I just wanted to know how many people out there are teens or young adults suffering from chronic pain? I started with chronic radicular pain down my legs at 16. I started taking Oxycontin at 17 and I have not stopped taking drugs since. I am 22 now, and on Methadone. I suffer from permanent nerve damage in my lower back from a herniated disc I suffered my senior year of High school. I've had 1 Laminectomy L4-L5 and then a Fusion at L4-L5 a year and a half ago. The surgeries helped somewhat with the pain in my RT. leg, however I have had constant radiculopathy in my LFT. leg for 6 years now ): I just wanted to let anyone here that is dealing with chronic pain and is fairly young that I am here to help yall. I've been through it and I have leared a heck of a lot these past years. In my opinion pain is pain. However, some doctors that I have encountered treated me like some punk kid trying to get drugs simply because of my age. Now, if I were let say... 60 I think I would have been treated a little bit better.. but that's just my own personal experience. Please let me know if you are a young person on this board and dealing with chronic pain. I know I am not the only one around... Let me know!
Hey Joe! Yeah, your not alone. I'm 26 now, but have been dealing with my back for years. I was hit by drunk drivers when I was 17 on valentines day. I wasn't injured badly thanks to my seatbelt, but I can't say the same for the party at fault. The passneger died and the driver was so messed up when I saw him come out of the car his face was nothing but RED. It's hard to forget that quick glimpse I cought. That accident sorta set me up for things to come. So about 5 years ago my back started getting real achy and painfull at times. So I had to start seeing Dr's. And I got the SAME B.S. you did. In the Dr's eyes, here we are young people that are just looking for some pain killers or muscle relaxers to get high on. I mean I have been treated SO RUDLY you have no idea. And I've been treated seriously as well. But I'll say back then, it was more rude than anything. Well 3 years ago I really DID IT, by giving myself a herniation, or procutaneous disk protrusion (something like that, lol...i just say herniation). L4-L5/L5-S1. And L5-S1 protrudes very deep into my Sciatic nerve. So my Orthopedic Surgeon turned me over to Pain Management. All he did for me was pain killers, steroids, muscle relaxants and Physical Therapys. So In pain management I've had several ESI's, neuroforaminal injections a discogram right before a Nucleoplasty and my introduction to Long Acting Opiates systems (morphine, fentanyl) Well I couldn't take any more 'Procedures' which that current Dr was sent bent on doing. So I went to another PM office. Thank the lawd for them. Their kind, compassionate, willing to try things my other place wouldn't and best of all....they DON'T do procedures there! YEAY! LOL I could go into so much, but I'll wrap it up. Yeah.....it is NICE to know that this place is here, this PM board is really really GREAT, there aren't many places on the internet for PM, that are so active in posting and so consitant in the clientel (sts). But best of all, it IS nice hearing from people in my age bracket. It's true, when I walk into a Dr's office, or a pain management office...I AM the youngest person I see. So we're here, just not as prevalant as say the sweet old lady suffering from RA and a new hip, going to the Dr's to get her pump refilled. (the gas station, she says) LOL.
It's always nice to see younger people on here...well, not nice because it means you're in pain too, but you know what I mean. I too have chronic pain that started when I was 18 years old. I'm 21 now and I have been through so much crap with so many doctors and procedures and all kinds of things. It is EXTREMELY frustrating to me that it's so rare that a doctor will take me seriously because of my age. "You're too young to be on painkillers, you'll get addicted...you're too young for surgery..." It was a year of horrible pain before I was even offered some Darvocet! Now I am on Oxycontin, but it sure took a lot to get even this little tiny bit of relief I have now. I have herniated discs at L3-4 and L4-5, causing chronic radiculopathy, compression fractures at T6 through T8, arthritis, bone spurs, and collapsed thoracic discs, and Scheurmanns disease in my spine.
Even with all this damage, I still get treated like I'm just faking it or something...that because of my young age, there's no way I could possibly be in pain. Like pain is only for older people or something. There are so many times that I have left doctor's offices in tears, sometimes just bawling, because they just treat me so badly. It's really horrible. But it's nice to find someone who understands these things. I had to drop out of school in February because the pain is just so unbearable. I am not even able to work right now and recently had to apply for disability. My whole life is on hold just waiting for something to help my pain....and right now I am debating on whether or not to go for a 10 or more level fusion of my thoracic spine, as apparently that is now my one and only option.
Anyway, how are you guys dealing with your pain? Is it really affecting your life as well, or are you still able to do everything? God bless you guys, and I hope you keep in touch here on the boards.
jen, yeah I too am applying for disability and ssi. I just started the process about last month. I've just got several packets in the mail to fill out (past job history and medical history, what i can lift what i did lift, med side effects, etc....they go into all those details) are you at that part yet? how far into your applying are you jen? And so I havn't worked since Aug of 2003 because of the unability to do so. now though, i forgot to say above, i'm coping better than before, but still unable to run, do heavy anything and i can't sit or stand for long, the longer i do the more pain and more of a 'process' it is just getting up. what's helping now is methadone and some BT meds here and there, but i just stopped those for an increase in my methadone. But you know the meds have side effects that would impare my work ability as well...it's all just so much you know, for anybody, but i guess at our yound ages...it's like we're robbed of precious youth. In a way though, I'm glad I was able to see my mom go through this (she's in PM too, for 15 years now) so i know ALL about applying for SSD, SSI and PM, it's her curse but it was my forunate lesson altough at the time I didn't know i would be following her footsteps. She's my role model, she's so strong and independent. I'd like to think i'm the same and then one day I'll be, WE'LL be a role model for our next young victims, u know...?
It sounds like we applied for SSD at the same time. I am probably just a week or two ahead of you if you just got those questionnaires. I guess it's good that you have had your mom as an example and so you know what you're doing with all of this! man, 15 years is a long time though, most of the time I feel like I can't handle even one more day of this. I cannot even imagine 15 years! I had no idea what SSD involved, or PM for that matter. My PM now won't prescribe anything for me, he suggested I take aspirin!!! I wanted to slap him! He is only doing injections now, I just had 2 epidurals, and will start facet joint soon, and then a discogram. Have you ever had surgery for your herniated disc? Just wondering, since you said it affects your sciatic nerve badly.
You're right, I have so much respect now for anyone living with chronic pain or illness...all of these people here blow me away. I never could have imagined how much strength and courage it takes to go on with such horrible pain. And yet we so often feel guilty or useless...
my friends have and still do give me a really hard time about my pain, and especially about not working. They make me feel even more horrible and guilty. I already feel guilty being 21 and unable to do anything, but they just make it worse. I guess I need to get over it and not let them make me feel bad about something I certainly never asked for. I would give anything to be able to work or return to school. hopefully one day...soon!
anyway, see ya later! have a great holiday!
Yeah my friends, well mostly in the beggining, gave me a hard time too. Family as well, 'well why aren't you working?' I would hear. And why are you on MEHTADONE!!!! omg, are you on heroin...? I love when I've heard that...LOL, it's just a constant time of explaning what the meds are about and what's happened to me and what my restrictions are. Pain is such a Beaoch! Nobody can see it, there for they've no clue how it feels for you. It's such a personal condition it's hard for people to wrap their fingers around it. Now I've had ESI', etc. and yeah...I had a surgery, minimally evasive, but still a surgery called 'nucleoplasty' and to be honest it didn't do a DAMN THING! And this was right after a discogram, so I've had that as well. Well about your Dr. not giving a thing except a lame response to take aspirin is BS. Go get you another Dr. girl! I'm for serious! You don't have to take that. It's your life, you've no ties to one certian dr EVER! So play the game till your happy! I had to do it too. My previous PM doctor would only Rx the LA morphines and duragesic or put in the pain pumps. I asked for methadone once and she said "NOW WAY" that medicine is TERRIBLE! along w/ oxycontin, she's just wasn't interested in my personal problems, like money... I couldn't afford her medicines or pain pumps, etc. So I say adios. I found a new one, their really great too! IT's just trial and error. See what I did was ask questions before I made the appt. Cause I can't afford to pay a dr's bill and not know what's going to happen when I walk out. I could walk out of there w/ the same BS situation, no methadone or No decent help at all, and then I'm out 100 or so dollars. So I asked 'do you Rx methadone there' and they said "yes, but I can't tell you that's what will happen", of course it's up to the dr. , but at least I got the answer I was looking for. See, cause I knew that methadone was the ONLY medicine for long acting pain that I would be able to afford. Just take your time, think things out and make some calls. I never hurts to ask a question, so just do it girl! I"m for ya! And it's GREAT that we are doing the SSI, Disability at the same time. So let me know how things go for you......k?
I am too a young adult going to 22 in sept. I have been going to doctors and pain clinics for over four years from a car accident that took place in high school. I finally founf a great doctor not afraid to prescribe because of age. I take a powerful combination of narcs and it helps me to function almost normally. Im intrested in hearing other stories and im glad to see there are others like myself. Im sometimes afraid to tell some people what im on because of critisism.
WOW! I guess I am not the only one My chronic pain has affected my life considerably. Everything from hanging out to with my friends and school. I too had to drop out of school for a while because my pain was so unbearable. I take METHADONE now and it works soo well. I am so glad to see people like me on here. I hope everyone can keep in touch!
I know exactly how you feel I am in chronic pain all the time due to a back injury and surgery in the past. Every time I talk to a doctor I get attitude or the "drug seeking " look or "addicted" speech just because I am 21. Its very unfair and there has been many time I have walked out of hospitals or doctors offices because I was so mortified and humiliated. I was made to feel like I was making this all up and I should just deal with it. Its nice to know I am not the only one going through something like this.