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    Old 01-26-2008, 11:10 PM   #1
    lizzybrog80
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    Post Newbie - Just had IDET

    Hi,

    I’ve been meaning to write this for a while and just haven’t found the time. My name is Beth, and I have been dealing with back pain straight for almost 3 years. Here is my story, in timeline fashion to streamline things. I also had an IDET procedure at L3/4 on 1/25/08, so after my story, I will talk about the procedure, so you can skip the story & go to that if that is what you’re interested in

    2000 Fell off a horse and landed on a jump pole on my lower back. Had pain for about a week, then it effectively went away, but hurt so much when I rode horses that I had to quit riding. Otherwise, it was fine. I never saw a doctor. Pain was on the right side only.

    2002 Out of nowhere that same pain returned for appx. 1 week. On pain scale it was low – maybe 4/10. I never saw a doctor.

    2005 In march 2005 I was carrying concrete out of our back yard w/ my hubby. It was a large chunk, and I was holding it out in front of me. I took a bad step and felt it instantly. I was in extreme pain for about 4 weeks – 8 or 9/10. The pain was on my right side only, in the low back/buttock. I had my first MRI, which showed a bulging disc at L3/4 and a focal disc protrustion at L4/5. The bottom3 discs (L3-S1) were black. I was given Vicodin by my PCP, which I took as needed. I finally took 800mg of Advil several times per day, and that knocked the pain out.

    The pain went away in early April 2005, but I had a flare-up in July 2005, which essentially lasted, at a much lower pain interval (maybe 5/10) through my next major incident, January 2006.

    2006 In January 2006, as I was preparing for a trial at work (I’m a legal assistant), I lifted a box that was maybe 15 pounds. I was in pain instantly, at 9/10 in the same place – right sided low back/buttock. Since that day, my pain has never gone away. I had my second MRI in January 2006 which showed essentially the same thing as previous, with a few key differences. At L3/4 if showed a tear in the PLL (posterior longitudinal ligament) via HIZ. L4/5 stayed the same – small paracentral disc herniation lateralizing to the symptomatic right side. Through this time I continued to take Vicodin as needed.

    In February 2006 my doctor recommended I try an epidural steroid injection (ESI), which I did. They did NOT use fleuroscopy; it was just “bend and stick.” The first one did not work, but they said I should come back for a second, which I did, which again provided no relief. It was at that point the doctor put me on Neurontin. Neurontin was a lifesaver for 2 weeks. It worked beautifully, and then just like that, stopped. So I asked to increase the dose, which we did. We eventually got up to 900mg/day, which was definitely helping, but not much. My pain was still easily a 7/10.

    During the summer of 2006 I consulted a chiropractor. I saw him about 14 times. I had begun having a little bit of leg pain, and when he manipulated me it did help the leg pain, but never helped the back.

    2006 In November 2006 I had a discogram in Annapolis, MD. I was sedated with Versed, so I don’t remember the procedure at all. But, the report showed 2 positive discs – L3/4 and L4/5 (no shocker there, based on previous MRI’s). It showed L3/4 had a massive annular tear and was leaking fluid onto the muscle bundle. L4/5 also had a big tear, and both (according to the doc) produced concordant pain. So I finally kind of knew what was going on. But what was to be done about it???

    2007 By 2007 I was returning to my orthopedist and he didn’t have anything to tell me, except fusion, which I did not want (I’m only 27). He gave me the name of Dr. Yeung in Arizona, who does endoscopic discectomies. I sent him my records & films to review, which he did and said I would be a good candidate.

    By June I had built a tolerance to Vicodin, and had to take 3 at a time to get any effect. So my doc switched me to Percocet. For a quick minute, 1 Percocet worked well. Then I had to take 2 to get relief. That seemed to be what worked for me for a while. I was also sleeping on the couch in the basement, because (1) I was sleeping terribly, maybe 5 hours/night, and (2) I would toss & turn so much trying to get comfortable I would wake my husband.

    So on July 12 I flew with my hubby from Washington, D.C. to Phoenix, AZ and had the procedure done. The procedure itself was easy. The first 2 weeks post-procedure were painful with both normal pain AND surgical pain – I was VERY stiff walking & getting around. Dr. Yeung told me it could take 3 months to know if the procedure worked. Long story short, 3 months went by, and nothing changed – my normal pain was still there. I was still eating Percocet like candy to control my pain. I was also sent home with a TENS unit, which I used a lot. It felt great while on, but never changed anything after I took it off.

    In November 2007 I had a new MRI (sitting), which my ortho thought showed a far lateral disc protrusion at L5/S1 (a disc that we knew wasn’t great, but thought was the least of my problems). So he recommended a foraminal nerve root block at that level, which I had done under sedation at the end of November. It did nothing.

    By that time I had really built up a tolerance to Percocet. After the injection I was taking 4 at a time to get just 1-2 hours of relief. My ortho basically said I was screwed and there was nothing else to do. He also referred me to a new pain mgt. doc (I had tried 2 about a year earlier, but all they wanted to do was eitiher inject or use TENS therapy and a heating pad – I thought they were useless).

    So, in December 2007 I saw Dr. D. Long story short, Dr. D is fabulous. I had always complained that when I would consult a new doc, I had so much history that I never felt anyone really paid attention or listened or questioned anything. Dr. D was in the room with me for 40 minutes. He read every report I brought and questioned things. He told me there were lots of options, both in medications and treatments. He started me on Avinza, 30mg/day (long-acting morphine), as well as Percocet for BTP. He also started me on Elavil, 25mg at bedtime, which, as soon as I started taking it, let me sleep 8 hours per night without waking up.

    The Avinza at 30mg did not work at all, so we upped to 60mg. That didn’t work either, and we went to 90mg. That didn’t work either, so we upped to 120mg, which is what I am on now, which works OK, but not great.

    2008 Dr. D wanted to perform 3-level foraminal injections at L3/4, L4/5, and L5/S1. We did that January 2, 2008. I got zero relief from it. We discussed my options, and decided that at this point, an IDET procedure was the best option. But since there are 3 potential discs involved, we didn’t know what disc to do it on. So for the sake of argument, we decided that L4/5 (the one Dr. Yeung operated on in July 2007) was not generating pain, and L5/S1 had lost some disc height, so Dr. D said it wasn’t a good candidate, b/c it could be hard to get the catheter in.

    IDET PROCEDURE 1/25/08 STORY

    So, by guessing & process of elimination, Dr. D performed an IDET procedure on 1/25/08 at L3/4. The procedure went fine. I was knocked out while he was inserting the catheter, so don’t remember that. Then they woke me up for the burn. There was a little glitch, and finally they determined that the catheter was faulty, so he had to re-insert another, then started the burn. It was pretty painful while they were fiddling with the catheter – the pain was on my left side (they inserted on the left) It took a while before I felt any of my normal pain, but about halfway through I did start to feel it at a low level. The level of pain increased throughout the rest of the procedure, but never got terrible, and I never had any leg pain (I had very little leg pain pre-procedure, or ever, so that’s not abnormal). Then that was it. When the burn was about done, they gave me another dose of Fentanyl through the IV, so that helped the pain. They removed the needle, which hurt a bit. I then went to recovery, where I only recovered for about 15 minutes, then got dressed, had some juice, went over discharge instructions, and left.

    I was home by 12 noon after the procedure and laid in bed. Dr. D’s post-op instructions said the first 48-72 hours are the most important, and he said do all I can to lie down as much as possible, so basically I stayed in bed the rest of the day & night. I expected to feel worse than I did. There were periods of some pain, but really low intensity (5/10). I think I was expecting to feel what I felt post-SED, which was lots of pain and stiffness, so since I don’t feel that, I feel like I am feeling better. We’ll see how things fare long-term.

    This morning (1/26), I woke up feeling great, got up and made a crumb cake. I then felt a little pain coming on, and took a Roxicet to catch it early. Needless to say, I’m feeling pretty good right now. The Roxicet makes me really sleepy though, and every time I take 2 (1 just doesn’t touch my pain) I fall asleep for 2 hours. I woke up still feeling good. I’ve seriously been doing nothing but laying in bed, and it’s funny how while you’re working you would die to be able to do this, but when you’re forced, it’s just not the same. I mean, a body can only lay in bed so long without getting pressure sores, so my upper back & buttocks are starting to get sore just from laying here, so I’ve tried to get up and stand up for a while just to switch things up. On the other hand, I want to move as little as possible, b/c I’m afraid of messing it up! I’ve been wearing my brace 24 hours a day, and can’t shower until tomorrow.

    Current Meds, just FYI, though maybe that's for anothe forum:
    Lyrica, 75 mg, 4x/day (nerve pain)
    Avinza, 120 mg, 1x/day (pain)
    Amitriptyline, 25 mg, 1x/day at bedtime (antidepressant/sleep aid)
    Roxicodone, 15 mg, 3x/day (switched from Percocet just after IDET)

    Every time I’ve searched for information on anything regarding back pain, I’ve found this site incredibly helpful, so I wanted to share my story. I will continue to keep you updated on my progress following the IDET. If you want to contact me, feel free to PM me. I am off of work all next week, returning on 2/4. I hope everyone is doing well and I wish everyone the best of pain relief!!!

     
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    Old 01-26-2008, 11:45 PM   #2
    mamakitkat
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Hi Lizzy,
    Welcome to the boards!!! I'm sure youwill continue to find so much info & help here. WOW you have sure been thru the wringer, I'm so sorry for all your suffering. It does sound like you have found help in the end. Although it is very early after the IDET I would think that if things didn't help youwould know it big time.

    I pray that you have success with this last procedure, I know only too well how living with pain can be, as do we all on here unfortunatly. I have had 4 attempts to fuse the same levels L4-S1, with little success. I am currently at a level 2-3 splondy with hardware, the fusions did not fuse so the hardware is what is keeping things from moving more. I have permanent nerve damage in my left foot & leg which is controlled (if you want to call it that) with 450 mg lyrica a day, 3-4 lortab & 3 flexiril a day as well.

    So glad you found the boards to help you thru this recovery, I assure you you will find so much support here.

    God Bless

    Carol
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    Old 01-27-2008, 11:14 AM   #3
    lizzybrog80
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    [QUOTE=mamakitkat;3412511]Hi Lizzy,
    Welcome to the boards!!! I'm sure youwill continue to find so much info & help here. WOW you have sure been thru the wringer, I'm so sorry for all your suffering. It does sound like you have found help in the end. Although it is very early after the IDET I would think that if things didn't help youwould know it big time.

    I pray that you have success with this last procedure, I know only too well how living with pain can be, as do we all on here unfortunatly. I have had 4 attempts to fuse the same levels L4-S1, with little success. I am currently at a level 2-3 splondy with hardware, the fusions did not fuse so the hardware is what is keeping things from moving more. I have permanent nerve damage in my left foot & leg which is controlled (if you want to call it that) with 450 mg lyrica a day, 3-4 lortab & 3 flexiril a day as well.

    So glad you found the boards to help you thru this recovery, I assure you you will find so much support here.

    God Bless

    Carol[/QUOTE]

    Carol, thanks for (1) getting through my incredibly long post and (2) your response. Sounds like your situation is not so good! I'm sorry you are going through all of that. I hope that when you say you are "managed," that it is at least a little bit so! I feel so incredibly lucky to have found this pain management doc - he has really been my saviour - not yet physically, but very much so mentally. I walked out of my first appointment with him with such hope, and I hadn't felt that in a while.

    Quick Update: I woke up at 9:00 a.m. this morning in quite a bit of pain (7/10). That is my normal time to take my meds - Lyrica & Avinza, so I decided to take my meds and get back in bed to try to tough it out. I woke up sleeping on my R side (bad side), so thought maybe that was the culprit. I think it was. I fell back asleep and woke up around 11:00 a.m. feeling great. So I'm glad I decided not to take the Roxicodone. I would LOVE to be able to get off some of these meds if this procedure worked. So as of now I still feel pretty darn good pain-wise, except that I'm getting sore/stiff in the rest of my body just from laying around still all day long I'll check back a little later. Take care, everybody.

    -Beth
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    Back pain since March 2005
    2 ESI's - Feb. 2006
    Discograms 11/16/06 & 7/10/07
    End. Discectomy - July 2007 (L4/5)
    3-level Foraminal Inj. - Jan. 2008 (L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1)
    IDET - 1/25/08 (L3/4)

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 02:31 PM   #4
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Hi Beth,
    Welcome This is a great forum, everyone is so very supportive.
    Sounds like you have been through alot but it also seems that maybe the IDET has helped somewhat. Great...you were able to get by this morning without the pain meds! Don't let the pain get ahead of you though! I will pray that you continue to get the relief that you need. Please keep us posted!

    Deb

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 06:54 PM   #5
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Hi Beth - very interesting story. Glad you are feeling better. Just wanted to comment on a couple of things. Number 1: This board does not allow personal contact or being "PM"d. So even though many of us would love to contact each other on a more personal level to exchange details, etc., it can't be done here. Number two - wanted to make sure you are aware that Roxicodone is Percocet without the tylenol in it. So the only thing different now is that you aren't getting tylenol unless you are taking tylenol as seperate medications along with the Roxicodone. Keep feeling better - K'Mac

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 07:44 PM   #6
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Hi, Lizzy,

    Thanks for sharing the story and congratulations on a successful IDET.

    The following words on your post drew my attention----- "2006 In November 2006 I had a discogram in Annapolis, MD. I was sedated with Versed, so I don’t remember the procedure at all. But, the report showed 2 positive discs......"

    I did the discogram on 10/02/07, the doc. who conducted the procedure said that I have a annular tear on L4/5 and there was fluid leaking, he suggested IDET. While I went for another doct for a second opinion, I was told that the disc should be negative since I didn't have duplicate pain during discogram. The thing is he is not the only saying that... therefore, I hesitated and don't know who to believe.

    My question is do you have the same pain when you were doing discogram and how did the doc. determine whether the disc is positive or negative?

    Thanks!

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 08:58 PM   #7
    lizzybrog80
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    [QUOTE=Memere;3413635]Hi Beth - very interesting story. Glad you are feeling better. Just wanted to comment on a couple of things. Number 1: This board does not allow personal contact or being "PM"d. So even though many of us would love to contact each other on a more personal level to exchange details, etc., it can't be done here. Number two - wanted to make sure you are aware that Roxicodone is Percocet without the tylenol in it. So the only thing different now is that you aren't getting tylenol unless you are taking tylenol as seperate medications along with the Roxicodone. Keep feeling better - K'Mac[/QUOTE]

    Hi K'Mac,

    Thanks for clearing me up on the PM'ing - I just assumed that was a feature without investigating it That is unfortunate, but luckily we can chat through these messages sufficiently.

    Also, I do know that the Roxicodone is the same med as the Percocet w/out Tylenol. My doc has been concerned about my Tylenol intake, b/c I had been taking 12 Perc's per day, which is really getting up there. So the Roxi's have two good things about them: (1) no Tylenol, and (2) increased strength (15mg) means I take less pills, which I think is good mentally

    Nice to "meet" you and I look forward to "talking" to you again

    -Beth
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    Back pain since March 2005
    2 ESI's - Feb. 2006
    Discograms 11/16/06 & 7/10/07
    End. Discectomy - July 2007 (L4/5)
    3-level Foraminal Inj. - Jan. 2008 (L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1)
    IDET - 1/25/08 (L3/4)

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 09:11 PM   #8
    lizzybrog80
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    [QUOTE=rachelzhu74;3413687]Hi, Lizzy,

    Thanks for sharing the story and congratulations on a successful IDET.

    The following words on your post drew my attention----- "2006 In November 2006 I had a discogram in Annapolis, MD. I was sedated with Versed, so I don’t remember the procedure at all. But, the report showed 2 positive discs......"

    I did the discogram on 10/02/07, the doc. who conducted the procedure said that I have a annular tear on L4/5 and there was fluid leaking, he suggested IDET. While I went for another doct for a second opinion, I was told that the disc should be negative since I didn't have duplicate pain during discogram. The thing is he is not the only saying that... therefore, I hesitated and don't know who to believe.

    My question is do you have the same pain when you were doing discogram and how did the doc. determine whether the disc is positive or negative?

    Thanks![/QUOTE]

    Hi there,

    Discograms are so confusing and controversial, and every doc you ask will have a different opinion. The first one I had (Nov. 2006) like I said was done under sedation with Versed, so I know I was awake and talking to them the whole time, but don't remember any of it (the beauty of Versed). The doc performing this disco said that at two levels - L3/4 and L4/5 I reported concordan pain during injection of dye AND he visualized large annular tears in both discs (different locations, though).

    I then had a second discogram done in July 2007 right before my SED procedure, because the doc doing the procedure wanted to do his own, and I agreed for a couple of reasons: (1) I would like the doc who is performing surgery on me to see what's going on with his own eyes, and (2) it had been 8 months; things could have changed since last discogram.

    During that disco I was under NO sedation, so I was awake & remember all of it. At L3/4 I felt pretty intense paid (7 or 8/10) right up the middle of my spine in the low back. BUT, my "normal/concordant" pain is on the R side only. So he ruled this disc negative b/c injecting dye did not produce concordant pain. He did see copious dye spillage from that disc and identified a grade V (HUGE) annular tear.

    At L4/5 I felt no pain. He compared that with my MRI and thought that was weird. He did see a grade V annular tear at this level also. Because he thought it odd I felt no pain, he re-positioned the needle and did the test again. Still, no pain. He finally determined this disc a false-negative, because he said that the tear was so big that the dye was escaping the disc so fast that he could not pressurize it, thereby causing pain.

    Moral of the story (if there is one): I don't know what to think. We ended up operating on L4/5 in July, because the doc assumed that was the disc causing my pain. I thought then, and still think now that the fact that I felt pain at L3/4, even though it wasn't my normal pain, is odd and should tell us that there's something wrong with that disc. That is the one that we subsequently did IDET on 2 days ago.

    Each doc will interpret these tests on their own. In theory, I think most docs are looking for the reproduction of your normal pain more than just looking for annular tears. The reason is that there is definite proof that there are plenty of people with annular tears but no pain. So in theory if you have an annular tear and that is the cause of your pain, your pain should be reproduced during discography. Whether that really works all the time, I don't know (nor do I think any of the doctors).

    Long-winded answer - sorry - it's something I've put lots of time into thinking about. I will say that my post-IDET experience, which has only been 2.5 days, has been great, and if it doesn't get any worse than this I would recommend anyone with annular tears & pain try it wholeheartedly. But, that's obviously up to you & your doc. Feel free to ask any more Q's & best of luck to you!!!
    __________________
    Back pain since March 2005
    2 ESI's - Feb. 2006
    Discograms 11/16/06 & 7/10/07
    End. Discectomy - July 2007 (L4/5)
    3-level Foraminal Inj. - Jan. 2008 (L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1)
    IDET - 1/25/08 (L3/4)

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 11:41 PM   #9
    rachelzhu74
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Thanks Lizzy, maybe I should do discogram one more time before I make a decision. So basically....This is the theory that the reproductive pain during discogram is the main factor to determine whether it is the source of pain or not. I wish I could find the course and deal with the ugly pain as soon as possible. It has been two years and it is really a suffering.

    I have done 3 MRIs these two years and they show the same results: A budging disc at L4/5. While most docs disapproved it is the source of the pain since the budging doesn't look severe and they believe there is enough room for nerves to pass through based on my CT film---------------------- but I have enormous pain and constantly. Well, It appears that I have pain in the wrong area. In theory, when you have a potrustion disc at L4/5, the shooting and pinch pain go down to your lower leg and toes while my pain is mainly focused on back, pelvis and upper leg.

    Only two doctors from Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan saying it is still possible that the pain is from the L4/5 disc even it doesn't complied with the nerve route. The last doctor whose diagnsis is " discogenic pain" suggested IDET. I went to do my discogram, I was also sedated but I am not sure if it was with Versed. What I was told is I wouldn't remember anything, but I was able to feel the pain. He inserted needle into L3/4, L4/5 and L5/S1 in order for me to tell the difference because he presumed that according to my MRI, I would be fine when he put the needle into L3/4 and L5/S1, but would feel great pain when he does it on L4/5. The result is I didn't feel pain on all 3 and it is odd that I remember the conversation afterwards even on sedation. Later, he insisted on getting IDET, explaining that the reason I didn't feel pain is because the big tear. I doubted and went for second opinion. And here I am, still struggling with pain every day.

    A brief history of my injury:
    2001 Fell on my back--left side, 3-5 days pain,no treatment, self-healing.
    2004 A spring on back--left, 1 month pain, no treatment, self-healing
    2005 pain on back-left, pelvis--left, later spread to left thigh,
    2006 pain on back, pelvis and thigh all both sides.
    2007 All symptoms getting worse gradually---- no sitting or walking more than 20 minutes, have pain more than 15 hours a day. Can't wear bracelet, can't even wear normal pants because of pinch pain.

    .

     
    Old 01-28-2008, 12:09 AM   #10
    rachelzhu74
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    [QUOTE=lizzybrog80;3413800]

    At L4/5 I felt no pain. He compared that with my MRI and thought that was weird. He did see a grade V annular tear at this level also. Because he thought it odd I felt no pain, he re-positioned the needle and did the test again. Still, no pain. He finally determined this disc a false-negative, because he said that the tear was so big that the dye was escaping the disc so fast that he could not pressurize it, [B]thereby causing pain[/B].
    [/QUOTE]

    Is this a typo? You mean causing NO pain, right?

     
    Old 01-28-2008, 06:16 PM   #11
    lizzybrog80
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    [QUOTE=rachelzhu74;3413893]Is this a typo? You mean causing NO pain, right?[/QUOTE]

    Hello,

    The theory of discogram is that when they inject the disc it causes pressure (imagine blowing up a balloon - when you blow into it, it then becomes pressurized). So Dr. Yeung theorized that because the annular tear at L4/5 was so big, the disc could not become pressurized because the dye he injected leaked out so fast (i.e., if the balloon had a hole in it, it would not inflate). Therefore, when he injected dye, I felt NO pain, even though he assumed that, based on the fact that the annular tear was so big, I should HAVE felt pain. Hope that helps clear it up - I'm not feeling like I'm making much sense
    __________________
    Back pain since March 2005
    2 ESI's - Feb. 2006
    Discograms 11/16/06 & 7/10/07
    End. Discectomy - July 2007 (L4/5)
    3-level Foraminal Inj. - Jan. 2008 (L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1)
    IDET - 1/25/08 (L3/4)

     
    Old 01-28-2008, 06:30 PM   #12
    lizzybrog80
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    [QUOTE=rachelzhu74;3413881]Thanks Lizzy, maybe I should do discogram one more time before I make a decision. So basically....This is the theory that the reproductive pain during discogram is the main factor to determine whether it is the source of pain or not. I wish I could find the course and deal with the ugly pain as soon as possible. It has been two years and it is really a suffering.

    I have done 3 MRIs these two years and they show the same results: A budging disc at L4/5. While most docs disapproved it is the source of the pain since the budging doesn't look severe and they believe there is enough room for nerves to pass through based on my CT film---------------------- but I have enormous pain and constantly. Well, It appears that I have pain in the wrong area. In theory, when you have a potrustion disc at L4/5, the shooting and pinch pain go down to your lower leg and toes while my pain is mainly focused on back, pelvis and upper leg.

    Only two doctors from Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan saying it is still possible that the pain is from the L4/5 disc even it doesn't complied with the nerve route. The last doctor whose diagnsis is " discogenic pain" suggested IDET. I went to do my discogram, I was also sedated but I am not sure if it was with Versed. What I was told is I wouldn't remember anything, but I was able to feel the pain. He inserted needle into L3/4, L4/5 and L5/S1 in order for me to tell the difference because he presumed that according to my MRI, I would be fine when he put the needle into L3/4 and L5/S1, but would feel great pain when he does it on L4/5. The result is I didn't feel pain on all 3 and it is odd that I remember the conversation afterwards even on sedation. Later, he insisted on getting IDET, explaining that the reason I didn't feel pain is because the big tear. I doubted and went for second opinion. And here I am, still struggling with pain every day.

    A brief history of my injury:
    2001 Fell on my back--left side, 3-5 days pain,no treatment, self-healing.
    2004 A spring on back--left, 1 month pain, no treatment, self-healing
    2005 pain on back-left, pelvis--left, later spread to left thigh,
    2006 pain on back, pelvis and thigh all both sides.
    2007 All symptoms getting worse gradually---- no sitting or walking more than 20 minutes, have pain more than 15 hours a day. Can't wear bracelet, can't even wear normal pants because of pinch pain.

    .[/QUOTE]

    Hi,

    Yes, I think that most doctors will agree that producing concordant pain (i.e., your "normal" pain) is the biggest determinor of whether a discogram is "positive." The main reason is that, and this is one of the biggest problems with back pain, it has been proven that there are many, many people whose discs will show up "deformed" on MRI, CT, discogram, but they will NOT have pain. Therefore, simply finding a diagnosis that something is wrong with a disc does NOT necessarily mean that that finding is the reason a person is having pain, because several other peoples' discs could have that same "deformity," but produce no pain. Does that make sense? Therefore, I think most docs want to have a discogram provide concordant pain, in addition to visualizing annular tears.

    I am so sorry you are going through so much pain. Trust me, I know firsthand what it's like. I also know that it is extremely frustrating not to have a "diagnosis." You have a tough situation. A bulging disc does not necessarily mean anything, and like I said above, you could perform an MRI scan on 100 people, and of those 100, 20 might show a bulging disc, but have NO pain, so it's an inconclusive diagnosis. Based on my experience, you probably are experiencing "discogenic" pain. I had the same thing - my MRI's never showed any obvious nerve impingement, ESI's did not work, thereby suggesting that the pain was generating from within the disc. Sounds like this is you, too (I am not a doc & this is not medical advice - to keep the legal peeps happy). It is odd that you did not feel pain during your discogram, but it actually sounds like your doc is using the same theory mine did - the tear is so big the disc could not be pressurized.

    Again, I would recommend IDET to anyone in your situation. Because what are your other options? Just learn to live with it or run straight to fusion. You obviously don't want to do fusion w/out exhausting all other options, which include IDET. The procedure, for me, was simple, and I am doing quite well. I did not take any pain pill until 7pm tonight & felt great all day long. The only downside is you have to be willing to commit to the stringent post-procedure restrictions. I would definitely talk to your doc again. I don't know that having another disco is going to tell you much. If you do, I would suggest having someone else do it - someone outside the practice of any of your docs, so someone independent. And, I would suggest doing it with no sedation, if you have a high tolerence for pain. I really think it made a difference for me to have my 2nd one w/out sedation, b/c I remember all of it. The first one, where he ruled 2 discs positive, I don't remember at all. I wish I did. For instance, in my 2nd one (no sed) at L3/4 I felt pretty intense pain, but not "concordant pain." So I wonder on the 1st one (w/ sed) if that was the same thing, or if during that one I really did feel my "normal pain." Who the heck knows. I've rambled long enough. I really do wish you the best of luck. Feel free to ask anything else you like. Take care!

    -Beth
    __________________
    Back pain since March 2005
    2 ESI's - Feb. 2006
    Discograms 11/16/06 & 7/10/07
    End. Discectomy - July 2007 (L4/5)
    3-level Foraminal Inj. - Jan. 2008 (L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1)
    IDET - 1/25/08 (L3/4)

     
    Old 01-29-2008, 06:21 AM   #13
    monkey5
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Lizzy, i need to stop whinning, i could be worse and i should be thankful! You are brave and doing great! Something you posted is so so true,although i have always wanted to work but so true I’ve seriously been doing nothing but laying in bed, and it’s funny how while you’re working you would die to be able to do this, but when you’re forced, it’s just not the same. Get rest and don't over do it!
    Love, Monkey

     
    Old 01-29-2008, 01:52 PM   #14
    rachelzhu74
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    Re: Newbie - Just had IDET

    Thanks, Lizzy, can I put it in this way applying to my situation:
    Because of the big tear, I feel pain all the time.
    And also because of the big tear and the dye is leaking so fast, I didn't feel pain during the discogram. Does it make sense?

    As for the treatment, I am still scared cuz one doc told me that besides its low success rate(around 50%). the burning will do more damage than good to the disc. I posted a thread a couple months ago comparing IDET with Nucleoplasty the response from people who had done IDET before, most are disappointing. You are the lucky babe! And a friend from China recommended an alternative which is called Methylene Blue injection.

    Last edited by moderator2; 01-29-2008 at 02:27 PM. Reason: posting an article, promoting another forum - please read our rules

     
    Old 03-27-2008, 01:49 PM   #15
    brokenbadger
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    discography

    hi there, to cut a long story short, 8 months ago i slipped on some water whilst carrying a 25kg load. instantly i felt a crunch and a snap. was signed off immediatly and have gone through chitotherapy, x amounts of physio and when that wasnt working , a spinal specialist suggested eppidurals. so had one of those, no improvement, so had another and same again... nothing.
    so the next step was discography....

    right, been and had that done yesterday....ouch ! i suggest no on ever has this done! so i had this diskography and the surgeon made me wait 8 hours to come and tell me that he couldnt actually get into the disk....

    also throughout all of this pain, i feel alot of grinding and crunching... so for him top tell me this , and for those symptoms to happen.. am i right in thinking that there might not be a disk there for the needle to go into?

    i am on large amounts of pain killers... tramadol and the one higher up from voloerol... and they dont touch the sides on the pain..

    help !!!!!!

     
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