I am new to forum and am so glad I found. I want to start with my first experience with back pain. In 1994 I had a lamenectomy at L5-6 when I was 29. In the years since I have had numerous surgeries (10) but only 4 on back. I had numerous epidural blocks and steroid injections along with PT and even a chiropractor one time...never again. Then in Oct. 2008 had a repeat on same disk and Dec. 2008 had a reherniation and another surgery. Then about 8 months ago I started having mid back pain and in Feb. I started having chest pain and went through a complete workup: stress test and heart cath which were normal but while lying completely still with head at 30 degree angle after cath. my mid back was hurting so bad I was crying. I continued to worsen so my primary doc(who I also work for) took x-ray and sent me to my neurosurgeon. He ordered an MRI which showed herniation at T7-8 and a CT showed calcification. With that and all the issues from very top to very bottom of spine my surgeon would not touch me and sent me to Duke University spine clinic. After he explained that he was one of the only surgeons in NC who does surgery on thoracic spine and that they only send to him if there is spinal stenosis we set a date for surgery, May 24. I have never had such a hard time recuperating from any surgery as much as this one. The pain is constant in back and wraps around the left side of chest and abdomen but now on top of that pain I have developed all this nerve pain which makes my legs hurt constantly. He said this is normal as they cut through muscle and nerve. They also discovered that a tendon had wrapped itself around my spine and had to be moved in order to even do the surgery. I have recently started Gabapentin in addition to my pain medication and muscle relaxers and nothing stops the pain. I am at my wits end. I am 48 yrs. old and have a 2 yr. old grandson that I cant keep up with or even pick up and hug. It breaks my heart. I am so scared to think if my back is this bad now, what will it be like in 20 yrs:( I have one older brother who is completely disabled with DDD since he was in early 50's and is homebound. My other brother had severe cervical DDD and had a donor bone implantation, so it is hereditary. I just dont know where to turn. I go back to surgeon July 18 for recheck but dont even know if or when I will be able to return to work as a medical assistant. I just wonder if there is anyone else out there who has experienced numerous complications and side effects after thoracic spine surgery. I went for another MRI and bloodwork July 13 and will go over them when I go back to see sugeon.
I am only 48 yrs. old and am scared to see what the future holds for my spine:( Three brothers disabled now and feel like I am well on my way:( it is so disheartening to realize there is just so much you can do and the rest is just process of aging....
Thanks so much for listening or reading...lol
Love and Hugs kelli