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Old 01-16-2013, 12:18 AM   #1
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4 more years of pain normal???

At the age of 20 I had micro d surgery in 08 for a herniation at l5s1 that had presented itself a year and a half prior. Within a year of the surgery the herniation was back along with scar tissue build up around the nerves. I went from 220 lbs to 165 thinking this would help my back heal on its own. I am in the best shape of my life yet the pain is just getting worse, I just want to know if I'm not the only one... I see everyone post about being "back to normal" within a year or so, so you obviously see how discouraged I am To make matters worse I recently found out I'm expecting, about 9wks DEF not planned but excited, and my pain has already increased dramatically.... I would just love for someone to say been there done that because I'm feeling quite alone in my problem.......

 
Old 01-16-2013, 02:31 AM   #2
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

DG:

You are not alone. Here is my story:

First the surgeries:

..... 1994 lumbar surgery for herniations;
..... 1995 cervical surgery for stenosis;
..... 1997 lumbar surgery with Harrington Rods;
..... 2000 cervical/thoracic surgery with Harrington Rods;
..... 2006 Spinal cord stimulator implanted for pain;
..... 2011 Spinal Cord stimulator removed not helping me;
..... 2012 "Trial" Intrathecal Pain Pump for pain (morhpine);
.... 2013 "permanent" Intrathecal Pain Pump for pain implanted.

Other health issues:

..... Diatetic;
..... Absent left kidney; congenital;
..... Kidney disease right kidney;
..... Pancreatic cancer surgery;
..... Surgery to left leg for blood clot.

While the morphine pump is helping my pain in my mid/low back. I still have neck issues.
Doctors are afraid to touch me surgically because of all the prior surgeries; it would be a VERY risky surgery and my other health issues would add risk to the surgery (diabetes; kidney disease).

An EMG was done and showed severe nerve damage in the neck and low back; severe arthritis; peripheral neuropathy probably from my spine and diabetes.

I have weakness in my arms; radiating pain; pins & needles feeling. Difficulty walking because of the numbness in my legs; loss of balance issues

Where am I headed with the neck issues? I dont know. I am seeing my pain doctor this afternoon. He is the one that put the Pain Pump in my low back.See what can be done to control the pain in the neck. Also seeing neurosurgon in about a week or 2 since MRI of the neck was just redone.

With all my surgeries I have been thru 11 surgeries if I counted them right. Most of them on the spine.

Will I ever be "normal" again? NO whatever normal is these days. I have been on disability 10 years already. Was 49 when I went out on disability. Now 59.
You are not alone in what you are going thur physically or emotionally.

What I can suggest to you is get the best medical treatment possible. Whoever you treat with in my opinion should be a Board Certified doctor that is either an Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon.

I prefer to treat with doctors that are affiliated with major teaching hospitals. They tend to be better trained and routinely see more complex cases than smaller hospitals.

Make sure that whoever you use you can communicate with this doctor. It is important to get an open dialogue going with your treating physicia.

I dont know what yoru support system is like. Mine has something to be desired. Could use improvement. But get support from your family/friends and get the support that you need from them.

Good luck. Keep us posted on how you are doing.

 
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:05 AM   #3
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

Welcome to the board. I'm not clear on whether you had a second surgery after the disc reherniated? In any case, if you are still in pain four years later, it would suggest that the initial surgery did not resolve the nerve compression, or that now you have scar tissue that is pushing on a nerve.

Carrying a baby to term often causes sciatic-type pain even in those without any back issues...so this will be something to discuss with your obstetrician and spine doc.

Have you consulted with a spine specialist recently?

 
Old 01-16-2013, 08:16 AM   #4
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It's going to be tough

Just keep things well coordinated with your OB, PCP, Spine Dr. and whoever handles your pain management.

I have read compete stories of people in your situation, either here at HealthBoards and/or over on the forums at Spine-Health. Maybe you can search and find them. Or just post in multiple locations and hope they find you and respond.

Best Wishes...

 
Old 01-16-2013, 08:46 AM   #5
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

I only had the one surgery, I wanted to try and put off a second as long as possible. I went through pain management treatments but saw no improvement. I actually am not medicated in any way, unfortunately most traditional medications have failed to help, I built up a tolerance in adolescence because of treatment for severe migraines. I have had 3 different steroid injections directly into the injury and after the first they just help for about a week or two even though my first was very successful and provided all but total relief from the pain. I do pretty well handling the pain on my own, I have an extremely high pain tolerance! I would just really love someone who can truly sympathize with!!!

 
Old 01-16-2013, 08:54 AM   #6
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

Oh and I keep up every 6 months or so with my spine Dr! He was actually a surgeon who used to work with pro athletes and I had done a lot of research to find this great Dr in my area, I have not seen him since I found out about the pregnancy although we have already talked a lot about what I should expect, I've always wanted to be a mommy but of course wanted to wait but I guess the big Guy had his own plans:P

 
Old 01-16-2013, 11:29 AM   #7
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

Congrats on your pregnancy.

I'm not sure what type of responses you are looking for. It sounds like you know what is causing your pain, and you have chosen not to have additional surgery and are managing your problem with pain management.

The title of your post is misleading....it is normal to have pain if you have something wrong with your back. If you had surgery to correct the issue and then continued to have pain, then it would depend on what is causing the pain. Sometimes that "something" can be addressed and other times, it becomes a matter of learning to live with the pain the best you can.

For example, someone may have nerve damage that no surgery or treatment can change....or a particular surgery may not completely resolve the person's pain issues, in which case, that person must learn ways to live with or manage the pain...and of course, there are many different ways to do that.

I feel like I am not addressing your reasons for posting....I'm not sure what type of information you are looking for!

 
Old 01-16-2013, 02:43 PM   #8
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

[QUOTE=dglidden415;5118194]I only had the one surgery, I wanted to try and put off a second as long as possible. I went through pain management treatments but saw no improvement. I actually am not medicated in any way, unfortunately most traditional medications have failed to help, I built up a tolerance in adolescence because of treatment for severe migraines. I have had 3 different steroid injections directly into the injury and after the first they just help for about a week or two even though my first was very successful and provided all but total relief from the pain. I do pretty well handling the pain on my own, I have an extremely high pain tolerance! I would just really love someone who can truly sympathize with!!![/QUOTE]

Hi dglidden, When i was 26 i got hurt, had a lumbar laminectomy on L4-5 L5-S1 leaked CSF & had to get another back surgery to do grafting on dura. This was in Jan & feb, got married in July, pregnant in Nov. I really know how you feel! My back still hurt but I made it thru to birth of my child.I had to see neurosurgeon every 6 weeks & OB but they coordinated my care all the way to the epidural! My back hurt but, it did anyway! Looking back this was the greatest time of my life! I was really healthy, i took care to eat right, drink milk, etc. The only thing different was postpartum i had PT to get abdominal muscles strengthened. I hope you do fine & i think that you will.

 
Old 01-16-2013, 07:54 PM   #9
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

Sorry about the misleading post line I was half asleep and in a lot of pain last night, I don't think I really knew what I was asking till I started writing I'm just looking for someone to share their story so I would know this isn't impossible!

OMG thank you so much! I see a lot about women asking these same kind of questions and everyone just say poor thing no one really talks about their own experience and the question askers never follow up with what happened:/
So I'm guessing you had a natural child birth, how was it, was your experience close to those who did not have this kind of problem? I would love to be as natural as possible I've actually always wanted to have a water birth because that is one place I've always felt at peace

 
Old 01-17-2013, 05:54 AM   #10
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

[QUOTE=dglidden415;5118464]Sorry about the misleading post line I was half asleep and in a lot of pain last night, I don't think I really knew what I was asking till I started writing I'm just looking for someone to share their story so I would know this isn't impossible!

OMG thank you so much! I see a lot about women asking these same kind of questions and everyone just say poor thing no one really talks about their own experience and the question askers never follow up with what happened:/
So I'm guessing you had a natural child birth, how was it, was your experience close to those who did not have this kind of problem? I would love to be as natural as possible I've actually always wanted to have a water birth because that is one place I've always felt at peace[/QUOTE]

Dear dg, Yes, I had a more natural childbirth than i expected b/c the epidural only deadened my legs! But, everything went fine, no complications, had no medicinel, in a hospital ldr room, family there, baby fine, I think that you could certainly have the type of birth you want! I think it all worked together for good because the
drs,OB & neurosurgeon, communicated with each other & me. Yes, to answer your question, I had normal pregnancy, labor, delivery, no problems at all. Congrats to you on your pregnancy! Keep us posted!

Last edited by gmak; 01-17-2013 at 06:00 AM. Reason: info

 
Old 01-18-2013, 12:59 AM   #11
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Re: 4 more years of pain normal???

Hi DG. Just wanted to let you know that you definitely are not alone. I've had 2 cervical fusions in my neck. Did really well, but my lumbar issues persist and my neurosurgeon doesn't feel that I am a good candidate for lumbar surgery. I've had to learn the live with the pain, which isn't always easy.
Congrats on expecting!! I am glad for your sake and your baby's sake that you aren't taking any medication at this time. That's just one less thing you have to worry about. You mentioned possibly wanting to do a water birth. My son's girlfriend had a water birth. It was amazing. She went in at like 9 in the morning and was literally home for dinner.
I hope that all goes well for you. Take care and I will add you and your precious baby to my prayers.

 
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herniated disc, microdiscectomy, pregancy



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