Good morning Mary!
Sorry I'm late getting back to you, but I was tuckered out by the time I got home, and hit the sack shortly after supper.
As you can see you have stumbled upon a great forum here, and the members have already reached out to you with warm and friendly responces.
I also had a lumbar fusion on March of last year, and have admited to those ugly words we hate to admit, of a FBS (Failed back syndrome) complete with nerve damage. Although, my pain does not run down my leg like your, its more broad based across my lower back. Am I better?...well maybe somewhat, and maybe mechanically fixed, but none the less, I'm still suffering pain. Med's? Yep!...I too was behind on them, and had to keep on my PCd to get me where I needed to be.
You sound like you, have tried several med's, with little success. However, I think once you get to the correct PM Dr, you will have much more success, if he knows what he is doing. It does sound like you did have a good one, but he was more of a injection type of a DR.
By no means count out the pain pump! Yes it is a last resort, but once you are out of options, please do consider it, as many have done very well with them, and as Straydog said, more than likley, it will take much less of a dose to get you some relief.
I see so many people taking BT med's as their base line med, and if you are a long term patient needing around the clock pain med's, then I believe you should be on long term Medication for it, and the BT should only be used as needed for a flair up.
We must also realize that being treated for pain with medication does not mean that one will be in total relief 100%, and I'm afraid many keep jacking up their medication at their request because they still suffer some type of pain. This can only lead to a much higher tolerence much more quickly than they had planned on, and before you know it, there is no room to go up on the dosage.
We also see more and more PCd scripting med's as the PM offices are under tight scrunity, and many of the PCD's are just in over their heads on how to treat their patients. While my Dr has treated me well, I do believe he is not up to par, and does not have a handle on it for long term care. At the moment I'm on a pretty low dose of med's, but if I need to increase much more,.. than I will request a PM, only if he will send me to a good one.
I think that is key for long term care, and should be carefully considered, before getting into trouble mediacation wise, and the high tolerance issues. You, know as well as anybody, what it feels like to be on the down hill side of you're med's, and its not a fun ride at all, especially if your on BT's instead of the ER med's.
It looks like you are headed in the right direction, and at least you have a good current Pm, willing to take you back and maybe help you in some other way, if things don't go well.
Several of the members here, have given you excellant advice, and I hope you continue to visit us, and let us support you. We can always use support here as well, ....so jump right in there and help support the members when you can.
Take care, ...and its a pleasure to meet you!
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum
"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"
Post Edited (Screaming Eagle) : 6/3/2011 7:52:59 AM (GMT-6)