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New here... lots of concerns

Started by Penelope63 on 05/21/2012 12:05am

Hey everyone. I just found this site today and I'm glad there are forums to talk to other people with similar problems.

I am 31yrs old and I've been dealing with back pain and chronic headaches for 10 years. At one point the sciatica issue was so severe I used a cane for a few years. All of my doctors have brushed me off as just being overweight, which I am, or they've attributed it to my Fibromyalgia. I finally got to see a pain specialist and he was shocked that no other doctor had investigated this before. I had an MRI done two weeks ago and got the results a few days ago.

Apparently I have 2 cervical herniation's with osteoarthritis and fusion(?). I also have two lumbar herniation's with osteoarthritis and DDD. I never expected anything more than one herniation, at most, to explain the sciatica. I never connected my headaches or arm pain to my back. I also haven't seen my doctor since the results came in, and I won't until June 1st.

I am freaking out a little bit. I realize now that these things are probably directly related to a car accident I was in in 2001, and if this has been happening inside my body for nearly 12 years, how many treatment options are still options? My brother, who is two years older and very fit, also has a lumbar herniation with osteoarthritis and DDD, so there may be a genetic factor, but they caught his early and he is getting shots and RFA. Two weeks seems like forever to wait to see my doctor. I woke up yesterday morning in pain and couldn't put any weight on my right leg. I couldn't really walk properly for hours, though it did eventually calm down.

Anyone have any experience or knowledge about herniation's etc. that have been untreated for years?

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Sorry about the duplicate posts! The site timed out while I was trying to post it and I don't know how to delete them...

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Hi Penelope63. I too have cervical herniation and cervical disc disease along with a compressive myelopathy. You do not have a fusion. A fusion is when they fuse the discs together because it causes too much radicular pain. Where is your arm pain? I am a pro at this. I need a fusion but in my neck but am scared to death about this procedure. I have degenerative disc disease in my lumbar as well as sciatica. Injections work wonders but don't panic. I was scared at first but shouldn't have been and made my back worse. I have 4 buldging discs and 2 discs that are leaking. Try not to worry to much. Just take Naproxen if you can which is Aleve. The gels work the best and it is also a muslce relaxer. Put heat and ice packs for pain. Injections work wonders but too many is not good. You have to learn to live with pain. Stinks! The right arm pain is from your neck. Try not to put pressure on your shoulders like heavy pocketbooks and get a sports bra. No pressure on your shoulders. Go to Orthopedic they will order tests or go to a Spine Center. Degenerative disc disease is when the discs wear out and then pain begins. Good luck and the most important thing is not to panic because it will bring you more pain.

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I just had surgery, a few weeks ago and I'm starting to think that something is wrong. At 6 weeks I should be getting better right? The first 4 weeks,every day was a little better. Then my surgeon refused to prescribe me any more opiates. I was forced not by choice, but only option was Subutex, and I get no benefit from it even though its 40x stronger than morphine. I guess I took it to long? Anyway, find a neurosurgeon (no ortho) that you can trust and answer your questions you have and heed his advice. I long as you don't take any medicine containing buprenoriphine like I was. You should feel relatively better after just 24 hours? I just hope you can have surgery and your herniation's aren't to old and turned in 'raisins'. Best of luck to you.

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Penelope: I have a 10mm L4/L5 herniation and a 20mm L5/S1 that have progressed for the last 16 years. Without insurance I have only been able to manage the pain but not actually treat the problem.

My doctor says that a herniation will either get better with rest and therapy or it will get worse. I urge you to get whatever help you can whenever you can. According to the neurosurgeon I consulted, you want to heal or reverse the damage before any nerve damage occurs or becomes permanent.

Good luck & take care,

Barbara

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Hi It's LavenderRose again. Just completed my sugery 2 weeks ago. I had corpectomy, disectomy and fusion C5-7. Am I ever going to get better? The surgery went well. I got my voice back in 1 day and in 1 week was able to swallow and fully swallow by 2 weeks. Don't get scared when people say you can't swallow....you can!!! At least I lost 5 lbs in 2 weeks! Anyways, the pain has hit my nerves. Will I ever get better? I know they say 4-8 weeks to use cervical collar but I need a life! Is there any hope or pain releif in all this? I was hoping so. I know it's too early to tell and everyone is saying "give it time" but if anyone can give me any good news on this...I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you and have a happy fourth of July! I'll be home :(

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