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Hello Brooke,
Christi is right. PT is not for everyone. I can't do PT because when I did, it actually set me back. I had these horrible pain on my L. My NS has absolutely told me not to go to PT that I should start swimming the sooner the better after surgery. I did the swimming and I noticed my leg pain got so much better. But I stopped cuz I got lazy. Then since everyone here was going to PT I thought, "mmhh it actually help me to heal faster".. nope, it didn't. When I went to my NS he told me to instead of wasting my $ and time, I should use that slap to swimming. So I did. I do swim every other day religiously. I sometimes have pain and go swimming. It goes away after.

hope I help,
[I]rm[/I]
-----------------------------------------

[SIZE=1]
[B]07/16/03[/B] Decompressive Laminectomy [I]L5/S1[/I] (RIGHT SIDE)
Also a small bulging disc at [I]L4[/I]. NS said it was not giving me problems.
[B]08/27/2001[/B] Started back problems.
Chiro, acupuncture, stretches, body massage, walking, nothing helped.
Got 3 epidurals, first they missed, second helped for 3 months, third didn't help.
Kaiser kept sending me back home saying: "it will get better". NEVER DID!!
[B]2003[/B] changed insurance TIRED OF KAISER!!!
[B]07/03/03[/B] saw new NS, w/in days he was doing surgery on me.
[B]09/07/03[/B] I am glad I went through surgery.
[B]11/06/03[/B] Visited NS, he stresses on us going [I][B]SWIMMING[/B][/I]. He says after 40 years treating backs, swimming is the only thing that seems to help to straighten our backs and get us back on track.[/SIZE]
I had my fusion done in May. I went back to work in Sept. I still have lower back and leg pain 6 months after surgery. I also don,t have much flexibility in my lower back. Is.this normal? My Doctor seems to have blown me off. I have no further schelduled visits. He said call him if I need to. I'm a little worried at this point.
Hi Jeanne:

Well I did go to my company's Christmas dance and yes I did slow dance with my hubby several times. We had a great time. I had gotten a new dress and to be honest with you I looked and felt great. Oh sorry, I probably shouldn't have said that. Not very humble of me is it. But I guess after so many months of pain and distress, I really wanted to have a good time and I did. The next day we did stay home primarily because we got a lot of snow and driving conditions were not good. Yesterday we had to move so many of the vehicles so that we could plow the snow. Today it turned warmer and rain. Not good for my back and leg. I could tell the change. I went from feeling pretty good the last week to feeling rotten and it is all due to the rain. I really wonder it the titanium rods and screws in my back have a lot to do with this.

It is really too bad about your medical problems. It is enough to recover from fusion surgery let alone all the other things you have gone through. Me I missed a pill about 2 weeks ago, and I started spotting before my period was due. Rats! I have an appt. with my gynocologist on the day before New Years. He will probably tell me to continue with the medication. I still don't want a hysterectomy. I will live with the discomfort and spotting until I start menopause.
Are you taking iron pills? Don't let your body become too weak because of the holidays.

Christi
Dear Christi and Jeanne,

Sometimes i find if i bend a little i feel a pulling sensation over my incision site. Do you think this is just the skin being so used to be in one location and not being stretched by normal bending etc and so when i bend its simply the skin pulling?

The pain i have when i move in bed troubles me too. It makes me think my back isnt healing though im sure it's just normal. I do not hear much pain out of my right leg but after i had that bingle in my car i had pain in my right leg and the day after as well. It seems to be back to how it was now. How much pain/ discomfort are you in from your back pain?

I am spending today inside as it's so warm outside. I had the aircon on last night and was wondering why the house wasnt cooling down, it would have because i didnt realise just how hot it was outside. I'll yake the opportunity to rest i think. Do you find you still have to rest during the day or is there a point you get too where your body doesnt require that rest period?

Love and Hugs
Brooke
Dear Jeanne, and Christi,

Hi, im glad now that i am not the only one who had a quiet new years. I often have this feeling after an event if i know i didnt make an effort to go, i feel bad but this time i didnt. I am too concerned with my back right now. Christi, that hotel sounded lovely, could you enjoy the spa bath?

Speaking of dogs, i have a small papillion, he's just turned 19 in november but is as cute as a button and looks like a pup. He was attacked by a german sheppard about 7 years ago. It just picked him up in its mouth and shook him around. From the incident his back has never recovered (we suspect it was broken during the incident) and his lungs were punctured from the teeth. Since then he has had trouble breathing and his back always cracks. Recently he has started draging his leg a little where his spine was damaged so i assume it is just the progression of his deterioration with age as well. The two of us have been resting on my bed..he snores..loud..lol..

It is the after christmas sales here right now and so i took my boyfriend shopping (as he doesnt have a car or license) all over the place because he wanted to buy a new tv and digital camera as he is going on a round world trip mid year. He spent $3000 all up and so i thought i would make the effort to take him to all the shops at different centers so he could try and get the best price.

I had worked 6am-9am that morning and was only the slightest bit on the sore side so we went shopping. About 3 hours later after driving and walking etc i was so sore, i had the same ache i used to have only this time i couldnt curl up in a ball to stretch the muscles because of the fusion. I began to feel sick from the pain and it was spreading up my back to my neck. I was due to go back to work from 5pm-7:30pm but the thought of that brought tears to my eyes. I managed to screw up all the staffs day because they had to find someone to cover me. One girl ended up working 11.5 hours.

I went to bed and my boyfriend brought me lunch and dinner in bed as i was too weak to get up. I had pain everytime i moved in bed but worse than normal and i had nerve pain in my right leg. This time it was up near my groin as well as down the leg.

I am resting today and im sure ill be fine. I am sure the fusion itself hasnt been compromised and that it was just the operative site and the muscles getting tired but i cant help but be dissappointed with myself for going shopping all day, for ruining the staff members plans, for failing to realise that i could not be up and about that long after 10 weeks you'd think i'd know my limits. So today i feel mentally horrible.

Larry,
I think my surgery has been a success so far. I have not taken pain medication in 6 or so weeks and im coming up to 10 weeks post op next wednesday. Nothing at all and only experience pain when im in bed and try to change positions because i assume my muscles are just really relaxed and so moving is unsupported to an extent.

I hope everyone is well

Love and hugs
Brooke
Hi Carole:

You don't need to worry about cutting back on pain meds right now. It hasn't been that long since your surgery and you probably need it.

Thanks for your positive comments. Sometimes I wonder how many people actually read this thread. I am glad that you are getting some help from it. On this thread we express what and how we feel. This is not a negative thing. It is good to know that other people are experiencing some of the same things and therefore we can help one another.

Brooke:

I think I might trade the weather with you. It got a little warmer here today but it must be getting humid as of last evening. I started to hurt more and in both legs. Again because I don't walk as much I believe my legs are weaker and therefore suffer more. I went to a antique car banquet last evening with my husband. After an hour of sitting straight my lower back really started to bother me. This is when I believe I can feel the rods and screws in my back. This is most unfortunate as my back hardly ever hurt me before surgery. It was always my left buttock and leg. Now since surgery, when the weather changes my lower back hurts too. Oh well this too shall pass.

Jeanne:

I hope you are feeling better. You must try to distract yourself now that you know about the fibromyalgia. don't let it get you down. A lot of people on these boards depend on you for your knowledge and support.

Hope to hear from you all soon.

Christi
Hi Mistina,

I am glad i have heard from someone who has the same difficulties with pain when laying down. It's not good for us but it's good for our piece of mind to know that it may be an issue post op and not an individual problem. I am 24 and had a PLIF L5S1 on October 29 of last year. I generally believe I have had a good recovery. I have been able to note when my body has gained strength and I know how to relieve any aches without medication. Rest is the key for me and it is all I need to make any pain go away. Normally if there are aches, it means i have been up and about too long or doing too much activitiy in general. I wont know it at the time, that is I wont feel sore, i'll just begin to feel tired and my muscles will ache in my back. As soon as i lay down that's when i'll know the extent to which i may have overdone things. The more i have overdone the soreer my back will be when i try to move. Therefore i need to predict just how much i may have overdone it then basically just decide not to move at all for a few hours. After that as my boyfriend said, it is as though i have be re-energised, like a child after they have had a nap.

Previously, just after my op i remember posting to both Christi and Jeanne in the middle of the night scared and upset at the amount of leg pain i was experiencing. It seemed to be worse than it had been before the op. This gradually subsided. Now i cant remember the last time i had leg pain. Perhaps if i majorly over did things, really majorly i would experience some kind of discomfort. This has been positive.

One thing is for sure and that is that i have not done any where near as much exercise a si should be doing. Unfortunately I am very much an all or nothing person and that is a really bad attitude to have. That basically means that when im told that i can walk moderately as a form of exericse that it not good enough for me and so i decide not to do it at all. Iknow deep down that something is far better than nothing but still i have that attitude. Hmm, something needs to be changed.

Hope to hear from you again soon.
Brooke
Hi Carole:

4 weeks postop. Wow that seems like such a long time ago for me. However I do remember that the things that you are going through are also many that I went through back then. I didn't know how long I could lie down in bed. I also was always turning over from side to side. My husband didn't even sleep with me very much as he was afraid to hurt me. My walking was slow and I couldn't sit for very long periods of time.

Just remember that it will take a long time to recover totally. Our minds want it to go faster but our bodies cannot always go as fast. You may be experiencing some swelling in your back which could attribute to your hip and leg pain. I still experience that even now. Sometimes even after almost 6 months it can still be due to swelling or overdoing things or that the nerve hasn't totally regenerated itself. That last thing can take years. But the discomfort is better than what it used to be. So take heart.

Christi
Hi everyone:

Well I just got back home from my appointment with my surgeon. I couldn't believe that I actually got to see my primary surgeon this time. They took the xrays and he informed me that as far as he could see I was fused solid, You could see it very well on the one side, not as good on the other because my spine is rotated some. Well that was good news. However I do show some narrowing above L4-5 and also have some bone spurs but we will deal with that in the future if need be.

I told him that I still have pain running down my leg and he told me exactly what I already knew that it can take 15 months or better for the nerve to regenerate itself, and maybe would not completely regenerate. I can live with this as I do feel so much better than before surgery. He thinks the tylenol I am taking is totally acceptable.

The discomfort that I am experiencing from above the hips to my shoulder blades is as a result of the rods & screws. He repeated the fact that because I am so thin that is why I am experiencing this. They don't look at removal of the hardware until 1 year after surgery. Being as I am fused, that is very much an option. I voiced my concern about recovery and he said it would only be 5 days. Well I will wait and see what happens before I make that kind of decision. Being that I am fused, I can now take anti-inflammatories if necessary. That is good to know just in case I would need some other kind of surgery (gyno)

So I am pretty happy with this report. Do I still have pain? yes but it is getting better. Let us all try to stay positive no matter what happens.

Christi
[COLOR=RoyalBlue][CENTER][B]Good Morning Christi & Brooke :wave: [/B][/CENTER]

[INDENT]I have finally recovered from my myleogram and that is another test that I will never have again. I had almost canceled it because I had started menstruated once again and when the hospital called me the night before they told me their was know need to cancel because of that. When I was brought to the radiology room I was talking with the nurse and I had remember her as she was their when I had my discogram. She told me the same doctor that did my discogram was going to perform the myleogram, I should have left right then.... The doctor came in and started the test and gave me the first injection to numb me which only stung a little bit. Then he inserted the needle with the dye and I screamed, Oh No, NOT AGAIN!!! He stopped and asked me what I was feeling and I told him severe pain down my entire right leg, the same pain I felt when he did my discogram. God I think he hit a nerve or something. He said this procedure is normally painful and I shouldn't be feeling this and then gave me another injection to numb me even more which worked. But I also felt pain in my entire right hip. So I just cried through the rest of the test. After it was over I couldn't even get off the table and they had to move me onto the other bed. Then I was brought to the CT Scan room. When I got there the good looking technician told me that I had to do these rotations because of the dye that was inside me. Somehow I managed to do them. Then he said that he was going to take off my blankets and move me onto the CT Scan table. I said NO!!! With every movement I just made I felt myself bleeding very heavily and I was so humiliated and I had to tell him this, and I just wanted to die.... So they had to move me onto the table with all my bedding for the Scan. When I got back to recovery I told the nurse I needed to go to the bathroom and about my situation and she called the doctor. He said that I had to use a bedpan because if I walked to the bathroom I would get a spinal headache. I said I already have one and sat up. The nurse assisted me and I don't know where I got my strength but I made it without falling on my face. The nurses completely understand why I have anemia. I really should have canceled this test. I went home a couple of hours later. I still don't understand why with both test this doctor always hits that same spot and causes such pain for me. After my discogram is when I began using my quad cane. I pray to God that this test did not cause me any more damage.

Have a great weekend [/INDENT]

[CENTER][B] :angel: Jeanne :angel:[/B][/CENTER] [/COLOR]
[COLOR=DarkSlateBlue][CENTER][B]Hello Christi :wave: [/B] [/CENTER]

[INDENT]I did get the result of both my myelogram and CT Scan. My surgeon had asked me which news I wanted first the good or the bad. I said the good news. He told me that the films looked good and he went over them with me and actually took the time showing me and the new PA what everything was and meant on them. He said that it looks like I have a very good fusion on one side. The other side is not as good but he said that was not important as long as I had a good fusion on one side. He also said that my nerves look good. He then went on to press on area's of my back and I wanted to scream or hit him. He told me those were the area's were the screws are. He believes that is what is causing most of my back pain. He said that he would like to try just one more set of injection's on me. These would be done in the hospital under sedation and they would be many of them. He also said that he would do the injection's. If I did get pain relief from this they he would schedule me to remove the screws. I agreed to this. Then he went on to say that he can't explain my leg pain. I guess this was the bad news. He said that it is a possibility that it is the Fibromyalgia. I asked him about my S1 nerve root being displaced and he said that it is only slightly displaced from scar tissue. I then asked what about the burning pain in both my archilles tendons. I told him that it first started in my left foot in July, a few weeks after my surgery. He then checked my chart and I know it was in there. He didn't say anything, so I asked if diabetes could do this and he said it could. I shouldn't have said that because I just gave him a way out of my question. My blood sugars are under control without medication's. Both my primary doctor and nutriontist said that it is very unusual to have diabetic neuroapathy with my hemoglobin a1c reading. I told my neuro surgeon that my podiatrist sent him a report that my foot problems are nerve related. He asked the name of my podiatrist and I told him. I know he has gotten these reports because she has sent a few as she has told me so. Either way I will pray that these injection's do work for me. Also my Cryoablation was rescheduled for next Wednesday. When you get a chance let me know how you are feeling. I miss you.[/INDENT]

[CENTER][B]:angel: Jeanne :angel:[/B] [/CENTER] [/COLOR]
Dear Chrsitina,

Water jogging is excellent for anyone who wants close to zero impact exercise. It is often used for injured athletes but general populations as well who need to exercise but can not due to the impact gravity presents.

When submerged in water the effect of gravity is lessened the deeper your body is submerged. When you are partially submerged (say up to your waist or better still your chest there is little impact but you also have a greater control over your posture because your feet are on the bottom of the pool. This is ultimately the best for those just begginning exercise again post op. The next progression from that is working in deeper water (that which you cant touch the ground in). Obviously with these depths you were a floatee around your waist. This aims to keep you upright in the water. While it does so this is also has a tendency to tilt you slightly forward. If you were to exercise in this slightly forward position you could actually do a bit of damage to your back. If you constantly keep in mind your posture by keeping your tummy muscles in and back straight, then you should be ok. By this method it is almost as if you are going for a jog on land but you do it in the water. That is you warm up for 5 minutes at a light pace and then get your heart rate up a little higher. You can be as creative as you want in terms of how you move through the water and the resistance you provide as long as it doesnt hurt and as long as your posture is maintained.

I wear a heart rate monitor any time i exercise so i can watch exactly what my heart rate is doing and how it responds to the different activities i do.
After 30 minutes in the water i am totally ruined. Im not in pain until i lay down and so its hard to tell if and when i am pushing myself. I did a workout in the water on Monday and whilst i was jogging in the water i used my legs like sizzors back and forth keeping the legs straight. This is difficult to do and every so often a got that tell tail little 'electric shock' feeling which means the nerves are having a little party of their own so i had to stop. I want to know why i am having any feeling coming from my nerves considering i dont get leg pain anymore.
When i laid down last night i could not get back up (not in a hurry anyway), turning was enough to wake me up so i was a lot more sore than normal which is dissappointing.

I have my check up with the surgeon on Friday and am very much looking forward to it. That said i still experience pain and fatigue, this tells me i definately can not be fully fused.

Love
Brooke
Dear Christi,

Yep the CT is to get a real good look at everything. The surgeon said slowly but surely each day the back and leg pain is going to get so much worse until. The CT will be in 4 weeks and then i have my surgeons appt straight after that and then the decision is made i would say that they will then book me as soon as possible. He said it is a bit of a race against time as the screws will soon start to loosen.

The whole procedure starts from scratch with larger screws and a special solution mixed with the graft. As far as i could tell Jeanne mentioned this may be a protein. All i know is that it is an acelerant to the graft and that this solution is called something-or-other and ends in 8. It hasnt been used in Australia yet but has in the US. It is still awaiting approval here, he is going to try and have approval in time for my surgery which is assume will be in May i guess.

I am going to go to a rehab hospital after as i remember when i first came out of hospital i was quite sick and was at the doctors every second day anyway. The rehab hospital is at the same hospital (just another wing) or there is another nearby where a friend of mine works.

The same surgeon will be performing it. He said it rarely happens and so i guess all the staff will be alerted that i am the second time round and also the youngest to ever have this repeated.

Great luck hey??

Love
Brooke
Hi Brooke:

Wow, I would hope that your parents would be more supportive. If you have failed back syndrome that doesn't necessarily mean that you did something wrong. However I would advise you to be more careful. I think I remember you going to a club one evening shortly after your surgery. I was in so much pain after my surgery that I couldn't even fathom going to a place like that. I figured you were doing so much better than I did.

As we have said in the past, some people heal differently than others. I still have back pain and many times even leg pain but I am still in the healing mode. It is better than before except when the weather gets nasty. I still try to be very careful in what I do. I told my husband yesterday that maybe I could help with drywalling. You should have seen the look on his face. I guess I won't be helping. lol Oh well I didn't really want to anyway.

Hope you get better soon.

Christi
hi everybody
had laminectomy only at L5 S1 on April 21 as had fused naturally & am now 5 weeks post op
now my problem is that I still have the nerve pain in my legs & feet - sometimes it feels like its decreasing a little but especially after PT which I've been having 2x's a week for 2 weeks now my whole leg just aches & have to retreat to bed with a hot water bottle!
what has been the experience of others with similar probs & similar surgery with regard to the nerve pain? I only see my surgeon 8 weeks post op but his p/a said the pain could last for up to 3 months as the nerve heals & swelling
subsides
my back doesn't hurt at all - just being carefull with no bending, lifting or twisting although my backache was never a real problem for me - it was always the awful nerve pain . . .
it would be great to hear from you guys
camelia
hello Jeanne - thank you for the kind words & advice
I really think the muscle pain in my legs after therapy is from the hamstring stretching as i dont have any back or nerve pain while receiving physical therapy & my therapist is really good
I think I just had hopes that were too high & expected total relief from the nerve pain once i had surgery but seems a lot of people continue to have pain as the nerve heals & swelling subsides
Are you saying your nerve pain was worse directly after surgery? Mine seems less - especially in the 1 leg - & I notice the back pain I had before after sitting & then trying to get up has almost gone completely which is really great!
Topamax? I'll run that past my pcp as she's the one who prescribed the tramadol
How do I change the info in my signature? anyone?
TIA!
Camelia





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