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Getting tired of the issues

Started by lwa57 on 02/12/2012 9:01pm

This back problem began about 1990ish. I never really had it treated properly in the beginning because they called it a "sprain/strain". It was a workers' comp injury and of course, the company thought I was looking for an excuse to get out of work, or to try and bilk them out of money. That wasn't the case.
Now many years later, case closed and cant be re-opened, I'm still suffering from the same injury and adding to it.

I had went from bulging disks to herniated disks.
L3-L4, L4-L5 and L5-S1 were the main culprits.
Now, other disks above those are effected. I was told that I had DDD and I've been through the P.T. , traction, epidural injections, chiropractic manipulations, massage, ultra sound and TENS stimulation. I've taken, Lyrica, Gabapetin, Cortizone, Mobic, Ibuprophen and some yellow pill that caused a reaction with my kidneys.

Still I haven't found relief that last. Last year I was supposed to go in for open back surgery that was supposed to relieve about 80% of the pain and 50-75% of the numbness. I was barely able to walk and washing my feet in the shower was a major task. Luckily for me, I woke up to a pain free morning that lasted for months. (divine intervention? or the meds finally kicking in?...who knows) I opted not to have the surgery. Especially since the doc said I would probably have to have it repeated in a couple years, plus he said I might still need the epidural injections for the pain because of scarring.

I've since went off most of those meds and only take Ibuprophen when needed. But the ability to get back up from kneeling, getting up in the morning is stiff and painful, getting out of chairs sometimes takes several attempts and now my feet & ankles hurt when I walk. The last visit, my doc said I had some scoliosis from the damaged disks. He defines my back problem as Spondylosis Lumbar with Myelopathy.
All I know is, I have a bad back that causes a lot of stiffness and mild to moderate pain. When I do anything that is physical, the pain levels are up there. Now whenever I do anything that requires bending and moving, I can not only feel my spine clicking, I can hear it.

I am ready to quit work and try to get this back issue healed, but my doc says I'm too young. He says I got to stay active or this is going to get worse. There are days when I feel like I'm ready for a long walk off a short pier, if you know what I mean.
It's a good thing that is against all my beliefs.

I'm tired of not being able to walk through grocery stores with out having to hang on to a buggy for support; Limping after sitting in a chair; Moaning and groaning every time I try to tie my shoes; Sex life...we wont even go there; Taking twice as long to accomplish tasks at work (physically demanding work); Using the handrail to pull myself up the steps; Feeling weak and tired most of the time.... I am so tired of all the issues with a bad back.

Anybody else in this same boat?
Any suggestions for relief that I haven't already mentioned?

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8 Responses


Hi Iwa57,
I was thinking 57is not to young tohave the surgery(are you 57?).Anyhow i have a kind of similar work comp history.I had a back fusion almost a year ago,i think it helped.Sounds like it may be time to attempt the surgery?I wish you the best.
Nurse Nancy


I'll be 55 this year.

Has anyone had to have their surgery repeated in a couple years. It just seems like a waste of time if it is only a temporary fix.


Sorry, repeated.




It sounds like I wrote this...Same problems..and I stand for a living...The doc wants to know, when i go back in a few weeks if I want surgery...I dont think so..Not now...Pain doc says Im too young...I kind of like his advice...but some people say he only wants my business...but back surgery=scarey...!


Gosh this sounds so much like myself. I've had back problems since I was very young. My Mom taking me to the Dr.'s and them telling her that it was growing pains. But 15 yrs. ago I had a chiropractor severly herniate a disc on me which then truly sent my life into hell. Several yrs ago I was diagnosed with DDD and spinal stenosis. My entire spince from my neck to the S1 is involved. Surgeons then said I needed surgery which I refused to have. I then proceeded to slowly get my life somewhat back to normal after gaining a lot of weight due to medications for the pain and depression which came from my changed life.
Then after several yrs of that my husband decided he didn't want to be with a (sick) person and wanted a divorce. So with that I dropped all the medications and decided exercise was probably better than meds to help the pain. So with that I lost 80 lbs and it did I think help my back pain a little. But I continued to do the things I loved. Ride my bike, walk lots, go dancing on the weekends with my friends. But I always silently suffered in misery with horrible back aches and neck aches from the back and neck problems I have.
I kept it from most of my friends because I hated for anyone to know I had problems. By last yr I could feel my left leg not working so well and it would actually give out and I would have falling spells. I knew then it was time I had to get something done as I was very worried I would fall and break bones. I saw my surgeon who then said I needed emergency surgery due to the severe nature of my problem. His words were, your back isn't the worst I've seen but what is going on with it is as bad as it gets. It had started to cause me to have accidents before I could reach the restroom. I knew then from articles I had read here on Spineuniverse I had problems that needed dealing with and soon.
So Aug 15th. 2011 I had a double laminectomy of the L3-4 and L4-5 and double discectomy of the same. The surgery went great. But it left my left leg numb about 4 inches above my knee to which my surgeon could not tell me why that was. 2 weeks later I was admitted back to the hospital with a severe infection and spent 2 weeks there very very ill. 6 months later I still have some numbness and tingling in my left leg. The sole of my left foot is totally numb. The part I really struggle with is the problems of spams and tingling have now involved the right leg since my surgery. I am still struggling with fatigue as well.
I could go on and on but I won't! My point is, my life has changed sooo much since my surgery and honestly, I really don't think it was worth it. I put it off for 15 years for a reason and I now know why! My life is so different now since the surgery than before. My spine is a mess. My contrast dye MRI I had done last week and went over with my infectious dr. who by the way has been amazing, said, your back is literally falling apart as we sit here and talk. I laughed as I do have a wicked sense of humor, but it really is making my life miserable. And yes, I too was told I would need repeat surgeries down the road. But then again, I was told I would need more surgeries for the missing discs etc that is going on. After all this nonsense with the infection and months of having the PICC then pill form of antibiotic too. I highly doubt I will ever have another surgery.
I do wish you all the best with finding help and comfort in your life with your back.


Thanks for your comments and advice.
Right now we are on vacation and drove down to Florida. I was surprised that I was not
In a whole lot of pain. However, the walking around at the theme parks was uncomfortable.
A few times I almost fell when that sudden jolt of pain would shoot down my leg
And I would lose control of my leg for that quick second. In a couple days we will be making the trip back. Not looking forward to it.

I've heard some good and bad surgery stories and Im still up in the air about getting it done.
For now, I'm just doing a wait & see approach. I can tell my family is tired of hearing me say I can't do something because my back hurts, or tired of hearing me complain about the pain. Believe me, I have thought about moving out so they won't have to deal with it. But for now I just deal with it as best as I can. I hope it doesn't come to that.