I would like to introduce Oldiebutgoodie63 to our forum

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White Beard
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3702
   Posted 10/4/2011 5:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome Oldiebutgoodie63 to our forum, I think you will find that we have a really great group of people here. So Welcome to our Chronic Pain Forum family!
 
Oldiebutgoodie63 I took the liberity of copying your post, from the older related thread and started this  new thread for you. I think you wifll find that you will get more response to your request and also more people coming to welcome you to our family.
 
Good Luck to you White Beard
 
Here is Oldiebutgoodie63's post:
  ""  I am scheduled for cervical spinal surgery in about 10 days and I am scared to death. I want to chicken out. I had a benign tumor removed from the nerve root between C5 and C6 in 1992. In 1994 I had spinal fusion of C5-C6 and C7-T1 with a bone graft from my hip due to instability. Now, a new doctor from a very reputable hospital is going to do a laminectomy on C3-C5 with hardware instrumentation C3-T1. The original fusion vertebra have slipped forward and I look like a turtle. The pain for the last 19 years has continued. Should I do it? Please respond. I need your input. Thanks""
Moderator Chronic Pain
After spending nearly 22 1/2 years in the USAF, I retired in Sept, 1991. I then went back to school and became a licensed RN in 1994, and I worked on Oncology and then a Med Surg Unit, I became disabled in late 1999 and was approved SSD in early 2002!-- DDD, With herniated Disk at T-12 and L4-5. C5-C6 ACDF in Sep 2009, C6-C7 ACDF in Mar 1985, 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 I am White Beard with a White Beard!

White Beard
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3702
   Posted 10/4/2011 6:18 PM (GMT -6)   
OldiebutGoodie63

I had several Cervical disk fusions in the past, C-6/7 in 1985, and C-5/6 in 2009, last year, I also had a problem with C-3/4 the vertebra had slipped forward, do to the disingration of the articular joints at C-3/4. Thus they did a posterior articular joint fusion, with rods and pins to stablize the cervical spine. I had 47 staples downthe center of the back of my neck from the base of my skull to the shoulder blades. Compared to the ACDF Anterior Cervical Diskecctomy and Fusion that I had previously, this surgery was extremely difficult! Actually easy for the surgeon, but really difficult for me! The healing process was long and painful! But the surgery did what is was suppose to do, and in the end I am glad I had it done! But it is no "cake walk" that is for sure!

I can not tell you whether you should have the surgery or not, Only you and you alone can do that!!! If I had to do it over again???? Well I would probably do it, but of course hind site is 20/20 and I would do things a bit different, as far as preparing myself for the pain though. If you are on pain meds already, make sure that the hospital staff and doctors are prepared to treat your pain differently than that of a normal non chronic pain patient. If your a chronic pain suffer, your pain treatment will be different and allot more difficult to treat and keep undercontrol than that of a normal patient with surgerical pain. So make sure your surgeon and all the staff know that and are prepared to deal with your pain treatment. If you are under the care of a Pain Management Doctor make sure he/she is involved in your Post Op care.

I do wish you well and again I welcome you to our forum!

Good Luck to you

White Beard
Moderator Chronic Pain
After spending nearly 22 1/2 years in the USAF, I retired in Sept, 1991. I then went back to school and became a licensed RN in 1994, and I worked on Oncology and then a Med Surg Unit, I became disabled in late 1999 and was approved SSD in early 2002!-- DDD, With herniated Disk at T-12 and L4-5. C5-C6 ACDF in Sep 2009, C6-C7 ACDF in Mar 1985, 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 I am White Beard with a White Beard!

momtofourangels
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 2265
   Posted 10/4/2011 11:16 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Oldiebutgoodie Welcome to our chronic pain forum. I havent had any kind of spinal surgery, but I just wanted to come and welcome you to our chronic pain forum. There are a lot of supportive and compassionate people here who genuinely care about you.

I wish you good luck with your decision for the surgery. I'm afraid you're the only one that can make that decision. Take care.

hugs
Loretta
Dx: osteoarthritis, bursitis in left hip, Osteoarthrits in right hip, compression fracture in thoracic spine due to falling on frozen ground March 2001 , ddd, spinal stenosis, bone spurs, osteoarthritis in spine, osteoarthritis in both knees
Meds: Fentanyl patch, oxycodone, otc: BenGay, Tylenol Arthritis on occasion

oldiebutgoodie63
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/5/2011 8:47 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Whitebeard and Loretta (thank you for the hugs - I can use them).

Your information has been helpful - I am 66 years old and have suffered chronic pain since 1992. I think my doctor is aware of this but I see him on Oct 12th and I will speak to him again regarding this. I have taken Percocet for the lasts 5 months, but not more than once or twice a day. I also take Soma to relax the muscles in my neck, shoulders and mid-back. Nothing really helps my condition, guess maybe the Percocet takes the edge off but I don't like taking it too much - I break them in half and take 2 or 3 halves most days.

I know I need to do this but wonder if I am too old or too far gone for this to make me whole again. I have had limitations on physical work/activity for many years.

White Beard, it is really helpful to know that you would have the surgery again even though the healing process was long and painful. I would do just about anything to improve my lousy neck!!!!!!!!


Soooooooooooooo anxious and scared.

Hugs,
Jill

Screaming Eagle
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 10/5/2011 9:22 AM (GMT -6)   
 
        Good morning Jill!
 
            Welcome to the Chronic Pain Forum! We are delighted that you found us here on the web, but saddened for the reason of your search. shakehead
 
      I believe you will enjoy the members here, as they are warm, and very supportive to say the least! wink
 
          I did read your other post on another thread, and understand your concern about the upcoming cervical surgery. One thing I see in your favor, is that you appear to be on a very low dose of pain med's, and this might be beneficial to you, when they are treating your post op pain. In other words the pain med's they will give you after surgery may be more effective and allow a little more comfort for you.
 
     Also, I had a double lumbar fusion surgery 18 months or so ago, and the success rate is not near as good as the Cervical surgery's. This is no guaranntee that you will have a successfull outcome, but I believe the odds are better than the lumbar surgries.
 
     If your a smoker, then stop! The healing time may be quicker, and it can affect the overall outcome of the fusion.
 
        Feel free to visit us often, and ask anything you wish. The members will be more than willing to help!
 
     White Beard (Moderator) is our most experienced cervical fusion member, and has quite a bit of knowledge in this area, so he is a good one to listen to.  Also, if you get a chance, please take a peek at the "Chronic Pain 101" at the top of our home page. There is a lot of good reading there about Chronic Pain.
 
      Take care, and again "Welcome" and "Enjoy" the forum!
 
      SE wink
     
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"

oldiebutgoodie63
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/5/2011 6:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for your input SE! I have not taken many pain meds for the last 16 years. I have taken Lyrica off and on for the pasts 4 years but the side effects for me are too difficult. In addition to weight gain, my ankles and feet swell badly. I don't like the way it feels but when going to Pain Management, that is what they said was right for me so I took it. Also had many of those injections into my neck while under anesthesia for a few minutes. I can't think of the right name for them but can tell you they did nothing for me.

I do smoke about 5 a day and don't seem to be able to give them up. Being in the hospital for a few days may be just what I need! I want to quit very much.

I will check out Chronic Pain 101 as you have suggested and took White Beard's reply to heart.

Guess I know I have to do it but.............I am really anxious and scared!

Bless you for your reply!

Screaming Eagle
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 10/5/2011 8:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Maybe an "Epidural Injection" will sound familiar to you. smilewinkgrin

Keep on visiting us here for support. I'm sure you will make many friends as well.

Take care,

SE wink
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look at what they can do when they stick together"

NiNi53
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 816
   Posted 10/6/2011 3:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Jill, nini/Kathy here wishing you all the best.  It is hard to say as I do not know of the surgeries you are having I had a lumbar laminectomy back in 98, and it was useless.  I would not do that again.
 
Just a quick on the not smoking, I have smoked all my life, I finally got tired of being nagged by my grandchildren as well as my children, so I got an electric cig. I gotta tell ya, its great, you still get nicotine, its like 1.8% enough to keep the cravings away, and I smoked 1 and 1/2 packs every other day.  Its just a suggestion, hope it helps.
 
Much luck to you in whatever you decide, and I am glad you found this forum, its like coming home, I have said that since my daughter found it for me in March.
 
Take care and good luck
 
Kat
degenerative disc disease, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, neuropathy, lumbar laminectomy july 1998 no help, rechargeable neurostimulator unit low right back w/lead wires to left side and right leg unit not working just sitting there.i am 57 years young in may will turn 58. i have 2 grown daughters, 25 and 29. i have 2 grandchildren, 9 year old grandaughter and 5 yr. old grandson

White Beard
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3702
   Posted 10/6/2011 10:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Jill
 
You are not to old for this surgery, and you are not that much older than me, it is all on what you need to have it done for. I mean for me the pain in  the back of my lower head and upper neck was so intense, it felt like some one was beatiing me, and I had had epidural steroid injections even nerve blocks but the relief was only short time. I finally desided I just could not put up with that any longer. But make no mistake right after the surgery, the pain was very very intense, and I had wondered if I had done the right thing???? The recovery is no picnic and I can not over empathize that! But now looking back on it I am glad I had it done.
 
I can really understand your anxiety, and it is legit that you feel that way. Only you can deside what is best for you Jill, and what ever your decision is, it is yours, and you will have to live with it. Just as I have had to live with mine. But what ever you deside, please know that all your friends here on this forum are here to support you and give you what encouragement that we can! Your definitely not alone in this!  We all share in this chronic pain thing, and we can all empathize with each other about it. Just keep us post on what your going to do, and we are with you all the way!
 
Good Luck to you Jill
 
White Beard
Moderator Chronic Pain
After spending nearly 22 1/2 years in the USAF, I retired in Sept, 1991. I then went back to school and became a licensed RN in 1994, and I worked on Oncology and then a Med Surg Unit, I became disabled in late 1999 and was approved SSD in early 2002!-- DDD, With herniated Disk at T-12 and L4-5. C5-C6 ACDF in Sep 2009, C6-C7 ACDF in Mar 1985, 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 I am White Beard with a White Beard!

sunrisedusk
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 10/9/2011 12:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, I totally understand your fear and anxiety about the surgery. I know I would be feeling the same way too. Surgery seems to help some people and it doesn't seem to help others, so how are we supposed to decide?


Being human we are "hard-wired" to protect ourselves from perceived danger that could happen to us right around the corner or at any point in the future. We spend a lot of time thinking about the possible outcomes of our choices. It' really just human nature to do so. And even though we feel anxiety or fear it doesn't mean that the choice we are thinking of is necessarily wrong.

I think what White Beard said makes great sense.


Thinking of you,
Imme
PS: After reading your posts again it sounds like you've decided to do it, it's dealing with the anxiety and fear that you've got going now.
I don't know about you but I totally believe in the idea of living in the present moment and not in the future. I try really hard not to waste my days or hours thinking about the "what ifs'". I wish I could say I was more successful at it but I still keep trying because it really makes sense to me. {{{Hugs}}}

oldiebutgoodie63
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/9/2011 3:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi to all friends who have replied and thanks for your input.

My situation has been worsened by stress. My 34 year old son committed suicide on March 23, 2010. My best friend of 47 years and my husband were both diagnosed with stage 4 cancer around May of this year. It has been the most difficult time of my life. As many of you may know, stress comes out in the neck and shoulders - it has become so bad that I feel I have nothing to lose if I try this surgery.

My husband is really doing well after starting out with chemo and radiation at the same time (believe me, that was no picnic). He is still on chemo and I must say I never thought he would do as well as he has. He also has surgery to look forward to but they want the chemo to shrink the tumors as much as possible so he will probably be looking at the end of the year for that.

All in all, it's hell getting old - but certainly better than the alternative!!!!!!!

Thanks again and I will keep you all posted. October 17th is D-Day for me. Agggggghhhhhh - I am scared!

Hugs to each of you - Jill

PS I passed the surgery certification exam and tests with flying colors!

Lindaloo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 1713
   Posted 10/11/2011 10:02 PM (GMT -6)   
I know how you feel about being frightened of spinal surgery.  I am an RN and in 1983 I was faced with a laminectomy at L4-5.  I was plenty scared and went to a couple of doctors to figure out what to do.  I had spent four years in pain and part time in the bed, due to the fact that I was just plain scared.  For me, I put it in the Lord's hands and went forward with the surgery.  It was successful.  The follow-up was difficult, in that I needed a year of physical therapy to help me restore my muscles, but I did it and looking back now, I'm glad I did.
 
I don't know if you are a praying person, but I am, and I will pray for success for your surgery.
 
Keep in touch with us and let us know how things go.  This family (the forum), is here for you, I can guarantee that.  God bless.
 
Lindaloo
Co-Moderator Chronic Pain and Fibromyalgia Forums
 
Believe in yourself.  Be kind to fellow humans and animals.  Take time to smell the flowers and the coffee.
And by all means, when you are down, ask me for help.  I will be there.
 
Linda
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