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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

Need advice
Aug 27, 2008
First off I will start out with a little bit of history on my low back pain. I have always had chronic back pain as I am well endowed as a lady, am considered as a dwarf because I am only 4'8 and also because of a few auto accidents. In January 07, after I had suffered a heart attack at 37 in November of 06 I was sent to do a stress test. That evening I had gotten off of the computer and went to go to the bathroom and had severe pain in the arch of my left foot I couldn't put weight on it and had to walk on my heel. I did find out during the time of this healing that if I put my foot flat on the ground and shifted my weight a bit I could walk normal; but still would have a pulling stretching filling in the arch of that foot. I had talked with my doctor is regards of this and she gave me flexirils, and vicodin for the pain. Since this time, my low back started to hurt and remained on these meds for my back, however where they would work for me and give me relief this wasn't even touching my pain and would barely if at all would take the edge off. So my dr. had change different meds, tried to get me to go to PT, but PT isn't covered by medicaid.

For a while I started to see a chiropractor which also normally would help me out and give me relief manual manipulation didn't work for me either. Now getting very frustrated not only of my back and the pain, but with the medical professionals because we weren't finding any answers. By now I had 3 sets of low back x-rays and not much showing up on the x-rays. I was sent to an orthopedist surgeon who re-did the x-rays again, changed meds again; he had decided to send me for an MRI. MRI and showned a herniated disc., DDD (mostly stage 1, and some places stage 2 and 3), some normal, non cancerous cyst and a bulging disc. I was then sent to a nero. surgeon who had suggested a lamenectomy, and possible spinal fusion and spinal epidurals to relieve the pain; however this dr. would be leaving the practice soon and refer me to 1 of his partners because he was leaving the state. This dr. however; didn't do anything though he did accept medicaid, he didn't treat patients equally and was painfully apparent. He also suggested an epidural, and PT; he wasn't able to do the epidural in his office and blamed the pain on the fact I am slightly heavy. Getting more frustrated as the pain is now getting worse by the day (literally and not exaggerating). I had decided to see a sports medicine doctor as by now in June of 07 the pain had now spread on both sides of my hip as well as the low back pain. This dr. agreed that surgery wasn't needed at the time and thought that I had fibromyalgia and that is the cause of my pain. So we changed meds. once again and nothing still pharmacuetical isn't working and for what little relief I may have would just barely take the edge off and that is/ and was just barely at that. He too suggested an epidural and again, not able to do it in the office. I was then referred to a pain management special in August of 07, however; he wasn't accepting any new patient until after the 1st of the year. Unfortunately there wasn't any other pain specialist that would accept medicaid and primary dr. couldn't send me to anymore specialist at this time. By this time, I had started to have pain in low back, both sides of my hips, tailbone and both sides of my groin; and also now starting to have numbness and weakness in both of my legs. I could and still can't walk or stand anymore than 2 minutes if even that without the numbness and weakness starting. The pain in my low back and hips is sharp, stabbing and burning sensation, (if I stood or stand outside of my now 2 minute window, while having numbness and weakness in both legs (no pain yet in my legs).

Finally getting my appintment with the pain specialist in March of 08 he agreed with me he didn't think it was fibromyalgia, or if it there is fibromyalgia, it isn't just fibromyalgia. He had wanted me on Kadian, ES vicodin and meds to help me sleep. Kadian isn't covered by the insurance, nor was the sleep medication, so I then started with MS contin, and ES vicodin for breakthrough pain. In April of 08 I finally had a medial branch block injection which didn't work so was again sent to another orthopedist that specialized in hips to get an MRI of my hips trying to figure where the pain is actually coming from as I am now having more pain my hips and still the medications aren't working for me. This MRI didn't show much in my hips cept some bursitis. Now taking the MS contin 2x's daily and the ES vicodin regularly the pain is getting worse, now starting to have pain in my thighs and both knees (by this time I had actually lost 50 lbs.) and the pain was still getting routinely worse. Pain is severely limiting any mobility and now have started to use a motorized scooter to get around bigger stores, and a cane to get around shorter stores. Also now completely unable to work because of the pain.

Today I had gone into a dicsgrogopathy (this procedure seriously sucks hurts like a dickens and you are awake during the procedure as they need you to be awake and able to answer questions because they are trying to simulated the pain). It is confirmed that I have 3 bad disc in my back and now is being recommended on getting a discectomy. Next Wednesday we are suposed to talk about the procedure more in detail as they couldn't by law discus it in detail because of the little sedation that I did have. (BTW, for what I did have, didn't make any difference as I was awake, and I am still dealing with the pain (made worse) even 12 hours later. LOL.

My question is ultimately does any one have any suggestions or comments for me in regards to the discectomy, what to expect? Should I go for it? What are the benefits? What is recoverly like? Would or will I regain some of my mobility? Or atleast decrease the constant pain that I have everyday and is still getting worse as the days go by? I am really concerned as the numbness, and weakness is getting worse rapidly including today getting ready for the procedure picking up my clothing from changing into the hospital gown my hip had rolled and popped and now it gives me extreme pain straightening it, or bending it. Dr. has suggested that this is due to the 3 bad disc. I am concern about any possible permanet damage as there has been so many delays in dealing with this and seeing my mobility daily decreasing and symptoms increasing and window of tolerance decreasing daily. I am scared and very concerned about this.

Should also mention that since this has been going on my back and hips are always warmer than the rest of my body regarless on statis of clothing being on or off. I can't stand nor walk anymore that 2 minutes. Can't sleep as sleeping on stomach or back bothers my back, can't sleep on sides because of pain in my hips so I am constantly tossing and switching throughout the night, and often wake up in the process. The only position I am somewhat comfortable in is sitting and even sitting I am constantly fidgeting and changing positions because of my back. There are days that my back really feels as though it has frozed or stiffen and makes it really hard to get up out of bed and the stuck feeling in bed is happening more often.

Sorry that this is very long, but I had wanted to include as much information that I could so you had a better idea of what I am going through and welcome any advice that anyone maybe able to provide or give me. Thank you.

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