PT re-evaluation today!

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anice
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 7/14/2009 6:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi friends, I have my re-evaluation for PT this morning at 9:30. I am really nervous about this. I want so much to do good. It is really stressing  me out! I want my numbers to be "right". I feel pressured. I am only putting the pressure on myself. And I know this. I am really trying hard to just relax and to push all this anxiety aside. This is an important evaluation for me. I have my doctors appt on Friday. And I want to discuss going back  to work. I am still in pretty high pain levels. The tens unit helps me when it is on. I asked yesterday at PT if I would be able to wear it today, and ofcourse the answer was no. She said they are re-evaluating me and how I am doing. I'll walk for 6 minutes timed and the distance measured. Then I'll see where I am with the back strength and mobility. That will be done on a machine. And I think that will be all. Mornings are not good times for me. I tend to hurt more in the mornings! And today is no exception. I will take my percocet and flexiril before I go. I sure hope that helps. I sound like a kid. I lost my tennis shoes. I can't find them anywhere. I will have to wear my flip flops. And those aren't the best shoes for this!!! I hoped to wake up early enough to run in a store and buy a new pair before the appt, that didn't happen. I overslept. And I am mad at myself for that!!! Anyway, I know this post is wierd and I am sounding all stressed. I don't mean to sound this way. I just can't help it. I will calm myself down on the drive there. I'll be okay. I am making more, way more of this than I need to. I just need to take a deep breath and relax. I am going to do the best that I can do. If the numbers show a big enough improvement and the doctor agreees, I may be released to go back to work. I'll post when I get home and let all of you know how it went. Thanks for letting me vent. Sorry to sound all messed  up in the head. I haven't had my coffee yet!!! Everything will work out  in whatever way it is suposed to. I can only do my best. But in the meantime, please keep your fingers crossed!!!!!!
Anice

White Beard
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3611
   Posted 7/14/2009 8:01 AM (GMT -7)   
Anice

I hope you had your Coffee, and by now, you should either be having or have completed your re-evaluation! I hope it went well for you! Your post kind of made me chuckle a little, How many times have we felt the way you expressed you felt about doing something that was special to us? Way to many time I am afraid! I know I can relate, perfectly to your Post! As I bet so many others can too!

I have had my fingers crossed for you! I hope it all went well!

White Beard
Moderator Chronic Pain
 
I'm Retired USAF, went back to school and became an RN, and now am on full disalbility!--Degenerative Disc (affecting mostly the thorasic disc but all levels involved), C6/7 laminectomy/diskectomy& fusion, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!) Medications: Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV


anice
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 7/14/2009 10:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Thank you WhiteBeard, I went back and reread my post. And I admit it made me laugh a little,too. I was way too stressed this morning!! Anyway, I wanted to post and just to touch base with someone out there to let you all know all the craziness and thoughts I was having at the moment. I did feel better afterwards. I drank my coffee on the way. By the time I got there I had calmed myself down somewhat.

The therapist talked to me at length today. I appreciated it. We discussed the tens unit. I was told by the therapist who gave it to me to turn it up to where I felt it but that it didn't hurt. And that is what I have been doing. I had it on to 4.5 and 5.0. Today my therapist said to turn it up high enough until it does hurt and then to bump it down a little. He said that the muscles would contract and that I would get numbness. He said it has to be used at high enough levels to reach the point of feeling the pain. He explained it in terms that it can be used like opioids, that I could get the same type of feeling in pain control... I haven't had it explained that way. And it contradicted what the therapist that gave it to me said. But I have it on now and at an 8.5 and a 9.0. It hurts, but I am sure it isn't high enough to get the numbness. I will turn it up higher a little later. I am having a hard time getting used to the increase in the numbers. He said this will go up to 60! I think I would pass out at that level!!!!! Anyway, I will increase the numbers in a few minutes and see what happens.

Okay, for the numbers. On the walking today I was at 60!!! On June 23rd I was at 45%. So this is better. I am still taking small steps but I am going faster. He did comment on my gait. He said I walk like a duck/penguin!!!!!! I know this and I can't help it. I can't take "normal" steps yet. My steps are small. He said we need to work on this to get me walking better. I want that in a bad way. I am embarrassed at how I walk. But I can't help it. I am doing the best that I can. On the strength (measured by equipment) part I was at a 40% today. On June 23rd I was at a 33%. And that is better too. He said that he wants me to join the health and fitness center. Since I am employed by the hosp. system,(even though I work in a office) I can join at a lower price. He said that I can go to the pool, whirlpool,sauna and work on the equipment there everyday if I want to. It is cheaper than the $20 copay that I have to pay for every PT session. He said it will have to be cleared by my doctor first.

I have a doctors' appt. on Friday morning. The therapist will send him the results and I have them written down too. I do plan to talk about returning to work. I have shown improvement with the PT. Although, I don't really feel better myself the numbers are showing an improvement.And that is what matters the most I guess. I guess I will feel better when the numbers are better than what they are now. I really am trying to get better. I have learned to be patient. It has been a long and hard lesson for me, but I guess I have gotten there. I have been hardheaded in that aspect. I just wanted to be better "now". I realize that it takes time. And no matter how much and what I want, it won't hurry things along to my satisfaction. I do want to go back to work. Maybe not next week, but I will ask if I can return the following week or atleast the first of the month. I miss my job bad. And I do think it will help me, atleast feel better emotionally. But I won't do an AmA(against medical advice), and I have to have the doctors okay before I can return anyway, regardless of what I want. I have been off for 11 weeks now. It will be 12 on Wednesday. I have rambled on long enough. I just wanted to give an update to where things stand with me regarding my re-evaluation from PT. Thanks for reading this. And I could use some input on the tens unit, if you don't mind. I know everyone is different but I could use some pointers. Do you actually get numb when the numbers are high. Having this at the 9.0 and the 8.5 hurt, but I don't think it is high enough to cause the numbness, he was talking about. How do you know when it is high enough? Any suggestions would be nice. I do need some input here. And I will keep in mind that you may be different than I am. I will take that into consideration,promise.
Anice

PAlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 7/14/2009 1:37 PM (GMT -7)   
Anice,
It's great that you're improving. My only concern for you is that you are still wanting to go even faster, and that this all comes in baby steps. Pushing to go back to work too soon could set you back. If your doctor thinks you're ready to return, how about trying to return part time for a couple of weeks and see how it goes? That would also give you time to go to the center and follow the routine your PT is setting up for you.

As far as the TENS unit, they are all different so I'm not sure mine's the same (mine's a slightly different type of unit anyway), ease up on it. I think your eagerness to get better could have you pushing up too fast. I know even at my PT's office he would put the control of the stim unit within reach for me (his big machine) and we'd start out at a lower number but as my body got used to it I could ease it up. Do it that way. Inch up slowly. If you go up too fast you might send the muscle into a spasm. Try to relax about it more, and remember it's in your control, so you can play around with it a bit. If it hurts, tone it down. Don't worry about the numbness. I think it's not so much numb as a feeling of a little relief from the vibration.

Now please, do something to try to relax!!

PaLady

golitho
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 1670
   Posted 7/14/2009 2:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Anice, it sounds so wonderful that you are finally improving even in small increments!!! But I agree with PAlady, you really need to relax, stress always raises pain levels! Good luck with your specialist appointment, thinking of you, golitho turn

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13473
   Posted 7/14/2009 3:25 PM (GMT -7)   

Thats is really good news. So, PT is paying off, just not as fast as you would have liked it to be but thats ok, you are shwoing improvement so now you know its working.

I was instructed on my Tens to turn it up as high as I could stand it, but I was not to reproduce pain. I could then back it off a little. I think turning it up too high can cause problems.

Do not be surprised if the dr does not release you to return to work on this appt coming up. He may want you in more PT or at least at the center a few weeks before letting you return to work. Even with your improvements you still have alot of deficit. The fact that you are not walking correctly tells you something. So, again, do not be surprised.

I cannot belive you lost your tennis shoes,lol. I hope by now you either found them or replaced them lol.


Straydog/Susie
Moderator Chronic Pain
 
crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & decreased circulation in both legs. Swveral other health issues just not enough roo to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 16 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.


anice
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 7/14/2009 4:20 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks PaLady, Golitho, and Susie, for your responses. It does help me alot to get feedback. I am confused now with the tens unit. I was using it at pretty low levels. The first therapist said that. Now, mine is saying to put it up until it hurts and bump it down a little. I have done that this afternoon. And I did get the numb feeling but it hurt alot. I don't like it quiet as well as the lower level!!! But I also want to do what is expected of me. He said I would get better and longer results this way...Well, I am in more pain today too. I don't know if it is b/c of PT yesterday and the re-eval. today(the back strength and mobility equip. hurt!!!) or the bumping up the tens. Anyway, it could be any or all of the above... I'll play around w/ it more and see what works better.

I'll wait and see what the doctor says about returning to work. I really can't go back part time b/c of my insurance benefits. You have to work full time. Part time employees don't get any insurance benefits. I promise to be open minded with this. I do need and want to get back, but I don't want to mess anything up either. That is much more important than me going back too soon. I will remember that. And I don't think the doctor will release me too soon... He is a older doctor and set in his ways fairly strictly!!! I'll find out on Friday.

Anice

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13473
   Posted 7/14/2009 5:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Anice it could be a combo of everything together at once causing your pain to climb. But, I would do what you said and play with the Tens Unit and find your right number. I truly do not understand what the peson told you about cranking it up high, that really makes no sense. With mine yes, I was told when I turned it on every time to go a little higher then back it off some where it was more comfortable, but not  like what you were told. I am afraid if cranking it up high is causing an increase in your pain, then the use of the Tens Unit is a wash. You have already had a good day using it as you were instructed in the very beginning. I think I would stick with that
plan of a lower setting and be more comfortable, inceasing the pain is not what a Tens is indicated for.
 
Yes, using your disability thru  your job means if you return to work the benefits stop. Then if you were unable to do the work after returning, you would have to file a new claim all over again, You would not just get to resume benefits automaitically. So, its best to be physically fit and able to work when released.
Straydog/Susie
Moderator Chronic Pain
 
crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & decreased circulation in both legs. Swveral other health issues just not enough roo to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 16 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.


anice
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 7/14/2009 6:20 PM (GMT -7)   
Susie, Maybe I explained it wrong about the tens unit. My PT therapist said it should be used at higher numbers- increase the number until it hurt and then to bump it down a little. He said it would get a numbness feeling. The therapist that gave me the unit said to use it at a comfortable setting, that I shouldn't feel pain. My therapist didn't say to turn it all the way up. I know I would pass out cold!!!I can not imagine that there is anyone out there who can tolerate it as high as it goes. He said to play around w/ the numbers until I found what worked for me. I did go higher today (9.0 and 9.5). I was using it at 4.0-5.0 settings. I don't think I want to go higher than I did today. That hurt, but it did go numb,like he said. I think I will call my PM(he's the one who made the order), and ask how he wants me to use it. I think that is the best thing for me to do especially since I've had 2 therapist tell me two different things.
Anice

skeye
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 7/14/2009 8:25 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Anice,

That is great news that you are getting stronger & gaining more endurance! Hopefully the trend continues & your doctor will release you to work soon! If he doesn't okay your full return to work on Friday, maybe he'll at least let you do a few hours a day, for a week or two, just to get started!

Skeye

fatherjohn
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 999
   Posted 7/14/2009 10:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Anice, I just returned home from work and such and I was checking in on my HW family. It is always great to hear some good news and the numbers continue to grow, good job. I know that you want to be at 100 and back at work but remember you are still healing. As long as the numbers continue to go in your favor, you are in good shape. I hope your Dr appoint goes as well.
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