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Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

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Old 08-02-2008, 05:43 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: California
Posts: 72
MissMuse HB User
Question Flexeril and Lower Back Pain


I am 29 years old, in fairly good shape and condition, but I started having this pain in my lower back about 2.5 weeks ago. It was horrible, and my arms and legs tingled while it was happening. I went into the ER because it was so intense and seemed to come out of nowhere. The ER doctor that I saw prescribed me Vicodin for the pain, but nothing else. They did a urinalysis to see whether it might be a UTI. According to the attending nurse, I did have some bacteria in my urine, but I guess not enough to warrant antibiotics. They also gave me a shot of Demeral for the intense pain (couldn't walk or sit up without crying out in pain--only barely managed to do the urinalysis with help--kinda embarrasing), but this only made it difficult for me to breathe and started to close up my throat (!!). I asked if this was an allergic reaction, but they wouldn't say one way or the other, but this prompted them to take blood directly from my wrist arterial vien to check the oxygen levels which were okay, though they said that I had a bit of a higher level of carbon dioxide in my blood which I questioned and was told that this was due to hyperventilation from stress and the pain. I was released with an Rx for Vicodin, and told to see my reg. doctor (which I don't have situated yet) if the pain hasn't stopped by the 5th to 7th day.

Well, sufficed to say, it hasn't completely stopped. I went in to the walk in clinic about three days ago (12th day of back pain). I was given a shot of Torodol in my lower back, and prescribed Flexeril (muscle relaxant) since the Vicodin did nothing for me (which didn't surprise the attending nurse at all since she could see that it was a muscle issue). She also told me to come back if it hasn't cleared in two weeks since they would need to take x-rays at that time.

The first day that I took the Flexeril (10 mg), I felt A LOT better. Now the third day of taking it, it's not helping me as much. I still have pain when I bend at the waist or twist, and my muscles don't seem to be relaxing as well. Also, I seem to now be having RLS symptoms when I go to bed at night, so I'm having trouble sleeping. I just don't know what to do anymore. I have been trying to rest, take warm baths, and things of this nature, but the pain continues. It seems to be worst on my left side. Last night, I had a strange sensation of pressure right where my spinal cord starts, then again this morning before I got up.

I'm just baffled: is it sciatica, spinal stenosis, or something else?? I have been doing a lot of research to try to find an answer. I did injure my back while I was lifting heavy bags of packages back in 2003. I'm not sure if this is related, but I have had pains like this off and on since that time, but this is lasting MUCH longer than it ever has in the past.

Any ideas? Suggestions for relief?

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Old 08-02-2008, 08:14 PM   #2
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: midwest
Posts: 6
blackcats13 HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

Hi Miss Muse! I think flexoril was one of the ones I was on too, with similar results. At first I thought 'oh thank gods!!' and a few days later I was back in pain. My next appointment is Thursday morning. I'm praying that 1. my meds are enough to get me through until then and 2. that he finds SOMETHING on that MRI. Something he can do something about. I was just reading the chronic pain board, you should check it out. There was a post titled 'can you relate to this' subtitled 'chronic pain, what it means to me' that was so dead on. I've only been dealing with this for a few months but I already understand a little. I sent it to my BF to help him understand.

I'll add you to my prayers. Keep us posted!

Old 08-03-2008, 06:20 AM   #3
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 384
Ashley9045 HB UserAshley9045 HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

I also starting last week with horrible pain in my lower back. The doctor prescribed flexeril, and also 800mg of advil. I had little relief from either of these medicines. The doctor said if I did not get back she would give me predisone for the pain, has anyone ever taken that for back pain? At this point, I will take anything the pain is so annoying. HELP!!

Old 08-03-2008, 12:58 PM   #4
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Portland, OR 97035
Posts: 184
ChickieLou HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

I have no idea why doctors continue to prescribe Vicodin for severe pain. It doesn't work. It's fine after a dental procedure, but the way it acts on pain is not the same action as say, oxycodone. Has anyone here had good luck controlling their back pain with vicodin?

I was prescribed Flexaril early in my back pain history (before I was dx'd with a herniated disk). It works well on muscle spasms which it sounds like you had but that may be only part of your issue. If it is a spine issue, these typically aren't helped by it other than "just put me to sleep and out of my misery for a while" which as desperate as I get at times, I would welcome.

Do you have any diagnostic procedures scheduled? MRI? It could most definitely be related to the lifting incident in 2003.

Old 08-03-2008, 05:03 PM   #5
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paula456 HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

Well, I use Vicodin for back pain, and it helps...

Old 08-03-2008, 05:57 PM   #6
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ChickieLou HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

Actually, I'm torn on the Vicodin thing, truth be told. It has helped me on occasions and not others for reasons I can't desxcribe. When I had an altitude embolism in my arm many years ago, which was easily my 10 on the pain scale, half a tab worked. With my back pain which is a 7 at it's worst, it just doesn't touch it. My mom and husband both say the same thing (we all have the stinkin' back ache) and it's turned into what we call "the Vicodin rant". When it was my mom recently and she was clearly experiencing her "10" on the pain scale with her back, butt and leg pain (prompting me to nearly move back home to take care of her), the Vicodin rant turned into the "please give my mom something stronger - she's suffering" rant.

I am glad it has helped someone here with their back pain, paula. That's all that matters.

Old 08-03-2008, 07:09 PM   #7
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Join Date: May 2008
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Posts: 193
paula456 HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

Chickie, I'm 5 1/2 weeks post op from a 2 level spinal fusion, L4-S1. When I came off the morphine pump in the hospital we switched to Vicodin. It's worked for me. It's not perfect, it doesn't completely eliminate all pain, but I don't expect all pain to be eliminated at this point in my recovery, and it will probably be easier to get off Vicodin then some of the other narcotic pain killers.


Old 08-03-2008, 11:26 PM   #8
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Mamasan2007 HB User
Re: Flexeril and Lower Back Pain

I don't take any narcotic's for pain relief, way to constipating for me.
I take Aleve and Flexeril, that combo helps a bit. But like the previous poster said it knocks me out for days. When I finally get up, I feel better because I have not moved much and my sciatica calms down.
A temporary fix, as most things are:-(

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