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Nancy
@nan57

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Joined: Mar 26, 2016

Spinal fusion of L1-4 and managing pain. What works for you?

Posted by @nan57, Mar 25, 2016

I had spinal fusion of L1-4 about 15 months ago. Lately, I’ve had chronic coccyx pain if I stand or sit too long. It becomes unbearable if I don’t use my TENS unit. I’m afraid to exercise since twisting really starts the pain cycle. I wake up every night with pain and use ice packs and Tylenol (and cross my fingers) hoping I can fall back to sleep. My back surgeon isn’t really interested in my aftercare. Where do I go from here?!

REPLY

Try physical therapy. My back and neck r fussed. From C3-T1, then from T4- my SI joints all fussed. Physical therapy does help. They show u how to do exercises that won’t hurt ur back and it strengthen the muscles that have been weakened. Talk to ur PCP about it. R u on a anti-inflammatory medication that might help too.

Liked by Nancy

Hi there; I had two laminectomies done ( unsuccessful) so last November a surgeon did decompression and Herrington rods inserted from waist down, once everything settled I had a tremendous amount of nerve and muscle pain mainly around the SI joints which radiated down to my feet. I did go to Physio and have nothing but good to report on the value. I have a series of home exercises to follow, which are constantly updated and checked when I go in weekly. They also do a fairly new treatment IMS which is inter muscle therapy done with needles similar to acupuncture needles. One of the physiotherapists is just completing her acupuncture studies which I will use when she is completed. I can’t say enough good about the benefits of IMS for post spinal surgery of any type and the benefit of gabapentin for the accompanying nerve pain, hopefully this bit of my experience will be beneficial for you.

Thanks for the suggestions to do physical therapy. I’m actually going through PT right now for recent foot surgery. They know about my back surgery and tailbone pain and are trying to relieve some of the pain. I’ll ask them for more home exercises on my next visit. It’s hard not to get depressed when I feel worse now than before my surgery. I’ll be sure to ask about the IMS therapy and gabapentin for the nerve pain. Thanks for the suggestions!

Hello, I had very similar surgery 5 years ago due to a work injury. NO MORE TWISTING MOVEMENTS/EXERCISES. Please stop this. With the type surgery we have had that is the absolute WORST thing you can do. You HAVE to be your own advocate for back pain care. Look for and find a GOOD pain specalist, one who will listen to your concerns and does more than just prescribe pain pills. Also, clean up your diet and focus on foods that fight inflammation. Physical therapy will help as well. Most type of water exercises will help with stress relief and keeping you joints moving. Check out the web site, loosethe backpain.com and see which of the strategies work for you. I have found more help from this web site that I stumbled onto quite by accident. Also, what medications are you taking? I take Neurotin, Celebrex, Cymbalta, all for nerve inflammation Nycunta for pain. Subcribe to several feeds/blogs on chronic pain: WebMD, The Mayo Clinic; Neurology Now, a free bi-monthly publication for patients and their care givers. Any time I am in a doctors office I peruse the publications in the waiting room to see what might be relevant to me. If you want to contact me directly by private message. Good luck in your journey to better quality life. Also, NEVER lift anything much over 10 pounds

Liked by Nancy

I have had 3 back surgeries/fusion L1&2,L3&4,L4&5, results severe lower back pain is worse, and in addition to upper left leg inside numb,left knee no feeling, below knee to ankle no feeling. What can be done to have the feeling back in my leg, and relieve severe back pain

@riverqueen1305

Hello, I had very similar surgery 5 years ago due to a work injury. NO MORE TWISTING MOVEMENTS/EXERCISES. Please stop this. With the type surgery we have had that is the absolute WORST thing you can do. You HAVE to be your own advocate for back pain care. Look for and find a GOOD pain specalist, one who will listen to your concerns and does more than just prescribe pain pills. Also, clean up your diet and focus on foods that fight inflammation. Physical therapy will help as well. Most type of water exercises will help with stress relief and keeping you joints moving. Check out the web site, loosethe backpain.com and see which of the strategies work for you. I have found more help from this web site that I stumbled onto quite by accident. Also, what medications are you taking? I take Neurotin, Celebrex, Cymbalta, all for nerve inflammation Nycunta for pain. Subcribe to several feeds/blogs on chronic pain: WebMD, The Mayo Clinic; Neurology Now, a free bi-monthly publication for patients and their care givers. Any time I am in a doctors office I peruse the publications in the waiting room to see what might be relevant to me. If you want to contact me directly by private message. Good luck in your journey to better quality life. Also, NEVER lift anything much over 10 pounds

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I’m so grateful to see this discussion.

@riverqueen1305, we recommend not sharing your email address publicly on Connect. We don’t want you to get unwanted spam. Instead we encourage members to share more personal information through private message. If you wish to private message someone or a group of people, simple click their username and then click the envelope icon.

Thanks all. Keep up the great sharing. This helps so many people.
Colleen, Connect Community Director

Liked by fastfay, Nancy

@riverqueen1305

Hello, I had very similar surgery 5 years ago due to a work injury. NO MORE TWISTING MOVEMENTS/EXERCISES. Please stop this. With the type surgery we have had that is the absolute WORST thing you can do. You HAVE to be your own advocate for back pain care. Look for and find a GOOD pain specalist, one who will listen to your concerns and does more than just prescribe pain pills. Also, clean up your diet and focus on foods that fight inflammation. Physical therapy will help as well. Most type of water exercises will help with stress relief and keeping you joints moving. Check out the web site, loosethe backpain.com and see which of the strategies work for you. I have found more help from this web site that I stumbled onto quite by accident. Also, what medications are you taking? I take Neurotin, Celebrex, Cymbalta, all for nerve inflammation Nycunta for pain. Subcribe to several feeds/blogs on chronic pain: WebMD, The Mayo Clinic; Neurology Now, a free bi-monthly publication for patients and their care givers. Any time I am in a doctors office I peruse the publications in the waiting room to see what might be relevant to me. If you want to contact me directly by private message. Good luck in your journey to better quality life. Also, NEVER lift anything much over 10 pounds

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Colleen, thanks for the information on not sharing my email pubically. I
hope the lady who posted this can find a few strategies that will help her.

@riverqueen1305

Hello, I had very similar surgery 5 years ago due to a work injury. NO MORE TWISTING MOVEMENTS/EXERCISES. Please stop this. With the type surgery we have had that is the absolute WORST thing you can do. You HAVE to be your own advocate for back pain care. Look for and find a GOOD pain specalist, one who will listen to your concerns and does more than just prescribe pain pills. Also, clean up your diet and focus on foods that fight inflammation. Physical therapy will help as well. Most type of water exercises will help with stress relief and keeping you joints moving. Check out the web site, loosethe backpain.com and see which of the strategies work for you. I have found more help from this web site that I stumbled onto quite by accident. Also, what medications are you taking? I take Neurotin, Celebrex, Cymbalta, all for nerve inflammation Nycunta for pain. Subcribe to several feeds/blogs on chronic pain: WebMD, The Mayo Clinic; Neurology Now, a free bi-monthly publication for patients and their care givers. Any time I am in a doctors office I peruse the publications in the waiting room to see what might be relevant to me. If you want to contact me directly by private message. Good luck in your journey to better quality life. Also, NEVER lift anything much over 10 pounds

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There wasn’t a lot of ways to manage back problems when I had my back surgery. Plus I had a really bad case of scoliosis. The top was a 66 degree and the bottom 63 degree. I was told it was moving a degree a year and it would crush my lungs and heart if I didn’t do the surgery. Is there any options for a problem like that?

@elltd

I have had 3 back surgeries/fusion L1&2,L3&4,L4&5, results severe lower back pain is worse, and in addition to upper left leg inside numb,left knee no feeling, below knee to ankle no feeling. What can be done to have the feeling back in my leg, and relieve severe back pain

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Hi @elltd,
I moved your message to this thread https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/i-had-spinal-fusion-of-l1-4-about-15-months-ago-lately-ive/ where you’ll meet @nan57 @ladidy @stumpy @riverqueen1305 and are able to read their messages.

@nan57 too speaks of unresolved back and coccyx pain.

Hello, I am wondering if there is anyone who is dealing with an “acute” compression fracture of a vertebrae. I have recently been diagnosed with this and have been struggling with intense pain (at times) for over 5 months. The pain centre here has recommended a vertebroplasty. Has anyone gone down this path, or another? Thanks, Martishka

@elltd

I have had 3 back surgeries/fusion L1&2,L3&4,L4&5, results severe lower back pain is worse, and in addition to upper left leg inside numb,left knee no feeling, below knee to ankle no feeling. What can be done to have the feeling back in my leg, and relieve severe back pain

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Wow I’m really sorry you have had such a bad experience. Was it neurosurgeon or an orthopedic surgeon doing your surgery? Was it the same surgeon doing all 3 surgeries? It’s sounds to that there is nerve damage. Try getting another opinion from a different kind of surgeon? Then there are non surgical products that might help with stimulating the nerves that no long fire correctly at Hanger. Have you tried that? I have had good luck with these products. Acupuncture is also something that helps with nerve pain. Good luck. Please contact me if you need any information on Hanger.

ladidyt thank you for the reply, the surgeon was orthopedic.I was referred to another orthopedic surgeon.and I was also referred to a neurologist to test my leg, all in this same  group of professionals. As I reflect back on all of this,  there is no money being made for the cure, only for the treatment. I am still paying for the treatment,physically, mentally and out of pocket. I should not have had the first surgery to (correct) the herniated disc.

I had low back surgery (Jan. 22nd) and a laminectomy and foramen was widened (L4 & L5) since the nerve was impinged. The first three weeks afterwards was great them I hit a wall and the pain returned. I started PT two weeks ago to strengthen my core and still have a few fingers of inflammation . I am told to just be patient and it will improve but there are days I can hardly walk because of the pain. Anyone have experiences with this like I have and what did you do? I am desperate for advise.

@martishka and @tom1942, I moved your messages to this thread “Spinal fusion of L1-4 and managing pain. What works for you?” https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/i-had-spinal-fusion-of-l1-4-about-15-months-ago-lately-ive/ so that you can connect with other members talking about the similar issues.

@riverqueen1305

Hello, I had very similar surgery 5 years ago due to a work injury. NO MORE TWISTING MOVEMENTS/EXERCISES. Please stop this. With the type surgery we have had that is the absolute WORST thing you can do. You HAVE to be your own advocate for back pain care. Look for and find a GOOD pain specalist, one who will listen to your concerns and does more than just prescribe pain pills. Also, clean up your diet and focus on foods that fight inflammation. Physical therapy will help as well. Most type of water exercises will help with stress relief and keeping you joints moving. Check out the web site, loosethe backpain.com and see which of the strategies work for you. I have found more help from this web site that I stumbled onto quite by accident. Also, what medications are you taking? I take Neurotin, Celebrex, Cymbalta, all for nerve inflammation Nycunta for pain. Subcribe to several feeds/blogs on chronic pain: WebMD, The Mayo Clinic; Neurology Now, a free bi-monthly publication for patients and their care givers. Any time I am in a doctors office I peruse the publications in the waiting room to see what might be relevant to me. If you want to contact me directly by private message. Good luck in your journey to better quality life. Also, NEVER lift anything much over 10 pounds

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Here is the link to sign-up for Mayo Clinic’s Pain Management Adviser e-newsletter that @riverqueen1305 mentions https://newslettersignup.mayoclinic.com/?fn=211 for anyone interested. It’s free.

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