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Old 01-06-2013, 07:12 PM   #1
AndreaDM
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Herniated discs anyone?

Anyone have any experience? I'm suffering from 2 herniated discs in my neck and have been in excruciating pain (neck, shoulder, arm) all weekend. My neuro referred me to a pain mgmt specialist, but the appt. isnt until Thursday and that is just a consult. I have an appt for steroid injections on the 16th. Anyway, what can I do to deal with the pain until then? I've been taking Advil like candy and have tramadol to take, but it does nothing. I've alternated ice and heat, rested all weekend, used icy-hot with no results. Help, I'm desperate. I almost went to the er several times over the weekend but I'm sure they are packed with flu people and I don't want to go sit there for hours unless I know they can really help me. DH thinks I should call pain mgmt to see if I can get in tomorrow. Of course I don't want anyone thinking I'm a drug shopper either I really don't know how I can work tomorrow, I have a 50 minute commute and that alone will be horrible. Any advice?
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Old 01-06-2013, 07:35 PM   #2
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I have a herniated disc in my lower back, that I have had problems with off and on for the past 20 years. It was giving me grief about 10 days ago. Was one of the worst back pains that I have ever had in the past 20 years. I was out of town and went to the local urgent care there. They were fabulous and they give me an anti-inflamatory shot. I hate shots and resisted but they persuaded me. Two hours later I was able to stand up straight and go out to dinner. The shot was so worth going and waiting there. I would go to the ER or an urgent care. There are things that they can give you to give you relief. Also find yourself a good chiropractor. Hope you feel better soon!
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Old 01-06-2013, 07:41 PM   #3
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I have a herniated disc in my lower back that pinches the sciatic nerve. I was given tramadol as well, but the only thing that helped was a mix of painkillers and muscle relaxers. For me a really hot shower helps a bit. Steroids didn't do anything either. The pain has eased over time.
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Old 01-06-2013, 07:45 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IheartMickey View Post
I have a herniated disc in my lower back that pinches the sciatic nerve. I was given tramadol as well, but the only thing that helped was a mix of painkillers and muscle relaxers. For me a really hot shower helps a bit. Steroids didn't do anything either. The pain has eased over time.
I have the same thing. I started working out at curves, it has made a world of difference. My sciatic nerve does not flare hardly ever now. I used to take all that to. Now working out has solved most of my issues.
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Old 01-06-2013, 07:51 PM   #5
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Working out, stretching and my chiropractor putting me in traction. Nothing else worked at all. When I have a bad flare up, I do not even attempt to take the pain pills or muscle relaxers because they turn it into a horrid cycle. The more you sit and lay around the worse I feel, but that is all you are able to do when you take those things.
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Old 01-06-2013, 08:03 PM   #6
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Yep. L5/S1. I had surgery (microdiscectomy). Best thing I ever did. The pain I was in was excruciating; so much so that I couldn't stand...or sit. The only position that wasn't pure agony was on my hands and knees. I had to crawl around the house and couldn't even sit on the toilet without crying. The onset of pain was a Saturday (though I've had back problems my whole life). It was shooting down my entire right leg and buttock into my foot. On Monday I went to a chiro in tears. He looked at my x-rays and declared my spine "perfect" and said my pain was due to a tightened periformis muscle. He then did some "adjustments" and within 30 minutes my entire right leg went completely numb and I lost the use of my foot...of course, the pain was still there. I called the chiro who declared that "normal" and told me I should come in for another adjustment. On Tuesday my friend (who is an RN who works as the office manager for her husband's pain management practice) demanded I get an MRI. Her husband set me up with an appt at the local hospital. Had the MRI on Wednesday, and an hour after I got home, my friend's DH called me and warned me to lie down and not move...he had the results of the MRI and he was sending me for an immediate surgical consult with a colleague (luckily the best ortho surgeon in the area). I saw the surgeon on Thursday, and he took one look at my MRI and also at me in so much pain I was weeping in the waiting room and he set me up for surgery the following Tuesday.

I woke up from surgery 95% pain free and regained the use of my leg and foot as well as all sensation within 6 months. by 8 months I was completely rehabbed, and two years later I am better than ever. The surgeon showed my the disc he removed and said it was the largest herniation he'd ever seen. The disc material had blown out of the space and tangled up in my spinal cord. It was like removing hair from a drain, he said.
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Old 01-06-2013, 08:36 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone, it helps to know others have felt my pain! I'm gonna try to hopefully get some sleep and see what I can do in the morning. So hard to get comfortable, I've been taking Benadryl just to help me sleep!
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:54 PM   #8
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I had two herniated discs in my neck (C5/C6 and C6/C7 - well actually three but C4/C5 wasn't symptomatic). The steroid shots didn't work at all for me, nor did physio. Gentle massage, traction, and ice (along with lots of ibuprofen) were the only things that helped, but they only gave me short-term relief.

Ambien was a godsend for sleeping. It's the only time in my life that I've taken sleeping meds, but I'm not sure how I would have made it through without it.

After 20 years of off-and-on again pain, culminating with a couple of months of no pain relief and some serious nerve compression issues, I had the two discs removed and the vertebrae fused (ACDF surgery). A year later, I'm now pretty much completely pain-free. I regained full use of my hand/arm right after surgery, and was without restrictions 10 days later. Within a month I was at 80% recovery, and 90% by six months. I haven't had any real issues now for months, and would say I've had a 95% recovery. I have no regrets.
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