I had a disectomy, laminectomy in 2008, was doing ok for a while but the spine shifted forward and my back grinds. After avoiding making a decision for abotu 4 months, I finally decided yes I want surgery. The surgeon planned on an XLIF and then because I did have osteroporosis 2.4 something like that, he was going to put me on my stomach and go through the old incision and put in hardware. I asked for another osteroporosis scan first. The request was sent to worker's comp and the surgery was denied (no surprise, routin denial) but the scan was approved. When I met with the surgeon I was informed they can't do the surgery now as I am 3.5 and am a high risk for a fracture. They said I am too young for this (59) and something must be wrong and I need to see an endocrinologist. The good news is I have been complaining to my private insurance doctors for the last few years about severe body cramping in spite of taking calcium, magnesium, potassium. I have been sent to ER a few times for cramping that caused severe chest pains. Well, now it is agreed that something is sucking the calcium out of my bones and I finally get to see an endocrinologist as my private insurance dr said he believed I just had a mental disorder that looks for problems. Geez, he just became a listener. This might also explain the calcium deposits in my brain. Anyway, I am so glad I asked for the test first. Could you imagine how horrible it could have been had the operation taken place? Of course now, I am totally freaking like I am a china doll
How terrible for you, Mel. Your experience is one that makes people wonder about their own doctor's competence. The gall of a physician to say that you're just imagining things. I find the calcium deposits in your brain to be especially troubling. Do they feel there is some sort of relationship there?
Best of luck to you. I'm so happy you had the correct test done. You're right -- think of the tragedy that may have been averted!
I hope things work out for you, Mel. Please keep us up to date.
I hate doctors who dismiss pain. Between back issues and a GYN-related matter, I have dealt with pain for eons and it is all pain that people can doubt. Luckily, I've mostly had doctors who have listened....just the frustration of other people's reactions ("yeah, i get cramps too...ever try midol?" or "my back hurts too...ever try advil???").
I don't fully understand all the medical aspects but I do think it is good to be cautious with surgery. It sounds like it was good that you investigated fully before going for the surgery, even though I know it is frustrating to have decided to go for a surgery and then feel like the potential for relief was yanked away.
I hope you find some good solutions!! And come here anytime you need supportive folks who understand the trials of living with pain and dealing with the mess of financial/insurance/WC stuff.
thank you so much for your responses. I am glad I have a cautious surgeon and grateful to not have the surgery which would have been more than likely a bad turnout. I am being referred to an endocrinologist to find out what is going on. I have been reading up about the parathyroid and that could explain the brain calcifications. I am going to assume the severe osteroporosis may be causing some of the back pain.
I am fortunate to have had the laminectomy a few years ago. That was a hard recovery but it was such a worthwhile surgery as the siactic pain was so unbearable prior to the surgery.
If I can contribute anything to the board and those having back surgery I would say, make sure your arms and thighs are stong prior to surgery. It makes a world of difference in being able to get up.
The Following User Says Thank You to Mel52 For This Useful Post: sherwoodman (11-01-2011)