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Old 04-18-2007, 11:17 PM   #1
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Post Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

Hi everyone.

Im here to seek some advice. Before I get started. I just wanted to let ya'll know I have a hard time explaining myself. So bare with me please.

I am 22yr old male. 230lbs 6'1

I was in a car accident Feb 1 07. Hit from behind (I was the passenger in a friends car.) @ 40mph while we were at a dead stop. waiting to turn onto a busy highway.

2 hrs after the accident. I felt my low back become painfull. It felt sharp and constant. I knew something was wrong. I thought about going to the doctors. But it was friday @5pm, didnt feel like going to the ER. (which i should have) So i took an advil and took it easy for the night.

Woke the next morning. While getting out of bed. I suddenly felt the pain of my back again. Same spot, felt sharp, strong and a constant pain that i have not felt before. (i dont know how to express the feeling. its like a dull constant pain) I decided i'd take 2 advil. And take it easy for the weekend.

I ended up having to get up and work. So I tried to pass it off in the back of my head. And not think about the pain. That week goes by. (friday after the car wreck) and I decided i need to go see someone about this. i end up going to an immediate care. Where i told him what happened. he talked to me for 2 minutes saying im in pain from the accident (go figure, lol) and I should take it easy and heal soon. He told me to take muscle relaxer and pain medicine which he prescribed a week supply(flexeril10mg and hydrocodone 5mg 10 of each)

So i take it easy for a week. Nothing has changed. Still hurts. By now, im out of meds and Im in pain. (with both medications not working for me) I call my primary care doctor and get an appointment with her the following day. She says try to take it easy and see me in 2 weeks. With refills on both meds.

Those 2 weeks pass. NOTHING has changed. Back is still in the same poor condition is was the day of the accident. Ive noticed Bending over caused pain in the same area. (with a little pain in the back of my legs) but i brushed it off as me needing to strech my legs.. and pain while im sitting in any position. Be it at my desk, in my car. Also it hurts when walking for more than 15 minutes.

I go see the same doc for the Follow up. Telling her my problems. I ask her if I should get some type of scan on my back done. Because I can Definetly Feel that there is something wrong with my back. She said No.. And said from the "tests" she has done. (which were looking at my back. And watching me bend over, and moving my neck) Then ordered me to go to Physical Therapy for 2 months. And to take Advil for pain. I keep insisting I am worried, and want to have my back looked into further. But she said no. (stubborn..)

I told her i didnt think it would be wise for me to go to PT without having my back checked out. And she said it will be fine. So i just left somewhat angry. (haven't contacted Her since, as she didnt seem to take me seriously)

I ended up seeing a spine doctor a little over 2 weeks later. (From my family telling me to go see a specialist.)

After waiting 3 hours in the waiting room on there computers they have for patients) i ended up seeing the doctor for no more than 10 minutes. He didnt do anything different than my Primary Care Doctor. He watched me bend, took the little thing to my knees to check reflex. and told me he would call to setup a follow-up. (since he didnt have enough time to see me for a full appointment.) Somehow the secretary and him had a communication error. dr thought i was a no show for my 830am appt. And couldnt fill me in til 1030am. So i waited til 10:40am (10min past my 2nd appt time) and the dr came out to the waiting room. And went up to the secretary. I heard the dr say. (Justin is a No Show for the second time today??) after i heard that. I said. (HEY, Im justin. And ive been here since 8:00am this morning! which is :30 early for the appointment you supposedly thought i didnt show up to!) Keep in mind. This all happened before i went into his office for about 10 minutes.

Basicly. He didnt give me any time to talk. And i ended up not getting the phone call back from him like he said he would. So i once again. Said F*** that guy anyways. Being upset as i was. I had it with my luck with dr's treating me like nothing and tried to put the pain in the back of my mind while doing my daily activities.

3 weeks pass by.. And for the past week. Ive noticed My toes are colder than hell (feel like they are dipped in cold water) and my toes are worse when im sitting down. I look through my toenails and they turn to a light purple color. And my feet are a pale color. and for the past two days. My legs have been somewhat "weak" and a feeling of "numbness" when sitting as well. When i stand up. It gets maybe 30% better. But the problems are still present. Keep in mind my back hurts when sitting down as well. I cant seem to find any position that works any better to help the pain. I notice when i wake up in the morning from sleep. My feet and legs are warm. But once i get out of bed and get walking. It's back to the same numb/coldness in the back of my legs and feet. (legs are numb, feet are cold)

So after getting on here and reading about numbness and whatnot in the legs. I think I should go to the dr's to seek help. But i dont think its urgent enough for an ER. (not life threatening) and i dont want to go back to my primary care. Cause she hasn't treated me well. I dont know where to go. I do have insurance. And im hesitant to go because the way i have been treated before ya know?

Ive searched for a problem like mine on here. And couldnt figure out what kind of problem i have here. As in. Should this be an immediate emergency. Or should i not worry about it and see if this goes away.

( P.S) The only pre-existing back conditions i have had in the past are. L5-S1 Clight Central Disk Herniation when i was like 18 playing football. I cant find any records. But remember the pain from the back being in the same spot. I did not have the leg conditions from my prior accident.


PLEASE ANYBODY!

(its late, and im sorry about the horrible grammar and wording)

 
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Old 04-19-2007, 12:59 AM   #2
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

Wow... I am sorry for all of your troubles with the doctors and pain. I was wondering since you have had previous injury are you able to go back to the doctor that treated you then? If not look for a pain management doctor, that who I use to treat my pack pain. My primary care physician didnít really have the ability to help me the way my pain management doctor does. I canít believe the doctor didnít order at least a X-ray or MRI, especially with your previous injury. I really hope you can find a doctor that will help you with your injury, if it comes down to it you may need to take it to the ER. They will at least order some tests to check you out. I hope everything works out, keep us informed.
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Old 04-19-2007, 04:33 AM   #3
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

I wonder if the reason they are not ordering tests is because so much time has passed by and no one else ordered tests in the beginning. I would try another spinal surgeon or neurosurgeon or go to the ER. Are you having a bowel or urniary problems? If you are, not to scare you, but please go straight to the ER and tell them. This could be very serious.

One thing that concerns me is if this was caused by an car accident and you need to make sure that all parties are aware you having problems as a result of it. Document it in a letter.

If the pain is worsening, personally I would go to the ER at this point unless you can get in quick with another spinal doctor. Tell them the new pain that you are having and [B]that it hurts like all get out[/B]. Also that you have had a prior herination. Then hopefully they will order more tests.

Good luck. I pray that they will order these tests so that you can get down to the bottom of it.

Last edited by ms_west; 04-19-2007 at 05:50 AM.

 
Old 04-19-2007, 04:48 AM   #4
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

So sorry to hear this. Listen, you must see another D-r. Go to the ER and say that you in a lot of pain. They will have to do a CT or MRI for you. Tell them you have the pain for a while already.
i had my car accident in 2003. And the same story: they took me to ER right afther (it was a big accident), did ex-rays (in most cases they show nothing wrong) and sent to PT and hyropractor. After 3 month of all this nothing helped and they sent me to orthopedic BACK specialist. And guess what? When he sent me for MRI the first thing he asked me when i showed up for my appointment "how did you survive all this time? your back is a mess". And after more tests, discogramm i had my bi-level fusion surgery.
You have to be your own D-r sometimes. IF you see something is wrong, go and nuck in a doors, find out about GOOD D-r in your area. And if they say no - make app in a city; we always go to NYC if something is not working here. Your body tells you something is wrong - go and help yourself. Unfortunatelly most of us can tell the story when D-rs feel they know everything and you know nothing. Would be nice if they would teach them in Medical schools a bit better bed side manners. But if you try hard, you will find someone who cares and will listen. Good luck to you and let us know know how are you doing.
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Old 04-19-2007, 07:17 AM   #5
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

I like you had, a herniated disc that healed, and then was in a car wreck, that sounds EXACTLY like yours. It re-herniated the disc. I would go to the ER and they will refer you to a neuro and get you help. Tell them, you have tried and no one will help you. Tell them about your legs going numb.

You have to be your own advocate with yourself, this is the crap we all go through at one time or another or alot. Demand an MRI.

I would 86 that doctor who treated you like that. You have to find the help you need. Sitting usually does make a disc hurt worse.

Sorry you are going through this. They act like if they don't treat us or tell us that it will magically go away.

 
Old 04-19-2007, 09:59 AM   #6
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

Ditto, ditto, and ditto! Also, if you see another back specialist, make sure you're seeing someone not in the same group as any of the others doctors you've already seen.

I hope you can get some answers quickly. Please come back and let us know how it turns out.

Take care,
Emily

 
Old 04-19-2007, 02:36 PM   #7
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

Hi guys, Thanks for the quick, and very informative replies. Im very gratefull!

I had to leave work today to pick someone up from the airport. So i couldnt get to the doctors. But i have the same old pain.

About bowel and blatter control. Im not sure exactly what normal is? I haven't moved my bowels in over a day. In that time. Ive had 2 Mexican plates. That has (beans, meat,cheese,tomatoes, etc) Along with lots of Water. What i HAVE noticed is... My urine isn't a strong flow. Its weaker than usuall. Esp when im drinking all this water. And i just got done trying to move my bowels. I tried. But nothing really happened.. Im not sure how to say this without it being kinda gross. But when I wiped. There was 2 little tiny black balls and some yellowish slime that kinda looked like Mucus... and NO actual Poo.. I still feel full.

Im going to wait a few hours to see if i am able to poo. If not. Then im having my brother take me to Immediate care Or the ER.

 
Old 04-19-2007, 03:59 PM   #8
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

The alarm bells would ring for loss of control. It sounds like you haven't lost control, just maybe aren't ready to "go" yet. If you're straining to go because we've scared you, you might be forcing out what you saw just because that's all that's there right now. Don't panic over this. If you become incontinent or can't tell when your bowels are ready to move, that's the time to take notice.

I hope you can get some follow-up, but again, don't panic. Be ready to take time getting this dealt with. Patience is a necessity with these back problems. There's nothing quick about it!

Take care,
Emily

 
Old 04-19-2007, 09:30 PM   #9
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

I think if you need to go the emergency route, to avoid the immediate care center cuz you went there already and they didnt help you much but to medicate you. At the hospital, they have all the resources to take care of you right off.

Word of advice. If you have to go the ER, don't go in great detail about the docs not doing an MRI on you. Less is somewhat better here. If it were me in your situation:

I would tell them about the accident. You sought treatment from your GP, which was very conservative and you've seen Zero improvements and no MRIs had been done to date or anything. Then add in, your pain has increased two-fold, your legs are going week, you have noticed changes in your urination flow, etc. Last, add in that you had the football injury at age 18, and it healed and no problems up until the accident.

Going into detail of you seeing the docs and them refusing to do an MRI and what not.. won't accomplish anything.

If they wanna refer to a doctor.. let them know you are changing your GP and could they refer you to a ortho or neuro surgeon, preferably a spine specialist. If they give you the same one you saw, ask them to give you several you can call.

You do indeed need to be your own advocate to get the proper treatment. Let us know how you are doing.
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Old 04-19-2007, 10:11 PM   #10
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Re: Car Accident: L5-S1 Back Pain & Numbness in Legs & Feet!! HELP ASAP

your bowel and bladder problems may stem from your meds.....hydrocodone is generic for vicodin.....which can constipate you and cause urinary retention....same for the muscle relaxers.....u should have an mri done immediately....i know you're busy but if u don't like a dr don't hesitate to go see another....then another...so on and so...it's ur life and the wrong moves can rob you of that life.....and exhaust all psoibilities before surgery...you're a young guy and there's always something on the cutting edge in the medical world...just my 2 cents worth

 
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