I had a cervical laminectomy 2 yrs ago, now I have re-herniated the same disc again. I have not seen my Dr. Yet. My appointment was for the end of the month. However He got the results of my MRI on Thursday and his nurse called and said he wants to see me first thing Monday morning (that can't be good). In the mean time my shoulder, arm and hand are KILLING me. I can hardly lift my arm, turn my head, and if I cough the pain just shoots everywhere. I do take gabapentin 300mg 3x a day and will be increasing as Dr. recommends. However it does not help much. Is there anything I can do to help ease the pain? Should I put it in a sling, use ice or heat, Ben Gay? Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.
elle...... I first wanted to wish you the best for your Monday's appointment. I too had the same symptoms and had surgery at Lee Memorial Hospital in April. 2008. After the fusion of a herniated disc (C-5), my neurosurgeon explained that my nerves may (or may not) return in time.
I stay focus on doing my own physical therapy to keep my legs from obtaining atrophy. I have more numbness then I do pain.
I wish you the very best and let us know what the MRI film showed. Please be calm and don't allow you mind to think negative thoughts. As I believe every day, there is ALWAYS hope.
I know how unrelenting cervical injury pain can be. I know that while I was awaiting proper evaluation, I had to keep my arm elevated. If it was dependent (hanging down to one's side) it throbbed like a toothache constantly. I tried to keep it above my head if I was reclining, That seemed to be less painful. I do hope your evlauation goes well.
I had the same painful problem with my arm, gosh it hurt so much I thought I would loose my mind. I could not let it hang down either, like the weight of the the arm hanging down was to much. So it was a PT who was working with me at the time recommended I put it in a sling till they figure out what was causing the problems.
Because it was so painful the doctors all agreed it was the one thing I could do, although they did not like me to "baby" that side to much the doctor who was trying everything under the sun to help me agreed I could not just walk around with the arm not supported. He noted my reaction when he moved the arm, I would be sobbing in no time, gosh it hurt & would cause other areas to ache around it to throb. So I wore the sling & took it off enough to avoid frozen shoulder.
I ended up with decompression of that shoulder, as we did discover bone spurs, bursitis & arthritis but the pain remained after months of recovery. Cervical problems were discovered after the shoulder surgery did not give me the relief desired.
It was a nightmare & one I'll never forget, cervical fusion at 5-6 helped me alot but I still have spinal problems. Im having pain in my arms/shoulders & hands but not to that degree & I dont ever want to end up like that again. It took along time for the severity of the problem to show in the tests but I learned to listen to my body.
Im assuming something has turned up in the MRI, I hope in the mean time you find a way to relieve the pain. I sure do feel for you. If you can let us know what your doctor has to say. Good luck & god bless, Sammy
I went to my NS yesterday. The MRI showed that I re-herniated c6-c7. The findings read like this: Moderate right lateral recess disc extrusion extending 9mm infralaterally at the C6-7 level superimposed on disc bulge and moderate disc height loss. this contracts and impinges both the right c7 and c8 nerve roots.
I go in for more surgery on Feb. 23. In the mean time I am taking oxicodone.
My NS said a disc re-herniating after having a laminectomy is about one in a million (lucky me). He also told me my first herniation was one of the worst he has seen in thirty years of doing this( lucky me). I told him he better get it right this time because I never wanted to see him again. This time he is removing the disc and putting in an ROI-C implant. Something VERY NEW (lucky me). LOL