Hi Everyone: I have had back problems since 2000 and went throught six fusions. I have quit counting the test and injections I have had. I had the test trial for the stimulator in May and that was a horrible experence that didn't work. I had done my homework on the stimulator and had such high hopes for it and when it didn't work, what a mental crash.
Have any of you had the pump implanted and it improved your condition enough for you to continue to work/return to work or is this a career ending move ?
wow I have never heard of anyone having 6 fusions you poor thing that is so narley , that is insane and I am so sorry your still in such pain, I guess they didn't work? That is why I refuse to have one, I would rather suffer in pain and take meds than have one.
I did want to let you know that I have met a lot of people in my pain management clinic in the waiting room and they have pain pumps for various reasons and they are all doing GREAT with there pumps and are so happy with the relief they get. they told me its like a 50-60% relief and that is pretty darn good so if I were you I would consider it.
Are you seeing a pain doc now? Does pain medication help you at all anymore?
Last edited by slipperyslope; 06-21-2007 at 06:42 AM.
Thanks, I had the first one in Feb. 2002 and about four weeks out I got a staff infection, was back in the hospital for two more weeks with my back wide open and getting it washed out every other day and I was intervenous antibiotics every four hours for eight weeks. The surg. said all the washing removed the bone graf and they had to do it again a few mo. later. After it just kept moving up my back. I am seeing a pain guy and am takeing 10mg lortab x 4 and a 90mg morphine pill a bed time. I could not make it without the meds and often times it's hard with them. The pain guy said the goal is 50% relief with the pump.
I have heard nothing good about the implanted pumps. My dad had one and my father in law had one and they both ended up in the hospital due to either infection or malfunction. My dad's blew up or something inside him and dang near killed him. I would never, ever have one in me. Ever.
Hi John, I could be the poster boy for pumps. Of course there is risk of ifection and failure, but 50% relief has taken me from pretty much being home bound to working part time again. I've only had 3 surgeries but each fusion got longer and longer so now I have a failed 6 level from L1-S1.
The pump cleared my head and relieved enough pain to loose the weight I needed to loose and exercise daily to strengthen what I lost over the years. I was going to hurt at night whether I sat on the couch or found something I could do aerobically and strengthen my core which supports the failed fusion. The doc can do their part, but you have to do your part to and rebuild what all the surgeries and meds have taken away.
The pump is the most effective way and has the least side effects to manage back pain without a large nerve component, like radiculopothy or sciatica. It may not help leg pain but it can help back pain. 50% relief is different for everyone, It's like comparing a pain score. To some it's the difference between walking and not. To others it means they can play 18 holes of golf instead of 9 and work the next day with the help of pain meds.
The pumps a way not to feel the way you feel from opiates. It's a way to have less side effects and use minuscule amounts compared to orals. It was the difference between looking at a very grey and depressed world to one in full color even though only 50% pain can be relieved because of the mechanical problems with my spine. I walk, I crunch, the pump doesn't fix that, but it allows me to deal with it, tighten my abs and correct my posture when I hurt, thatís if I can't find a place to lay down. I also fake being completely normal much better on a pump with my eyes all the way open.
What do you have to loose doing a trial and getting started iwith the sceening process. Giving up cnntrol and trusting your doc is going to listen and make adjutsments as needed is the most important thing. If a docs not managing things with orals and you know what you need isn't unreasonable, he's proabbly going to have mental limits as far as pump dosing. I've heard of docs that won't go above 2mgs of morphine a day, I would suffer at that dose. So trust your doc and take the decsion seriously but it's a shot at getting some of your life back.