What do you guys think.

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 1205
   Posted 8/14/2010 8:22 AM (GMT -6)   
I've been going to pt for two weeks now. I thought it may be helping some because my range of motion seems to be a bit better.The pain is still there and it doesen't take much to send sharp pain thru my spine like step down off a step to hard or a simple sneeze or even a little walk to the mail box all i have to do is turn wrong and there it is more pain. The reason i'm asking the advice of my wonderful family here,is that i go back to the dr. this thursday. He'll be checking me out and making the decision if i'm ready to go back to work. I'm not sure if i am and i know if he releases me to full duty and i keep having pain i'm not sure that there will be much i can do at that point.Where as if i stay under his care and remain out of work workers comp will have to keep sending me for treatment for my injury. I hate this and i hate being in pain everyday God only knows what will become of me. confused

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16784
   Posted 8/14/2010 11:20 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Kay,
For some reason I am going blank about you getting hurt at work, jeesh brain fog is rotten at times. You are in pretty tough situation no doubt.
First off, who is this dr seeing you? Is it your regular dr or a different one? Is this a dr of your choiuce, or a dr selected by the worker's comp carrier? If its a dr for the worker's comp carrier (insurance) then of course you know the drill, they will put you right back to work as a rule whether you are capable of working or not. Generally when PT is ordred they give about 6 weeks of PT, were you only ordered two weeks? Maybe they want to re-evaluate you to see if there is any improvement before contining on with more PT. Its hard to ever second guess what anyone is going to do thats for sure.
The best thing you can do is just be honest and tell the dr how you feel. Have you just been taking it easy since you have been taken off of work? I bet if you increase your activity much you are going to be right back in excruciating pain. I know you and how you have a high pain tolerance. You know you may the afteroon or morning of ther appt, depending on the time of day of your appt, do a few things around the house so that when you see the dr he can see what happens when you increase your activity and he may want to keep you off a little longer. Make him aware of how physical your work is.
I am sorry, but I just don't think I am being of much help here. Sorry. Take care of yourself.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 8/14/2010 12:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Sorry I haven't followed or responded much to you (or to lots of people). I don't read every thread but I do remember your starting PT. I've had tons of PT in my life, and the stuff that's helped has lasted for months. Two weeks of PT is nothing in my book. Yes, your ROM is a little better, and that's a good sign, but sounds like there's a lot more work for the PT to do, and it also sounds like you've found a good one who's working slowly (although I wouldn't mention say that to your doctor, as you don't want W.C. sending you to someone else who moves too fast and makes things worse!).

I agree with straydog that maybe increasing your activity a bit before you go could help both you and your doctor see a more realistic "you", but I wouldn't mention to your doctor you were doing this just for that purpose; again, I'm thinking if it's a W.C. doctor and you say something like that it could be taken (and put in notes) that you're deliberately trying to influence things for the worse, or something along those lines.

Usually they just want to know if PT is helping at all. I know private insurance companies even after a couple of weeks want some evidence that there's improvement, but that evidence can be modest - like your somewhat increased ROM. I would just say that but also say what you described to us. Fact is, I'd emphasize those things and say you think PT is helping but it's moving but you're still having problems and then describe what they are. Be sure to add if you're following all your PT's instructions re: stretches, movements (both things to do and not to do) and I would be positive in general that you're hopeful PT over time is going to get you back to work. Also, what is your PT saying? Because your PT's notes will probably go to your doctor, and if your PT does/doesn't think you're ready for work, but are making progress, that will matter a lot.

Good luck!


Screaming Eagle
Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 8/15/2010 9:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello auntkay! I'm so sorry that I'm late getting here to post a reply to you.

Ok, well....if this is a worker's comp issue, you are right in that you want to be careful.

With the type of work you do and who you work for, can I safely guess that you have union representation? If so, more than likely they also have lawyers that
an employee can go to with problems like this. If you do, I certainly would go and visit them to see what your rights are. In more than one instance, I have seen
where an employer tried to take the cheapest route out, in care for an employee.

Also, if you re-injured your back as a result from the fall at work, they would be liable for your care. Are you on FMLA? In most cases you are allowed 12 weeks a year,
If you have been using this, and you happen to need back surgery to correct your L4-L5 disk problem within the same year, your care can take longer than the 12 weeks allowed per year.

Make no mistake about it, these company's know full well what it may take. Let's hope that this is not the case, but I worry when a back injury is involved.
Unless you are sitting on the board of directors or are the CEO, you are looked at as damaged goods that may cost the company lots of unproductive revenue.

So, I think you are wise in the caution you are concerned with. The most important item to deal with is your Health & your ability to retain your job.
It will be up to you to protect your rights, so be careful.

Lets hope that you have a wonderful track record, and that you are not just a number with your employer.
From what you describe with your pain, I would venture to guess that you may have other issues going on with your back, and may need some extended care above and beyond the PT (IMO)

If you are seeing a company Dr, I would be cautious. Remember they are employed by the company. There are several factors that I'm sure you are dealing with in your decision.
Vacation and sick leave time accrued by you, plus the FMLA time allowed by law, along with the financial revenue lost during this time, will have to be weighed, as to your decision.

Please take care, and if you have any other questions please feel free to ask. Also..just a tad bit more information about you to the members might help them to provide a better and or more educated reply for you.

Your Chat friend! :)

"Respect your fellow human being, treat them fairly, disagree with them honestly, enjoy their friendship, explore your thoughts about one another candidly, work together for a common goal and help one another achieve it."

Post Edited (Screaming Eagle) : 8/15/2010 9:18:23 PM (GMT-6)

Mrs. Dani
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 2787
   Posted 8/15/2010 11:37 PM (GMT -6)   
   Dear Kay,
    It is good to hear from you! *hugg* I had wondered how the rest of your week progressed. I must admitt, when we talked last thursday I was worried. You have been trying so hard to get back on your feet / recover. I could tell your were getting frustraited with it all.
     With such a physically demanding job... not being fully recovered, you could easily end up back at square one. If the doctor does clear you to go back to work.... Is there anyway you could go back to work part-time to start out? Or perhaps a "light duty" position you can take for the first week or so?
     I really hope your doctor appointment goes well. You are in our hearts and prayers! Stay strong!
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
Chronic Pain Moderator

Retired Mom
Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 1753
   Posted 8/16/2010 2:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi again,

I was wondering how you were progressing. WC is such a trial for so many people. I did not have to deal with that, but I did have to deal with the FMLA and was given a horrible surprise the very day that my FMLA expired. They put me on contingency leave on that day (despite my many, many years of positive service, my accumulated leave I had on the books, the short term disability I had purchased, and everything else). I did get it fixed, but I almost lost my opportunity to apply for disability retirement.

Please study your options closely and read all the fine print before you sign. I know from personal experience what the added stress can do to your body.

Best to you!
Retired Mom
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