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Back Problems Message Board


Back Problems Board Index


Opana questions
Nov 7, 2013
So I've never posted on anything like this, but I was thinking today and it really seems like having other people who have the types of medical issues I have to talk to could really be helpful. So, every doctor I see tells me I'm a rare case. I wasn't in any kind of accident to cause my back issues, and really, none of it runs in my family. When I was 15 years old I began having excruciatingly back pain, so after a few doctors telling me it was growing pains, pulled muscles, pinched nerves, my PCP orders my first set of X-rays. He looks at them, very perplexed, and when I ask what's wrong he goes "this is so weird...I can see a bit of arthritis, but it doesn't make any sense. I later find out (still at age 15), that I have degenerative disc disease. Most doctors wouldn't even see me because of my age, but the older I got, the worse the pain got. At 17 I was finally accepted by a spinal surgeon, and lucky for me, he was one of the best in the entire state. My second MRI showed a few bulging discs in my lumbar spine, all they could do was give me some tramadol, give me some exercises to try and hope the bulge would stop causing problems.
The pain continued, and at age 17 I had my first lumbar epidural steroid injection...I understand that this is an 18 gauge needle being shoved into your spine, and call me crazy, but nothing could have prepared me for how excruciatingly painful that injection was. I've had four since, and still, I can never mentally prepare for how badly it will hurt. But anyway, the first set of LESIs did not help at all, so I was referred back to my surgeon. After telling me there was basically nothing left to try, they decide to order one last MRI. I get a call a bit later, asking me to come in to see the surgeon. He says the bulge has gotten significantly worse, the disc has now herniated and requires surgery...it was set up for 2 weeks later. So my first spinal surgery at age 18, a laminectomy and discectomy of the L4/L5 disc. Recovery was brutal and a major struggle, but the surgery actually helped for a bit. Fast forward to today, I am 22 and the major pain began again last December. More surgeons, more MRIs, more lumbar injections and of course lots more Percocet. My surgeon officially diagnosed me with spondylolisyhesis after seeing my most recent MRI, and unfortunately in the middle of planning my spinal fusion he had to suddenly retire. His office has been working with me and trying to hard to find a comparable surgeon to take on my case, but most say no before seeing me due to the severity and my age. For the time being, I'm holding off on surgery and taking pain meds...this is where my questions come in. Until yesterday, the only medications I was given for this pain were baclofen (mainly to help while sleeping), and Percocet 10-325 every 6 hrs. I have a medical background, and was thinking "why am I taking something for breakthrough pain, when in reality I have severe chronic pain?"...I took this question to my PCP who agreed. He wanted to start me on fentanyl patches, but I wasn't as excited, just in case my next back surgery fails as well, and I need pain control meds long term. He decided on Opana ER 7.5 BID...so far it has been decent, but he and I are both thinking we'll have to increase the dosage very soon. So, I'm not exactly sure how this forum thing works...I just would like some opinions of people who have used Opana before. Does it work long term? Does it control pain well, and have you had many major side effects? The more info I can get the better! Thanks everyone =]





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