It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Pain Management Message Board

  • 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

  • Post New Thread   Closed Thread
    Thread Tools Search this Thread
    Old 02-19-2005, 06:28 PM   #1
    sned2121
    Junior Member
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 21
    sned2121 HB User
    Exclamation 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    I have had neck pain for 10 years, but in the last 3 years it has been gradually getting worse and worse. I have a high pain tolerance and I am in extreme pain, even though I am on Duragesic 50 MCL and 10 MG Norco (Hydrocodone) for spikes.

    3 Years ago, I finally went to a Neurologist at my Primary Doctors request. I had a good bit of pain, but I am able to tolerate more pain then the usual person. He ordered the first MRI. When He called me in for the results, he just shook his head and said 'this is the worse case I have seen in a man your age (40 at the time). That said allot and right away I knew I was in trouble. Basically 4 bad discs 1 severely broadbase with cord stenosis and nerve stenosis on the C5-6. The C4-5 was medium base and the other 2 C3-4 and C6-7 were mild at the time. But my nerve pain was starting to get were I could not stand it, so i asked for help. He recommended PT and Darvecet. Neither worked and I progressed to a home traction machine. My condition continued to decline and Pain got worse. After all kinds of therapy and treatments that did not work, In 2004 he ordered and new MRI. It showed that the C5-6 and C4-5 got worse, as my pain diagnosed before I got the MRI. I was up to 25 lbs on the traction machine. The Neurologist recommended I stop the traction and got to Pain Management, since I was not going to have fusion with 4 bad discs.
    When the Pain Management Doctor looked at my MRI's, he's said that traction could have actually made my problem worse because I have annular tears in my disc that fluid is leaking out. The traction may have stretched the discs so the tears got bigger and leaked out further. He recommended Epidural injections. I was in enough pain at that point, I said do it.
    I think I would have done about anything that had a chance of helping, because the pain level was so high. Remember, I can handle pain, Played football as a QB with fractured ribs once. I had torn ACL, broken ribs and other painful ailments and did not phase me much (or I hided it very well).
    I went through 3 of those Cervical Epidurals with very little relief for about 3 weeks. Then it got worse again. So He recommended the Facet Blocks. I had 2 of them. after the second one it gave me about 60% relief on my right side for 1 day.
    Then the pain came back full force. So the Pain Management recommended Radio Frequency Ablation, because the facet block work for a short time and he thought he could burn that nerve and relieve the pain. I had that done the first week of January 2005. After the Surgery I had quite a bit of increase in pain and now, 6 weeks later, I am really hurting.
    I went back last week to see the pain management PA. I told him of my increase in pain, so much so that I passed out. I said I need more pain meds to handle life (I am working from home and want to continue to work). He was very short and in an angry voice said I should have went to the emergency room when I passed out. I said I was home alone and the pain had slowed, so why take the chance of passing out behind the wheel of my car .Duh. So he said We need an MRI right away to be sure the RFA procedure did not create additional problems. I was in extreme pain in the office and asked him to increase my pain meds so I can work and take a shower. He left the room to talk to a surgeon. When He came back he gave me a prescription for the same pain meds I was currently on (25 MCL Duragesic and up to 4 Norco a day in which I had to take all 4 every day, so I still had no pain spike meds). I said to the PA 'You are going to let me leave this office today in severe pain and leave me like this, suffering'. He said 'Yes.. the Doctors will not increase my pain meds since there are so many law suits and we treat pain with procedures not meds'. I WAS SO ANGRY!!!
    I called my Primary and complained big time and he said If I wanted to drop the Pain Doc that he would handle my pain meds until he could find somebody who does that. In the mean time I have to take 5 or 6 Norco to get close to managing regular life. This is on top of the 25 Duragesic (Fetynal).
    I had the MRI done and had it sent to my Neurologist and the Pain Doc. This week I got a call from the Pain Doc to come in. The MRI Results are alot worse, since 3 years ago they said. They suddenly changed they're minds and increase my pain med to 50 MCL Duragesic from 25 and 1 Hydrocodone a day for spikes. It is not cutting it. I am in severe pain still. I am also wondering why the had a change of heart and want to treat me with pain meds now. Could it be the MRI showed something went wrong with the last procedure and they are worried? I don't know, but I have all my films. I don't want to sue anybody, unless they make me worse and I have to suffer. Then I may need the money later in life.
    But for whatever reason they are saying they will treat my pain with meds all of the sudden. I'm deciding whether to drop them anyway and ask my primary to give me the pain meds, since the Pain Management PA and Doctor are not helping enough and I am still suffering. The pain is all the way down my right arm to my hands, down the left side shoulder and up and down my spine from the top of my back to my head, The pain is worse on my right side neck and shoulder. The Headaches can get really bad, as well. Why are they so scared to give pain meds? I would sign anything to show I won't sue if they are worried about that. The pain is worse than any pain medicine addiction. I had a couple doctors tell me that and believe it.
    I am going to see a Neurosurgeon, Highly recommended by my Primary and Neurologist. To see what options I have. I am really worried about fusion since I have 4 bad discs. But in the mean time I don't know who to see to get help with my pain. What I have is not cutting the pain nearly enough.
    Also, should I be worried about the increase in pain after the RFA procedure and get a Lawyer. Is it smart to have a Lawyer to protect me from descimination on my job, as well?
    Any input would be greatly appreciated.

    The latest MRI report says the following (some I understand and other part I don't). Any help or advise would be greatly appreciated.

    At C5-6 there is broad-based posterior disc/osteophyte complex, with mild deformity of the ventral cord. The canal is mildly stenotic. There is left greater than right foramina! stenosis due to uncovertebral spurring, best seen on axial image 15, impinging the left C6 nerve root and encroaching on the exiting right C6 nerve root.

    At C4-5 the canal is borderline narrow. There is posterior disc/osteophyte, more pronounced on the left where there is
    contact of the cord surface. This Is best seen on axial Image 11. There is mild biforaminal stenosis due to uncovertebral
    lipping.

    At C3-4 there Is mild posterior disc bulge, minimally separated from the cord surface. The canal is borderline narrow, in
    part due to short posterior elements. There are mild zygapophyseal degenerative changes, but the- foramina remain open

    At C6-7, there is posterior disc bulge, touching the cord without deformity, the canal is mildly stenotic. There is mild left
    foraminal stenosis,

    IMPRESSION:
    1 At C5-6, there is mild canal stenosis. Posterior disc/osteophyte complex produces mild effacement of the ventral
    cord. There is significant left greater than right foraminal narrowing, encroaching on the C6 nerve roots.
    2- Mild stenosis at C6-7, with posterior disc bulge touching the cord surface without significant deformity.
    5. Borderline canal stenosis^tC3-4-anqhC4-5-without cord-deformity.There is mild biforammat-nafTowing^t^4-57
    4. Straightening of the mid to upper cervical lordosis, suggesting muscle spasm.


    Thanks in advanced for you help

    Last edited by sned2121; 02-19-2005 at 06:30 PM.

     
    Sponsors Lightbulb
       
    Old 02-19-2005, 07:40 PM   #2
    SheSparkles
    Inactive
    (female)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 394
    SheSparkles HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    Hi,
    It seems to me as if you have all the reasons and proven tests to show need for increased meds. I am in my early 50s, fem, 5'7 and a bit over average weight and I have (compared to you) myofascial pain, which is bad enough for constant pain (7-8 unmedicated) 4 medicated and increasingly bad sacral pain from a missed sacral fx many years ago and now it can't be well diagnosed since I can't have MRIs with a pacer in; about the same pain levels. My meds are The Duragesic patch 100ugh/mcg changed every 48 hrs and Dilaudid 4 mgs q 8 hrs prn severe b/t pain. That SEEMS much higher to what you are prescribed. Lately the back pain is much worse;usually the meds work amazingly well. Adequate levels of meds are miraculous for allowing me to live in comfort most of the time. Keep after some Dr. until you are medicated correctly and at adequate levels. Only YOU can squawk enough for a change to be ordered.
    Sparkles

     
    Old 02-19-2005, 08:03 PM   #3
    sned2121
    Junior Member
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 21
    sned2121 HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    Thanks for the reply Sparkles.
    I have been yelling load and clear to my Pain Management PA all through the procedures (i.e. Faqcet Blocks, Epidurals and RFA).
    Do you get your meds form you Primary Doc?
    Because I am starting to think that the PM Doctors are less likely to give you the Pain med levels you need and more likely to recommend more procedures.
    So I may drop the Pain Management and ask my Primary to prescribe pain meds. He said he would do that, only if I drop the PM Doc.
    For the Disc issues I have, I am not on the proper level of medecine and still suffering more than I should.
    I am 275 lbs and 6' 4" man in his early 40s. So there is allot of ground to cover.

     
    Old 02-19-2005, 11:59 PM   #4
    SheSparkles
    Inactive
    (female)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 394
    SheSparkles HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    [QUOTE=sned2121]Do you get your meds form you Primary Doc?
    Because I am starting to think that the PM Doctors are less likely to give you the Pain med levels you need and more likely to recommend more procedures.

    Yes, my PCP prescribes for me and before this one, my primary at Kaiser did the same thing. And I agree, a PM doc may fuss around with procedures, which I suppose are ok, sometimes, if you are medicated properly. However I am a bit skeptical of procedures truly helping in the long run. Perhaps that's just me. As long as you have good charting from your doc I can't see the problem with meds and at this juncture I would give fair thought to just going with your PCP.
    Sparkles

     
    Old 02-20-2005, 11:05 AM   #5
    sned2121
    Junior Member
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 21
    sned2121 HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    I know I do not believe in the PM Procedures after getting the following, which were all unsuccessful:
    3 Cervical Epidurals
    2 Facet Block
    and a Crevical Radio Frequency Ablation.

    I should have just went to my PCP to begin with.
    My Neurologist does not prescribe Narcotics.

     
    Old 02-20-2005, 08:00 PM   #6
    SheSparkles
    Inactive
    (female)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 394
    SheSparkles HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sned2121
    I am 275 lbs and 6' 4" man in his early 40s. So there is allot of ground to cover.
    Hi Sned,
    I was rereading this and realized, with a smile, you are almost exactly my Dads size, and may I say, very huggable. I lost him over 20 yrs ago but his size will always stay with me. When we danced, I hugged him around his waist.
    Anyway, let us know when you get your meds straightened out. I hope you can see your PCP maybe this week? Just stay with one doctor for narcotics and you'll do fine. But you must insist on adequate relief so don't stop till you have achieved that, k? Have you tried the patch? It is wonderful.
    Best to you,
    Sparkles

     
    Old 02-20-2005, 11:12 PM   #7
    erfan
    Senior Member
    (male)
     
    Join Date: May 2004
    Posts: 283
    erfan HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    when I showed my MRI to OS he said that I have the back of a mucj older man. I'm 46. I told him that if he sees the older guy to tell him he can have his back returned to him.

    Anyway, I have 4 levels of Herniation ranging from severe leak to thecal sac impingement. Also some stenosis. Now, I am getting severe pain in my heel on the same side (left) 24/7. I cannot walk, nor can I now stand on toes or heel. I am wondering if this is the dreaded foot drop.

    Is it possible that the heel pain is related to the back?

    Currently I take 60mg MS Contin TID with 30mg ROXI for BT up to 3X a day

    Alan

     
    Old 02-21-2005, 08:34 AM   #8
    foreverangel143
    Member
    (female)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2004
    Posts: 63
    foreverangel143 HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    Alan,
    It is very possible that heel pain is related to the back. I had heel pain and went to my podiatrist, he wrap it and said lets see what happens in 2 weeks. I returned in 2 weeks with even more pain. He consulted with his surgeon and she sent me to a pain clinic for evaluation. They sent me for a MRI on my lower back. The results came back and I had a 2 hernitated discs.(News too me!!!!!) They did a epidural injection in my lower back and within 3 days my heel stop hurting (knock on wood...no pain for 9 months so far). So yes, heel pain is related to the back. Have it checked out. Maybe it will work for you too.

     
    Old 03-11-2005, 08:58 PM   #9
    sned2121
    Junior Member
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Feb 2005
    Posts: 21
    sned2121 HB User
    Wink Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    Thanks for all of your input. I truly wish the best for each and every one of you. We can all relate to each other, which kind of bonds us. Nobody really knows what we are going through and how debilitating the problems are. We all get people that doubt that your really that bad off. You know the people that you can just feel the doubt. They think your looking for sympathy or trying to get ta free ride. Well, I would not even wish the pain I have on them or anybody else. What good would that do me. But as you know, it is frustrating.
    Below is an update on my situation:

    I talked to my first Neurosurgeon this week. He thinks the C5-6 definitelt and most likely the c4-5 will need fusion. He said it is not an emergency, at this point. Of course there is risk in waiting for the surgery, such as permenent damage to the nerves, the disk getting worse and pushing on the spinal cord and the risks associated with being on the Narcotics for pain. But he said he could not gurantee the surgery would help the pain. In fact many patient do not get releif from the pain. especially the more you need fused. Since I have the disk above and below the proposed fusions, I would have a greater chance of the domino effect on those disks with repeat surgeries sooner than a patient with good disks.
    The good thing to me was e said it is not an emegency. It's not as if I can take a small tumble out of bed and make it allot worse. Unless I fall in exactly the right manner. I should be very careful driving.
    So, I am going to wait for surgery and continue my Duragesic 75 patch (yes my PCP raised the level) and up to 4 Norco for breakthrough. It may go up as time goes on. But I am going to take my wife a go on a vacation for a week. We are going on a relaxing cruise. My PCP did not think it was a good idea, but I convinced him to see what the surgeon said and told him I bought the best insurance for cruises. I'm covered for $100,000 for medical evacuation and I have the pre-existing condition waier. Plus the Surgeon said go on the cruise, it may be good for your neck to get away from the computer.

    We'll see how it goes when I get back. I hope to have a better work environment at my home provided mostly by my company to take the strain off the neck while working on the computer and teleconferencing.
    hopefully this will allow my neck to rest and heal and hold off the surgery as long as possible. Maybe even prevent surgery forever Ok. that may be stretching it, but stanger things have happened.

    Last edited by sned2121; 03-12-2005 at 01:27 PM.

     
    Old 03-12-2005, 05:29 AM   #10
    ARANGER
    Veteran
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Apr 2004
    Posts: 424
    ARANGER HB User
    Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    I know some will disagree, but whenever I saw my PM Doc, he always wanted to try the same things: Epidural, Facet Injections, Botox, Accupuncture Etc. Mine always seemed reluctant to prescribe pain meds. The whole time I was seeing him, I had a fractured back, DDD, and Two discs buldging at L5 and L4. That never came up once until I saw a great NS who basically showed me this on a Friday and I had surgery on a Tuesday. I spent over 6 months going to a PM Doc this whole time in excrutiating pain, but would be treated like I was a pill pusher (I was only taking Lortab at the time). Come to find out all this time, my back has been broke at L5 along with a list of other problems. The same thing happened with my neck when I went for Extreme neck pain. Same treatments: epidural, Facet, Etc. When I finally went to see the surgeon, I had a C4-5 fusion weeks later. Point is, I'm not sure where I stand on the fence with PM docs yet. Although I have heard people having horrid stories at thier NS as well. I guess I just got lucky with mine. Anyway, good luck and hope the vacation eases your mind for a few days. Then come back and worry about the surgery. I would drop my PM Doc a photocopy of my bill of your surgery and NS notes, just to show what he missed

    Take Care

     
    Old 03-18-2005, 11:56 AM   #11
    serendip
    Newbie
    (female)
     
    Join Date: Mar 2005
    Posts: 7
    serendip HB User
    Wink Re: 4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help

    wow, sned, your story sounds a LOT like mine.

    with >2 bad discs, your chances of fusion are just about nil.
    i've seen 6or7 neurosurgeons and all say the same thing, more than 2 at your age (i'm now 39), no WAY. there are no good bones to fuse to (ok, now i have *5* bad discs, but still).

    in my experience, this is exactly what happens. the original bad discs, followed by rest and/or pt, just degenerate more (even without treatments that might make them worse, like home traction which thank GOD i was advised against) over time anyway...

    it kind of feels like one's spine is a house of cards, imo.

    i've done the epidurals and trigger point injections, facet injections, occipital nerve blocks (to try to stop the pain-generated migraines)...all help for the slightest of times for me, an hour to a day or two. pt just aggravates me. heat/hot tubs are really helpful for me - have you tried them???

    also, have you tried any topical lidocaine rubs or patches? sometimes, these numb-out the surface pain and muscle spasm feelings for me. like you, my right side is FAR worse (i'm right handed). but then again, i'm not even trying to work anymore. pain like that you mention is keeping me from same, in fact i've been officially disabled by it since 2000.

    increasing activity (being online for more than 20minutes, grocery shopping, cleaning, you name it) often causes my pain to flare significantly, and i ignore flares at my peril...this is what leads to migaines for me. you should try to pay attention to the early signs of a pain flare, and STOP whatever you are doing. i know this is hard; i'm an overachiever of the worst kind, and do NOT like to think of myself as needing to stop doing ANYTHING...but i've learned, over time, what is best...and often, admitting that i am starting to feel bad and giving myself permission to stop and rest, or stop altogether for the day, can stop the pain escalation process fairly quickly. try it!

    ---pam, who knows she can be her own worst enemy OR her own best friend!

     
    Closed Thread

    Related Topics
    Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
    The FDA approved artificial discs 10/2004 for lumbar spine, Cervical to follow snicklefritz Back Problems 17 01-25-2012 03:12 PM
    cervical lordosis reversed french44 Spinal Cord Disorders 22 05-02-2010 11:39 PM
    Cervical Spine + MRI Problems...Need Some Advice mountainmomma50 Back Problems 3 02-11-2010 09:23 AM
    Cervical Problems TINCAN Spinal Cord Disorders 29 08-10-2006 09:20 AM
    bulding cervical disc maw maw Spinal Cord Disorders 2 09-02-2005 05:44 AM
    4 Bad Cervical Discs - In Extreme Pain - Please Help sned2121 Back Problems 1 02-20-2005 04:55 PM
    Cervical Injury's & Treatments MarianJ Spinal Cord Disorders 0 05-30-2004 07:45 PM




    Thread Tools Search this Thread
    Search this Thread:

    Advanced Search

    Posting Rules
    You may not post new threads
    You may not post replies
    You may not post attachments
    You may not edit your posts

    BB code is On
    Smilies are On
    [IMG] code is Off
    HTML code is Off
    Trackbacks are Off
    Pingbacks are Off
    Refbacks are Off




    Sign Up Today!

    Ask our community of thousands of members your health questions, and learn from others experiences. Join the conversation!

    I want my free account

    All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:40 PM.





    2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved.
    Do not copy or redistribute in any form!