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wayyy too young

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:24 AM in Lower Back Pain
So here's the deal.
I just turned 20 years old (first and foremost)...3 years ago I was in a bad car accident and have been dealing with numerous back problems and got extensive studies done in numerous fields.
I was told I have major disc degeneration/herniated discs at L3-L5, scoliosis, and arthritis of the spine. I have a pinched nerve in my neck that causes arm pain and numbness (loss of color too) and my sciatic nerve is pinched (sciatica) causing sharp pain in my right leg, achy joints, numbness in my toes, etc.
I have had 3 epidural injections, tried MONTHS and MONTHS of physical therapy, I've been on every damn muscle relaxer and pain killer there is, resulting in other health problems and sending me to the hospital (I was up to about 12 prescriptions a day, so I voluntarily stopped taking all my medication when I had a very serious drug interatction). I've tried decompression therapy, alternative therapy, heat packs/ice packs, excersize, you name it I've tried it, other than surgery. Due to my age they did not want to put me through that, which is ABSURD in itself.
I missed a good portion of my highschool 'career' I was out of work, and now struggle in college being that I have a hard time sitting through lectures.

I'm tired of suffering, I'm way too young to have to go through such excruciating pain on a daily basis. I lose a great deal of sleep, I'm physically exhausted all the time, and real miserable...I'm at my wits end, I would like to know if anyone has 'success stories' of surgeries they have had done and healing times (I know it varies but an approximation would be a great deal of help to me).
I plan on discussing options with my doctor but everytime I go in there he just gives me a prescription to "try".



  • that lots of docs hesitate to do surgery on someone so young because say with a fusion surgery, if you were fused at one level it puts more pressure on the levels above and below which will lead to more fusion surgeries. It is like a dominoe effect. There are no guarantees with surgery and I have met lots of people (including myself) that surgery actually made the pain worse. If you were able to find some type of relief there is a possibilty of a newer better procedure with better chances of success to come along. You mentioned 12 scripts at one time. Have you tried any of the long acting opiates? You are right you are waaaaaay too young for this and I really feel bad for you. I wish you luck and please keep us posted.
  • although i haven't had decompression yet or injections and don't have as many problems as you, i know what it's like, i missed out on my senior year and senior basketball season it blows.

    sorry nothing helps.
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  • I went back to the doc's today and they prescribed me Amrix, Naproxen and Flector patches...we'll see how this goes.
    I also have a consult for November 7th with a orthopedic surgeon.
    Apparently, my neurologist thinks im crazy and suggested that I not be put on narcotics until I have a psychiatric evaluation, which I was never informed of until today.
    BOO doctors.
  • Didn't you know that? Oh, I guess you're too young to have heard that very much yet. You will, give it time. When doctors say that they should be slapped, it's their favorite line.

    Concerning surgery, has anyone suggested a simple Laminectomy? When I had mine, I was on top of the world. Too bad I injured myself and re-herniated the disk soon after surgery. But if that is all you would need to get some major relief, I would say go for it. I was up and about freely just after 1 little week. Dancing after 3! In the living room of course!

    Good luck!
  • First welcome to SH. ;)
    As topfuelfan put it all to well you will hear that over and over "your to young".
    I will mention this to my good buddy who just had surgery through the front and back. She is a great gal and mabye can help you understand a bit better.
    Your never to young hun. First something major happened to you the dreaded "car accident". DDD starts happening at any age. Especially if it runs in family history in my mind doubles the risk factors.(thats where most of mine is from) so ask about that also.
    Personal opinion only I am not keen on Neuro's. Yes there are plenty of GREAT ones out there. Like the one for my thoracic spine. But I found the orthopedic surgeons that specialize in the spine are more knowledgable. Ok again not all of them.
    We are here to offer you all the support we can give you. We are unable to give you any medical opinions or diagnosis.

    Mabye the ortho will give you news you want to hear.
    Surgery is not to be taken lightly. As its been said it puts pressure on the other disks. I know that off hand experience with my back.

    Did you have a cervical MRI?? Number one I know how painful aa pinched nerve in your neck is. I was just curious to see if there are any disks out in that area?? Do to the accident. Discoloration of your arm?? Well darn that don't sond right #o

    I feel your pain. I live it everyday!!
    Let us know how you make out at your appt.
    I wish you the best of luck!!!
    Take your new meds RX'd and hoping for some relief for you.
    Please take care of yourself. Don't overstrain. And stay with just simple walking. Consult even just your personal MD on that to.

    Hang in there you we will get through this you came to the right place!!!!

    Terri O:) >:D<
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  • Hi There,
    Not too sure what else to add that hasn't been said already.

    You are young but there are othere here like you who needed surgery. The point the docs are trying to achieve is balance qualoty of life versus risks of surgery and more prbs in future.

    As long as you don't have a doc who is rushing in for surgery and you are clear on the pro's and cons.

    One can't live in agony forever!
  • I know how you feel and you have to be so so frustrated as to what has happened to you. I think everbody is right on what has been posted. I would try very hard to find any type of alernative treatment than surgery. I would try to wait a few year till tech. is better. there has been several articles not to have back surgery now cause there is so much better tech. that will be out in a few years.

    You are very young and need to talk about your future when you meet with these Dr. A fusion is forever no turning back maybe a surgery to relieve and pinched nerves or something like that. I say this from my heart please try anything but fusions Dr.s will do the surgeries than later if there is a problem you wil get brushed away.

    There is a disc decompression treatment that I looked in to doing and I can't cause I had a fusion but I talked to the owner and they swear thay can help its new and I would try it. If you would like info I cant look it up.

    Please just keep your future in mind when doing treatment. I hope so much you get some pain relief soon.

    Take care
  • You are sooo young to go through this. My first bout with back issues began when I was 21. Work injury. It took over 2 years of pain and numbness in my feet before a doctor finally did surgery. I went to chiropractic, PT, osteopath, etc and nothing had helped. When the surgery was done, I felt much better. The drs had all said I was too young as well. When they performed the laminectomy, the doctor apologized to me. Seems that the herniation was much worse than the films showed and that he then understood my condition.

    In my current situation, I am 40 and have been told that I'm too young for surgery to fix the 2 DDDs, 2 bulging discs, bone spurs, and nerve canal compression. ~X( Go figure.

    Many hugs and prayers that you will find relief one way or another.
  • i was 16 when i found out that i had to have surgery on my back. now i'm 30 and going through the same thing again. however, when i had the surgery then, it made a HUGE difference. i felt a great deal better. they told me that i had the back of a 40 year old then and i would have to deal with back pain for the rest of my life. so if you have support, like i have found here, talk to a real surgeon and take the chance. you'll feel better and your mood and spirits will raise making life a whole lot better. good luck and feel free to pm me if you ever need to talk.
  • i am 30 and i had my c1 c2 fused. so far so good. i am recovering slowly but surely.

    i got off the pain meds and most meds a few weeks after surgery. i am still in neck brace and therefor still use muscle relaxers as needed.

    i had no choice but to have surgery. i must admit that i was really worried about having it but i did.

    i did have bad anxiety for a bit but right now i can say i am a positive for fusion surgery.
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