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Leesa,

I've always had tingling/burning + pain on the bottom of my foot on the same side as the PS. I actually still have it but to a lesser degree. It's not fun. Not sure if yours is the same as mine but mine seems to only be an issue when my foot is in contact with something i.e. the floor. As soon as I sit and prop my feet up, it disappears. However, if I prop my feet up and my heel is in contact with the foot stool, then the heel still burns.

Robyn,

Sorry you had to join us but you're among friends who can answer lots of questions for you during your journey. You mentioned that you're not seeing Dr. Filler because of cost. Do you have insurance? If so, and things don't work out with Dr. Martin, consider Dr. Barbaro. He's chief of neurosurgery at UCSF. I'm assuming Dr. Martin is a neurosurgeon? Did he diagnose you or did someone else? What criteria did they use in the diagnosis?

A quick update on me (since I haven't posted in awhile) is that I'm still doing well. I did a couple of no-no moves over the weekend that involved lifting some heavy items and then topped that off with a little dollop of over-agressive stretching. Needless to say I'm not doing as well as I could. Lots of back pain and some increased burning in my thigh. It's better today than yesterday or Monday, though. I swear my husband is going to lock me in a closet if I don't behave and follow the doctor's orders!! But in spite of all that, I'm still walking about a mile and a half and am able to sit a lot more comfortably. So I'm not complaining! It's all good!

Margie
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Hi Robyn and welcome to the Butt Warrior Club. Sorry you have to be here but hopefully you will get some help. We understand, believe me, so just by saying I have been diagnosed with PS after about 2 years of agony pretty much say s it all. I m assuming the doctor you are going to see in May is a surgeon? If so, here are some questions:

Ask how many surgeries he s performed and what his success rate is.

What type of surgery will he perform (will he cut (release) the piriformis, take it out or what?)

Will the incision be small (2-3 inches) or larger?

How long is the recovery time? (If you work, when should you expect to be able to get back to work?)

What should you do after the surgery and when should you increase your activity? Should you do any physical therapy either with a professional or on your own?

If you find that your symptoms aren t gone after the normal recovery time, will he be available to you? (What s the follow up care like )

If you live alone, how long should you expect to need someone with you to help with everyday things (put on your socks and shoes, shower, grocery shop, etc.)

If you aren t seeing this doctor to talk about surgery, let me know and I ll think of other questions to ask that are more appropriate!!!

Everyone on this Forum is great and has been through the nightmare you are in so don t hesitate to ask away.

Leesa

Margie:

Your foot sensation sounds similar. Mine tingles and then goes numb (only on the bottom) and like you said, stops as soon as I get it off the floor. Same with my heel except my heel really hurts and if it barely touches, say the sheet when I m in bed, it hurts more. It s so weird. Heaving lifting?? Yikes .take it easy over there!!

Leesa
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Leesa,

Yep, we have identical heels! Even the sheet thing. It's so frustrating that even on days when I have "zero" pain in my leg.....my stupid heel gives me fits with the sheet!! I actually sleep a lot of the time on my stomach with my feet hanging off the end of the bed so that nothing is touching them. Aaaarrgh!

Margie

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Hi Robyn!! Welcome to to this forum.. :) I Am a "newbie to this site to"...and it DOES give you ALOT of insight to your questions....

So>>for all who have had the "surgery".......Mine is now 6 weeks past..and I will probably be out of work another 4ish?? Nurse's said 6-8/8-10 depending on patient??? My question is >>.How long till I can "stretch" and get my OWN socks and shoes on?? It is JUST the left I have problems with...And moving that leg and knee up to angle it is pure "Hell" and I do NOT want to Aggravate The insicion and muscle :( Because it still "acts up"...Is this NORMAL?? at this time....I know it takes time to heal...And I know my back/leg/shoulder muscles are probably weak,because they ACHE alot..Probably from NOT doing much now...Any type of exercize or stretching any one does at this time past surgery???
My Dr..gave me NO Rehab to do...
Any answers would be appreciated....
Thanks Everyone :)
Candy

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Leesa, Candy and Preacherman I can hear your frustration about this recovery process. Margie, a little bit from you about the bedsheet. I don't know how you sleep on your stomach. There is no way I could. I would wake wiht a big cramp in my neck and I just find it really uncomfortable. I never do my walks in miles, just time. So, how long does it take you to go a mile and a half? That sounds pretty good to me.

Margie I have another a question. How much is Dr. Barbaro compared to Dr. Filler? And is it the surgeon's fee or the hospital fee that is too high? t Cedars Sinai's fees seem obscene, $100,000 and upward. I thought Dr. Filler's fees, if they are stated accurately ($8000-$12000) were about what any neurosurgeon in the States would charge but Imay be entirely wrong. So my question is, do you have a breakdown of the fees? And what were they?

Leesa, your surgery was 2 hours if I remember and I lam wondering if you know what the insurance company and/or you were billed. I know David's surgery was long and it seems to be his hospital fee was pretty high also.

And what about you Preacherman? What were you or the insurance company billed. Also how are the supplements working?

I am having to think of all this as I try to decide if I will have surgery if recommended. I remember David saying any amount of money is worth getting your life back. But then again if you have NO insurance coverage, which is the case with me then $$$ certainly become part of the equation.

Robyn, welcome back although I am sure you wish you weren't back. I remember you from before and went back and looked at some of your earlier posts. It has been a long road for you. Someone else, I think on this forum had surgery with Dr. Hal Martin and if I remember it was successful. I tried to look back but I couldn't get into some of the pages. Maybe Mary remembers. I may have to make a decision soon about surgery also.

My physio wants me to try to walk 30 minutes and no more than that every other day since I have been able to walk better since the injections. But she wants me to stay consistent for awhile and then increaseafter that if I can. She always has to reign me in because I have a habit of pushing to the limit and as I have said before, turning a good day into a bad day.

David, did you have ischial tunnel surgery in addition to piriformis? I am asking because that is where I have the most irritation where the sciatic nerve is deformed by an enlarged vein. He injected in the ischial tunnel for that irritation. I don't exactly understand what ischial tunnelsurgery is. Does anyone else?

Better go now. Sorry if I have overwhelmed everyone with questions.

Shirley
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Candy,

You and I had our surgeries within a couple of days of each other. I'll be at the 6 week mark tomorrow. But I've had a very different experience. Sounds like you're having a rough time. I was only off work for 2 weeks. I went back part time the third week and full time the fourth week. I could put on my socks and shoes after the second week. You must be so frustrated and ready to get your life back. I would have hung myself by now if I was having the problems you seem to be having.

Shirley,

I have not gotten a bill from Dr. Barbaro yet. He billed my insurance so I won't hear from him until after the insurance company has paid him. However, I did get the Explanation of Benefits from my insurance company saying that they had paid the hospital. The hospital bill was $31,000. The hospital has not yet billed me for my portion. I did, however, talk to Dr. Barbaro's office at one point and asked how they handled situations with people who do not have insurance and they said they would work out a payment plan. I'm sure if you called their office they could give you a better answer than this - perhaps even a breakdown or at least a ballpark figure. Hope that helps.

With regard to my walking......it takes me about 30 minutes to walk a mile and a half. I walk a "loop" at a nearby park. It's 3/4 of a mile. Starting next week I'm going to add one more loop and see how I do. I'm feeling pretty good after two loops so I think it's time to push it to the next level. I'm also going to start swimming next week. Dr. Barbaro told me I couldn't swim for 6 weeks so next week I'm hitting the pool!!

Take care,

Margie
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Hello,
Before I went to Dr. Filler we had him fax a letter stating what Mri nuerography was and how he is the only one who does this type of imaging and the only one who reads them.
My insurance is blue cross of Tn.
All insurance companies have a Dr. who decides what is in network and what is out. My dad spent many hours on the phone with them and finally got them to agree to pay in network for dr. Filler for 6 months since he is the only one who does this imaging.
We had to pay up front and finally after hounding them, my sister called every day, they agreed to pay in network as they had said.
The hospital was in network and cost 60,000 of which they paid.
Thats how we did it. :D
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Hi everyone and welcome "newbies",

All is pretty darn well here. Not 100 percent but I am doing very well.

We went to the Tx A&M spring football game and I was up on my feet walking all over campus. For those of you who have seen A&M's campus, you will know what an acomplishment this is. For those that don't, A&M's campus is the size of a medium size city. Huge! I did great and we had a wonderful weekend.

With regard to the foot questions, yes I sometimes feel burning and tingling in my feet. Kind of strange in that my right leg is nearly 100 percent but the right foot really tingles near the ball of the foot and toes when I walk long distances.

Yesterday was a bit odd as well. I felt wonderful. Truly great. The old me. Until 10:30 am. I was walking from my office to another office and I felt a reasonably sharp pain in my left hip. It immediately left but my whle left leg felt heavy with that old pressure behind the knee. It did not hurt but I experienced that old gross tingly pressure thorughout the whole leg. I went home and mowed and really tried to stretch it out as I walked and it improved. By the time I went to bed, it disappeared. VERY ODD and I have no idea what happened. Since there was no pain, I guess I shouldn't complain since there was no pain.

With regard to medication. I've eliminated all my evening doses. I'm no longer needing Alleve but I help my self in the morning to 2 ibuprofen. I've dropped on the hydrocodone, but not eliminated per Dr. Filler, to biting the pills in half so I take a total of 1.5 per day equivalent. Same with Skelaxin. That's all. Not good relative to normal life but great from where I've been.

To all the new folks, I'm glad you are here and I'm very sorry you are here. The other "butt warriors" on this fourm are very fine folks and have been an enormous help to me.

And yes Shirley, my bride makes me one of the most blessed and luckiest man alive. Why she chose me still boggles my simple, albeit very thankful, mind.

Have a great day everyone. A chin up, fantastic day.

Your friend,

David
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FYI for anyone who is wondering........Dr. Barbaro at UCSF also does Neurography. If I'm remembering correctly, it cost about $10,000 but my insurance (Blue Cross/Blue Shield) paid for it.
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Candy:

I m a little over 12 weeks post surgery. I started back to work on a very light schedule around 5 weeks. By then I was putting my shoes and socks on but very carefully. Even at 12 weeks, I ve been told NOT to stretch. The only exercise I was doing was walking but since I ve been having quite a lot of pain these days I m not doing any extra walking. From my experience and what I ve followed on this Form, it s just a very long, slow recovery. But Margie is doing much, much more and much earlier than most everyone else so I m not sure what normal is. Take it as easy as possible. I may have started back to work too soon, who knows? Hope you start to feel better.

Shirley:

Filler s fee for the surgery was around $10K (just for the surgery, not including injections, neurography, office visits, etc). The hospital bill was around 67K and my bill says insurance adjustment $51K so they billed the insurance $16K which is pending. My out of pocket for the year is $7,500 so I think that will be the most I will end up paying but I really don t understand how all of this works so I m just waiting for the bills. I ll let you know how it turns out.

David:

Great to hear from you and I m so happy to hear you are doing great for the most part. I get sharp pain in my hip from time to time too.

Leesa
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Almost 5 months post surgery and I stretch everything but the hamstrings. The first time I tried, it lit me up for a couple of days. Filler told me to hold off for about 2 more months.

Interesting about Barbaro having neurography for the obvious reasons. BC/BS would not pay for my MRN with Filler.

Yes, $10,000 per side via Filler. Far higher than BC/BS allowable. My Cedar bill was $100,000 but insurance paid all but $129.

Gotta go again.

btw/ please forgive all my bad grammar and typos. I'm trying to squeeze in posts while at work and there should be a comedic documentary done covering my typing skills performed at home or work.
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Someone asked about Dr. Hal Martin. One of his patients wrote about her experience on page 3 of this thread.
Look at the right hand side at the bottom of the last post on this page and you will see "Go to Previous 1, 2, 3, ....64" Click on 3. Look for post from penn4559

You might try sending her a private message, but I doubt she looks in her mailbox here. She seems to have disappeared from the forum. She had 12 weeks of PT after surgery (no stretching for 6 weeks). Sounds like excellent follow-up! Mary
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Candy,

Just wanted to clarify that I AM NOT THE NORM! I don't know why, but I'm not. I'm sure you've gotten that from reading everyone's different posts. Listen to your body and your doctor! One bit of advice that Marianne (Dr. B's nurse practitioner) told me when I kept asking "When can I do this or that" she just said, "Your body will tell you when it's ready." So listen to that body! :)

Take care,

Margie
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Hi, everyone,
Candy, I experienced the same inability to stretch my leg at all for three months following surgery, then slowly, little by little. Sadly, it is still an issue 2 years later, but not as dramatic. And luckily this doesn't seem to be the norm.
I have a question for everyone. Is it wiser to have a longer incision or to risk having a 2nd surgery? Dr. Barbaro makes a longer incision, and in doing so is able to observe the whole area and work with everything he sees. Dr. Filler's incisions are much less invasive, but he oftentimes recommends a 2nd surgery at the ischeal tunnel.
Glad to hear that many of you are recovering well -- and that some of you have had great success with the insurance companies.
Ronesa
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Hi EveryOne!!!
THANK'S for your replies back on my (Socks/Shoe) dilema..PAIN..
I am looking at calling my Dr.office Monday and talk to his nurses..
About>>>>ALL this other muscle pain I have...Shoulder's,back,BUTT,legs....I KNOW it is NOT ALL from My "BUTT ISSUE"...I was reading up on it, and I THINK some sort of "Pain Mgmt" is my next step...Nueromuscular???? I am DEFFINATLY NOT a Dr.. But I DO know my Symtoms.... :( A friend told me maybe FIBROMYALGIA..But it is NOT..Already been checked for that a few yrs. back... Maybe some kind of "needle therapy" I was reading about or??? (Not accupunture) already done that :(
I DO NOT want to go the Phy/Therapy---Rehab route....(Traditional way)
Have done it,been there..Really..NO help,,,Just more $$$. (STILL Pain)
Is ANY of this the type of things you all are talking about?? Injections etc?? Do they help??? Or Do you think I am going IN the RIGHT DIRECTION??? H :D PEFULLY??? Well Enough of my "whining :" for now..
Hope you all have a PAIN FREE weekend :)
Thanks again...
Candy
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