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Cymbalta For Leg Pain AFTER L5/S1 Fusion

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:24 AM in Pain Medications
Hi everyone. It has been a while since I posted but I have a quick question regarding leg pain and cymbalta. I had my one level fusion (L5/S1) on June 10, 2008. So I am 4 months out. The CT scan shows excellent bone growth and the screws and rods are still in the correct position. My problem is that I still have the same leg pain in my left leg. My pain management doc has me on 3 80 mg Kadian a day,10mg Norco for breakthru pain and Lyrica 130mg 1-2 capsules twice a day. He is adding Cymbalta now since he says it helps with nerve pain. My question is:

Anyone feel less leg pain due to taking Cymbalta?

I was on Lexipro but stopped that a few weeks ago due to the weight gain. I know the Lyrica is causing weight gain also.

I take way more Norco than prescribed and my PM knows that too.

I also have arachnoiditis. My last 3 MRIs have shown that and it runs all the way into the thecal sac. So maybe the arachnoiditis is he culprit here.

All I know is that since the sciaticahit me on St. Patrick's Day 2006 I have been suffering ever since. Had a laminectomy that didn't do a thing for me. Spent 30K at the Laser Spine Institute that didn't do anything either. Now I finally have gone and had the fusion and I still hve the leg pain.

Sure would love to hear some opinions here. Some spineys say (and my PM also) that the leg pain really ceased around the 6 month mark.

I also read that pain meds could be causing the pain. Like our brain wants the drugs up in the receptors so it generates its own pain msg to get us to take the drug.

Jeez-I want a do over!! Can I just be 25 again?? I was 54 on Oct 2.

Thanks to all,



  • My "shrink" has just put me on Cymbalta for nerve pain. It's only day two but I think it helps a little and the Doctor said it takes a week or so for the full effects to take hold. I am also on remeron for anxiety. The one thing I am not liking about Cymbalta is that it has me all hyped up.. My anxiety is hitting the roof. This is supposed to pass as my body gets used to it.

    And yes, pain meds can cause you to have more pain the longer you are on it. My doctor told me that and I didn't believe it but have since read it in other places as well as talking to people who had been on pain meds for an extended time. They said their pain dimished quite a bit after getting off the meds.

    I havn't been on pain meds for over two months and my pain is as bad or worse than when I was on the meds. So I don't know what the answer is. It all quite frankly sucks.
  • Sorry I am about to be totally unhelpful - Did you get any nerve pain relief in your leg after your surgery? Is this just some residual pain or truly the same pain, and the fusion did not ?

    I am a candidate for this surgery; everyone's situation is different, but reading your post really scares me! So I am curious to hear the responses as well.
    Jan 2009 L5-S1 ALIF
    May 2017 ALIF L4-L5 with PLF rods added L4-L5-S1
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  • suziee,

    now you are confusing me. on 10/12/08 at 6:19 you wrote in another thread https://www.spine-health.com/forum/pain-medications/cymbalta-leg-pain-after-l5s1-fusion
    suziee said:
    anyway they wrote me a prescription for hydrocodone and soma, just enough for a week and they explained to me that this was a one time deal and that they wouldn't be able to do it again. i, like you just wanted some relief.
    and now you are saying that you haven't been on pan meds for over two months? a week worth of hydrocodone and soma is a week worth of pain meds.

  • I did say I was without pain meds for 2 months and I found that the pain did not go away and yes I did go to the ER on Thursday and they wrote me a script for hydrocodone and Soma. What exactly are you trying to say? I'm sorry that I don't mention in each and every post! I'm sorry you are confused.
  • My post should have read "I hadn't instead of havn't.
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  • I was on Cymbalta and it really does help with nerve pain. It made me very, very sleepy so I had to stop taking it but it absolutely worked for the nerve pain.
  • j.howiejj.howie Brentwood, Ca., USAPosts: 1,745
    Hi Dorene,
    What they don't tell you about cymbalta is it is very hard to withdraw from for most people.Do some research and ask questions. Try going to askapatient.com or rx drugs from a-z. Everyone has different results. But there are side effects and withdrawals. so weigh it up carefully, "risks verse benefits.
    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!
  • suziee said:
    I did say I was without pain meds for 2 months and I found that the pain did not go away and yes I did go to the ER on Thursday and they wrote me a script for hydrocodone and Soma. What exactly are you trying to say? I'm sorry that I don't mention in each and every post! I'm sorry you are confused.
    I read both threads and noted the inconsistency of how you presented the current state of your pain management.

    When communicating on a forum such as this, all we know of each other is what is written in our posts. I feel that since I give the other member the respect of reading their posts, the least they can do is give me the respect of being consistent to the best of their ability at the time.

    If I get conflicting or confusing information, I ask about it.


  • In my case cymbalta helped me get through the nerve pain after my laminectomy. I took if for about 6 weeks and cut the dosage in half for 2 to stop taking it. I was dealing with wanting to sleep and not eat while I was taking it, sort of that don't want to do anything at all feeling. It did help me get over the 'hump' so to speak.

  • I loved being on Cymbalta. It worked much better than the Effexor that I had to switch to this summer due to insurance issues.

    I also had NO problems with withdrawal. I had read a lot of horror stories, but was fortunate not to have any bad problems.
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