okay, so we know I have two small bulges from L4-S1, and one larger at C5-6. We know I have DDD in both the lumbo-sacral discs, a tear and spur. And, we know I have a pinched nerve in my neck. So, listening to all of you, I did a little reading on line for surgical treatments.
I have found that w/the DDD in the lumbar regions, I could maybe be a candidate for a fusion (2 level). The disc at L3-4 is very healthy w/no problems. IF, big IF I had a fusion, what are the odds I would have problems at the higher level? If I watch my weight and don't abuse my back any more by bending poorly and lifting, do you think I could go the next 20 years better than if I did nothing at all? I am a smoker, but I have a quit date of November 16, before then if I have surgery.
For my cervical problem, I read a microdiscectomy can be done (had one at L5-S1 previously). So, I wonder, if I had all this done, since my symptoms are text book and no non-surgical intervention has worked (PT, anti-inflammitories, traction, ESI, steroid meds, Narcs), I wonder if I would get some relief. I am in good shape and am pretty healthy (aside from smoking). I used to work out all the time and know what exercises to do for a strong back). I am kind of thinking out loud, plus, you all know I have my appt on Tuesday, so I am thining of everything to bring up, consider, and talk about to my neurosurgeon. I am aware he may want to do more testing (myelogram is one). So, if any one out there has any thoughts on this, please share!
(oh, and I WILL NOT be returning to work as a nurse asst. So, no lifting required anymore)
have I exhuasted all forms of nonsurgical treatment?
I have done:
PT on neck and back, oral steroids, antiinflammitory meds, muscle relaxors, traction on neck and back, narcs, epiderals AND I have been "resting" now for almost three months with an increase in pain since all of this. I am eleven days post esi. What other treatment would be out there? Oh, have done cold/hot packs too. They don't help either......
I am in so much pain right now, I can't even describe it. I hurt everywhere. My neck, my shoulder, arm, hand, mid back, low back, my legs feel tingly. GOD THIS SUCKS. I honestly can't do this forever, I really can't!
guess I have over posted well, sometimes just writing helps I guess. Still in pain, what else is new. I am really looking forward to my appt. My husband and I decided to push for surgery. I wonder though, if the doc would consider two surgeries, one major and one minor at one time. Fusion at the lumbar level (2) and microdiscectomy at the cervical level. I would rather kill two birds with one stone if he is willing and aggreeing that surgery would benefit me. I am glad too that all of my family is supportive and they understand why I want to have these major surgeries. Helps too that not only I am in healthcare, but my mom and mil are both RNS and both have worked with back patients fairly regularly. Everyone in my family just wants me back to normal, or say, as close to pain free as possible (I know surgery won't give me back a healthy back, but may help me lead a fuller life). I appreciate too all the help and support I get here, it helps a great deal to be able to ask questions and get real answers from people who have been in the same situation. Ya know? So, thankyou all so very very much, sorry I keep over posting, but it helps take my mind off the pain when I am on here.
Last edited by mel1977; 10-03-2004 at 12:45 PM.
Reason: added a word
I know how you feel with the pain and having already had surgery before also I worry about having anymore but thinking of being in all this pain much longer doesn't go over very well either. I also need surgery on my back and neck and was also wondering if they can do both at one time so I can get back to work sooner. Let me know what they tell you about doing both at one time and good luck...
one more symptom to add and support my case. My left arm is getting weak. I sqeezed my husbands hands and he could def tell my left hand was weaker than my right. I had a hard time just walking my dog yesterday (holding the leash in left hand). It sucks, but it also supports my condition, which will help with my appt tomorrow.
Mel I hope all goes well with you tomorrow.I also have weakness in my hand i drop things all the time, I just found out today that the w/c never did pay for my neurosurgeon so i'm back to the waiting game again. again good luck tomorrow and let us know how things go.
I haven't started to drop stuff, but I bet it would be just a matter of time. I am really looking forward to this visit. I don't know, but with my husband there I feel like I will have a good visit. I have no other reason to think it won't be, just b/c this doc seems pretty good and nice. We'll just have to see!!!
Hi Mel, I know how you feel, this really sucks, I wish my legs an hands would return to normal, my thumb an pointer fingers on each hand are normal but the rest are so painful like knives cutting into them all the time. from my waist down I am numb, stiff cold, hot,crawly feelings, always bumping into things frequent falls, an no one seems to understand what pain I am in, as I look normal except for my gait, am so sick of this 2 yrs past surgery, tired of pain management-no help thus far. Well please take care best you can. Mink
my doctor told me to pick a date. November 16 I turn 27, which is ten years of smoking. I have been told it is better to pick a date and stick with that goal. I have been thinking about quitting sooner, but I don't know yet. Will just have to wait and see.
Hi Mel, I didnt mean to go on about myself, I just have your same view..this sucks..an what did you mean by , you can always come here? Where are you from? I find myself not sleeping alot thru the nites as like you in pain, the meds, a combo of all that goes with the problems for any of us with Back troubles. I do have a new Respect for anyone who has had to have any kind of Back surgery, its quite the eye opener your Back seems to have an effect on our whole body. I still hope my spianl cord will still Decompress an hope for everyone out there the same Hope. Hope you are feeling better! Thanks for your time. Mink
well, I meant when things get bad, you can come to the boards and get support. Though it won't cure your pain, sometimes it can help. Plus, like for me, I can lie down with my laptop and I get wrapped up in the boards and don't focus so much on the pain. I am in Nevada btw. It does suck doesn't it? I just really don't know anymore. I don't know if I should have surgeries or not!