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Post-Op Muscle Spasms

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Old 02-26-2007, 10:07 PM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Plano TX
Posts: 5
slabman HB User
Unhappy Post-Op Muscle Spasms

I had my back surgery 3 months ago (L4/L5 discectomy) and was recovering normally. Did the PT thing and two months later I may have overdone it, leading to severe recurring pain across the lower back. Severe pain through muscle tightening seems to be the main problem, as all leg pain/sensations are back to normal now. I need constant muscle relaxers and Coedine to alleviate the pain. If I tighten my stomach muscles when getting up, my whole back goes into spasm. A short, 6 day course of steroids helped a bit, but now that it's over, the pain has resumed. Where do I go from here? Injections? More potent steroids? Acupuncture??????

Last edited by slabman; 02-27-2007 at 07:45 AM.

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Old 02-27-2007, 05:41 PM   #2
cowboys wife
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Cedar Park, Texas, USA
Posts: 6
cowboys wife HB User
Smile Re: Post-Op Muscle Spasms

I also had surgery (lumbar fusion) of the L4/L5 discs. My surgery was in 2004 and although the surgery went very well, several months after surgery I to started having the lower back pain again (muscle tightness, and also the pain associated with the sciatic nerve down the left leg) I also started having spasms of the left leg. I had numerous MRI's since my surgery to which I was told the fusion was good, and that they could not find anything else that would be causing the pain and spasms. My neurosurgeon referred me to a pain management physician who I have been seeing for a year and a half trying different procedures to alleviate the pain. Nothing has worked. Today i saw my neurosurgeon again and he said I probably have scar tissue built up around the area of L4-L5. I am scheduled to have a Mylogram CT , and if that doesn't show any other abnormalities then he will schedule me to have on of the spinal cord stimulators implanted to control the pain. However, that still does not explain the leg and muscle spasms that I am having. Mine has gotten to the point that I have shooting pain down the left leg (sciatic nerve) and I will actually get a muscle cramp in the left thigh muscle. I hope yours doesn't get as bad as mine but I would certainly go and talk with you surgeon again.

Old 02-27-2007, 06:05 PM   #3
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: western us
Posts: 7,266
ms_west HB User
Re: Post-Op Muscle Spasms

I would head back to a spinal surgeon or neurologist for further testing and consultation. Good Luck.

Old 02-27-2007, 06:34 PM   #4
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Plano TX
Posts: 5
slabman HB User
Re: Post-Op Muscle Spasms

My surgeon let me live in pain for the last 4 days and then today finally I got my call to go through...24 + hrs. later. I guess these guys just don't get it. I finally got them to recommend another injection with that long needle......just like I had 3X prior to surgery. So he gives me the same ol' milk toast steroid pack as before, hoping I can get by 'till Friday when the injection is scheduled. I was so sore and confined to the bed today I called the pain Dr. and he arranged to give me Flexeril to control those spasms. Now I have to go sans steroids for two days brefore the injection, according to the pain Doc. So why the lack of sensitivity by the surgeon in regard to this pain? If this doesn't work, it's time for another MRI.

Old 02-27-2007, 09:54 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Berryville, Virginia
Posts: 2,381
Justoneofus HB User
Re: Post-Op Muscle Spasms

Well some docs just dont have much of a bedside manner at all, and often it's the specialists that fall into this stereotype.

I got lucky.. my doc was great! And still is!

If you were referred to PM by your surgeon.. that is often the reluctance to providing meds to you.. as they expect you to work through your PM for that part of your care. (just a thought).

Im not sticking up for the doc.. just trying to give you some ideas on WHY.

Hope you get relief.
"believe in the beauty of your dreams"- E. Roosevelt

L5/S1 bulging @ 18, now 46; still there (but no pain)
Fusion at L4/L5 Apr -2006
Solidly Fused Nov-2006
A Success, but still improving!

Old 02-28-2007, 01:53 PM   #6
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Plano TX
Posts: 5
slabman HB User
Re: Post-Op Muscle Spasms

Yes, I think that IS the case here. He's not sure how to proceed and the PM can do some things. I just hope it's not a recurrent disk problem that's causing this.

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