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What kind of life do you have after SEVERAL SURGERIES and CHRONIC PAIN???

ToYoungforThisTToYoungforThis Posts: 150
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:27 AM in Chronic Pain
There has to be breaking point somewhere here I just Picture being like this for my whole life. I have not posted in awhile and this one is going to be long so read on or stop.

I stubbed my 2nd to little toe a few days after Thanksgiving, it was bad toe purple all the way threw. Needless to say I was limping and did not have good footage and slipped out side on ice getting out of a truck must of been the way i fell but I had to go to ER right a way I felt sever pain. Guess I did a number on my back had to stay in hospital for 2 days for all my Sergeons to descide what was the best surgery route......

Well it was a HORRIBLE surgery Guess since i have holes in the bones from old hardware, the screws are almost 3" long, well i had fractured 3 levels 2 on both sides. They took out hardware at two levels and redid it at another two levels. Cut part of bone out at a few levels for sever stenosis. and put severl sereral small screws to hold bone to heal. also they went ahead and fused SI. And of course the normal removal of scar tissue.

I am haveing the HARDEST time healing from this one and just can't stand the pain and limitations. I still have to usethe walker and can not stand with out my brace on. There are days that I just can barley move. Its almost my 3rd year date from 1st back surgery and now I am 8 that is EIGHT and i feel that I am doomed.....

How can anyone recover from that many surgeries in such a short time period, I have lost so much muscle tone, and strength is an issue, my rumatoid arthritis is giving me a hard hard time also, with hands swelling and lack of moblilty in my hands I was blamming it on switching meds for the swelling, but Dr said there will be times when it like attacks my joints and does damage then lets off for a few and does the same. I have been wondering if that may be linked to my spine issues. Hmmm just do not know.

lol lol so that is what I have been up to lately and why I haven't been on SH. If you read it thank you....

Guess I am just down and wondering what kind of quality of life i am going to be left with. I am ONLY 31


  • i am sorry that you are going though hell ..but i do know how you feel and that you are not on your own {even though it may feel like it }
    i too am in pain after 2 major surgeries and several procedures on my back.i am 42 and virtually house bound due to pain .i am waiting for another MRI because when i went to see the pain consultant and i asked her for another epidural ..she said no because of all the scar tissue in my lower back...all i can do is get myself around the house and from my bed to my recliner {that's where i spend all my time}..i am trying to do a little more every day as i HAVE come to terms with my illness and the fact that i WONT get better....sometimes that's the hardest thing to do...my problems started after a car crash in 1995/6 i too was only a similar age to yourself.{personally i lost my job/house/wife/daughter/and my respect/fitness/and so called friends!!
    BUT there is a happy ending to this story i am now remarried {10 years together} we have a lovely well kitted out home we both have new cars and my wife is the kindest woman on the planet {after the last wife ..i thought they were all basxxxds!!
    i wish you well and feel free to contact me if you want to
  • after that many surgeries but as everyone keeps saying there is also a new normal. I had 4 in 11 months and recovery is so slow. The pain beats me down and somehow a little voice in side of me keeps whispering you aren't going to win. I must take each day or each second as it comes. Time really means nothing and being kind and forgiving to yourself is what you really need to be as you heal. Make sure you ask for the help you need from whomever you need it from. People seem to stay away not knowing what to do or say when we have been long term in getting well. So I have learned to just ask and put my pride aside and say I can't do it right now so please help me. Maybe tomorrow I will be able to but not today and today is what matters. If we think about all that has happened to us we can get lost in it. So treat today as the first day and likewise tomorrow. Hope this thought helps. We are here for you always.
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  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,348
    Hi ToYoungforThis

    Your situation is not like mine, mine is not like others. We all have different situations, different environments with our spinal medical condition. One thing we all generally have in common is Chronic Pain
    That is something that we all need to figure out how to live with.

    The easiest path would be do do nothing, give in to chronic pain and basically become a piece of a broken clay pot with its pieces shattered.

    Or, we can take a more positive approach. Instead of letting all those broken pieces lie around, we can figure out ways in piecing some of them back together. Sure, even if we are able to piece them all back into the clay pot, will that clay pot even be as strong as it was in the beginning? NO

    So here is where we have to make adjustments. Perhaps that clay pot cant hold hot water for any length of time, we know that mixing in a little cold water will make the pot stand up and handle it.

    So many times, I've tried to simplify our situations. Instead of looking at the pure medical definitions , terms, etc I like to break them down into everyday terms we all understand.

    I cant do what I do before, but I still have had a very fulfilling life and have a lot more to go before the brake pedal is pressed.

    Work hard at understanding what you can and what you cant do. Figure out what things you can do to improve your condition. Through Exercise, Diet, Treatments, etc thera is a correct 'blend' that everyone can use to get them to their top condition. Our top condition may be only 3/4s or less for another, but its the best we can be.

    We want to pick up our children, our grandchidren, we want to go to our children sports events, their school recitals
    and more. Whats really amazing is how our children react to our conditions. My children understood my medical problems and it never impacted them. Contrary, they spent a good amount of time making sure I wouldnt hurt myself.
    But we never missed an important event. Maybe I would have to be there with a Cane, maybe I had to stay in the care, mabye I had to leave early, but I was THERE

    Never give up, do your best. Your life and your family is too important to expect anything less.

    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Bless your heart - my niece is your age and I can't imagine her handling your situation and with three children -- I must confess I feel like a big "wuss" after reading your story -- and I think I'm in pain! I read all of your replies and the people on this web site are wonderful and kind. The advice given is very good. I think you have your youth on your side and although it may not seem like it right now, you will probably heal faster than those of us in our 50's. I'm happy you have your children to make you smile, although I certainly hope you have family and friends helping you through this tough time. I don't know if you rely on faith - I certainly do -- when I think I can't stand the pain anymore, I call on God to be with me while I'm needy and pathetic and His love always sustains me through a bad patch. Sending you much love and sympathy and HOPE! Don't give up -- you will heal!
  • Yes, there is a life after multiple surgeries and chronic pain. It's not the best, and certainly not what we want, but we have to keep living. Everything has to be approached differently, and the best you can do is keep things simple. Don't try to do too much, don't place unrealistic expectations on yourself, and don't beat yourself up when you can't do anything on some days. Try to take notice and enjoy the simple things in life, life spending time with family. Little things like that do matter. I think what saved me is having a sense of humor, I know this is a cliche but laughter is good medicine.
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  • you've had to deal with so much so soon. Wishing you the best. Things will get better. Maybe not as good as new (as Dilauro says--I'm paraphrasing) but BETTER. Susan
  • i also have had 4 back surgeries and deal with chronic pain everyday. but, i work and try to go on as well as can. i don't sit around feeling sorry for myself. i am not implying that you do. there is nothing we can do except deal with the pain. remember, 1/3 surgeries get better, 1/3 stay the same and 1/3 fail. we have to live with these odds. there is an old navy saying, it is mind over matter, if you don't mind, it doesn't matter. a lot of us deal with these issues. one must plug on and live life as best as we can. i have been dealing with this for 8 years and i don't think about it that much. i get up go to work, come home and try to live life as best as i can. if i don't feel like doing something, i don't. it could be worse. so we must keep things in perspective
    good luck and hang in there
    your friend in pain
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
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