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Bad News!

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Old 05-06-2008, 06:47 PM   #1
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Bad News!

Hello everyone! I haven't posted a whole bunch. But some of you know my story, especially Shawley.

Anyway, two years ago, at age 35, I found out I had Spondylolisthesis L5 S1, with over 75% slippage. I just knew I was having back pain. I had a lumbar fusion, then I had a ton of nerve pain, so they removed the hardware. Still lots of nerve pain in my legs and feet. All sorts of meds, still nerve pain. So I got a Spinal Cord Stimulator.

SCS works great!! I had it placed over a month ago and it's been heaven!! Unfortunately, I have been battling an infection in the battery pack area. Lots of drainage from the incision. Three rounds of antibiotics. Now, I am getting drainage from the upper incision where the leads are.

Went to my surgeon yesterday. He said we have to take it out ASAP (Tomorrow!) They are going to take out the pack and open up the lead incision to see if they need to take out the wires. I'll be in the hospital 2 or 3 days with massive IV antibiotics. Then I have to wait at least six weeks, get my labs normal, and try again with another SCS! Waaaaaaah!!!

This was very disheartening! I cried more than I have during this whole saga! I am trying to come to terms with it, it just seems like everything that can go wrong will. I just can't believe it!

I guess I am looking for support. Maybe one of you has been through this successfully? I don't exactly know why I am posting this, I just needed to.

Anyway, I am reporting in for surgery 10:30 am MST tomorrow. Just send me lots of positive energy tomorrow.

Thanks everyone, I know everyone is dealing with their own sagas. I appreciate everyone of you.


Last edited by StephM; 05-06-2008 at 06:48 PM. Reason: typo!

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Old 05-06-2008, 07:18 PM   #2
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Re: Bad News!

Sorry to hear about this - as a nurse let me tell you that they are doing the right thing. You need to get that out asap and wait until you are completely infection free to try again. you don't want to end up with an infection into your spinal cord. Hang in there - be strong and get strength from knowing this is a temporary situation. I wish you all the best - I hope you are able to get good pain control while without the stimulator.

Old 05-06-2008, 07:24 PM   #3
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brianpain33 HB Userbrianpain33 HB User
Re: Bad News!

That really really sucks. I don't know how else to put it. I would just want to cry and not believe it. I wonder what is causing all of the infections? I wonder if they got something in there when they did the initial surgery and then infection just keeps going and going. I hope they can figure out what is going on. Unfortunately you might not get the entire truth especially if the surgeon messed something up. I just want to wish you alot of support. My mom has had several surgeries that did not go as planned and they had to go back in and fix things. I know the podiatrist messed things up on my feet and I don't know if I ever will have another surgery on them. Keep praying and things will get better. I will say a prayer for you as well. Good luck.


Old 05-06-2008, 08:02 PM   #4
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Re: Bad News!

Thanks you guys! I am soaking up the support like a sponge.

I just got off the phone with my best friend and she gave me a good pep talk and I feel better!

Thanks again! You all are such a source of support, and even though I don't always post, I have relied on each one of you through the last couple of years through my journey!


Old 05-06-2008, 08:13 PM   #5
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My prayers are with you. Hang in there.

Hugs Nadine

Old 05-06-2008, 08:17 PM   #6
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cmpgirl HB User
Re: Bad News!

Hey Steph, I am sorry to hear of your infection and all that it has caused. I know it has to be so discouraging when you finally have some relief from the pain, only to have that relief taken away.

At least they caught the infection, before it got to a point where it did permenant damamge. I know how infection can damage tissue and they are doing the right thing. I hope you expressed that you are going to need some other type of pain relief, ie. meds, while in the hospital and while you're waiting to have it reimplanted. Don't let them leave you hanging, OK?

I will absolutely send healing thoughts and positive energy your way and prayers too. Good luck and let us know how you're doing when you are home. Hang in there, cmpgirl

Old 05-07-2008, 07:18 AM   #7
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SpinalMalady HB UserSpinalMalady HB User
Re: Bad News!


I'm so sorry to hear of your saga! I pray that your new SCS gives you much less drama, and offers the pain relief you so deserve without all of the hassles of the infection.

Please make sure to ask your docs about ototoxic poisioning. I lost my hearing in my left ear (oh the irony as I teach sign language!) when I was hospitalized with multiple infections caused by EBV. The massive doses of antibiotics fried the 8th auditory nerve in the left ear, and left me with moderate damage in my right.

Guess it's a good thing I know sign language. Just make sure to ask about the side effects of the antibiotics. I too will lift you up in prayer.

~!~ Becky ~!~
\lm/ = "I Love You" in Sign Language

12/10/04 MicroD & Hemi Lami 100% Success
09/05 Re-injured post Katrina
06-07 In Pain Mgmt. trying to deal
3/9/07 2 Level PLIF due to CES

Old 05-10-2008, 07:44 PM   #8
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Re: Bad News!

Thank you everybody.

I am home now. I was in the hospital for three days and nights. They had to take out the entire stimulator, leads and all. The cultures showed I had Staph infection in the generator site and up my spine.

I am now under the care of an Infectious Disease specialist. They installed a long term IV Catheter in my upper arm with tubes to accept an IV of antibiotic, which I will need to give myself via IV for at least six weeks. I am hoping even with the big tubes sticking out of my arms that I'll be able to go back to work after they remove all my staples.

The nerve pain is "waking up" inside my legs and feet. It seems to be manifesting in electrical shocks and a restless leg feeling. So far, the meds seem to be managing it.

I know I just have to do this one day at a time, heck, one minute at a time. My hope is to get my body in control so the second SCS will work AND will stay. The good news is I will now have an extra remote for the next SCS, as I did not surrender it, I wasn't asked. I am sure my Rep will be able to program it with my future stimulator.

Becky, I will ask about the oxotoxic poisoning with the antibiotics, thank you. I'm so sorry for what you've had to deal with! I, too, know some sign language. Hopefully I won't need it!

OK, well, thanks again everyone! I will keep you posted, as I foresee much free time!


Old 05-10-2008, 08:59 PM   #9
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ms_west HB User
Re: Bad News!

Stephanie, I am so sorry this happened to you and I will be praying for you. I can't imagine the pain you must be in and how badly you must be feeling. Take care of yourself and please keep us updated. We care.

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