U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Health and Wellness
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-03-2007, 11:21 AM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 16,335,145 times
Reputation: 7583

Advertisements

Well, although I fancy myself a doctor, no state has given me a medical license yet.....so I'm shooting from the cuff!

If you are terrified of needles, as long as you have someone to drive you home they will sedate you if needed - a little Valium or Xanax before the procedure to put you in the zone, but not put you completely out - just give you a little something to help you relax. A tiny injection of lidocaine will numb the area where they do the epidural. I'm not afraid of needles in my body, but take me to the dentist and I collapse - they sedate me to even clean my teeth, I just fall apart! Most physicians are sympathetic to your phobia, it's not uncommon at all.

Inactivity is not necessarily the way to heal. Don't do any heavy lifting, bending, pushing or pulling - try to get on some back exercises to strengthen the muscles and hold you up straighter. Modification of lifestyle may be all you need to get you by, but the problem is that if you have a very large disc that is impinging on the nerves you could sustain permanent nerve damage that can never be repaired, causing you to have numbness or constant sciatica or whatever ( a miserable sensation...ugh ).

You'll have to get an honest to goodness medical opinion about whether it can heal without injections or surgery - but 90% of herniated discs do NOT require surgery, so that should be some comfort to you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-03-2007, 11:37 AM
 
Location: Home is where we park it.
3,098 posts, read 8,353,710 times
Reputation: 3185
They say to always make surgery your last resort.

I went thru all the non-invasive routes first and ended up in surgery. Had a laminectomy with spinal fusion of L4/L5/S1. I am just over 15 months post op and given what I was dealing with, I would do it again.

Mild Scoliosis, Arthritis of Spine, Spinal Stenosis, and 2 herniated disks ravage my spine. Before surgery, I had pains radiating down my right leg to the toes and down my left past the knee. I could barely walk. The back pain is still there but the radiating pain, numbness is gone.

I had a neurosurgeon (who specialized in spines) and a spinal orthopedic surgeon do my surgery. It was a team approach. Liz
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-03-2007, 11:38 AM
tao tao started this thread
 
Location: Colorado
720 posts, read 2,969,527 times
Reputation: 933
Thanks again. You've all really helped. I'll hopefully find out what the best course of action is in a couple of weeks when I get more info from the new doctor (and hopefully get referred to a specialist). Until then I'll try to take it easy and avoid any heavy lifting or straining of my back. Again, thank you so much for all your help.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-03-2007, 12:11 PM
 
Location: So. Dak.
13,495 posts, read 34,082,151 times
Reputation: 15063
I was also suffering from periods with tremendous pain months after surgery. I've had muscle shots and spinal shots and they're not very painful.

Your MD will probably send you to a neurologist to gauge how bad your situation is. He'll then refer you to a neuro-surgeon. In our area, the only ones who can do spinal surgery are the neuro-surgeons. But maybe I'd trust Sam though cause he/she sounds pretty knowledgeable about the specifics of it.

The ironic thing is~a few years after my surgery, it proceeded to move to my lumbar so I also have a protrusion in L4-5. AND four years ago I had emergency gall bladder surgery, the old fashioned style. My gall bladder was infected with stones in my pancreas and liver so that was also a bit rough. Are you sure we're not related?

And I totally agree with the other posters~only go for surgery as a last resort, but you know it's there if things are unbearable some day.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-03-2007, 02:07 PM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 16,335,145 times
Reputation: 7583
tao

Microspine in Destin - Dr. Tony Mork - excellent spine surgeon. That's the one I was trying to come up with - it came to me during a Sunday nap!

Good luck to you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-05-2007, 01:50 PM
 
Location: The mountians of Northern California.
1,354 posts, read 5,757,613 times
Reputation: 1291
My hubby had surgery for a herinated disk and a ruptured disk, both in his lower back. It was in 2003 and since then he is doing great. He was a football player in his youth and in college. This helped break down his back and knees. His back still tightens up and he has to be careful, he knows his limits now. He doesn't play basketball or football anymore. He golfs and he walks alot during his workday, sometimes up to 5 miles. We also hike and walk alot with our kids.

Be sure to follow the doctors recomendations for exercise/therapy post-surgery. We have known some people who didn't follow the instructions and they seem to have alot of pain issues doing everyday things. One thing he has noticed is that sleeping in is not a good thing. Whenever he sleeps in, he wakes up with his back feeling sore. Good luck!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2007, 06:31 AM
 
Location: N/A
217 posts, read 906,769 times
Reputation: 84
Default tao

Hi. I have had an operation for an explosive herniation at L4-L5. My disc had to be taken out in little pieces because it blew up. That was about 35 years ago. I was in the hospital for 10 days. They don't do that many days anymore. They get you up and walking the same, or next day now right after the surgery. You will go back to work in 3 to 4 months now. It is no fun. If you are not in chronic unbelievable pain, you may escape surgery. About 20 years ago I needed more surgery for severe spinal stenosis and massive buildup of scar tissue from my previous surgery. That was a total failure. I worked for 2 years on and off and finally admitted to myself that my working days were over. I'm talking to you now at 5:20 CA time because I'm in so much pain, it's impossible to sleep. Try EVERTHING to avoid surgery. Once you have spinal surgery, you may need another down the road. I know many people who have one surgery and end up going in again. I worked as an airline mechanic for 20 years. Back and knee surgery are as common as a cold doing that type of work. I don't mean to ramble on here. Please try everything as I said before. Best to you,skitow.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2007, 10:19 AM
tao tao started this thread
 
Location: Colorado
720 posts, read 2,969,527 times
Reputation: 933
I'm happy to report that I'm not going to need surgery, at least at this point. I have an appointment to see a pain management specialist on Wednesday and we'll be talking about my options, which will possibly include cortisone shot treatments. My pain is lessening now so I'm hoping I won't need the injections and that's a great thing. As long as I keep taking care of my back by not bending and lifting too much (my husband's been really great about doing everything around the house) I feel like it will heal. Then I can learn which exercises will help strengthen the area in my back where I have all my issues. In the same area I have been diagnosed with degenerative arthritis which is somewhat rare for someone my age but apparently stems from the injury which I believe started me on the road to disc herniation in the first place.

Anyway that's the good news. The bad news is now I'm suffering from percocet addiction/withdrawal. I've been on it for six months now (first because of my gallbladder surgery in December then for my back which went out again a week after surgery) and because the pain is lessening I wanted to stop taking it. But I've found if I take nothing I get really sick. This is an unexpected development. I've done my research and it's dangerous to quit cold turkey so I'm trying to wean myself off it by cutting down to half a pill or two halfs a day. I was only taking two pills a day, three max a day when the pain was most severe but it seems that's been enough to get physically addicted. It's crazy, unexpected and distressing. I'm just trying to get through it though and wean myself so that by the end of next week I'm off them completely. The problem is, most days the pain really starts cranking up by the end of each day, that shooting down my legs pain. How can I quit my percocet and relieve the pain?? I feel like it's a vicious cycle. Has anyone else had these problems?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2007, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Northern MN
592 posts, read 2,581,280 times
Reputation: 353
Quote:
Originally Posted by tao View Post
I just got my MRI results back and found out I have a severely herniated disc and I'm going to need surgery. I would love to hear from anyone who has gone through the same thing. What can I expect after surgery? Is there anything I need to know that I might not be thinking about? I know nothing about all this, just that my disc is herniated and I need surgery. Will I have to sleep on my stomach after surgery? What's the recovery time?

Thanks in advance for any help or advice.
Hey Tao, don't take me wrong, but I'm thinking you ought to be chatting with a Doctor. I herniated L-4 and L-5 fifteen years ago, putting pressure on my nerves in my spine, causing terrific sciatica. I begged, begged, begged my Doc to cut, he soberly looked at me and told me there was at least a 50% chance I'd lose bowel and bladder control, OR be paraplegic after surgery. Didn't take me long to see the wisdom in physical therapy and finding ways to tolerate the pain. Find a doc that will give you the straight skivvy on the diagnoses and treatment options.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2007, 12:45 AM
 
Location: N/A
217 posts, read 906,769 times
Reputation: 84
Default Tao

How ya doing? I'll put in a little more info for you. If you have a disc that has herniated FORWARD and not pushing on any nerve roots, you may get by. If you have a true herniation,not bulging disc, I would guess that in time you will need surgery. If so, you will sleep on your side. It will most likely be too painfull to lay on your back. With the hospital bed all made,the nurse will lay a small blanket over the bed. Or across, depends how you look at it. That blanket is called a turn sheet. You may have trouble turning yourself after your surgery. The nurses just grab it and lift(flip) you over at your request it. It is a very slow roll to get you to the position you are most comfortable with. They also use the same turn to change your bed. Turn you to one side, pull up the sheets, roll you back over and pull the old sheets out. Then use the same process to get clean sheets on your bed. You get the idea. If you can turn over by yourself, skip all that turn blanket stuff. It all comes down to your personal pain threshold. When it is time for surgery, you will know without a doubt. I feel so bad for you. I know exactly what your going threw. Like I said earlier, Iv'e been there twice. Back pain is an all engulfing hell. It devowers your life. I truely pray that you can escape the surgery. Take care, and try to keep your smile on.skitow.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Health and Wellness
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top