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post op hell

Aug 28, 2016 6:57 AM

I had spinal fusion at L5-S1 in late December 2015 due to spondylolithesis it was complicated by a bleed the day after the op and although the shooting pains down my legs has stopped I still have very severe back pain and my legs ache like crazy. The surgeon is happy with my MRI scans regarding the nerves but it doesn't help with the pain I'm in. Currently taking 60mg slow release morphine morning and night, naproxen 500mg morning and night, Gabapentin 300mg 3 times a day, amitriptyline 30mg at night and oramorph when needed!!!!! I was wondering if anyone is or has been in the same situation and what your status is. Thanks

Aug 28, 2016 7:30 AM

Hi, I had emergency surgery in the same spot. I had cauda equine, my nerves were extremely stressed and he had 6 hours to save the nerves. My surgeon told me nerves take 2 years to fully repair. I apparently have some scar tissue on my nerves (MRI 2 years post op) I do have chronic pain 8 years later and fibromyalgia.. Compared to how I was leading up to surgery I am feeling blessed.
I certainly did not have that amount of pain post op ... On a personal side I went vegan due to my permanent nerve damage it was helpful for elimination and less stress on my lower back. I wish I could have a more definite answer past nerves needing so long to heal .. take want you need to rest so you may heal.
Take care

Aug 28, 2016 8:13 AM

I had L3-L5 laminectomy and also discectomy ie two surgeries. Prior surgery had pain in thigh and sitting was problematic . Almost two years later I'm worse off. Still can't sit for long and have severe sciatica . Sleeping on either side also brings on pain. All looks good on MRI. One specialists suspects piriformis but even after cortisone still pain . Having another MRI soon . I think first surgery destabilised spine . A recent nerve conduction established no peripheral damage so it's in the spine . I too take naproxen, panadol and sonetimes lyrica. I'm sorry to hear of your drama. What I do know us that our emotions play a major role in our condition . It is a tough journey for us living with pain and the uncertainty .

Aug 28, 2016 4:45 PM

Stefanro, I'm very sorry to hear of your long ordeal post-op. I have problems at multiple spine levels from cervical to sacral. And pain at any level is very hard to deal with, especially when accompanied by neuropathy. Have they tried doing nerve blocks to help with the pain? I've had successful nerve blocks in the C7T1, T11-12, & L4-S1 regions. I was having severe sciatica 2012 when they started the epidural steroid injection nerve blocks (series of 3 injx at each level), finishing in 2014. I didn't have any sciatica again until late 2015, and the flare ups are random and short each time they occur. If they haven't tried ESI's maybe you could talk to your doctor about them. I was under a pain specialist for the ESI's, and was lightly sedated during each procedure. My pain specialist seemed to know more about the nerves than my orthopedist did, but he also specialized in neurosurgery.

I completely understand the frustration of post op pain. I had C3-4 fusion on August 8th, and I've been having very painful neck & chin neuropathies since 4 days post-op. And when I use my right hand/arm (dominant) it causes pain from my neck to my fingertips. I've not been posting much because of it. I've had cervical fusions twice before in the 90's and this is the first time I've had post-op issues. I see my doc on Tuesday so hopefully he can do something to help. Hugs love & prayers your doc can do something to help you get relief! 🙂💕🙏🌸

Sep 01, 2016 11:00 PM

Step, I had a different type od spinal surgery in Dec 2014. My surgeon told me 2 years is the average time to heal the nerves. When they are fiddled with they can go to sleep, but when they decide to wake up, you will know it. I had 3 cysts worked on and 14 nerve roots were involved. I have to look at life as a new normal. My old life is gone and I will never have it again. To combat the pain i refuse to use the word. I discribe it as what the feeling really is, such as burning, stinging, etc. This tricks the mind into not thinking all is pain. Also, jusst knowing that the old life is gone helps me to figure out that there is something new for me, kinda like getting married. Single life, wife, then mom. All just steps in our journey. I don't have Arachnoiditis yet, but I try to live like i do. There is a good doc in California, Dr Tennant that has good info on Arachnoiditis. It is simply inflammation of one of the linings of the spinal cord. From what I understand from my life is that that is one more thing I will get to look forward to since my nerves have already been messed with. Just look it over and try to do the lifestyle changes he recommends. I have been doing most and already can function better.

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