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mbeckoff
05-29-2010, 09:00 AM
I will be 4 weeks out from my surgery on June 1. I am in so much more pain last night and today than I have been. What is going on? of course, it is a holiday weekend and I cannot get in touch with my surgeon. I came home from the hospital/rehab on May 20 and was doing great and now the last couple of days all I can do is sleep and now I am in so much pain.

ANy ideas?

Melissa

Vali
05-29-2010, 09:20 AM
Hi Melissa, so soryy to hear you are in pain. Is the pain, pain that you were feeling post-op - only it got worse, or is it a new pain. There is got to be someone you can touch base with. I can't believe they didn't give you a number to call in case of things like this, especially since you are only 4 weeks post-op. My suggestion would be to keep up with the pain meds (take them strictly on time) and rest as much as you can. I sure hope someone can help you real soon with that pain. Sorry i couldn't be much help. Take care.

Back-out
05-29-2010, 01:14 PM
Melissa,

So sorry to hear this news. I/m glad you wrote in, but I can almost feel through the monitor how much effort it took you.

Echoing Val, wondering what kind of pain it is, and where? Whether it's new or recap of old. When and under what circumstances it came on. Can't believe there's no one to call. It's not even the holiday yet.

Try NOT TO PANIC! Pain gives us all kinds of messages, of urgency and emergency but one thing we learn from back pain is that since the nerve centers are all being handled and worked near, we can feel godawful pain which is NOT dangerous.

Try to separate yourself from the pain as much as possible. There's a meditation technique called "mindfulness" which seems to have changed my son's life. I'm definitely going to work on it too. I read a book where a man man dying of ALS, uses this technique - resolving (and succeeding) in separating himself from his pain, as bad as it gets.

Somehow, that helps so we're kind or on-lookers at the agony our bodies feel, while our essential selves are protected and even calm. As you relax (below) try to take inventory of your body, part by part, what feels what. You're looking at it. The notes may help later too, reporting to a physician.

Panic is the fuel that amplifies pain. Try to tell yourself "it's just pain. It's probably not an emergency, and I'll get through this." And a phrase I taught both my kids used to help them:

"The fear is real but the danger is not". In this case it's fear coming from pain. If you can self talk yourself out of letting your fear take over, you will maintain some control not only over yourself but the level of pain. And after all, one of the fears that come with pain, is not only WHY but HOW LONG, HOW MUCH? All kinds of what-ifs.

Try to talk yourself down from those fears, interpreting the pain as benign ("I don't KNOW this means anything serious, except that it hurts!"). This is much what people with panic disorders are urged to do. Avoid catastrophizing! Let it "just" be pain, but not an emergency generating it's own crisis response (and more pain).

It probably is nothing more serious than pain itself. So much settling going on. A nerve gets in the way, and all our inner fire alarms go off as it sends signals all over the place. Make yourself breathe slowly and deeply exhaling through your nose, counting slowly backwards from ten - then higher. As your fear ebbs your pain will stabilize and go down. You'll regain control (with the help of meds) and meanwhile, keep trying to get through or have someone try for you. Hope you're with someone. Call the crisis line in your town if not. It WILL END! Stay in touch.
:)

LindaRacine
05-29-2010, 01:16 PM
Hi Melissa...

It's not uncommon for people to have a lot more pain at a few different recovery times. I think it's often just a matter of being more active or reducing pain medication. If you back off a bit and feel better tomorrow, then you'll know what it is. If you stay in bed today, and feel worse tomorrow, you might want to call your surgeon. (I'm sure s/he has someone on call.)

Hang in there. It will get better.

Regards,
Linda

mbeckoff
05-29-2010, 04:29 PM
I have not reduced my pain meds. My surgeon told me not to play with them until I see him June 9 . I really do not think that I have been more active. I have taken it easy today. The pain is different than other post op pain that I have had. If I do not feel better tomorrow , should I call my surgeon's office?

Melissa

LindaRacine
05-29-2010, 05:39 PM
Hi...

That's hard to say, since none of us can know what you're feelling. If the pain doesn't start to subside with inactivity, it probably wouldn't hurt to call.

--Linda

jrnyc
05-29-2010, 05:50 PM
hi melissa
so sorry to hear about the pain...it must be frightening, after you were doing better! everybody on forum who has the surgery sounds like their pain goes up and down, and that recovery is a crooked line, not a straight one...i hope that is all you are going through, just a but of temporary pain increase as your body tries to heal...i hope it reverses soon!

just my opinion, but i think you should put in a call..it's a holiday wkend, but maybe he'll get back to you by monday...

hope you feel better really soon...
jess

Back-out
05-29-2010, 05:55 PM
Melissa this is just off the wall checking, but to reduce the possibility that you're suffering from infection or internal bleeding (and have more information to provide if you call).

Have you taken your temperature? Elevation is undesirable, of course.
What about dizziness, the color of: your nail beds, gums, eye rims (below the whites). Are any unusally pale? How is your pulse? Hopefully, not unusually fast. If you have a BP monitor, it would be good to check it.

Linda knows best, but if it were me, I'd call the physician or at least, the on-call.

(Why not, someone? Anyone??)

I'll probably be a very unpopular surgical patient (if I live to make the decision :o), but "better safe than sorry" is one of my mottos. Maybe physicians (like a few of my relatives) would rather have me "sorry" - in effect - but be able to say later, "But you SHOULD have called!" But how many post-surgical patients does he have, anyhow - ones as recently discharged as you?

After January hand surgery I had a STRONG unusual pain immediately after surgery (I'd had it before on the opposite hand). After being blown off when I finally called, I didn't call later even when I ran a low fever on and off. I was criticized for NOT calling, when I reported that (much) later. (I was sure it was the kind of fever that would vanish as soon as I walked in the door).

The P.A. told me on my single call, that the pain MUST "be referred" (i.e. insignificant) as they hadn't "done" anything where I described. But when the cast was removed, it turned out that the pin holding my reconstructed thumb joint together, had come out the back of my hand - where I complained of severe pain. Not "done anything there"!?

Anyhow, I sincerely doubt your problem has any danger attached to it , Melissa, simply because a) most often pain is benign b) you have so many reasons at this point, to feel pain. Probably anxiety is playing a major role (hope you read my earlier post, as at the very least, you could be calmer in evaluating how you feel), but...but. Not call? :confused: Aren't there ALWAYS on-call point people for physicianss - especially surgeons, whose patients may have such specialized conditions they're almost impossible to evaluate outside the practice?

When such things happened to my kids (I was much braver calling about them), I was always swayed by thinking how much LESS the doctor would like to be woken up in the middle of the night if things got worse then. And in this case, tomorrow is even more of a holiday than today (and Monday, all the more so).

So if you're going to call, I'd think better sooner than later.
But are you prepared to describe your pain, somehow? It would be better if you could be more precise, however hard that is. Even as to whether certain movements or pressure points, elicit the pain more than others.

Maybe even verbally, he or a rep can ask you screening questions to rule out the rare possible dangerous cause for your pain.
Otherwise, with nothing to go on, he's almost forced to to tell you to forget it, or meet you at the ER (or at least, tell you to be examined there - but chances are the ER doc would want to get in touch with him anyhow). That WOULD be a toughie.

Still wondering whether you're alone. These things can prey on us so much more if we are, and our anxiety mounts...The pain itself can multiply because of fear.

Wishing you the very best outcome, and for your clearest thinking decision now. :)

mbeckoff
05-29-2010, 10:48 PM
No I not alone. I am home with my husband and my 2 teenage kids. The pain just feels different.I really don't know how to describe it. I have not had this kind of pain since I had the surgery. If I do not feel any better tomorrow, I am going to call my surgeon's office

Melissa

Vali
05-30-2010, 08:09 AM
Hi Melissa, is the pain easing at all. Can i just ask? Is it back pain, leg pain?

joyfull
05-30-2010, 09:52 AM
Melissa, If it were me, I would definitely call the surgeon's office as soon as you can. If anyone is on call, I would call today. If you've done nothing different, I would think you would want to rule out anything more serious. Hope you're feeling better. Joy

mbeckoff
05-30-2010, 11:25 AM
The pain starts in the middle of my spine and then goes down my left leg . This never happened before since i have had my surgery

I have done nothing yesterday nor today

Do you think it is something to call about?

Melissa

jrnyc
05-30-2010, 11:51 AM
melissa, does it feel like a sciatica? does it feel like nerves, electric impulse down your leg..or something else..?

hope you get some relief soon...suggest you call...

jess

loves to skate
05-30-2010, 12:44 PM
Melissa,
Your pain sounds like sciatica to me. It could be swelling from the surgery that is putting pressure on some nerve roots and will probably resolve itself over time. However, if I were you, I would call the Doctor. I am sure there is someone on call and it will give you peace of mind.

Hey Melissa, we bought a piece of land in New Bern, NC this past week and will build a house on it very soon. I can't wait to get away from the long cold winters in the Northeast.

Sally

mbeckoff
05-30-2010, 03:23 PM
I think that I will call but I do believe that It is sounding like sciatica .

Melissa

mbeckoff
05-30-2010, 03:38 PM
Well, I called my surgeon's office and of course, there was someone there to talk to. I left my message and not 5 minutes later I got a call back. The doctor's answers was , at this time, if I can tolerate the pain, then there really is nothing to do. But if at some time, I can not tolerate the pain or if I can not put weight on my foot then I need to get to the hospital where they can evaluate me.

Thanks guys for being here with me and helping me thru this crisis like you have done before

Melissa

LindaRacine
05-30-2010, 03:41 PM
Hi Melissa...

You can usually tell where the pain is originating by looking at a dermatome chart. For example:

http://bootschiropractic.com/images/Dermatomes-leg.jpg

Regards,
Linda

Back-out
05-30-2010, 05:16 PM
Linda,

this link doesn't seem to be working!

Thx :)

LindaRacine
05-30-2010, 05:21 PM
Linda,

this link doesn't seem to be working!

Thx :)

Not sure why it isn't working for you. It worked for me just now using both Firefox and Safari.

--Linda

Pooka1
05-30-2010, 05:31 PM
Works for me.

jrnyc
05-30-2010, 05:37 PM
thanks, Linda...i am now figuring out what is probably causing the sciatic that runs down the back of my left leg! i kinda figured pain was originating somewhere in lumbar...the diagram confirms that...

hope your wkend is good..

jess

mbeckoff
05-30-2010, 05:41 PM
My pain is on the inside of my left leg. Before I had the surgery, I did have sciatica with my left leg but that was on the back/left side .This pain is new and it is on the inside of my leg

Melissa

foofer
05-30-2010, 05:45 PM
Pretty interesting!

That S2 is the beast.

Pooka1
05-30-2010, 05:54 PM
I agree it is interesting. I am having pain in my left buttock and left calf that feels like a huge bruise in each place. Based on that diagram, I think my two level fusion is propagating down to involve L4.

Vali
05-30-2010, 06:53 PM
My pain is on the inside of my left leg. Before I had the surgery, I did have sciatica with my left leg but that was on the back/left side .This pain is new and it is on the inside of my leg

Melissa


I had this pain for the last about 6 weeks. It also is on the top of my left thigh. I was struggling to walk and could not put any weight on that leg . As I mentioned elsewhere, imagine that you could poke a stick through the left Si joint at the back and it comes out at the front. My pain radiates (it has eased now) from this point down the front of my thigh till me knee, but also down the inside on my leg (all left side). The spasms i was having were extremely painful. They went all the way down my leg until my foot and even made my toes curl! I had a CT scan and x-rays done as my surgeon first thought i may have snapped a rod, however, there was nothing to be seen as to why this was happening. He said we could do further investigations, but that i should ride it out a little longer before we go down that track. Today, after two good days, i am back to having intermitent pain, but its ok, i can deal with it. Sorry this is long.

P.S. Surgeon put it down to 'aggravation of the si joints'.

mbeckoff
05-31-2010, 07:15 AM
Well,I had a decent night sleep, thanks to pain killers. My left leg pain is still there. As it is Monday, I believe, I will wait until tomorrow to talk with my surgeon instead of going to the ER on Memorial day. That is, based on the pain now.If the pain gets worse,I will go to the ER today

Thanks

Melissa

jrnyc
05-31-2010, 07:47 AM
most of the time, the ER's out here just refer back to the treating doctor!! the ones i've been to seem to prefer something like pneumonia that they know how to treat!

good luck..hope you get some help, and can hold out til tomorrow..

jess

Doodles
05-31-2010, 11:01 AM
It must be bad leg week. I just posted my leg problem on another thread. It's my left from low back/hip down the side of my leg and under the knee. I just can't figure out what I did and if this still can be surgery related since I'm more than a year out or something new. I've given up exercising and walking for a couple days now but that hasn't helped either. It's so annoying cuz it's hard to sleep or stay asleep! Janet

Back-out
05-31-2010, 11:39 PM
Not sure why it isn't working for you. It worked for me just now using both Firefox and Safari.

--Linda
Boy, do I feel left out! It won't load on either Mozilla or IE on my PC!
But everything else is loading fine in the thread and online.

The mysteries of computer coding....Maybe chiropractic sites are now blocking me! :p

mbeckoff
06-01-2010, 05:26 AM
Well,I made it thru the weekend.I am going to call my surgeon this morning. All I did yesterday was sleep.i feel so bad this AM. I have not felt this bad since before I left the hospital which was May 20.

Melissa

mbeckoff
06-01-2010, 03:36 PM
Well, I spoke to my surgeon's nurse this AM and she has called another drug into my pharmacy for me. She also pointed several items out for me to think about. She pointed out that I am only 4 weeks out of surgery and I do have a very long fusion which will take a while to heal. I have only been home from the hospital 11 days and I am certainly doing more at home than I was there. She , also, reminded me that I have fibromayligia which gives me many aches anyway. So I will be recuperating slowly and at my own pace

Melissa

rohrer01
06-01-2010, 03:43 PM
Well, I spoke to my surgeon's nurse this AM and she has called another drug into my pharmacy for me. She also pointed several items out for me to think about. She pointed out that I am only 4 weeks out of surgery and I do have a very long fusion which will take a while to heal. I have only been home from the hospital 11 days and I am certainly doing more at home than I was there. She , also, reminded me that I have fibromayligia which gives me many aches anyway. So I will be recuperating slowly and at my own pace

Melissa

I hope the nurses reassurance helped take some of the scare out of your pain. That really stinks to have fibromyalgia and have to recover from a long spinal fusion, too. I hope you feel better soon!