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Horrible Pain! What did I do?



  • Well,...I have an MRI with contrast scheduled for the morning. I'm glad,...at least I think I am. My left leg still tingles/aches (sciatica) everyday and between the big toe and next toe, I have tingling/minor numbness still. Taking Voltaren and Percocet for pain/inflammation still and I'm 9 weeks post op. The MRI has to show something new because I just don't understand why I feel my symptoms get worse after standing/walking around for a little while, but I'm better when laying down. Doesn't make sense if all the issues were addressed in surgery and I've had no complications. Hmmmm....
  • i'm getting an mri tomorrow too--well later today i guess.i had x rays done on my feet and chest on the 13th-my pm looked at the chest film and saw a narrowing in the t-6,7 area-so he ordered an mri.the chest x ray was ordered from my pcp,but being they are both with the same hospital-he just looked mine up on the hospitals computer out of curiosity.the films were ordered for my cough-not spine-lol.

    if you're having any foot problems/pain,it can cause issues elsewhere-from knees,legs,hips,and back.you mentioned your feet hurting whenever you lay down..is that still happening?
    don't forget to mention that to your dr.

    here's part of my left foot-lol-i couldn't fit the whole thing on my scanner ha ha

    take care and let us know how it goes.

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  • I had the MRI with contrast and actually waited around for 15 minutes to get a copy of the MRI on CD (so I wouldn't have to drive back and pick it up later). So,...theoretically, I could look at the MRI now,....but I'm chicken. LOL! My followup with the surgeon is on Friday the 24th. If I look at the films and I see something bad, I'm gonna freeze up and start really worrying. At least now my hopes aren't dashed that my pain/tingling is normal due to healing or something minor that I can work through. Kind of silly, huh? I'm sure I'll have a look-sy before my appointment. I won't be able to stand not knowing. It's just too early yet.

    Wow Robin,...how does your foot feel now? That's a long screw in there. I agree with you about foot pain could be originating from other places. I believe my hips are a mess (sacral plexis nerve grouping by piriformas muscle) and my hamstrings,...LOL, let's just say, I need to stretch them s l o w l y.
  • ..and preferably in warm water.My muscles are a mess,so I know how that goes.

    I didn't ask for my MRI-they told me one or two days (business days) for it to be studied and read,report finished anyway-and I had it done Friday-so...I can wait-lol.

    No news is good news-that's my motto as far as this MRI goes.My pain is pretty bad lately and I really think something new is going on with my back.

    I have an appt with the OS on the 28th-it was the 21st,but I already rescheduled that.No choice really-and I'm simply in too much pain right now to even care.

    Logging off for now-You take care ☺
  • Well, after looking at the MRI myself, I concluded that at the L4/L5 level there was something displacing the L5 nerve root because the foraminal opening was completely dark where I should see some light in that area. The MRI Radiologist stated that there was "epidural fibrosis encasing the L5 nerve root and mild foraminal narrowing at the L4/L5 level." So at my appointment with my surgeon, he feels like it could be disc material possibly. The good news is that my disc height is good and the discs are still light colored inside so they are not blown out so to speak (still have moisture in them)and L3/L4 looked good. No more stenosis noted on MRI either.

    I suggested a foraminotomy and repeat micro-d to remove the scar tissue. I told him how my foot is slowly getting more "numb" on the bottom of it as the days go on. He's a little reluctant to do another procedure and doesn't want to do a fusion (thank the lord). Ultimately,...he wanted me to get a second opinion with another doctor in his staff and then see me again in 10 days. I guess then we will decide what to do.

    We should have done a foraminotomy while in there the first time. Isn't there a way to minimize scar tissue around the nerve root? I thought I read about surgeons' coating the nerve with fat cells to limit such growth. Anyone have a surgeon perform a technique that worked? I know, resurgery is a crap shoot but I think it's worth a try.

    I got a little emotional explaining how I was feeling and how I am worse now than I was before surgey and he put his hand over mine and showed some real empathy. I'm glad to know he's not a robot like many surgeons. A little embarrassing but I am getting to wits end here. I'm just not normal anymore. I truely feel for everyone on this board battling back issues. It's a tough, lonely process at times.You just don't know what it's like until it happens to you....then you respect those who are in "this personal war."
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  • Hang in there Robin. I did the same thing. I actually had my MRI disc within 15 minutes after the MRI (little did I know, I was given the wrong one) and I waited 5 days to look at it. I wanted to believe in the "it's just swelling" possibility, but knew in the back of my mind, it wasn't. Overall though, the MRI wasn't as bad as I think it could've been, but still not good.

    Let us know what your OS says, K?


  • There are a couple things that can be tried, but there is no guarantee that they will work. I have a similar situation so will be interested in hearing what the next surgeon has to say to you.
  • I'll try anything to stop this nerve root from being choked off anymore.
  • similar to how scar tissue "remodels" itself within skin?

    Will constant mobilization in PT eventually woek the scar tissue loose so the nerve has room and can finally heal?
  • I have heard of gentle stretching exercises to prevent or stretch out scar tissue. I don't know too much about this and am not sure if it's a proven thing. The best way to deal with scar tissue is prevention. I think there are things surgeons can do to hopefully minimize it, but it is a common occurence post surgergically. Some don't regard it as a pain generator since it doesn't have nerve endings, but if it is near a nerve root or compressing it, it is more likely to be that. They also have to rule out everything else like recurrent disc herniation, new herniation, stenosis, tumors, slippage, etc.
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