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In need of some advice, Pain Is so bad....

Started by 588625640@facebook on 09/13/2012 12:52pm

Hello, My name is Barb, I am 32 yrs old, from Ontario, Canada. I have had back problems since I was 17, most likely due to my gymnastics. In early 2003 I was suppose to have a spinal fusion on my lumbar spine but ended up pregnant and had to put the surgery off. Once I was ready to go ahead, I called my surgeon, Dr. Douglas Orr in Hamilton, ON just to find out he moved his practice to Clevland, Ohio.. Dr. Orr is a surgeon and works for the SPINE UNIVERSE... So hear I am trying to get answers as for 9 yrs now I havent been able to get any further with my back. My pain is getting unbareable, and is now more then ever impacting my daily life. I had a MRI done in May 2010 and a follow-up xray done just last mth. Here are the results, but ever referral to a surgery, denies me... What DO I DO NEXT... NEED HELP... CANT STAND THIS PAIN ANYMORE.... Thanks

MRI-Lumbar & Rx3 + 3DA

In the lumbar spine there is a minimal anterolisthesis of L5 upon S1 of about 6mm due to bilateral pars inter-articularis defects.

At L4-5 there is a diffuse bulging of the disc although no focal herniation. This is not however causing significant canal or foraminal narrowing.

At L5-S1 there is diffuse bulging of the uncovered disc causing a moderate degreeof foraminal narrowingbut no canal stenosis.

Any help would be great thank you...

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Please anyone with any tips on how to ease the pain or tips for more comfort, anything will help... Feel so alone, no one understandswhat I am going through here at home... This sucks ;(

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Mornin Barb, It sounds like your having a bad week w the pain, I am so sorry,ur actually makin me cry. Im 45 an to hear u suffer as I am I feel bad for u. Trust me when I say I understand, This week has been hell for me too. We discussed once b4 about trying to receive help, IS IT that bad in Canada? (so ive heard). I hate for you to not even have a doc to start with. What if u went to ER, they cant deny u care. , or Pain management ,,just to get it under control. The pain comes from your narrowing and the slight bulges u have, think back,,did u move or lift something the wrong way,,the pain is because u have so much inflammation to the nerve areas n it takes days or weeks for it to calm down. Can u atleast take over the counter naproxyn, all it is is a high dose of aspirin, it should help w the inflammation. also apply ice to area for 20 min on 20 min off. dont laugh , u can use a bag of frozen veggies..There has to be some sort of health care to tend to u,,why is Canada so difficult? Also stay off your feet lay down and put pillows under your knees, U hav to not move for inflammation to stop getting aggrevated, Im grasping at straws for u, I told u I was an orthopedic nurse so im tryin to think of everything u can do to help since u dont have medical help right now. Explain to me what would happen if u went to ER? Take your reports w you...Waiting to hear back, RENE :)

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Barb, a couple of more things,,why r u going straight to surgeon,did u try just an orthopedic doc, here in ny the steps to get to a surgeon is first being seen by an orthopedist, he can atleast scrbe some pain meds, and a primary,,they all can scribe for pain meds. Then u get to surgeon. an orthopedist offfice usually has a pain mngmt doc in their office, once u gain their trust the pain doc will see u an start u on a med regimen. Now I understand why people turn to the internet to order narcotics. Dont give up keep pounding down every doc u can see n plead for help. It took me one year to finally find correct pain doc,all others treat u like your seeking drugs,I would get so depressed at how degrating they would make u feel, Dont feel alone,,thats what we r here 4. And the family, I understand that issue too, mine finally came around after I was told about needing a second surgery. My kids r grown n they too would fight w me saying I was just looking for sympothy n pain meds n their Nurses. Finally when we got news about my cervical issue,they all came around to understanding. I highly suggest psychologist help,,it will help too, I still see one 2x month. they too prescibe meds. Im just tryin to help,im thinkin of everything for u, n prayin for u to get some much needed medical attention..Rene :)

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Hi Rene, thanks for the quick reply, so sorry to hear u r also having such a bad week. And YES health care here BLOWS... I did go to the ER with all reports I have, 3x now and all I got outta of it is going to be sent for a new MRI as they dont believe that my problem sould be causing me any pain.. BULLSHIT... Like I have said b5 i was booked for surgery with Dr.Orr who now works for this spine universe we are writing on right now... So Y cant these idiots see what the hell he did to want to do a fusion on me back in 2003... As for pain management, back in 199-2003, I wore a j mold back brace till got preggo, also epidural injections only one as it went the wrong way and caused complications. When my back is really bad I do take raliva but only when i can afford them as they are not covered here. I recently have tried lyrica, cymbalta, naproxens, celebrex, nothing works well... So now i am trying bacoflen but i find it makes me very very cranky for no reason and every little thing aggrivates or annoyes me, so i dont know what else to do... I am hoping to get a family dr soon as I feel thats the only way I am going to get anywhere with this... When my gf has a week off in early OCT we are going to goto the ER at the Toronto Western Hospital as that is where I seen Dr tom wright in the past for my spine consults, wouldnt hurt to try, and my brother lives out there so worth the trip, only 6 hrs away. also i new feeling i have been wondering about is my butt area feels like i have no feeling in it, and lately i have spasms in my right arm like twitches that doesnt stop for days, very annoying and sometimes painfull feeling... Would that be caused from straight neck, as my neck seems to be getting worse then my back these days....

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Hi,Barb.I,also suffer from chronic pain,not only the fact that my ENTIRE spine is affected,but now that fall is here,the arthritis in the rest of my body is kicking in,in the form of swollen joints & extreme amounts of pain,now surpassing the back pain by a long shot!Rene is 1 of the ,if not THE best resource I have found on here.Her knowledge is far more extensive than mine,I am just a layman with lots of experience dealing with extreme amounts of pain.My malady of the spine has led me 2 research exercises such as Yoga & walking,they have been the most beneficial 2 me so far,along with my positive attitude & my relationship with God.Getting in2 the swimming pool is instant relief,but I can only take the external pressure 4 about 2 hours,then,regretably I must leave until the next day.I find that laying on my electric blanket is very good also.I know it sounds insane 2 seek exercise as pain relief,but 4 me it REALLY WORKS!spinelessinalbertaJustKeepSmilin' :) JesusSaves! P2

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Well still fighting here in ontario to get headway with my back, but no luck... Its getting very depressing as I still need to go on with my everyday life which seems so hard right now.. I feel like i am in pain 24/7 and no one seems to understand. Feeling very low today but still have to make myself get up go get painting supplies and flooring and have to finish my new house this weekend as I move in next thursday... When need help the most it seems is when i am left to do things by myself.. I feel so alone.. I hope I can make it these next few days doing all the painting and flooring, I know its going to be hard but it needs to get done...

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Mornin Barb, sorry i havnt reached out to u, How is it going? Ive had a bad week too, was in ER all day yesterday,,,got knowhere,its a long story,,,Just gonna say I was treated by my NEW SURGICAL GROUP in such a discusting , frustrating way Id need a dictaphone to type an entire novel as to what I went through yesterday....And there responce is as always " your depressed n need psych help" No shit,,,,n I am seeing psych 4 2 yrs now, I wouldnt be deppressed if I wasnt in so much pain..So right now im fit to b tied,,My hubby finally said hes stepping in n gonna meet w my surgeon in 2-3 days, cause thats all he ordered at ER for me to follow up w him.Last week surgeon scripted me another MRI,,to make it short n sweet, I couldnt hold out for apt. n approval process so i went to Nearest ER.Surgeon had them transfer me via ambulance to his hospital and via phone would not let hospital receive order from him to get MRI,,( then why did they transfer me,,the first hospital was willing to do MRI they were managing my pain correctly, but when they called my surgeon he requested I b transfered n he would take it from there..P.S HE would not give order,,Then why the hell did they transfer me I kept asking,But he wants to see me for a follow up in 2-3 days..What a joke. Im so angry n frustrated too as is my husband ( hes a very big man n intimidating)..so hes comin to the visit. Im ready to blast them....Enough about me,,,,,,Plz dont do all that work your saying ur going to do, its only gonna HURT yourself, its not worth it,,I know it has to get done, I just know what your gonna hav to go through afterwords....Keep me informed about your medical care, if u found one yet or just how your feeling..Ill b watching 4 your responce..Try to hav a good weekend,Ill do the same, ill check in tonight,,,bye,,Rene :(

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Hi, Barb, I read your blog with great interest. I had your exact diagnosis on my L-5 S-1, as well as bulging discs higher up in my lumbar spine. I have also had 2 cervical fusions over the past 15 years. So--my sciatic pain down my right leg was so unbearable. I did everything according to the book--PT, epidurals, steroid packs. Still, not relief. I was gobbling narcotics to help me go to work. So, about a month ago I had the surgery. I was told by my doctor that there was an 85% success rate and I should feel relief immediately. WRONG. My pain immediately DOUBLED. I had to big the nurses for my IV dilaudid, it was so tortuous. (I'm an ex athelete and not a wimp) In the meatime, my surgeon had somehow disappeared. Dr. Scott Boden of Emery. A world famous researcher. He spoke with my wife for 30 seconds after the surgery. Typical arrogant God complex. I had to get the Emory patient advocate involved just to get info from my dr's office. Their advise? Go to a pain clinic.

So I went from begging to be cut to relieve the pain to asking why did I have this done? Subsequently, I learned about something called Failed Back Syndrome. It's when, based on a new MRI, your surgery looks to have gone well, but you're STILL feeling pain. So the surgery, from the Dr's perspective could have been successful and you're still limping around wondering when the wheelchair is going to arrive.

So, you have to go into it with eyes wide open. It sounds like you're in sufficient pain that you have no choice. My suggestion is to have a list of questions for the Dr during your pre-op appointment. (The dr will try to keep it short as he's has a lot of patients to see, which i have found doctors HATE) Ask what you should expect post-op. Relief? What happens if there is no relief? Should I not have another MRI to see what's going on inside me? If I have weird symptoms, who do I call? Will the doctor speak with me?

Good luck.

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Hey Barb,
I just read your story and my heart goes out to you. I live in Edmonton Alberta I broke my back so severe in 2004 in a snowmobile accident I had permanant hardeware installed and have had MANY complications (3 surgeries) since. I have had great support from the Pain clinic at the University of Alberta Hospital they don't judge you and take your word for what your pain level is at. It is really worth calling them at I guess the Toronto Hosp. I believe they can also prescribe pain meds as well. I will keep following you I hope things get better for you I know nothing sucks more than being in pain :( Kim

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Hi, Barb,

I'm very sorry about your situation. Your L-5-S-1 is identical to mine. My pain level had gotten so severe that I had no choice but to have the surgery. However, I had to laminectory and discectomy. I have 2 cervical fusions (I have a degenerative spine) and experienced immediate relief. So expected the same with my lumbar surgery. My "world reknown" Emerory surgeon said there was an 85% success rate. "Let's have at it," said. AND THEN THE ANESTHESIA WORE OFFF. I'm 3 1/2 weeks post-op and then pain double from pre-op. For 3 weeks I was in complete agony. The heavy narcotics took 50% of the pain away and only by taking Ambian could I sleep. I have young children and a thriving business. I was SCARED. SO--after waiting the required 3 weeks, my surgen told me my nerve had been so compressed that after the surgical decompression it inflamed seriously, which caused all the pain. So I received another epidural--this one through the side of my scar tissue. 80% of my pain disappeared. So I might be one of the lucky ones. It's still too soon to tell it will stick, but we'll see.

If I were in your shoes I'd get 2 or 3 more opinions to see if a surgery like mine would be possible instead of the fusion. But if the vertebrae are just about rubbing against each other, you have no choice. SO THERE IS HOPE. Hang in there. Make sure you have plenty of support for your recovery. Friends, neighbors, family. Good luck.

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hey guys..sorry for interruptin...... but im really worried now... im just 18 ....... and im from toronto ...same as for you mrs barb ..... what i really wanted to know know is .... what does disc bulging really mean.... n is that gona cause me more than i couldnt bear...... are there any measures i could follow to bring them down........ (disc bulge in L2)

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