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Old 08-21-2012, 01:35 PM   #1
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Nerve Pain and Stenosis

I am new to this site - this is my first post. I am 55 years old and have had this pain in my hip, shins and ankle for at least 3 years. I have had 3 epiderals, physical therapy and pain medication to treat the pain. None of these options have worked and it seem the pain keeps getting worse. I did not realize there was any type of surgery available until just recently. I can tell you I am ESTATIC to think that there might be some relief. The more active I am the more pain that I have (walking and standing are very painful) but it sounds to me like there is a need for more activity after the surgery to help repair the nerve damage. Can anyone tell me of their experience in that case? My surgergical porcedure is Right L4-5-S1 hemilaminotomies, partial medial facetectomies and formaniotomies. The surgeon said I will have to have more surgery to put a spacer in between discs for DDD at a later time. (I wish they would do everything at once)
Any input would be greatly appreciated. My surgery is September 6.

 
Old 08-21-2012, 03:30 PM   #2
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Re: Nerve Pain and Stenosis

Welcome to the board. It looks like you are having surgery to counter stenosis and to make more room for the nerves. This surgery is fairly straight forward, but they do have to go through the back and the big muscles that are in the way, so you will be sore after the surgery.

When I had this done, I also had fusion surgery so it was a bit more complicated. I think some surgeons tell patients they can return to work between 2-4 weeks post surgery. I imagine you will have the customary restrictions for lumbar surgery: no bending or twisting at the waist, no pushing, pulling, reaching up overhead or to the side, no lifting over about a gallon of milk, and limit your sitting initially to about 15-20 minutes at a session.

Walking is very important after lumbar surgery. It helps to stretch out the spinal nerves which helps to keep scar tissue from attaching to them as it grows and fills in. Many short walks are preferable to a long walk in this regard. It also keeps one from getting too tired and/or from irritating the sciatic nerves.

The first couple days are difficult, but you'll get through it. You might want to take the time prior to surgery to organize your house so that things you use often are at counter height. There is a "stickie" note at the beginning of the first page of the back board that is compromised of various and sundry suggestions of what patients found useful to do or have post surgery. If you read through it, you will realize that you will not need most of what is on the list, but it does help you imagine what life will be like as your are recovering from spinal surgery.

 
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:11 AM   #3
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Re: Nerve Pain and Stenosis

Thank you for sharing!!!
I also had a car accident and shattered my knee on the right side. I had to have a wheelchair, then walker and a leg brace for about 3 months. Originally I thought all of this had to do with the accident - I walk differently now. After I had the MRI that said it was stenosis, I assumed it was just something I have had for a while that got worse over time. After reading some of the other board topics, it seem that some of this can be aggrivated by athritis setting in after an accident. Do you know anytihng about that? I so appreciate your sharing. Do you think it would help if I posted this as a question on this site? Thank you!!!

 
Old 08-22-2012, 08:10 PM   #4
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Re: Nerve Pain and Stenosis

I know that in an impact motor vehicle accident, most people end up developing arthritis in many joints of the body, including the facet joints of the spine...and earlier than it would happen otherwise. There is a name for this: posttraumatic arthritis.

Any sort of change in structural alignment, posture or gait can have an impact on the spine. Often when there is pain, the body compensates for it by favoring one side. This can lead to muscle imbalances, ligaments shortening or lengthening, etc...which can all lead to various problems with segments of the spine.

 
Old 08-22-2012, 09:13 PM   #5
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Re: Nerve Pain and Stenosis

I just read your post and I can't believe that I have the exact same problem as you do.

 
Old 08-23-2012, 02:17 PM   #6
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Re: Nerve Pain and Stenosis

Wow! That's great information. My car accident was pretty serious. I was hit head on by a person who was texting and driving. She didn't have insurance, of course. I was conducting a monitoring review for work. It has been 2 1/2 years now and I haven't received compensation from my employer. I really didn't think stenosis could have anything to do with my injury, but I am sure the accident aggrivated it because I didn't have anything other than some mild hip and shin pain that was only treated with an anti- inflamitory and it did not affect my way of living. It was only after the accident that I could not walk or stand for any length and had chronic and horrific pain in my shin, ankle and hip. I may have to ask my doctor if this could be related to the accident.
I have an attorney but because my case is work comp - there is no "pain and suffering" etc. It's all cut and dry; however the lawyer said it would make a big difference in my case. Please don't get me wrong - I am not sue happy or greedy. It's just been such a burden to my family and I feel like the ordeal I went through was traumatic and the company I work for is only offering a small settlement - probably less than $50,000 for everything involved. Again - not money hungry or "sue happy" - I just would like to be compensated for this major change in lifestyle. Thank you for your input.

 
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degenerative disc, hip pain, leg pain, nerve damage, stenosis



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