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Thread: Nerve Pain/Sleeping Issues

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    360

    Nerve Pain/Sleeping Issues

    Hi everyone!

    I'm 5 months post-op and for the past 2 weeks I've been having a lot of nerve pain in my right leg. It usually starts in my lower leg and then radiates up to my hip (It's much worse at night). I know several of you have had nerve issues with you legs. Did you take Neurontin? Did it eventually go away on it's own? I'm having a similar problem in my right arm too. It would go numb before my surgery and had pretty much stopped until about a weeks ago.

    Then there's the sleeping. I have such a difficult time falling asleep (usually takes 1.5 hours) and then I wake up 5-6 hours later. I don't know if this is related to the surgery or not. It's been a problem for about 2 months. Melatonin doesn't work. I did buy some Valerian root last night and it seemed to work better.

    Any input would be appreciated!
    Chemist, 30

    1998- 18 degrees
    2003- 33 degrees
    2005- 37 degrees
    2006- 44 degrees
    May 2007- 47 degrees
    December 2007 - 50 degrees X-ray

    Surgery May 27, 2008
    Fused T1 to L2
    Curve corrected to 15 degrees X-ray

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    1,978
    So sorry to hear about your problems, Shell. I took Neurontin (gabapentin) for leg nerve problems, for probably about 4 months, weaning down toward the end (from 300 mg. to 100). By the time I was off it, I had no problem. Have you mentioned this to your surgeon? If not, I wouldn't hesitate to give him a call if I were you. The sleep issues I had seemed related to when I was changing meds or dosages-- and then sometimes it seemed like I only got a few hours' sleep. It was so frustrating-- especially since all my life, I've pretty much slept like a baby with no insomnia whatsoever (my head hits the pillow, I'm asleep...) Keep us posted.
    Last edited by Susie*Bee; 11-08-2008 at 07:34 AM. Reason: add
    67 and plugging along...
    2007 52 w/ severe lumbar stenosis & L2L3 lateral listhesis (side shift)
    5/4/07 posterior spinal fusion T2-L4 w/ laminectomies and osteotomies @L2L3, L3L4
    Dr. Kim Hammerberg, Rush Univ. Medical Center in Chicago

    Corrected to 15
    CMT (type 2) DX in 2014, progressing
    NEW 10/2018 x-rays show spondylolisthesis at L4/L5 - Dr. DeWald is monitoring

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    407
    Shell

    I take Gabapentin and Naproxin a little before I go to bed, and it does help. Although lately not as much as my back is all knotted up and my wife can't do her regular massages for me because her arm hurts much more as the weather gets colder. (she had an ulnar nerve transposition a few years ago)

    But the drugs have helped out a good amount.
    Surgeries July 26th & August 3rd 1983 (12 years old)
    Still have 57 degree curve
    2 Harrington rods
    Luque method used
    Dr David Bradford
    Twin Cities Scoliosis Center
    Preop xray (with brace on)
    Postop xray

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Bern, NC
    Posts
    1,445
    Hi Shell,
    I take Gabapentin (neurontin) for leg pain and restless leg syndrome. I was not able to fall asleep when I had the RLS and when the leg pain started. The pain gets you so tensed up that it is hard to relax. The neurontin has helped me with both problems and I fall asleep fairly easily most nights. My Doctor said it can take up to two years for the nerve pain to subside. I hope you can get some relief soon because sleep is so important. Sally
    Diagnosed with severe lumbar scoliosis at age 65.
    Posterior Fusion L2-S1 on 12/4/2007. age 67
    Anterior Fusion L3-L4,L4-L5,L5-S1 on 12/19/2007
    Additional bone removed to decompress right side of L3-L4 & L4-L5 on 4/19/2010
    New England Baptist Hospital, Boston, MA
    Dr. Frank F. Rands735.photobucket.com/albums/ww360/butterflyfive/

    "In God We Trust" Happy moments, praise God. Difficult moments, seek God. Quiet moments, worship God. Painful moments, trust God. Every moment, thank God.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    360
    Thanks so much for your replies Susie, Brad and Sally. I appreciate it!

    I guess I should call my surgeon. He doesn't know about the nerve pain. He's always reluctant to give out medication and that's been keeping me from calling him about it. I need to call anyway to ask for antibiotics for an upcoming dentist appointment. It sounds like Neurontin works well so I will ask about that. It gets depressing to have issues come up post-op. I have the same pain now that I did before the surgery. I have to keep reminding myself that the sole reason I had this surgery was to stop the progression and that appears to be successful.

    Thanks again!
    Chemist, 30

    1998- 18 degrees
    2003- 33 degrees
    2005- 37 degrees
    2006- 44 degrees
    May 2007- 47 degrees
    December 2007 - 50 degrees X-ray

    Surgery May 27, 2008
    Fused T1 to L2
    Curve corrected to 15 degrees X-ray

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Lawrence, Kansas/ Overland Park, KS
    Posts
    195
    I have had a really hard time with falling asleep and staying asleep also post op. It started when I was off all my medications, at about 1 1/2 months. I am 4 months out now and doing a lot better. I called my family practice doctor and she prescribed me a low dose of trazadone, i think it's 50 mg. It really helped with the sleeping. I also started to exercise more and that helped too. After about a month of taking that, I gradually reduced it to half a pill a night to just a quarter to nothing. I am sleeping well now most of the time but every once and i while i still take part of one. If you aren't getting any sleep it's something to look into because it's not habit forming like other sleep aids. Good luck!!
    aBbiE
    22 yr old F,KU college student
    Kyphoscoliosis...
    Scoliosis (25T, 23L) diagnosed @ 14 yrs old; curves June 08 were 45T, 32L with 18 degree rotation
    Kyphosis of 65 degrees...
    I am missing a lumbar vertebrae

    Surgery 6/30/2008 with Dr. Lawrence Lenke
    Fused T2-L2


    before/after pics
    all smiles!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    near Philadelphia
    Posts
    1,260
    Shell, I have also had a hard time sleeping since I got off all the meds (7 months ago). I take Melatonin, which helps a little. The thing about Melatonin is, you need to take it regularly for about a month or so before you get the most benefit from it. That's what I was told, anyway, and that's the way it's worked for me.

    I work part-time and I sleep much better the days I work because I get more mentally and physically tired. Walking every day helps too. I would urge you to look into Neurontin for the leg pain though. It's not a narcotic so your surgeon should not give you a hard time about it.
    Chris
    A/P fusion on June 19, 2007 at age 52; T10-L5
    Pre-op thoracolumbar curve: 70 degrees
    Post-op curve: 12 degrees
    Dr. Boachie-adjei, HSS, New York

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