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Mamakitkat-
Lordy, I don't even know what to say! Your doc has seen you so that is as much as can be done for now, I guess. And you have a possible explanation that, if true (nerves waking up), could lead to good things so far as eventual recovery goes. But man oh man, it's the getting thru it that takes some doing, eh?
I am quite funny so fas as meds go. I have at times taken as much as 60 mg of Flexeril a day and been completely unfazed by it. But when it comes to pain killers and antibiotics, I usually have a very low tolerance and all the typical side-effects. I took some benadryl with my Ultram tonight and so far it is working to keep the itchiness and nausea at a low level.
I'm curious to know what it is that makes your first several steps out of bed so difficult? Dizziness or stiffness? I'm noticing an increase in my instability upon waking at night. Maybe the meds but I have nearly toppled and crashed into the walls a few times this week. I don't feel dizzy but I can't make my legs work. It passes after a few steps and I feel like myself again. I decided to purchase a walker since I wanted one here at home for my post-surgery anyway. I was told I would not need one for my fusion a year ago and I did. Come discharge day I insisted on having one and I'm glad I did. I only needed it for 4-5 days but I needed it for sure. I'm not taking too many chances anymore. My pride can take a hike and I'll use the support I need to prevent an accident.
As you may have read from me before, Carol, I have little experience with the type of nerve pain you are dealing with. I can't offer much besides my constant thoughts and heart-felt wishes for you to heal. Thank goodness we have each other and this board, no? Till tomorrow. Suzy-Q
Carol & Suz,

Hi there. A follow up on me. Been having rough time of it myself, since that I started the Neurontin Monday. I am having all sorts of issues (which I think are side effects). Muscle control, soreness, weakness, increased leg numbness, now serious swelling in the legs and feet. I look like I have elephantitus or something. My hips are now involved in the pain and now getting lower back ache and pain across lower lumbar and two of the incisions are now aching a bit. Up til now, the incisions have not caused any issues, no leaks, just itching.

Called the doc yesterday, only to find he is away at a surgerical seminar and his nurse was also out. One of the newer PAs did at least call and take down my information and said he couldnt tell me to come off the Neurontin cuz he didnt know enough. He just encouraged me to call the office on Friday if further problems and definitely call Monday when the doc was back. Well my feet and legs (mostly left) just aching like crazy and I started to realize that my feet were killing me more when my slippers were on (but are normally loose). I sat down this morn and looked at my feet and legs.. OMG.. they were badly swollen and I had slipper dents. I called the docs office right away, being Friday and didnt want to go thru the weekend like this. Another PA called me back and called me into the office right away. Sent me immediately for an ultrasound on my left leg to rule out blood clots. Good news no clots. Changed my 4 week check up appointment to first thing Monday with the doc. He will order an MRI to check on spine but also checking for a staph infection. Geez that is all I need, but hey.. they are really trying to help me and I am so appreciative that they are not brushing me aside. OH.. they took me off the Neurontin, and PA said this drug is not for me. She gave me another Medrol pack for the weekend, since it helped ease things a bit before the Neurontin. I dont know if this is happening to you, but I have been digressing big time. This week alone has been a major jump backwards, since on the Neurontin, which may all be coincidental. I am so weak, getting out of bed is major work (not to this point previous 2.5 weeks). My spine aches at base (is this just healing goin on), my hips are killing me now (is this too part of healing), and every step is a major accomplishment, with a major increase in limping around, also have a miled headache and stiff neck. I am so tired of walking like a have a stick up my butt! hehehe. This is my first major set back, but feel is a very major one. And I have noticed an incease of being sensitive (such as cry easier watching tv shows etc.. hehehe), but still easy going as usual. I hope all this stuff happening is just the Neurontin and things get back to more normal healing, and the leg pain can be treated or starts to subside. Wishful thinking anyway! hehehe.

Suz- I read some posts earlier about the benadryl chaser.. excellent idea. See, stuff like that.. you might not have ever thought to try except someone did and offered it here to let others know. Gosh.. I love this forum, it's been my one of my saving graces from going bonkers and I am getting to know you, Carol, and others and am so grateful. I'm not a spiritual person, but I can say I feel blessed being able to use this wonderful technology to be able to talk to so many wonderful people.

Carol, what's the latest on you? I know your doc told you to walk and sort of stay the course. How you feelin today? I hope better than me.

Talk to you both again.. Tammy (With my bottle of water.. here's to us all healing and being painfree real soon!)
Good Evening to All - Hi Carol, Hi Tammy -
I have enjoyed following this thread. I'm sure you can explain it but I find it odd that your docs tell you the pain is from nerves 'waking up' and yet you have very apparent symptoms like swelling and redness and all of that. Do nerves cause this inflammation when they are waking up? Frankly, I have many times been nearly disappointed that I don't have anything visable going on around my incision - I am stunned that what feels so bloody inflammed and angry can look just about normal. Well, I do hope you've had a better day?
I've had a funny day of it. The benadryl chaser to the Ultram is helping but I'm still scratching and still having hot flashes. The nausea is down and that is a blessed relief. But I am very uncomfortable even taking 2 pills every 4 hours. Of course, I do more physical stuff on Saturdays and so my back is just tired out. I'm tired out, too. I'm going to do a little looking on the net for a walker and then hit the sack. Do you shop on-line? On-line shopping is a wonderful thing for me. It is all I can manage to get to work and to the doctors and the grocery store. Anything I can buy on-line I do and it saves my back all the horrid stress of snail-shopping (as I like to call it). Why is it that a walk in the woods or around the neighborhood is relaxing and good for the back but a trip to the department store triggers grinding pain? Well, it does for me anyway.
I spend a good deal of my free time a few houses down my road at Kelly's kennel. She fosters rescue dogs and cats and I volunteer and help out with the homeless animals. These days, I do what I can and walk only the most docile and small dogs. In all ways, my time there is a positive benefit to me and my own two adopted dogs. But I started volunteering 3 years ago when I learned that Kelly's husband, Dave, was being deployed. Kelly is a young woman with 2 small kids and I just couldn't imagine how she would cope with a full kennel and the kids and no one to even run to the store for a gallon of milk. Well Dave is in now in Afghanistan on his third deployment in 5 years. Kelly has a wonderful family and a large supportive group of friends. But the toll this is taking on the marriage and the children is frightful. I'm glad to say that even with my limp and my slow pace, I'm still able to be of some use to Kelly. I help her by helping the animals and that helps me. I read a lot on this board about quality of life decisions and it is so very true. I sure do take into account my present inability to do things like socializing or athletic sports but the final elbow, believe it or not, is my ability to walk those dogs and feed those cats. Who'd have thunk it?
Well, I think I'm rambling. And I'm scratching up a storm. I'll talk with you tomorrow. Warm regards - Suzy-Q





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