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Chronic pain is running my life!

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:24 AM in Chronic Pain
Hello Everyone! :H
I'm a Newbie here, but I finally decided to post on a regular topic and hope to get some help. I've been doing a lot of resaerch, and have even found some of things that I've been looking up right here on this message board. Thank goodness! Maybe someone can answer a question I have. First of all, let me tell you a little about my situation. I have had 2 surgery's, 1 laminectomy and one spine fusion both which have failed. I also have nerve damage from it and fibromyalgia. I also have upper back and neck problems doe to scoliosis. I'm 33, female, and am no longer able to work. This has been going on for about 10 years now, except for the upper back problems which I've had since I was a teenager. I've been seeing my pain management doctor for 4 years and I like him but I think he's getting too old and maybe needs to retire. He's always forgetting what is wrong with me, suggested that I lose 80 pounds, which would put me at well below 100pounds, and I'm 5'7". He told me this just the other day. I told him that was way too much and that I would be a stick figure and he told me "that's the point". Here is my big question. I have been wondering about the RF procedure because I have a lot of scar tissue and that causes the most pain, im my opinion. I asked him what he thought of it and he said that he's never heard of it. He also said that if he hasn't heard of it, then it's something that only quacks do, and told me to stay away from it. Is this a real procedure, has anyone had any success with this, and who is right? I really had my hopes up. I haven't had a new MRI in 5 years, so he's ordering a new one now. He says that if it shows that PT would benefit me that he will refer me. Just as all of you, I am miserable and not able to do anything anymore. BTW, my pain management doctor is well into his 70's, is it time to find a new one? I take Oxycontin 80 mil twice a day, lexapro for depression, xanax for anxiety attacks, and phenergan for nausea. I could use all of the input I could get. Please help if you can!
Thank you!


  • Chronic pain is a very hard thing to deal with especially being young its even harder. I am 30 and a mom of 3 kids, I know I have depression, but its due to the pain and surgeries. and can completely relate to what you are going threw.

    But I do agree you need to get a new pain management Dr. if you are in that much pain and failed surgeries you need a younger Dr that is up to date with technology. You are to young to not to being doing something bout your back. If I was you I would not stop until you have a good treatment plan and PT and a game plan, not to be mean but your Dr is doing what my old one did and that was just to give meds and let you be. Remember you are in control of your treatment an getting to a point where you can tolerate the activities of daily life.

    I would look for a hospital that has several clinics in it. Like a spine clinic, chronic pain clinic, physical therapy, that way you have several Dr.s working together to get the best treatment possible.

    Trust me I know what you are going threw and happy you joined SH its a great place for support and information, not to mention the chat room is great place to share infor and just talk w others that have the same issues.

    Take care
  • I hate to admit this but I actually feel guilty leaving my doctor but you're right. All he's doing is keeping me on med's and nothing else. I have read so many threads on here where other people are doing so many other types of methods for their treatment and I feel like I'm just old milk left on the counter to curdle. I'm too young to curdle! :D Wow, you have children to take care of, I don't know how you do that! I can't even work anymore. Luckily we decided not to have children because I really don't know how I would be able to take care of them. Sometimes I can't even take care of myself! Well, I'm really starting to hurt right now, I wish I had a laptop! So I had better go put myself back into the fridge until I feel better. :))( I hope to hear from you again sometime! BTW, does it seem odd to you that my pain doctor has never heard of RF? Or is this really new? If you know!
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  • You feel bad about leaving your Pain Doc because you are a nice person. Nothing wrong with that. But let it go and find a new one. What you are looking for is a very common procedure and almost always works. You will get better!
    Chronic severe pain is TRAUMATIC and people who have been traumatized start thinking that everything is their fault.

    FROM health.discovery.com
    "The term "radio frequency" essentially means utilizing electricity to manage pain, typically to produce heat in the affected area. Radiofrequency lesioning utilizes radiofrequency electricity to produce heat in order to melt away nerves or other tissues.

    Radiofrequency is used to treat several areas of the back causing back pain, such as diseased or injured facet joints or the spinal discs. The facet joints prevent us from being able to lean and bend as far backward as we are able to bend forward. These joints can become diseased and cause significant amounts of pain in the back. The radiofrequency lesioning procedure can be used to melt away nerves that cause pain within these facet joints of the back.

    When utilized to treat back pain in the spinal discs, there is a special type of radiofrequency utilized called IDET, or Intradiscal-Electro-Thermal-Annuloplasty, which is a big term for threading a thin filament into the disc and applying heat to the inside surface. The heat serves to do many different things, one of which is to reduce pain. However, physicians are not absolutely sure what exactly the mechanism is for reducing this pain; we believe it may have to do with melting the pain nerves within the disc, or by helping the disc to restructure itself and become more supportive and sealed.

    Radiofrequency is usually a technique that is used to directly damage tissue in hopes of actually healing the tissue and relieving pain in the body. This procedure is almost always accompanied by some degree of risk. Thus, the use of this technology must be accompanied with caution and care, particularly with consideration for the long-term risks of the therapy.
  • j.howiejj.howie Brentwood, Ca., USAPosts: 1,732
    It sound to me like you already have been given very good advice. So I will just welcome you to S.H.
    Good luck, Jim
    Click my name to see my Medical history
    You get what you get, not what you deserve......I stole that from Susan (rip)
    Today is yours to embrace........ for tomorrow, who knows what might be starring you in the face!
  • Thank you so much for taking the time to explain all of that to me. That more than I've learned from all of the reading I've done on it so far! Actually, you managed to put it into non doctor language so I could understand it so much better. And thank you also for understandng why it's hard to leave my current doctor. I always feel like I'm going to hurt someone's feelings or make them think that I didn't like them. That's not the case at all of course, I just seriously need some help so I can still have a shot at a future. I'm not ready to give up yet! And yes, I will weigh the risk to benefit very carefully. I wish I could hug you! >:D<
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  • J.howie,
    Thank you very much for the warm welcome. Yes, Dr. Eric really helped me to understand the RF procedure so much better, and to not feel so darn guilty when it comes to changing doctors. I hope you have a nice evening!
  • Has given me great relief. Good luck and keep us posted.
  • Painintheback, I would really be interested in hearing all about it. If you don't mind of course. You can either tell me here, or send me a pm. I'm sure it's a long story so I won't put the pressure on you to tell it if it's too much. But thank you for letting me know that is was indeed successful for you! I'm very happy for you! :D
  • It is everyone’s objective here to reduce the pain that they have and live an improved quality of life, those nuances of improvement are not always possible and we determine the risk of making things worse on the pretext of some immeasurable improvement.

    If we go with the notion that some improvement must be possible or even available we continue our quest unabated, as with me, some element of reality has to determine my future that no specific cure is possible and we live in an age where the rhetoric and reality differ, that hope should and does drive us forward and no easy solution is available. With the coming of age comes all those hopes and dreams of our youth and the plans we made, having those thwarted and seeing others not incumbent of restriction is sad and a loss and should be treated as such. The duration and intensity of that angst is individuals and I would never suggest that anyone gives in to the pain, however difficult that is on a daily basis.

    Managing it means having some control for yourself, this requires some begrudging acceptance that this is how it will be and many here are required to make the best of it, would it be better that you were given false hope, we always have the thought that a remedy is just around the corner and I am not a statistician, but the odds are against us.

    Having chronic pain at any age is never easy, for the past, present and future always difficult to accept and live with, only within those windows of opportunity do you have some hope for a changed quality of life and I read your words with an additional message other that the written one, only you know your pain and with my 17 years of experience I wished I had been helped sooner and reduce the possibility of collective facets of difficulty develop with earlier intervention could have been managed more effectively.

    I cannot make your pain go away, I wish I could as with everyone, you are learning to know yourself and we all need to continue monitoring and developing new strategies to improve our control however small that is.

    Take care, you are already on the way to something bigger by understand yourself better.


  • Welcome.
    Everyone pretty much said it all already.
    Please do not ever feel guilty about switching Drs.
    The younger ones out there "sometimes" are up to date on all the new procedures and what type of treatment may help you and you only.
    Everyone is unique in chronic pain. Chronic pain covers a wide range of people from age A-Z.
    Your not alone, don't ever feel that way .
    Some days may feel hopeless and that there is nothing that can be done.
    But once you have found that right dr, the right treatments along with the right medication combo, your life may feel "norm" again. I am in no way saying PERFECT but able to carry on day to day fuctions..

    Hang in there we are all here to support you and know what your feeling and thinking.
    I am in the battle with you right now in finding the "right" dr to treat me for my issues.

    Terri >:D< >:D< >:D<
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