I was in a car accident several years ago which totaled my car and I have been having back pain ever since. I wake up everyday with my back, my hips, and my legs hurting. Maybe once every month or two it will get really bad to where I can't sleep and am absolutely miserable for days. I will get shooting pains, tingling, or the sensation of pins and needles poking my skin that go all the way down my leg to my foot followed by numbness. I can usually suck it up for the few days it's bad but it's starting to be more frequent and worse causing me concern. I have no insurance but qualify for a state health program which I am about to enroll in. Problem is I can't get an appointment for over a month to see a dr and who knows how long it'll be before I can see a specialist and get the tests I need. I've considered going to the ER and waiting the 10 hours I would probably have to wait to be seen but I'm stubborn thinking it's not that bad (even though I find myself in tears occasionally.) Part of me is also afraid they'll term me as drug seeking and not do anything but judge me and send me on my way. I've tried every OTC med, tramadol (which I hate) flexiril, vicodin (the only thing does work on bad days) valium, xanax, massages, stretching, working out, pain patches (the kind you get at the drug store not fetanyl) torradal shots and blah blah blah. I was told a long time ago that I would probably have back pain most of my life due the shape of my spine, and because of how my hips and knees turn in. I didn't believe the dr at the time. For my situation any opinions on what the best way to go about seeing a dr and getting help is? How will they be able to tell whats wrong with me and should I be asking for certain tests? Sorry for going on and on I've been very frustrated and emotional the past few days due to dealing with the pain. I'd appreciate some suggestions
13 Jun 2012
A couple questions, right after the wreck did you get checked out, & if so what did they say at the time?
It sound like you damaged your spine in some way.
They will probably take x-rays & a MRI possibly.
I don't understand why it would take a month to get into a doctor. Is the dr. you are trying to get into one that you have already seen before?. If it is & there are other doctors in his group you may try to get into see another one of the doctors as they would have access to your records.
I don't think going to the ER will help you much because ER's usually do not run very many test they just give you a little medicine to get you by. Then they tell you to follow up with a dr. You might want to call around to other drs to see if you can get into see another dr.
I hope I helped a little bit & hopefully you can get into a dr soon.
13 Jun 2012
Despite the accident, you have reason to seek a doctor's care as you were told of your condition many years ago which I suspect is scoliosis based on what you have said. The pins and needles sensation, shooting pain down your legs and tingling is because of a pinched nerve. You really need an MRI for a definitive answer on that. I recommend you hang in there by doing the exercises they taught you back when you were in physical therapy, start out slow. Don't go to the new clinic or the ER for that matter asking for specific meds or procedures. Tell them your symptoms and past history and let them decide what to do. If you go in with demands of medication and procedures they are more likely to term you a drug seeker. I work in a free clinic so I'm fimilar with not only the wait to see a doctor you are having to endure but also how some get dubbed as drug seekers. If the pain is unbearable, once you have insurance, go to the ER but again don't go in with an agenda. Remember there are newer medications such as Lyrica for nerve pain that are not narcotics like the Vicodin and not benzo's like the valium and xanax. Asking for narcotics or benzo's will get you a name real fast.
Hang in there,
13 Jun 2012
Hi sugarhOOker, we meet again. Am glad you posted about what started this thing with your back pain. I think once your medicaid or what ever state program is in effect, you will be able to see a doctor that can order the needed MRI or other tests (the nerve test is an EMG) to see what is going on in your lower spine. Since this started with a car accident, you could have aggravated an already existant condition. This happened to my son when he was in a car accidnet & hurt his back it was found out that he had spina bifida. Of course today they would have found this out in a sonogram, but back when I had kids they didn't do sonograms before the baby was born. He had to eventually have a spinal fusion. It also could be just about anything from a ruptured disc or spinal stenosis which usually requires surgery to get that disc material from pinching the spinal canal. It's really hard to just guess what could be causing your pain until you get the proper tests.
I have had two faied back surgeries that left me with sciatica from the right side of my back down the hip, leg, & to my foot. It gets so bad at times I want to scream. I am way past having any more surgery, but you are not. I have scar tissue embedded in the nerve roots of my lower spine & a huge cyst in the canal & doctors are afraid they would paralyze me with more surgery so I am treated with pain control drugs for the really bad days which is every day. I also have scoliosis which usally doesn't cause the pain down the leg I have found. There is also a condition called pitiformis syndrome. The pitiformis is the large muscle in your hip, & the sciatic nerve runs right thru it. Sometimes it will pinch that nerve & cause awful leg pain. You won't know any of this until you get your aid & have the proper tests. Please keep us informed as to how you are doing. I would suggest in the meantime to keep as flexible as you can, & use heat on your lower back (as long as there is not swelling,) & on you hip. It won't take it away, but will help some. Until you have a definate answer, I don't reccomend exercise because you don't know what is wrong, & in some conditions like my son had, you could do more harm than good. Don't be a couch potatoe, but don't going running any marathons either. You know I have your best interests at heart! If you can take Aleve or something similar. It may help you right now. I hate to see you get hooked on narcotics when you really don't have a definate dignosis yet. I wish you the best as always... Mary
13 Jun 2012
Just wqndering where the insurance company is that was involved with the automobile accident. I live in California and we need to be insured in order to drive. (I think you said this started with a bad auto accident?) If there is no private insurance, there is uninsured driver's insurance which would be responsible. I am only stating this due to the fact that getting in to see doctors for treatment seem to be your problem. With this kind of pain, we should not have to be worried about how to see a doctor. Go to your Social Services where you have applied and tell them you are in pain and you need help immediately. Sounds like you have a pinched nerve which is detected by a Neurologist who gives the proper tests to detect any nerve damage or problem. He/she will also order MRI's or CT scans whichever is needed. Then comes the proper medication/treatment. Wish you good luck! Anne
13 Jun 2012
Hello. I'm so sorry that you are having so many difficulties and pain. I was in an auto accident and had ongoing pain shortly afterwords. The neurologist I went to was an older doctor who only believed that Fibromyalgia was due to an autoimmune disorder. I realized he didn't believe that I was in pain, but I felt I needed help with referrals for physical therapy for my pain, etc. (I didn't know that I had FMS at that time). The physical therapy only helped with muscular problems, but my wide-spread pain continued. I wonder if you press in on your legs, arms, etc., that you experience pain? With the opinion of the neurologist, I had difficulties receiving good care from future doctors. There is information on the Net from doctors/Lyrica about car accidents causing Fibro.
If you feel your doctor doesn't believe you regarding your pain, please find someone else!! Also, if you don't have medical insurance and are low income, you can apply for a sliding fee scale based on your income and expenses at the hospital/hospital rehab and possible pain center as well. Best of wishes. C.E.
14 Jun 2012
Hello again. You have already received some great advice, other than the poster that said... just go to the doctor, your putting too much whatever into this. I would ignore that comment. That is what this site is for. For you to ask questions and get feedback. Help, support, caring and thoughtful answers from people that have been there or are there. Please don't ever hesitate to write in with a question. Again... that's what this site is for. You should never ever feel bad or embarresed in any way. I'm so glad you are here, and I hope when you finally get into a doctor, they can get an MRI and find out what's going on and help you in some way. Remember... I'm here if you need a friend hon. Best wishes and good luck to you. Ruthie
15 Jun 2012
Hi, sorry to hear you are so uncomfortable right now. Just wanted to tell you of my experience in case it can help in any way? I had a back injury a few years ago. Took ages to diagnose what the problem was, but finally found out it was prolapsed disc/s. I have some of the same symptoms you are experiencing. My doctor prescribed Amitriptyline to take at night which were, and still are, very helpful in reducing the pain and helping me to sleep. Of course i know this won't help you while you are waiting for your dr appt, but maybe it is something you want to ask about when you do see him/her. When my back gets bad i use heat pads, or if at home, i lay on a hot water bottle. A simple solution, but it does help. I hope you are feeling better soon.
23 Jun 2012
Hey Sugar very sorry to hear of your situation.I went through the same ordeal for years until I found the pain mngmt Dr. that I now see.I injured my back at 17 and from then on it only got worse all total I have 9 discs in my back that are causing pain.Two are ruptured and three are bulged and 5 in my neck are dessicated basically degenerative disc disorder in both neck and back.No dr took me seriously till now they treated me like a drug seeker.Its only gonna get worse for us who are in real pain thanks to those who enjoy shootin up medicine.They have made it next to impossible for us to get the help and relief that we so desperately need.I wish you best of luck dont give up you will find a doc who trusts you and will treat you for your pain God Bless.
23 Jun 2012
Hey sugarhOOker, was just wondering how you are doing? Has the pain lessened at all? I wouldn't put a whole lot of stock in the fibromyalgia diagnoses until you actually see a physician. Lots of doctors are now recognizing it as a real disease, & I have it my self. but it is usally brought on by a traumatic event in ones life. In your case it could have been the accident you were in or as you stated you had trouble as a wee one & was told you had a congenital disorder with your back. I belive what ever that is whether it is scoliosis, or spina bifida or whatever, I believe the turning in of your hips & knees has a lot to do with your back & leg pain. I also have that too along with the scolioisis. I have an idea for you to try. Find out if you can see a chiropractic doctor or an osteopath, & explain all this to them. A chiropractic doctor always does x-ryas of the spine before trying any kind of manipulation. He can tell you exactly what you were born with.
My grandaughter also has scolioisis of the lower spine & is absolute misery with it. Unfortunately I received & passed on some bad genes concerning the bones in our family. It kills me to see my sons & their children have to suffer like I do & my mother & grandmother did also. If yu can try to see a chiro while waiting to see a regular physician. I believe you will eventually be referred to a neruologist or neuosurgeon for a consultation to find out what is really going on with your back. Sometimes a chiro can manipulate the spine & hip joints to get 'that turning in' as you put it, back into place. A lot of doctors today are finally acepting chiros as real doctors of science. Their science of the back & the nerves connecting every part of our body is very important.They also cn help with fibromyalgia pain in the rest of your body too. They can do heat, massage, trigger point massage which does hurt to begin with, but getting those knots worked out feels so good! Othertherapies they offer are joint manipulation, & have helped me greatly. Unfortunately for me my bones have gotten to a ppoint where they cannot be moved anymore because of osteoporosis, & spinal fractures, but I really bet they could help you out alot. Just another thought til you get into a specialist to find out what is really goin on with that back of yours. If your knees are turning in & your hips are rotated too, that alone can cause back & leg pain. I know hard it is to wait, but look! You have made it 1/3 of the way already. Please let us know how you are doing? Good luck & best wishes... Mary
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