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Percocet after ACDF surgery?

Started by LaurieA on 09/15/2011 11:53am

I had ACDF surgery C4-C7 almost 2 weeks ago on Sept. 2nd. 3 allografts (cadaver bone) and titanium plate and screws. Stayed in hospital 2 nights. Was in post op for 5 hours, instead of the planned 1 hour, due to severe pain causing my pulse and BP to skyrocket. I was not awake most of this time. I was sent home with Percocet every 3 hours for 3 days and Flexoril. Then I received a refill of Percocet for 5 days for every 4 hours. This is a total of 8 days. When I requested a refill of Percocet the Neuro nurse was awfully rude! She told me that I "should not need pain meds anymore" and If I "requested more I would be sent to the Pain Management Clinic."

This was not elective surgery for me. I had myelopathy and was falling with my spine being compressed in several areas. I also had been on Celebrex for 8 years for arthritis and spinal stenosis and was told I had to stop taking it before surgery and remain off it for one year after surgery! I told the nurse this and told her evey inch of my body hurt after going off Celebrex and this was combined with my three level post op pain. She obtained a refill of 60 Percocet and phoned me back saying "You better make this last because you are not getting more!" I told her I was insulted by her condescending attitude and the way she was acting like I was a drug addict. Ugh!

The next morning I had an incision check with her. Tues. 9/13. I arrived at the clinic with my husband and my cane. Due to the myelopathy I have to use a quad cane or walker all the time, ever after surgery. A different nurse brought me in and told me my "appointment was upgraded to a PA and the Neur Surg due to all of your problems." After they all examined me the doctor gave me a big lecture on Percocet addiction!!! It was 11 days after major surgery!!! He then decided I should take Neurontin to replace the Celebrex. They made me feel so awful and I cried when we got back to the car. Is this usual? I am not an addict and was only taking Tylenol and Celebrex for my pain before surgery.

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3 Responses


Hi Laurie

Im sorry that I cannot help you with your discussion but I had to respond because it made me so upset to hear how you were treated. I can relate because my family Dr. made me feel the same when I went into him every week complaining about my back. He prescribed Percocets (30, 60, 30 and then 10) I asked him why he lowered the amount and he said that he didnt want me to get depressed, and the MRI results werent back yet and I was already on a pain patch. He made me feel like a drug addict, I would leave his office crying because it was hard enough to get my friends and family to better understand my pain, I had faith that my doctor (whom I very rarely bothered) would help me. I started to doubt myself and the pain. About 3 days later the office called and told me to come in for the MRI results. My Doc has now given me 90 perocets every 15 days. I will no longer be worried about what my family, friends and Doctor think my pain is..Let them tell me I'm an addict because I likely am one. For one day let them walk in my shoes, I didnt ask for this and certainly don't want to rely on a pill but if it means I can get out of bed each morning, I will continue to take them. I urge you to stay strong and maybe through this site you will find the support you need. Best of luck


Thanks for your response Pela. I'm glad you ae getting the needed pain meds. :) It's very sad when the ones who are supposed to understand and help us, make us feel worse. When I was crying after my appointment on Tuesday, I told myself I would not let their behavior hurt my recovery. I took deep breaths and tried not to think about it.


Hi Laurie,
And welcome to group.Dont be so surprised ,,,,we have all and are still getting treated like this.Because I had same attitude from neuro surgeon n pain mngmnt docs,, I went back to my primary w all my written reports, hes close to me,,Usually if u bring all your info,,MRI written reports, your primary will supply u with proper scrips.Good luck to u , Just a suggestion,even primarys try to cut u down w narcs, I take percs too, this month we went to 6 day allowance to 4 this month, well 4 aint workin I need the 6 so hopefully I dont get hard time, thats why I said dont let this surprise you,, obtaing them are hard,some docs r nastier than others, And Im a Nurse.I found every doc different in personality and as far as getting narcs my primary will give them to me but all narcs r monitored, They usually only prescribe for 3 months.If they can only feel what r bodies r feeling I think things would b different...Then we have the drug addicts who get these scripts,( and I dont get it?) In the office I once went to. the place was loaded w addicts at painmgmnt doc and they leave w their scripts.......and we get scrutinized and we have the paperwork n reports to back up our pain, thesee people come in complain their back or neck hurts n they get them no problem..I dont understand healthcare, and lets not forget their on disability or SS,And thry walk out nomally, no signs of pai. Im 45 and I walk like Im 90.yrs lol..Good luck on your journey to wellness, feel better RENE :) :)