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What the doctors don't tell you

RadfireRRadfire Posts: 1
edited 08/31/2015 - 1:22 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hi I am new to the forum and like most everybody I was looking for answers. I just had emergency Laminectomy, Lamenotomy, Discectomy 9 days ago. I wanted to post on the surgery recovery forum but it was locked. I was interested in people's recovery and posts people are stuffering from the same problem . A few weeks out they are experiencing pain or numbness. I had a major set back my sixth day of recovery after what I thought was the day of major break through.
I felt really good , strong and ready to tackle some light chores like sweeping up dome dead weeds and watering the outside plants. My surgery was unplanned and my wife just had her second total knee replacement. So even though I just had surgery I am still doing most the meal preparing and stuff.
So after this wonderful day of accomplishments I really crashed that night after dinner and had night sweats fever like dreams and all around tough night. Still no pain save the incision site and muscle repair pain. The next day though not feeling great I kept my plant to help my wife with the church band. Four songs in and I had to lay down till the closing song.
On the way home the balls of both feet were numb and still are 8 hrs later. I only cut down on pain med's because I am not ready for withdrawls, I've been on them for over two years and know it will be difficult.
Ok with that out of the way. My thought is exactly what some other thoughts were but I'm curious to how many people actually had doctors tell us how crucial it is to not do anything physical when we are felling good enough to do so. I personally need other to tell me stop and don't do these things before I do them. All my discharge papers ask is no heavy lifting, avoid activities that make you short of breath. No swimming , no sitting in the tub or jacuzzi. No driving on narcotics. No bending lifting or twisting. And then on other paper it says keep up strength and range of motion.
How do you keep up strength and range of motion if you can't do any of these things I asked the hospital. She said just use good judgment. So I'm here to tell you better safe than sorry so you can't be blamed if it doesn't work out. We apparently don't know what good judgment is in this state. You know desperate to enjoy life after years of serious pain.
God bless

Welcome to Spine-Health

One of the most important things that members can do is to provide the rest of the community with as much information about themselves as possible. It is so very difficult for anyone to respond when we do not have enough information to go on. This is not meant to indicate that you are doing anything wrong or violated any rule, we are just trying to be pro-active and get the information upfront so that people can start responding and your thread is more effective.

So many times we read about members who have different tests and they all come back negative. The more clues and information you provide, the better chances in finding out what is wrong, The fact that your test results are negative does not mean that you are fine and without any concerns. Many times it takes several diagnostic tests and procedures to isolate a specific condition.

Here are some questions that you should answer:
  • - When did this first start? . Year, Your age, etc
- Was it the result of an accident or trauma?
- Are there others in your family with similar medication conditions?
- What doctors have you seen? (Orthopedic, Neurosurgeon, Spine Specialist, etc)
  • . Which doctor did you start with? Ie Primary Care Physician . Who are you currently seeing?
- What Conservative treatments have you had? Which ones?
  • . Physical Therapy . Ultrasound / Tens unit . Spinal Injections . Acupuncture . Massage Therapy
- What diagnostic tests have you had? And their results (MRI, CTScan, XRay, EMG, etc)
  • . Summarize the results, please do not post all details, we cannot analyze them . How many different tests have you had over the years? Similar results?
- What medications are you currently using? (details, dosage, frequency, etc)
  • . Name of Medication . How long have you been using this? . Results
- Has surgery been discussed as an option? (If so, what kind)
- Is there any nerve pain/damage associated?
- What is your doctor’s action plan for treating you?

Providing answers to questions like this will give the member community here a better understanding
of your situation and make it easier to respond.

Please take a look at our forum rules: Forum Rules

I also strongly suggest that you take a look at our FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) which can be found at the top of the forum menu tab or by going to FAQ There you will find much information that will
  • - Help you better utilize the Spine-Health system- Provide pointers on how to make your threads / posts- Tips on how to create your avatar (your picture), posting images, etc- General pieces of valuable information

Please remember that no one at Spine-Health is a formally trained medical professional.
Everything that is posted here is based on personal experiences and perhaps additional research.
As such, no member is permitted to provide
  • - Analysis or interpretation of any diagnostic test (ie MRI, CTscan, Xray, etc)- Medical advice of any kind- Recommendations in terms of Medications, Treatments, Exercises, etc

What could be good for someone could spell disaster for another.
You should also consult your doctor to better understand your condition and the do’s and don’t’s.

It is very important that new members (or even seasoned members) provide others with details about their condition(s). It is virtually impossible to help another member when all the details we have are

I’ve had this for years, it hurts, I cant move my shoulder – what could this be, what treatment should I get?

Diagnosing spinal problems can be very difficult. In many ways it’s like a game of clue. Especially, when the diagnostic tests come back negative – no trouble found! Then it’s up to the patient and the doctor to start digging deeper. The doctor is like a detective. They need clues to help them move along. So, you as the patient need to provide the doctor with all sorts of clues. That is like it is here. Without having information about a condition, its impossible for anyone here to try to help.

Specific comments :

Personal Opinion, not medical advice :

--- Ron DiLauro, Spine-Health System Moderator : 08/31/15 08:22est



  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,347
    edited 08/31/2015 - 1:39 AM
    the discharge papers from the hospitals as well as any other instructions and limitations outlined for you.

    It is important to slowly regain some strength and endurance. You should never rush in to this, most doctors prefer a gradual build up over time, thus giving you time to recover and also start to rebuild. That is basically the same objective of physical therapy. Depending on the surgery and the doctor, physical therapy can start as quickly as 1 week post surgery up to 3 or 4 weeks post surgery.

    There are so many ways to maintain range of motion and rebuilding strength without the type of activities you outlined. Stretching is just one simple way. But before you do anything, you should always check with the doctor to make sure they approve.

    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
  • MandyLAMMandyLA Posts: 2
    edited 08/31/2015 - 8:03 PM
    I am 4 1/2 months post C5-7 fusion with hardware and partial laminectomy with cage with complications of frozen shoulder (right dominant side). I have been in physical therapy since 2 weeks post-surgery. Things got progressively much more difficult after the frozen shoulder set in. I am struggling. Yet, I was seeing improvements and my PT says to push the boundaries within reason SO I did a little extra exercise at home after finishing my physical therapy exercises at home. Well, I went too far and sent myself into terrible muscle spasms and pain at a 8 or 9 on a 1 to scale. Pretty much put myself on total bedrest for a week and now I cannot do the physical therapy that I worked so hard to achieve over months of work. I am beside myself in frustration at the slow recovery and lack of ability to get back to anything remotely usual. I learned a lesson, however. This recovery period is about restoring function, basic tasks of life, nothing else. It felt so good to exercise and relieved frustration and desperation, but I am paying dearly for it. I agree with Radfire that there is very little information shared by doctors and PTs. I have literally had to cross-examine my doc and PT to find things out. For example, I was told to move my head to the right and left. That was said to me repeatedly. So I asked, what about up and down. I was then told do not look up and restrict looking down. Ok. Two months later, I asked again. Can I look up or down? My PT said sure, I can look down, just do not keep my head down for long periods of time. I wondered when that changed since I was told not to do it. So I asked about whether I could look up? He said, "No." A month later, I asked about whether I could look up. I got a strange look and my PT asked me why I am concerned about looking up? My response was no particular rush to look up, but it is a basic human response and something I would like to be able to do later in life (e.g., when I am able to be physically active again). He looked me in the eyes and said, "Nobody has told you? You will never be able to look up or tip your head back again. No chugging beer." (I do not drink beer. He was trying to be funny.) I must have looked shocked because, frankly, I was surprised. He asked if he was the first to tell me this to which I responded yes. I would have thought someone would have made that clear to me and not have made me asked questions over and over to learn it. My PT says the hardware is not made to accommodate the head moving backwards like that and it can cause further damage to the spine. I think that would be something my physician might have told me before my surgery if not immediately after. Oh well. You live and learn, and I am in the midst of this tough experience trying to make it through to the other side.
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