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Spine pain: Dealing with t2 diabetes

My father has had t2 diabetes since he was 9 and this year he will be going in 56. Up untill a couple years ago he was a normally functioning diabetic (if there is such a thing) who manages his food intake and tries to exercise frequently. Now hes had his far share of health issues besides t2 such as congestive heart failure at 50. He broke his back in his 30s and had had several surgeries since then. Because of his back issues he's been through the entire list of pain meds with him currently taking morphine derivatives. The pain in his back is so severe most of the time that he hardly has an appetite (which can be a serious issue for diabetics). Since the beginning of last year he has been in the hospital 6 -7 times for blood sugars as high as 500 and as low as 38. Its been an emotional rollercoaster for me (his only son and caregiver). Next week he will be receiving a device that will be attached to his spine to disrupt the pain signals, which hopefully can take him off these pain meds.

The reason for this post is seek out advice from anybody that may have been in a similar situation or know somebody who has been. We live in florida and he is on full disability and im working two jobs and trying to go to school while constantly stressing about his health.


  • Is the device you're referring to the Spinal Cord Stimulator? My grandmother is also a diabetic, she has Crohn's disease ( among other things) and also deals with lumbar and cervical problems. Steroid injections cause her sugars to go completely out of whack and the Crohn's affects her appetite. The combination of her TENS unit and Hydrocodone seem to help some, but she is unable to be up and about very long. She goes to warm water exercise and takes many natural vitamins/supplements that she swears by. Unfortunately there are certain medications that can cause appetite suppression. Have you asked about trying a different pain medication that may be more effective and has less chance of affecting his appetite? It's really a hard battle when there are multiple issues to try and treat properly. Plus unmanaged chronic pain can affect a person's overall health. How long has he been on his current pain medications? The body can become tolerant to it after some time so a change may be necessary. Has he tried Physical Therapy, water therapy or other alternatives? Hopefully the device helps. If it's the SCS you're referring to I went through the trial but unfortunately it had to be removed to to complications.

    I wish you both the best!

    Progressive DDD
    Chronic S1 Radiculopathy
    Discectomy L5-S1 2002
    Discectomy, Laminotomy/Foraminotomy L3-S1 January 2014
    Bilateral SI Joint Fusion and 2 level spinal Fusion October 2014
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