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Been 1.5 years of this for me: (

Clay1336CClay1336 Posts: 2
Well to start it off I guess I'll start by saying my name is clay, I'm 24 years old and lived a very physical and active life workin in the albertan oil fields and did a lot of weight lifting and snowmobiling not to mention working my butt off on rigs and pipeline jobs, for the first 4 months of my excruciating journey I was seeing a walk in Doctor and a very large clinic who INSISTED my pain was nothing more than a torn muscle and sent me on my way despite me comming in time and time again saying it's only gotten worse, eventually after 55-60 visits to there and my local hospital I finally was sent for a CAT scan and they saw my massive disc bulge/hemmorage following up with the MRI not only was it bulged and hemmorage it was also degenerative... As you can imagine I was livid with this walk in Doctor made a complaint and never returned. Found a new doctor and met my awesome neurosurgeon [edit] in Edmonton Alberta. (6 months later) so the pain was so extreme for a year and 3 months that I walked like I was 96. And only walked when I really had to. Extreme shooting sharp pains from my butt and hip right to the bottom of my foot, over that year I had 3 ambulance rides to the hospital from pain so bad I would puke violently and couldn't walk and they tallied my hospital visits up to 186 visits In about a 8 month span, so about 4 months ago they finally rushed my surgery due to the extremity of my case. And upon no surprise my surgeon told me after surgery he had never seen such a large Chung of disk be restricting the nerve and falling off and needing to be removed he showed me it and told me it was the size of his ENTIRE thumb wich is rather large. So after the surgery I actually felt great I could DEFINITLY tell I got some relief even though being in pretty major pain from the surgery I was optimistic. Couple months went by and I'm still in pain, not NEARLY like it was before but still quite bad and seems to be getting slowly worse. He sent me for another MRI post surgery and seen that mkre fluid has leaked, the pain doesn't shoot to my foot anymore only to about my knee and I find I need to balance the perfect amount of laying and resting with little bits of movement or else I get extremely sore lower back from laying around for so long (IV pretty much been bed ridden for almost an entire 2 years at 24 years old). Even with the 120 mg of hydromorphone contin I take a day it's getting to be almost unbearable again, now that being said IV tried EVERYTING PT , aqua therapy (pt in water) , chiropractors, cortisone injections, pain clinics, accupuncture gabopentin nerve blockers I'm just losing hope... I really am... The thought of suicide runs rampid in my head... Only thing that has stopped me is the devastation I know I would put on my family and fiancée... I just don't know what to do anymore I'm so depressed and so much pain... Then to top it off I'm constipated from all the meds and I was throwing up violently for about a year I went from 195 pounds and fit very in shape guy to 145 pounds looking like a heroine addict..... Any tips and help would be appreciated guys even my family doctor who has been in practice for 25 years says he's never seen sciatic pain this bad. Same with my neurosurgeon.. I was optimistic for a long time but I'm really starting to lose faith guys, any help or tips is much appreciated IV adapted the sleeping on side with pillow under legs or on my back with pillow under knees just by experimenting with what was comfy. And we have no idea what caused it maybe skidooing or working out or maybe just the years of. Physical labour IV done... But I don't know how much longer I can hold this out... I thought about creating a forum like this myself to maybe be a speaker for people with similar issues...and had dreams of being a lawyer I was in my first year of my undergraduate degree when this all happened and now there is no chance of me ever being capable of paying for that kind of schooling. I used to work summers with my Union and be able to make 50-60k in a few months but that has long gone and I'm drowning in about 60k of credit card and line of credit debt. I'm just lost. And don't feel like myself... Thanks to anyone who took the time to hear my story and listened to me vent it's been nice to be able to put it on paper in hopes someone will hear me out.... Take care guys and I wish everyone with similar problems the best. Take care guys

Sincerely Clayton gray

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Liz, Spine-health Moderator


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    Please take the time to read this post and refer to it when you have questions

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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • Welcome to the forum. You will find lots of good information on here and people who support. Sometimes it just helps to know there are other people struggling in the same way ... not saying its good to read about others struggling!!

    I didn't catch which disc you had surgery on or what type of surgery?

    I have experienced nerve pain to the point of violent sickness and at times lots of swearing in front of my children .. teenagers at the time so they had probably heard worse!

    I have suffered from back problems for years and refused a fusion on my lumbar in 1995 due to the problems it would have caused me further down the line, with further fusions higher up my spine. My very active little boy at the time needed somebody to run after him all the time which would not have helped a fusion!!! I opted to try conservative treatments via chiropractor, then osteopath who did some good and then progressed to the gym. 2 years later I had a six pack better than most men and a more stabilised back. No running on the treadmill (very progressive walk) and no loose weights. This all help and I kept up the ab crunches daily to keep the muscles tight to support my back.

    Unfortunately my back over the years has been subjected to lots of heavy gardening, manual labour on house renovations, chair lifting 6ft + male patient downstairs to get them on the ambulance and to top it off floristry, which at times has more weight lighting than any gym, with buckets of water and heavy boxes from the floor during wholesalers visits. I thought I had everything under control and my back was 'ok' but life changed again in 2013 when my L5/S1 disc said NO MORE and herniated again so badly it made friends with my nerve! I just thought this is bad, the worse yet and did all the things I would normally do for a week and then headed to the osteopath. He tried but I ended up at the doctors with a perscription that could fell a horse and sent home with a referral for MRI. Delays on surgery after discovery of severe herniation, caused permanent numbness from nerve damage. Wish I had shouted at the time and demanded quicker treatment but too late to fix that bit now so moving on...... Surgery in Jan 2014, followed by lots of steroid injections and then revised surgery on L5/S1 , discectomy of L4/L5 and Wallis inswing Stabilisation unit between spinous of L4/L5 in May 2015. Latest update on MRI is fusion required on 2 Levels in my lumbar and a disc replacement at C5/C6 but have 2 different views of surgeons... one says I am too young(??) for lumbar fusion and the other refuses to do a disc replacement on C5/C6 because I am too old!!! The first surgeon said all my lumbar discs are knackered and there is a 30% risk of herniation to the disc above after fusion! There are words I could use to describe the state of my back and my feelings at the moment but I would be banned from this site so best left unsaid!! :-)

    I can relate to everything you are feeling due to my years of suffering (first back issues when I was 18). At 49 it has been a rocky path at times and I didn't think I could make it through but here I am .... numb leg, foot, toes, arms and hands that go numb and drop plates just whenever they feel like it. I have found myself at times asking people to dress me, help me shower, do buttons up .. not the best thing for self esteem but I am able to walk with a stick, talk and breathe so I am luckier than some and have to embrace that every day on waking. Sometimes this is the only way I get through the day and knowing my family support me and love me, so I need to be around for them.

    The drugs overload on the system has devastating effects to our internal system. The standard medicines to help with this don't always help me, but if you can buy Golden Linseed and soak 2 heaped dessert spoon of the seeds in water for a few hours, stir and drink at bedtime, you will see a huge improvement with your sluggish bowel. It was recommended to me by a colonic therapist and it works and is natural, so no extra chemicals on top of pill boxes full!

    I hope this helps and you are able to get further investigations for your terrible pain. It unacceptable to leave you like that unless they have told you there is nothing more they can do?

    Hang in there, life is terrible to us at times but try to look at what surrounds you and do something different every single day, no matter how small . . . it focuses the mind somewhere else for a few minutes

    Good luck from Cloudy England :-)
    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015

  • Ya it has been very rough and I'll definitley look into the seeds I need something I currently use restore lax wich I'm sure is terrible for me ontop of all of the pain meds and anti nausea and anti inflameitories i have a hemoraged bulging degenerative L5-S1 as well as some numbing and permanent damage, I had the microdisectamy about 4 months ago, and IV been doing the cortisone injections regularly for about 8 months now, they haven't exactly left me like this my surgeon has offered revision surgery but urged me strongly to not rush into it and give it a chance to heal or a miracle to happen basically. I trust him when he says revisions are very risky with scar tissue ect so I agreed to wait a few months or so. I don't think I could actually have the balls to kill myself but it's definitley crossed my mind.... My hole life crashed in front of me had to sell my house street bike quads skidoos basically everything IV worked my @$$ off for and mind you I'm only 25 I worked my butt off since IV been 15 to get where I was and was hoping to be done law school by 32.... Had to drop out of school lost tuition money ontop of all the debt I accumulated in the time this all happened it's truly been devastating for me, they haven't talked about any fusions for me just yet but my uncle actually has several fused vertebrae and it doesn't look pleasant not being able to bend at all. I know my family has my back and so does my fiancée but this has been harder on her than anyone had to move back to my parents she had to get 2 jobs to be able to support herself when IV basically supported her for 6 years and the shift in lofestyle from casinos and quading and camping and being extremely active to being stuck in bed 24/7 I appreciate her immensely but I almost feel like I'm holding her back at this point and that I can't give her what she deserves anymore and that's been the hardest part of all of this for me. IV broken several bones in my life and nothing even comes close to the extreme pain caused by this pinched/damaged nerve.... Just pretty down and gloom person these days and it's not me... Been extremely hard not looking for a pitty party or anything but my god it's excruciating and torturous thanks for listening guys.
  • and you have been through a lot of that. Loss causes a sort of grieving process and we have to work through all the emotions that are attached to that, so let your body and emotions take you where they have to go at the moment.

    A shift from what appears as independence to dependence can be viewed in another way. Interdependence is a must in human life and even though you cannot see it at the moment,, you are doing that but in different to before. Viewing a changed life from a slightly different persceptive can bring huge rewards but we have to dig deep and find it at times. I always say I like a challenge in life when something difficult is thrown at me!!! The big black hole can seem very deep and almost impossible to get out of at times but try to find that ladder as it is there, just in the dark at the moment :-)

    I have other ways of moving forward that have helped me and I will share those next time as I am pressed for time at the moment.

    I have lost many material things that I worked hard for and it hurts a lot to see all that hard work disappear before your eyes... but you still have good memories of what you achieved and that is far more important. Congratulations on the amount you achieved in such a small part of your whole life. You will achieve great things because you have the willpower to create and the determination within your character and you still have that :-)

    Take care
    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015

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