Hi, you all should know my story by know. I'm having a lamenecomy fusion at L5-S1 at the end of the month and have posted my story around a week ago on this sight.
I had an office visit with my neurosurgeon today were we talked about the procedure. He told me that he will only give me pain meds for six months after my surgery and after that, there is no more pain meds and nothing else that could be done. I felt like he was talking to me like I was a junkie or something. This freaked me out. I shouldve spoke my mind but I didnt. What if this surgery doesnt work. He is only giving me a 75% chance that I will get some leg pain relief and doesnt know if any of the back pain could be fixed or relieved.
I felt like he thinks that I'm just looking for pain meds. Who would go through such a surgery just to stay on pain meds when I can get them through my pain mngmnt doc and still not have the surgery.
Trust me red flags have gone off but I'm so desperate for this surgery I fill he is my only chance. I cant deal with the pain any longer, and I cant hold on long enough to try and find another doc that may or may not want to do the
surgery and try all the alternatives I already have indured.
Isn't it premature for a doc to say that?
What do I do if after 6 months I'm still hurting or worse something else has went wrong?
I would think that it would be very hard to find a new doc after I had surgery that would want to pick up were another doc left off.
Ahhhhh, I'm worried, scared and venting
I would suggest you if after six months you still have pain to talk to your doctor about a pain pump. This is surgically placed i believe in your abdomen with a catheter that carries pain meds directly to the source of pain. It is something my Dr. has said we would look into if my surgery doesn't work. Might be an option.
All I can really tell you about this, is that my Surgeon said he could not give me any pain meds before surgery, but during and after the surgery then it was his responsability to take care of me until I am released from his care.
3 to 6 months I guess is the limit for the surgeon considering there are no problems, then your pain management doc takes over your care again. Once you are released from his care, it's usually healing and doing great, therefore not needing him anymore, His part was the actual surgery, then you have a seperate Pain Management and a seperate Physical Therapist. Each one has there own job to do.
Once you don't need the surgeon anymore, PM will take over and take care of any and all pain meds you will need. Your Surgeon will still have your records in the event of future visits of course.
His bedside manner might not be what you want it to be, but the real question is: Do you trust him enough to operate on your back?
I hope this helps a little, I have heard of Surgeons with bad attitudes being the best and some with Great attitutes being the best. You need to keep your PM up to date on everything, mine knows of the surgery and did the last ESI injections 2 weeks before surgery to get me though until my Fusion, then requested I see her 1 month after the surgery, I did, and she automatically ask me if I needed pain meds and muscle relaxers, etc.
The Best of Luck to you .
Thank you QuietCook for helping me. You are very rare human being, giving out all the advice that you do on this sight. You will never know how much we all appreciate the time you take out of your day to try and help a complete stranger get through what could be the scarest time of their life. THANK YOU!
And also thank all of you who replied to this thread
quietcook has definitely been through alot more than most of even us! (scary thought...)
i think it's important to pay attention to those signs...although i understand the "addiction" concerns, i'm curious if the dr is more worried about you than about them (given the fda and other oversight of this stuff).
frankly, i've been on muscle relaxers for almost 5 yrs, ultracet for 2 yrs, and now have to take barbs for excruciating migraines! i'm a walking prescription cocktail, and i work with and for law enforcement. if i can do that, i think you can too!
what matters is making sure that what you take is helping and right for you, and not taking 10+ if you only need 3. i had the opposite problem of you - w/in my first year of this "epic" i was prescribed so many that it got up close to 10! i started reviewing what i had, then worked with my pcp to cut out the extraneous stuff.
and although i can appreciate the addiction concerns of your dr, that's your job not his! i'm always assessing my situation, and trying to cut back or eliminate (even if it's temporary) to keep this in check. it's hard, but i'd rather do that than live with the pain.
i'd like to tell your dr he can have your pain for a day and see how he likes it...maybe you should look into a second opinion. take care.
TOTALLY AGREE - didn't mean to make it sound like I leave him out!
I always have the periodic "pow-wow" with him to assess the situation, and he is GREAT. Really knows his stuff, and me (seeing him since '94). So open-minded about the "weird" stuff too (alternative healing-type stuff).
I joke w/friends about the "prescription cocktail" sometimes just to hit home that I can't drink, and other "normal" things. Funny, I've NEVER had an "addictive" personality (never smoked, only drank in college, etc.etc.), but I became scared after 2 months of tylenol w/codeine. Withdrawal was brutal!
I then told myself 3 things: 1) I'd avoid codeine if possible, 2) if the withdrawal symptoms were headaches, I could swing that, and 3) I'd never go cold turkey again!
Even though others have different w/d than I had with my list of scripts, I'm taking those that are just causing headaches in w/d. So, I've managed to stick to those rules pretty well, while getting the relief I need. But, I've made those rules clear to my drs anytime the word "prescription" pops up, although the headache one isn't easy to know just thru discussions!
"Toast" a couple cocktails in my honor tonight, and I'll be doing the same for you! Take care sweets...
Thanks for your input guys but I'm the farthest thing from someone trying to get narcotics.
I was once on Oxycontins 40's and had the doc take me off, Didnt like that dopeing feeling and heard it had bad withdrawls to get off.
Six months ago I was on Duragesic patch 100 and 6 Lortabs a day. It controled my pain very well. I went to the doc and had him lower me to 75 then 50 then the 25 and only took 3 lortabs a day. Then the doc took me off the Duragesic altogether and put me on Methadose 30mg daily. Big mistake! One time i ran out of the methadose for 5 days and had the worse sickness ever and I still had my lortabs (wich are double Vicodens). I fill that putting me on the methadone was big mistake because I fill I already kicked the Duragesic now Im on a pill that has major withdrawl problems.
By having the doc lower all my meds I know suffer to much daily pain so know im having the surgery.
Thanks again guys
mydogsobe - my heart goes out to you! this can be such a difficult journey. i just hope that you know you can depend on us for support at the very least! like quietcook said, please keep us posted on your progress, and i hope we can help you through this. don't know how long you've been dealing with all this, but i'm coming up on my 5th wedding and accident anniversary (accident 1 month after got married...now that SUCKS!)
quietcook - LOL!!!!!!!! my friends have learned to do the same thing...which says ALOT for them, since i drink caffiene-free regular cokes (hate diet...never got used to it). and those are tough to find!!!!
both - i really think that's why, regardless of how anyone feels about his politics, i have to admit that i can't judge rush on his problem with painkillers after his back surgery. never thought i'd NOT be critical, but i've been there. and when you have to live with pain that can't be relieved/diminished by standing, sitting, lying down, etc., you're willing to do just about ANYTHING to get rid of it.