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depression battle after fusion

hi.  i had a l5 s1 fusion a year and a half ago.  i am battling through each day of work and life by a thread sometimes.  trying not to hurt myself all day long at work followed by long commutes plus trying to help my wife raise 2 young children has left me an absolute mess sometimes.  

i am 34 years old.  i feel like everything i used to love doing has been taken away or tainted with pain and anxiety.

no sports. no playing with the kids. nothing phisival at all cuz u need to save it for work the next day.  cant sit too long cant stand too long... the list goes on and on.

just wondering if anyone else is wrestling with depression years after their surgery.  i dont forsee this going awau and i terribly regret having the surgery sometimes. 



  • Hello Behr

    Welcome to Spine-Health

    Here you will find people who are walking in your shoes and  offer up a supportive community!

    Please use the Welcome link below my signature for more info about and inside Spine-Health while you wait for answers from other members

    William Garza
    Spine-Health Mod

    Welcome to Spine-Health

  • Behr, hoping to make you feel better but know that Depression following spinal surgeries are approx 80%  The majority of us have gone through the severe major depression just after surgery and a lot of us still have the occasional bout at times. Your feelings are completely normal, BUT if you really start considering harm, please consult your MD. Your family does need you whether your able to do things or not! Hang in there and keep us posted...........David


    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator

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  • Behr

    As David said, depression after surgery is extremely common and sometimes it is hard to shake.

    My coping mechanism has always been to try and think of what I still have, a great ans supportive wife and family, friends I can count on, and a home I can take pride in, that does not work for everybody, if you cannot shake it, please talk to somebody, a professional can and will help talk you through the tough times. It can be hard for us big tough men to admit that we need help, but it can be necessary at times

    I want to tell you a personal story about a good friend of mine, he had surgery that didn't work out very well, had to give up his job and a lot of activities, after about 6 months he actually tried to take his own life, luckily his wife came home and found him in time, he ended up getting professional help, he has now adjusted to his new normal after surgery and is doing well.

    Please do not try to keep everything internal, it will eventually eat you up.


    Veritas-Health Moderator

  • hi guys.  thanks for the comment.   let me clarify that i have 2 young kids and a wife and would never take my own life regardless if i wanted to or not.  hahaha.  couldnt do that to them.   with that being said.   my surgery is called a success.   yet i am hanging onto my current job by a thread because i am unable to lift anything certain ways that the job reauires from time to time.

      i literally cannot envision a job in my qualifications that does not require some form of badness for my back.   and any job that would be ok for me i am not ever going to get because of my background in field services.   its like i am absolutely stuck risking myself each and every day. 

       i live in ontario canada and am entitled to zero help from the government for retraining myself in a new career.   because of my long recovery i cant afford to do any college courses or anything to retrain myself.   its just an endless cycle thats going to end in me hurt and on disability.   which sadly means i lose my house and my entire life falls apart.  

    all the while we are supposedly "fit to work any job" they just spit u out of their care into this broken system with no help if it goes wrong.  terrible that they make u work until you are disabled fully before offering any assistance when they coupd have healthy productive members of society with a little of the right help at the right time.  

    thanks for listening to my rant.  wish me luck.

  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 6,367


    You made the statement that you are still in pain. Have you talked to your doctor about where this pain could be coming from? Constant pain is enough to keep anyone depressed. The anxiety and depression could be caused by what we call "the what if's". What if I can't tomorrow or what if I can't when I get home. You have to think of "what I can for now". Do what you can, taking one day at a time. You may not be able to play ball right now but I'm sure your kids just love you being home.
    And don't give up on finding answers to your pain. You have found a great site full of people in your shoes that understand.
    Keep us posted.

    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator
    Please read my  Medical History
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  • I would get a new opinion from a new neurosurgeon. A different person looking at your medical history and your current complaints might go a long way to finding relief. 

  • Jerome001Jerome001 Cocoa Beach, FloridaPosts: 363

    I imagine it is a rare individual that would not be depressed when experiencing a major change in life, especially something as serious as a spinal fusion. Behr, you are definitely NOT alone in the way you feel. Facing our new limitations is exhausting and although I've been like this for years, most days are still a struggle and I have to find some way to occupy my mind and fill my day. Perhaps your surgeon or pain management doctor can recommend a psychiatrist experienced with pain patients. I prefer a psychiatrist because they are MDs with knowledge of and ability to prescribe appropriate medicine, if needed. They do seem to be few and far between but I think worth finding.

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