PDA

View Full Version : Emotional Month



TiffanyK
04-29-2010, 09:29 PM
I know I haven't posted in a while. I've been having a hard time for the past month or so. My emotions have been on a big roller coaster lately.

Earlier this month I went back to Dr. Majid and had planned on telling him I wanted to move ahead with the surgery. However, he threw me a curve ball that I wasn't expecting or hadn't thought of. First he wanted me to get a third opinion in Hershey, PA. Second, he wanted to wait on the surgery until I finished expanding my family and to try an epidural shot first. I already knew that was not what I wanted to do and got so angry and upset that I couldn't talk anymore. I couldn't tell him that I don't even want to imagine another pregnancy for fear of what the pain will be like after. For some reason I followed through with the epidural shot and I now know why it felt wrong for me. Besides the fact that the shot was painful to get, I still have side effects from it. The flushing is horrible... my cheeks (the ones on my face for those of you that think like my husband), my arms, chest, back... everywhere! It's slowly dying down at this point. The shot never did relieve the pain.

I was so upset the day I came home from the epidural shot, I called for my third opinion. I saw Dr. Vora yesterday at The Milton Hershey Medical Center. I didn't expect much as the last two opinions ended up being the same. I was pleasantly surprised with a much different opinion. It was like meeting a new friend who thinks just like you do. I practically cried from relief. Dr. Vora remeasured my x-rays from 1999 and compared them to my new ones. None of my doctors before ever looked so closely at my original x-rays or were concerned with my thoracic curve as much as the lumbar. My thoracic curve is 10 degrees more, while my lumbar curve has progressed a little over the years. From the way I've always been told, I thought my curves didn't progress until I had my daughter.

In the end I've kept with my original decision to go ahead with surgery. At this point it looks like he will fuse me from T1 to L1. I'm looking at the beginning of August as he is booked through the middle of July. I've done a lot of thinking and praying to get to this decision. Deep down I know this is the right thing for me to do.

LynetteG
04-29-2010, 09:32 PM
Congratulations on finding a great doctor and making a great decision. It's amazing how suddenly we know at the right time - our gut - or our instincts just tell us that this is the right time. Good luck - I'm sure everything will go very well for you!

JenM
04-29-2010, 09:40 PM
Hi Tiffany-

Congrats on being brave enough to make such a big decision! It was such an emotional time for me when I made my decision back in November. Now I am approaching surgery which is only about 5 1/2 weeks away. I am also around your age and have little kids so I understand what you are going through. Mentally you will start to feel better now because you made the decision. I think it's the right thing to do because we are still young and have large curves and the pain is only going to get worse. My curve and pain level really increased after I had my second child.

Best of luck to you!

JenM

jrnyc
04-29-2010, 09:43 PM
Hey Tiffany
i am so sorry that you went through all of that with that doctor! i swear, some of them dont think...or dont care...or both! finish expanding your family...?!! so are you supposed to wait til when...age 35, or 40? and who is he to say you want to carry a pregnancy with the pain you are in!!!

the epidural should not have made you flush...i am wondering what medication he used..cause i'm pretty sure that you reacted to the medication......i've had 3 epidurals...no flushing...some pain, which i wouldnt have minded except i got little to zero relief...i've had other pain treatments too...facet blocks, nerve ablation, sacroiliac injections...the last one worked the best, but none helped very long...only botox in thoracic area is really helpful with my pain....

if your decision feels right to you, then i believe you are doing the right thing...sometimes our guts know better than our brains...sometimes it's both, telling us what is right for us!

best of luck
jess

TiffanyK
04-29-2010, 09:49 PM
Actually, the flushing is a normal side effect from the epidural. It was on my discharge papers. Except I never knew what flushing really was. The first day I felt like my cheeks, ears, and neck were on fire! I was sitting in my cubicle with cold wet towels on my face... it must have been a sight to see for sure!

If I waited the way he wanted, I figure I would be around 40 or so. We can't have another child right now anyway... can't afford two in daycare. My daughter doesn't go to kindergarten for almost another 3 years.

jrnyc
04-29-2010, 10:08 PM
well, that's a surprise to me...has never happened to me...and if any doctor ever mentioned it as a side effect, i must've not been paying attention...i've had lots of steroids, oral and injected...as well as some other injected stuff...never had flushing! only time that happened to me was an allergic reaction to vioxx! stuff almost killed me! and i swear, i flushed all over! :rolleyes:

jess

rohrer01
04-29-2010, 10:18 PM
Actually, the flushing is a normal side effect from the epidural. It was on my discharge papers. Except I never knew what flushing really was. The first day I felt like my cheeks, ears, and neck were on fire! I was sitting in my cubicle with cold wet towels on my face... it must have been a sight to see for sure!

If I waited the way he wanted, I figure I would be around 40 or so. We can't have another child right now anyway... can't afford two in daycare. My daughter doesn't go to kindergarten for almost another 3 years.

Where did you get your epidural, if you don't mind me asking? I had one in the L5-S1 area about 3 weeks ago and never got any flushing. It wasn't even mentioned in my discharge paper. :confused:

LindaRacine
04-29-2010, 10:46 PM
I think the flushing comes from an allergy to the dye.

loves to skate
04-30-2010, 01:25 PM
I think the flushing comes from an allergy to the dye.
Linda, I'm not sure that is true because I have had cortisone shots in my wrists for arthritis, thumb for trigger thumb in addition to my spine where no dye was used and flushed almost every time except the first shot I ever got. Each shot, the flushing got worse and the last shot was the only one delivered under fluoroscopy which would have had a dye in it. I will never (hopefully) get another cortisone shot because the flushing was so bad plus other side effects. If you google cortisone shots, I think you will find that a higher percentage of women get flushing than do men. It is definitely not uncommon.
Sally

jrnyc
04-30-2010, 01:29 PM
years of cortisone shots...zero flushing...i would not trust any medication that made me flush!! as i said, the only one that did was during a severe allergic reaction to vioxx...the stuff cut off my breathing after causing hives and flushing all over...almost killed me...seriously!
my rheumatologist told me that i was to immediately stop any medication that caused flushing to happen...and call him right away! fortunately, no other medication ever did!

the internet says 15% of folks who get the cortisone shots get flushing, and as Sally said, more often women than men...

i've had cortisone pills, including prednisone and the stronger decadron...no flushing...nor with the shots...i think it would really scare me if it happened...especially with what my
rheumatologist said!

glad nothing bad happened with your flushing, Sally...but i hope you dont get any more of those shots!

jess

loves to skate
04-30-2010, 01:55 PM
Don't worry, I won't. Check out this website.
http://orthopedics.about.com/od/paintreatment/f/sideeffects.htm
I am allergic to adhesives,(you should see my back right now 1 1/2 weeks post-op), also I reacted to Vancomycin and Clindomycin this surgery, and Penicillin from surgery number one. What is a woman to do. I am afraid to ever go back to a hospital. Oh, also all of those narcotic drugs you take, they make me vomit, so now I am down to Tylenol and Advil for pain.
Sally

jrnyc
04-30-2010, 02:28 PM
Sally, i am so sorry that you have been having a tough time...i dont know what i'd do without pain meds...tylenol does nothing for me!

how did the surgery go...do you think the problem is solved now, once the healing is done?...i hope so!

feel better
jess

LindaRacine
04-30-2010, 02:36 PM
Linda, I'm not sure that is true because I have had cortisone shots in my wrists for arthritis, thumb for trigger thumb in addition to my spine where no dye was used and flushed almost every time except the first shot I ever got. Each shot, the flushing got worse and the last shot was the only one delivered under fluoroscopy which would have had a dye in it. I will never (hopefully) get another cortisone shot because the flushing was so bad plus other side effects. If you google cortisone shots, I think you will find that a higher percentage of women get flushing than do men. It is definitely not uncommon.
Sally
I stand corrected. :) (I made the assumption because the form I filled out asked if I had ever had reaction to dye.) I looked it up, and its apparently called steroid flush.

Coincidentally, I had my first injections yesterday. I have no leg pain today, and couldn't be more delighted. I was offered concious sedation, but turned it down, as I wanted to know what it was like in case anyone asked. While it's not the most comfortable thing in the world, the pain isn't horrendous, and it's only momentary. About the 5th time they injected steroid at L5, I was ready for it to be over.

Sally, sorry to hear about your pain medication issue. It must be pretty tough. When I had my spine surgery, I hated the morphine that I was getting, and asked to be taken off of it about day 6. The resident asked me what I wanted to be put on instead, and I was clueless. He asked if I had ever taken anything previously, and I told him I thought I'd only had codeine. He asked if I'd had any reaction to it, and I said no. So, that's what he put me on. I might as well have been swallowing jelly beans.

--Linda

jrnyc
04-30-2010, 02:44 PM
Hey Linda
so glad the injections helped you...do you know what they were...i mean, i had sacroiliac injections, facet blocks, etc...but the steroids didnt do much for me..nothing does much for my lumbar...and the pain gets bad from waist level on down......lately my sciatica goes up to my left hip something new :rolleyes:..previously, it only went down left leg...

best of luck...hope the relief from shots lasts a long time for you!

jess

loves to skate
04-30-2010, 03:52 PM
Sally, i am so sorry that you have been having a tough time...i dont know what i'd do without pain meds...tylenol does nothing for me!

how did the surgery go...do you think the problem is solved now, once the healing is done?...i hope so!

feel better
jess

Hi Jess and Linda,
Tylenol works only if you take it every 6 hours without fail. Fortunately, this surgery was no where near as painful as my original surgery when I absolutely couldn't get along without morphine, oxycontin or dilaudid etc. As far as is my problem is solved, I will know more in a few weeks according to my visiting nurse as it takes time for the swelling to go down. I am still hopeful. I walked a mile yesterday (yea), am tired today.
Sally

PS: Sorry Tiffany that we kind of raided your Thread, but at least you know your aren't the only one reacting to cortisone shots.

LindaRacine
04-30-2010, 06:28 PM
Hey Linda
so glad the injections helped you...do you know what they were...i mean, i had sacroiliac injections, facet blocks, etc...but the steroids didnt do much for me..nothing does much for my lumbar...and the pain gets bad from waist level on down......lately my sciatica goes up to my left hip something new :rolleyes:..previously, it only went down left leg...

best of luck...hope the relief from shots lasts a long time for you!

jess

Left L4 and L5 transforaminal epidural injection

jrnyc
04-30-2010, 07:03 PM
thanks for the reply...hope the epidural works for you!

jess

TiffanyK
04-30-2010, 08:58 PM
It's okay about the raid. I enjoy reading everyone's posts. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one reacting to the shot.

Oh, and for the question as to where I had my shot, it was L5-S1. Maybe I'm a big baby, but I found that it hurt a lot to get the shot. I wanted to punch the doctor out and I'm not a violent person. I blamed it on the steroids and said I had "roid rage"!

rohrer01
05-01-2010, 07:46 AM
It's okay about the raid. I enjoy reading everyone's posts. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one reacting to the shot.

Oh, and for the question as to where I had my shot, it was L5-S1. Maybe I'm a big baby, but I found that it hurt a lot to get the shot. I wanted to punch the doctor out and I'm not a violent person. I blamed it on the steroids and said I had "roid rage"!

I just got a shot in the same area as you and it didn't hurt at all. Did they use fluoroscopy to guide the needle? Maybe you are just very sensitive to steroids. I would definitely have them put that in your chart. did you get ANY relief from it? Sorry you had to go through a terrible procedure. :(

TiffanyK
05-01-2010, 04:11 PM
They used fluoroscopy. It hurt really bad as they were putting in the steroids, felt like something was going to burst in my back/butt. I didn't cry out when I was in labor with my daughter, but I did with this. As of right now, 10 days out, I have had no relief from it.

jrnyc
05-01-2010, 07:09 PM
Epidurals are funny things...though no one is laughing! :rolleyes:
sometimes they help...sometimes not...i've had 3...the first one helped a little...about 5 years later, i had two more within 3 years...neither of those did anything....the first one felt like pressure..like a truck was on my back...but not real pain...the last 2 hurt...felt like the fluid was going into my kidneys!! that happened with sacroiliac injections too...and the anesthesiologist swore he was no where near my kidneys...i believed him...but it just felt like it was going there! hurt alot!
the facet blocks didnt hurt as much..didnt help, either...the nerve ablation hurt...helped very little....

out of all the procedures, the sacroiliac injections helped the most, but nothing helped (my lumbar area) for much more than one month!

i think whether or not they help depends partly on where the most damage in the spine has occurred...also, several surgeons have told me that injections dont usually help very much with pain coming from structural damage...more apt to help with nerve caused pain and disc damage pain...

i am so very happy for anyone who gets help from these type of injections...am curious to see how long the relief lasts...hope it lasts longer for you guys than it ever has for me! the only injections that have ever given lasting relief has been the botox shots(in thoracic area)...they last for 3-4 months, then we repeat them...i realize that sometime in the future, they may stop working...which is one of reasons why i am gonna have the surgery....:(

jess

Back-out
05-03-2010, 03:00 PM
Epidural is just a term describing where the drug is injected, It could be anything. And, yes, corticosteroid injections generally cause flushing. Those orally ingested and injected (usually only in cumulative dosages) can cause many other serious side effects too. I won't list them as the power of suggestion is so great, but let's just say, they should be reserved only for dire necessity.

One too important for pts on this Board to neglect, is that they can cause bone thinning. You can imagine how that effects one eligibility for deformity correction surgery - not that bones only thin from cortisone!

jrnyc
05-03-2010, 03:24 PM
Epidural injections, per doctor, include both medications of steroid and anesthetic...i do not believe my other steroid injections included anesthetic in the injection...the only anesthetic used in my other steroid injections had anesthetic only on outside to numb the pinprick, while the epidural included anesthetic injected into the space where the steroid goes...it is supposed to hit the nerve roots that are inflamed, etc...it is supposed to help with degenerative disc disease and spinal stenosis, both of which i have, but only my very first epidural helped those conditions at all....


jess