I had surgery on November 3, 2008. L4/L5 they put in the cage with the screws and bars. So it has been a good 4 months. I started back to work full time last week. My job is just sitting at a desk. I also started Physical Therapy. My legs are suddenly giving me very bad problems again. They are really hurting. I want to stop taking the pain pills. I have myself down to taking 1/2 pain pill when I get up and usually 1/2 in the afternoon. I just worry so much about taking them. The last few days that has not been enough. I am feeling very discouraged. Should I really be having leg pains like this after this length of time. What is the normal amount of time people are still in pain, how long do most people have to stay on pain pills. Also I still take lyrica, is that normal. Should i try to quit taking the Lyrica??
Sorry no one has replied yet. I had surgery on Dec 2nd. Incisions in front and back....Fusion - two level and a laminectomy. I am also back at work full time and I also work in an office setting. Did you just have an incision in the front? I am pretty surprised with the small amount of pain meds that you take, that's why I asked if they went through the front. I know going through the back takes quite a bit of more time to heal and for the pain to go away. I still take pain meds and muscle relaxers throughout the day. I have leg pain in one leg only but it seems to be more muscle related. I feel like these kind of pains are mostly because I haven't done anything physically in years and now I'm trying to walk and do more.... I don't think you should worry much about the pain in your legs unless its really dibilitating (sp?). But I would take the meds prescribed to you to keep you comfortable and able to keep moving. I've been told and I believe that it takes a long time to recover from this surgery. take care...
I am also sorry nobody has replied. I have not been on the board as much.... I had a 2 level ALIF surgery on dec 16, 2008. I,too, have the cages, screws and plates. I would NOT quit taking the lyrica until you ask your doc. The pain med, well, I too worry about becoming dependent on that. I do still take it if needed. Is the leg pain like nerve pain? Sciatic nerve pain? If you've had that before, try to pay attention to if it is the same kind of pain you suffered with before surgery. I surely wouldnt stop the lyrica until you ask about it. I take it also.....I also think you have to be weaned off of it.
Vicki....hope you are still doing good. My incision is on my lower abdomen. As far as the incision, it healed very quickly. I do agree with you as far as it being a bit easier to heal having the incision in front but........let me add, a person still feels it in the back...meaning, the surgical pain. I woke up this morning, in terrible pain in my back. Not sure if its because we got blasted with snow this past weekend and its reallll cold here. Was 9 degree's here this morning.
I hope you get to feeling better Mlill and hope you are doing good Vicki.....take care ladies!
I think these questions are better left for your surgeon and not for us. That is why you aren't getting any responses. I know my surgeon wants his patients off pain meds by 4 weeks but that is only if they aren't on them before. I don't know your story so I am just giving you what my doc says.
Everyone's different, but if your doctor is still prescribing pain meds for you and he's not concerned about your still being on them, then if you need them, take them. Even at 4 months post op, it's not at all unusual to still need pain meds. Especially at the small dosage you're taking, I really wouldn't worry about it. If you're taking them for pain, you're not going to become addicted at that small dosage.
I don't know about the Lyrica. I've never been on that one.
I agree with everyone about the pain meds. Do what your doctor says. That's one thing I've learned since my surgery and being on this message board...... everyone is different and apparently every doctor is different as well. I know some of us have had basically the same surgery, from what we know..... and some have to wear braces and some never do, and I guess the same is with pain meds. As of now I'll be wearing my brace for 5 months. Maybe more is done on the inside, on some, that warrant more meds....who knows. But we shouldn't have to be in unnecessary pain. And PT has told me if we hurt, we won't move like we need to....
Oh, Lynn, I didn't mean that ALIF didn't cause back pain as well..... I'm sorry if I came across that way......Like I said, we always don't know what the extent is of what the doctor's do inside. I was only saying that my back muscle was cut so that might be why I still need pain meds and that's kind of what I was told. One thing we all know is what its like to go through back surgery and it ain't easy..... I hope all have a restful night.