depression and anxiety due to herniated discs and lumbar pain

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New Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/12/2009 9:32 AM (GMT -6)   
i am taking pristiq 50mg  and klonopin 3x a day to help with anxiety and depression they say i got from have herniated L-5 disc with real bad lumbar pain and numbness and tingling down legs. i wish they would stop trying to fix my depression and anxiety and fix my back then i think the rest would go away.  any suggestions

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 177
   Posted 6/12/2009 1:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to the bunch. Hope you'll feel comfortable here.

This is a Chronic Pain Forum, so the people here weren't complety healed. You get used to the pain, at least to some extend but it will always be there when you're a CPP (Chronic Pain Patient).

On depression. Personally, I never had a depression or anxiety problems. It is quite normal however that you feel a bit down when in serious pain. in the long run, you'll get a bit used to the pain, but the constant pain-in-the-background frinds you down. That's when people often appear to get a depression as well. Others on this forum will be able to discuss these matters in detai as I have no first hand experience with them.

Of course, should someone be able to fix your back completely, then you're mental problems might go away as well. The fact this hasn't been done makes me assume you're in this for the long run.

What I personally did was accept the fact that I was crippled and in pain for the rest of my life and dealt with it. No shrinks, no anti-depressants, nothing, except pain meds (not that pain meds are the solution, but they can make life bearable and even worth living and they often give you the possibility of performing). Others will probably disagree and I suggest you listen to those who know more about this than I do.

Keep up your spirits and keepus posted.
To stand and be still at the Birkenhead Drill is a mighty bullet to shew.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 119
   Posted 6/12/2009 1:47 PM (GMT -6)   

Morgoth..... I hear you and feel your pain..... They did that to me for 2 and 1/2 years before I lost it in the doctors office and they decided to give me an MRI and found I had a ruptured disc that if I moved wrong I'd be in a wheel chair... Nice right????  Tell them to stop trying to fix the depression and fix your back.  Sorry to be so dang blunt but I think you need to.  If I had not had my melt down I dont think they would have done anything for me until I was wheel chair bound.  shocked   Tell them the depression is DUE to the BACK PAIN!!!!!!!! I'm a very very goofy person and cut up and carry on daily, and they put me on depression meds for a few months til I took myself off the ^#@&%$##^*!!! things.  I dont need them I'm not depressed you sorry soo in sooo, I'm in PAIN!!!!!!!!! LOL....I really hope you get to feeling better and tell them to BITE you and fix you......


Good luck


Troublemaker yeah


Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 168
   Posted 6/12/2009 1:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Classic,

I agree with Morgoth. I am sure they will get to the fixing of your back problem but only after trying all available conservative methods first. In the meantime you will be in some degree of constant pain. That will wear you done. It sounds like your doc is trying to relieve at least some of pain and elevate your mood at the same time, knowing that constant pain can put in the dumps pretty quickly. Surgery is always the last resort if nothing else works for you. So yes, you are in for a long road ahead. By the way, are you a truck driver? I assumed that from your sign. Anyway, no pun was intended. You do have to come to grips with where you are with the pain and what options are open to you. After all treatments have been tried you may still have some residual pain. Backs are tough to fix. Medical science knows volumes more about treating hearts, knees, feet, amrs and legs along with all sorts of internal medicine issues than they do about fixing spinal problems. The classical fix has been laminectomy and fusion. I've had four of them. That procedure will fix the shooting pains in the legs but almost always leaves you with back pain. My specialists have, in fact, given up any further surgery on my back because it would only make things worse.

Sometimes back problems from herniated discs can resolve themselves with conservative treatments. Given the downsides of back surgery I would certain go the conservative route first. But it will take some time. You have to be patient and follow the procedures your doc recommends. And don't worry about the antidepressant meds. They are probably doing more good than you know.

I hope this helps. I know how being in pain is frustrating. You just want it fixed...NOW!

Degenerative disc disease since 1985, 4 back surgeries, fused from L2-S1, instrumentation. Being treated for chronic pain. Oxycodone 30 mg. IR. Candidate for SCS in the future.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13363
   Posted 6/12/2009 4:45 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Classic and welcome to Healing Well. What kind of tests and procedures have been done for your back problem? What are your drs proposing to do now?

I have CP from a back problem and facet joint problems. Surgery cannot always fix the problem as you have been told. It sounds like you have nerve involvement with the pain in your legs. I do know if you wait too long to have any surgery, most of the time the surgery will not get get rid of the leg pain. PaLady has terrible leg pain, but she waited three years to have surgery and thats way too long, so I am not surprised at all that she still has problems. A friend of mine did the same thing and she ended up with the same results and walks with a limp permanently. 

It is true a person can become use to the pain. Alot of times people can get depressed because of chronic pain.  Its a normal thing to happen if the pain has changed your work ability, which then puts stress on yor life that no one needs. Many factors to take into consideration.


You did not mention what kind of a dr you are seeing. he best thing to do is have a heart to heart with the dr and ask just what he/she intends on doing for you in the near future to help you. I hope you get some good answers. Susie

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 6/12/2009 5:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, Classic,
Welcome to the Chronic Pain forum of Healing Well. Let's hope you can move on a road to get your pain reduced if not eliminated, and not need to be here anymore. But in the meantime, this is a great support group. We're not doctors, but can share a lot of our experiences.

As straydog mentioned I had lumbar fusion surgery and may have waited too long, although it's possible that surgery wouldn't have helped anyway. I actually had an evaluation for surgery at the 2 year point and was told by a local surgeon he wouldn't recommend surgery. I went to a big teaching hospital and had a minimally invasive fusion, but turns out the first doc was right. All that time, though, I had been doing numerous treatments and procedures - a lot of physical therapy (that's usually first on the list), but then a variety of injections. With the numbness if you're not seeing a good neurologist you need to be. And possibly have a consult with a neurosurgeon, but surgery doesn't fix everything. Sometimes a herniated disk can be helped by PT. But you don't want to wait to have tests done, and start these more conservative treatments.

However, depression is part of chronic pain not only because of all the losses we suffer in life, but because what happens in our body to produce pain also produces depression. Depression is not just in our heads, but is related to changes in biochemistry. So anti-depressants also help with pain, although they're not the only medication that's needed. So it's ok if your doctors want to treat the depression, but they need to also be treating your other problems.

BTW, klonopin isn't an anti-depressant; it's generall used for anxiety, so that's not one of the meds that's going to help with chronic pain.

Hope this helps a bit. Again, welcome.

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