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Immediately upon waking from lumbar laminectomy, I was in severe pain ... NOT pain from the surgery - not lumbar pain, but horrible bone aching hip and leg pain. The pain level was off my "10 yrs. experience from chronic pain" scale ... Pain was so bad I couldn't handle it ... shaking, crying, wanting to die pain. What they kept telling me in the recovery room, was that because I had a medical history that included 10 years of opiate use - MS Contin - that my pain was unsupressable. I had been taking 180 mg daily. Then, four hours later, they finally put me on a lauded drip ... self-medicating.

I have 3 questions ...

    Obviously this is nerve damage from the surgery, right? The pain prevented me from walking or sitting. Sitting caused severe stabbing pain in the hip ... and then my entire leg ached ... well BOTH hips and legs acturlly. 3 days later the skin on my shin, top of my foot, and big toe were numb. Almost 7 weeks later numbness remains. Is this siatiac nerve or just spinal nerve damage?

    I was taking 180 mg MS Contin because of chronic thoracic pain. Before surgery, I was told that recovery would be 20-30 minutes, but because they couldn't do anything for my pain ... because I had developed hightened pain sensivity from 10 years pf opiate use ... they couldn't do anything for 4 hours. Even the Doc told my wife there was nothing tey could do for my pain ... eventually blaming me for it being "in my head". Did they relent and provide the lauded drip to get me out of the recovery room so the staff could go home - or would anestesia require me to wait 4 hours?. Could there be a medical reason why lauded couldn't be prescribed, because I was on it for 2 days along with my 180 mg daily of MS Contin, so why couldn't it be administered after surgery?

    Lyrica eventually saved me from the pain, lowering levels to within tollerable limits. I know nerve pain is unpredictable and it could last years ... Right now symptoms are limited to my left leg and hip, instead of both sides - though the right does ache occassionally. So I could stick a knife in the left shin and not feel it. But the strangest thing is that only the big toe is numb. So from below my knee, across the top of the foot to the big toe. So if this is nerve damage, why only half my leg and not the entire leg? Or is this just par for the course regarding pesky nerves?


Thanks for ANY advice. I see my Doc later this month, but want another slant on the symptoms before asking him about it. But after being told it was all in my head, I don't think I can trust his answer.

thanks!

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hi my name is jeff i have been suffering the pain in for 4 years this is my list you ready lbp left foot numb ,lombago,insomina,depressive d/o,htn,anxietymoodchanges,nerver root compression,disc herniation,disc bulgel4,l5 i have had 1 laminectomy and 1 discectomy and say it out again and they say i should have another opp i have been thinking about a artificial disc just don't know yet so i suffer i am only 30 they cut me 1st time at 25 after 2 years of pain and try this try that if they got it i have done it 4 Edi's months of Physical therapy etc. and at 29 just 6 months ago but i try not to get down just got to try and keep your head up best way you can and try not to sit on your but to much it makes your pain worse i have found but do what dose not hurt and keep it short best to all who suffer the pain i take oxycodone 45 mg 6 times a day and still the pain is there i would seek a new doc i only have half of s1 never i have been chronic for 6 years if they told me it was in my head i would kick them in there butts and get a new doc asap i took me 4 docs to get one who cares just keep looking tell you find yours good luck
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What level did they do laminectomy on?

Intense pain is common in the days following a laminectomy. You may not have a high pain tolerance but you do have a high pain medication relief level.

IV pain medication is stronger than oral but you obviously can not be on an IV drip outside of the hospital without some prearranged licensed care.

Because you are status post-operative I will refrain from making any pain management suggestions. You should talk to the surgeon and let him know your pain is unmanageable history of opiate abuse or not.
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it was l5 s1 the first time l5 l4 the next time i have a very high pain tolerance if not i would be bed stuck i was just trying to help u with your questions i will help if i can hope your pain goes away have the best day you can
jeff
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I think that the guy on the top here needs to lay off the drugs. Doctors know what they are doing. They do whatever is humanly possible to fix your body, and you talk about this super nerve pain. It doesn't make any sense for you to say it like that. It is simply ignorant for you to state it in that mannor and also rude to the Doctor. Yes it takes many years for some post operative pain to subside. But if you want to make a full recovery you have to mentally get passed it. I am at the ripe old age of twenty with two back surgeries. Both failed. But I am still going to be positive. . and it's not lauded, it's Dilauded. Government Heroin to be exact. I hope you can get passed the pain if it is in fact real and you aren't trying to be difficult over your drug problems. Considering 1 in 250,000 get actualy damaging nerve pain. I now deal with stabbing in my knee. I won't tell the doctor with I think as much as I think it might be nerve damage. I will let him do his job.


Also. Try educating yourself a little more.



Donwildabe
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I read the last persons comments and was amazed how downright rude some people can be. Everyone has a right to an opinion but your comments were and are uncalled for. WE ALL FEEL PAIN DIFFERENTLY, and the guy at the top as you put it is merely stating how he feels. As far as your attitude on doctors is concerned "sometimes they are wrong "and i would get annoyed if i was in pain and no one was giving me pain relief!! We cant all be like you. I certainly dont think about being a nice person when im screaming in agony, i will question and cross question if i have to, doctor or no doctor they are human and can make errors.
Recently a dear friend of mine was diagnosed with cancer after months and months of being told she was constipated and being treated for that too. I eventually took her to the hospital and luckily she is now in remission . She was told she was so close to death. Myself i have suffered with pain for years, my spine was operated on last year, i came round from the op in more pain and i knew something was wrong. This week after literally pestering each doctor i saw for the last year i had the results from another scan. Apparently they failed to see something else on my scan in 2006 and i now have nerve damage !! you see, i have cried buckets and i have children to care for too, but i knew something was wrong. I COULDNT TELL YOU ANY MEDICAL TERMS OR NAMES OF DRUGS ETC, AND I HAVE HAD AN EDUCATION, the guy wrote what he thought was right and how the hell do you know that hes not dyslexic or something.Perhaps if you had asked questions yourself then maybe you would not have so many failed surgeries!!! How do you like it.

Ps. Your last sentence makes no sense at all.
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wow completely agree. donwildabe, does making a post like that make you feel tough? you have no idea the pain that anyone else on here is going through, its probably more than yours. and congratulations for being twenty and going through this and "staying positive"... I'm 18 and in the last year i have had two laminectomies/discectomies, 2 steroid injections, and 6 MRIs on my back for chronic sciatica with no success because of severe spinal stenosis and degenerative disc disease... it happens... you are not unique and your situation is not worse than others. and "to be exact": dilaudid is not government heroin, it is an entirely different drug than heroin- they do both produce morphine in your body, but so does oxycodone and the other morphine derived opiates. hmm...
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Try acupuncture for the pain. I had a hemilaminectomy L5S1-left side. Then the right side herniated of the L5S1. This is called "failed back surgery". Now the discs are bulging above and below. Now these are not large bulges- 3MM tops. I was on pain meds for 14 years and finally got sick behind them- suffered really bad withdrawal. All in all, the best and safest treatment is acupuncture. Try it. I found that I took pain meds because I was so afraid of the pain. the worst pain was almost unbearable. I was so afraid of the pain, I was afraid to even skip a dose- then the pain got worse because the meds weren't cutting it-I was building up a tolerance. The pain got worse because the meds have a reverse effect making the pain even worse.
I know the pain can be really bad- so I am just throwing my experience with acupuncture out there .
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Hi Everyone,
I'm new to this site...i had surgery last week and am very weak and in pain. I'm interested in what folks do for work...everyone on here...but particularly folks that have had pain and back issues for years...I'm just trying to figure out all my options and am not sure if I will be able to continue doing the work I have been doing.

Just want to know about your experiences...
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I am in the same boat from a steroid injection. I had the first of 3 steroid injections in June this year (I just turned 29 too).
When I came off the pain drugs they gave me for the injection, I was in horrible pain in my hip, like a deep bone ache. I described it felt as if my hip bone was trying to grow out of my skin. It was absolutely worse than any pain I was in previously. I called the doctor on call and she said it sounded like I had a reaction to the cortizone which should go away in a few days. It is now November and it has not gone away. I have extremely high pain tolerance and have never used pain meds long term and I felt the need to go to the emergency room. Since I have wanted to die so many times, literally!, I cannot even count. It is awful, agonizing pain.
I have had 2 further injections by another doctor to no avail. No one will say that anything was done wrong, in fact no doctor will say anything about it at all. My mom is in the medical field and I have spoke with several doctors at other hospitals who say it sounds like they either hit a nerve or injected the cortizone directly into the disc. I have also spoken to a few other people who have suggested it is possible they tore a ligament which connects back muscles to muscle running down the hip.
All I can say it is so nice to hear that someone else has had this experience because it has gotton to the point where alot of days I feel so insane and want to die.
I have now scheduled a laminectomy because I don;t know what else to do but I cannot go on living like this.
I so sincerely appreciate your post just to know I am not alone and I am so, so sorry for you with what you are going through.
PS Doctors are human and like everything else, there are good ones and there are bad ones, too.
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Hi,
I had a bowel resection (they took a foot of colon) in August and I was given a Morphine pump post op. It was inadequate and I was in terrible pain. Luckily, my roommate's daughter had the same surgery and told me to tell the doctor to change it to Dilaudid. They did and I had much better pain relief. I am having a 4 level lumbar laminectomy in a few weeks and I requested the Dilaudid pump post op. The doctor said that a lot of people don't get relief from Morphine and they require Dilaudid. There is also oral Dilaudid that you can take for severe pain. I hope you get some relief.
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please research "Meralgia Paresthetica after spinal surgery"
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Thanks for this site. I too had laminectomy of L4-5 and L5-S1 and had severe, severe pain after surgery (out of a scale of 1 to 10 it was 1,000). Being a retired physician, I know the pain was real, and I shook for two days. Finally, they gave me oral steroids, although I asked for IV steroids. What I had was meralgia paresthetica which was damage to the spinal nerves, possibly from being in the prone position (20% occurrence). No, doctors don't know everything and too bad that docs do NOT know how to deal with complications of their own surgeries. It is two months now from my surgery and I am just now beginning to feel well. Walking is like learning to walk all over again, but I no longer have the sharp stabbing pain of sciatica with each step. I now have the deep burning "bone" pain others talk about but that is manageable. Antidepressants do help, not by stopping depression, but by blocking pain in the body. They potentiate pain meds. Ice and Heat also help. Hope most people consider spinal surgery ONLY as a last resort (I had 7 docs tell me I needed it). Hope all this helps others when considering surgery. The comment "minimally invasive" sounds like it will be a piece of cake, up walking, home the next day. Nope. Didn't happen.
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Hi, I'm new here and wish I'd visited before my surgery. I am 34 years old and 3 weeks out today from disc removal of L2-3,L3-4 and L4-5.
Also had hip bone and cadaver bone used for fusion. Titanium rods and screws too. I've been thinking that was doing great, even came home
Day after surgery. After day 4 at home the severe hip and leg pain started. They sent me home on lortab and flexeril but then changed me to lortab and Valium. That helped for about 2 days then the pain recurred. I was then prescribed lyrica. That stuff seemed to help but made me nuts, blurred vision and dizziness! They cut it back to once a day. I'm starting to wonder if the surgery was worth it and if the pain is ever going to go away. History: torn disc from unknown injury. Tried PT, and 3 epidurals with no relief. Discogram showed tears so surgery with instrumentation was option. Surgery date was 11-08-10
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I guess I'm the oldest one to post here, but I think maybe you'll agree that I should be quite knowledgeable on the subject.  Sixteen years ago, I had to undergo anterior cervical discectomy and fusion at C4-5, C5-6, and C6-7... Two years later, C6-7 was a non union, and C7-T1 was ruptured - this time, 6-7 - 7-T1 were fused and fixed with a titanium plate and five(5) screws.  The point here was that having all the films and measurements, they should have had a custom plate so that they could have proper fixation - they didn't, so both levels were non-unions, leaving me with instability at 6 through T1!  Two years ago, I was rear ended by a 22 year old doing seventy miles an hour - I was sitting still in the rain in the traffic jam... I had to have lumbar surgery from L2-S1, and cervical surgery from C-3 to C-5! I have only one lumbar disc left, and one cervical disc left... The titanium fixation screws that they installed in my lumbar spine came loose at six months post surgery, and I had to have the lumbar surgery a second time!  And guess what - six months later, again the screws had started to come loose again!!! The first time it was a nut that supposedly had been torqued down with 120 inchpounds of torque - I read it in the surgical report... I didn't believe my glutes or sphincter reached up and unscrewed the nut - and it didn't come loose all by itself!!! The surgeon simply didn't get it torqued - they are only human.  They say the third time is the charm, and at the eight month point, all is at least still intact - I, too, have the shooting hip pain, accompanied by neuropathy from the knees down to the toes - like shooting electrical pain... The hip pain, for the most part just comes and goes, and the best way I can describe it is like an ice pick being stabbed into the bone!  I used to take between 240 and 300 mg daily of Morphine Sulfate - got off of that stuff as the respiratory issues became too severe... I am back to the hydrocodone; Norco two every six hours as needed, with 600mg Neurontin four times a day.  Lyrica actually worked better than the Neurontin, but without insurance, and without a generic - I just can't afford it!  The toughest part when you have ten levels of your spine fused and fixed, is you are basically unhireable for any kind of job; nobody wants to employ a person who is taking narcotics to function, and no one wants you on their healthcare program for sure!  When you're living on social security disability, can't work anywhere, and have no chance of buying insurance - well, let's just say it SUCKS!  You keep putting one foot in front of the other, try to find and take the minimum amount of drugs/narcotics needed to be able to function, and pray for the day that someone comes up with a better mouse trap to fix what ails you!  I am fifty five years old, and it is the toughest thing in the world for me as I have worked since I was thirteen years old... I can't do that anymore... I am the toughest SOB that I know, with the highest tolerance of pain: when they removed the hardware from my lumbar spine, I went home the next morning! They had told me they were going to retrieve the loose nut and replace it... They ended up removing all the hardware on the right side, opening up the original twelve inch incision to remove the rod and the remaining lock nuts, so they could replace the "defective" screw!!! Talk about CYA!!! Again, they are only humans, just like you and me... It is your responsibility to question, and your responsibility to get additional information or oppinions... And finally, its not how many times you get knocked down, its whether you're gonna fail to answer the bell for the next round... Answer the bell!!!
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