm am in no way asking for medical advice or treatment. I am simply trying to see if anyone had similar problems or heard of something like this before. I'm asking because, as stated, I can't get in touch with my md. I will make my own judgement call once I've heard people's opinion.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,865
    edited 09/30/2015 - 10:19 AM
    is what we provide for almost all new members, especially when there is not enough information or it is not clear. This helps the entire member community with a better understanding of your situation. For instance you mention surgeries, when was it?

    Following your train of thought, sounded like the normal progression of spinal surgery recovery. But what type of actual fusion was done also plays a major role in post surgical time frames. Can you think of anything that you may have done after that 3 week period? Going from something that seemed smooth to now generally has a cause.

    But what you are asking , is far beyond opinion. A failed fusion, broken screw or rod is far beyond what anyone is capable of providing here.
    In order to do that, you need to have a clinical physical examination or perhaps a medical professional may have more clues.

    You were lucky with your urgent care. They went quite far in attempting to treat you. Especially when it came to the steroid injection. I dont know many emergency room doctors that would give a steroid injection without have the approval of the patients doctor. Spinal injections are something that are carefully planned out, having the appropriate equipment ( fluoroscope / X-ray / etc )
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • jkr2020788jjkr2020788 Posts: 3
    edited 09/30/2015 - 1:31 PM
    Sorry, it was let a spinal injection, just a solumedrol shot intramuscular. I guess my main question is would any of those conditions cause that type of pain. Like nerve pain= shocking /tingling/fire. Muscular= more throbbing/shooting. My train of thought was thinking that a broken screw would cause an intense sharp pain, but I am uncertain if walking would make it worse.
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