Spinal Stenosis, Degenerative Disc Disease and Surgery for it?
- 20 Nov 2015 by Thor283
- 30 Aug 2017
- insomnia, back pain, buprenorphine, fatigue, surgery, disease, spinal stenosis, exhaustion, stenosis
I've had these conditions since at least 2009. They were so minor back then that the Dr. didn't even tell me to come back. For the past 3 yrs they've become worse. Now I can barely walk 2 blocks, I can no longer stand up straight, going up stairs is very difficult, and it's getting worse. The pain is under control, so that's not the problem. I'm alarmed because walking is difficult. I can't go many places and this upsets me. I don't have a car, but we have buses. Still, unless the store is quite close to the bus I can't make it. I'm only 63 which I feel is too young to become home bound. I know I need to see a specialist and have tests done. Assuming the Dr suggests surgery I'm wondering if anyone here has had surgery for these conditions? I've read so many stories of back surgery going wrong that I don't know if I should even hope it can help me.
Can anyone tell me anything, good or bad?
I to have spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease ,faucet disease, bulging disc, a cyst And a small disc fragment .. I also have osteoarthritis and mild scoliosis... lordosis is what I was born with and has caused me further problems... my L5 vertebrae is arched out over my L4 , and I think sponylethisis was on the report but not heard much about it. I think I have listed everything. But most of those are slightly impinging on my S1 nerve roots. Right now I am dealing with for a month now is pulled muscles which actually turned out to be a pinched nerve causing the muscles to contract which the first 2 wks it hurt so bad I compared it to contractions having a baby... I am still layed up waiting to see a neurosurgeon about it. I can't lift over 5lbs or bend or lean, I been sleeping in a chair... I really hope they can remove the cyst and disc fragment I think that's what is causing all of this.
But a few yrs ago I consulted with a surgeon and he said that nothing could be done. That was before the cyst. So to answer your question I don't know if it can be fixed with surgury, I was told no. But I am going to see a different one soon about my pinched nerve and I am going to find out. I am only 42 yrs old. I have had problems my whole life but it wasn't until 15 yrs ago that I had to take pain meds on a regular basis. But now I had to switch Dr's and my meds got cut less than half... which right now is a bad thing because my pain level went up to a 9-10 and my meds went down. I have a 6 yr old to raise by myself, I don't have a whole lot of help. It's really hard and breaks my heart because I can't do anything with her can't take her places because I can't be on my feet long or walk . I wanted a child so bad and was told with my back I would never have one. But I got a miracle. She is the only thing that gives me the desire and strength to go on. I have Fibromylgia to. I wish I had a good dr to treat my back and Fibromylgia because I can't bare the pain and most dr don't believe in Fibromylgia . But I don't know even how to find a good dr anymore . I can tell you the pain gets worse and it is hard to deal with the fact that we are not able to do much. If I find any information I will post it. And I hope you find more answers ...
It's time to go back to your doctor and review your case again. It's no doubt degenerated, which is why they call it Degenerative Disc Disease. Yes, I have most of these same conditions, and had cervical surgery for stenosis, laminectomy, as well as the replacement of three vertebra with donor bone, and metal pins and braces to hold it all together, which doctors call "instrumentation." It was a very complicated surgery and it was also very painful. But when all was said and done, I ended up cured. It took me a year to finally feel like I was completely well again. The recovery is quite painful, so be prepared for that.
I now have "facets" disease in my lower back that is extremely painful. There is a simple surgery for this, but after having a massive heart problem last year, I'm sort of freaked out about having it done. My neurologist said I can continue to just be treated with pain meds if that's what I choose. So far that's what I've chosen to do.
Best of luck to you!
Well, you're right about one thing, surgery IS ALWAYS a last resort. Back surgery is often not successful. I was very fortunate. It took many years to finally get my doctor to send me for an MRI. When that came back and she actually saw for herself what was going on, due to the report that came with the MRI, she sent me to a back surgeon. That surgeon's first words to me at my first appointment when he looked at my MRI were "Well, your MRI certainly got my attention!" He was surprised I was able to walk into his office. He said most people with my problems are wheeled in by a relative in a wheelchair. He told me what I needed, and that it was a very complicated and painful surgery, and explained what he would be doing. I went to Cleveland Clinic and got a second opinion, and it was also for having the surgery. So I went ahead with it.
I had been suffering with some back pain since my 20s, and was always diagnosed with stress, or pinched nerve, or this or that, but I don't think they did those advanced back surgeries back then anyway. I'm 69 now, and I had my back surgery just a few years ago, 2011. It was AWFUL!! I was in pain so much from the surgery that I cried most of the time. My family took turn, with my wonderful husband, caring for me and cleaning and helping me with things.
I am just very lucky that I have people in my life to help, and that I worked in a company for many years that has a pension plan with full benefits. My surgery expenses were upwards of $60,000 and I was only in the hospital for three or four days. I only had to pay about $200 of that after all the insurance paid. Like I said, I'm one of the lucky ones.
Then, last year I almost died from a burst aorta, unrelated to my back. That's what keeps me leading a very quiet life. Once again I got lucky and survived it. I live in the Akron/Cleveland area, and there are many good doctors around here. But still I have seen several bad ones too, in attempting to find the good ones. When you're older, they aren't quite as concerned with your being an addict. I mean what the hell does it matter if you need to take pain pills for the rest of your life if you're close to seventy anyway?
You still haven't said if you have insurance or any other way to pay for the expensive treatment you will need. I'm not trying to pry, I'm just wondering if that's the missing piece in the puzzle?
One thing that I can say, is to take two ibuprophen with your prescription pain pills. Believe it or not, it's one of the best pain relievers out there.
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