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New Member

Date Joined Dec 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 12/26/2011 11:58 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm new to the forum, not new to pain. A drunk driver cut in front of me 6 years ago, which has now resulted in a disc protrusion in my c6-c7. It's constant pain. Tried massage, physio, medication....medication has been a tricky situation. Neurologist tried Naproxen (anti-inflammatory) which resulted in vertigo after three weeks, then tried Lyrica, which then caused swollen hands, feet, knees...which left him with....opiates. I was started on 1 oxy (5mg) once daily...well that didn't work. Then bumped me to 2 (5mg) once a day. I gave up. It eventually took 2 pills every four hours to keep the pain away. Neuro, not wanting me to take that many, gave me a 25mcg of fenatyl (patch)...well that did nothing. Can you see my frustration???? I'm currently on 50mcg of fenatyl and 2 (5mg) of percocet.

All in all, I'm thoroughly frustrated, which I feel a lot of people feel with chronic pain. I'm mad at my doctor for not doing everything in her power to help me.

I've had to find my own physiotherapist because my old one said I "plateaued" and she couldn't help me anymore. I just had an appt. today with my new physio and she was AMAZING! She went through my entire medical history, after and before the accident. She has put a treatment plan through to my insurance to have my medication, at home traction device and all my physio covered by them.

about 3 weeks ago, I have a partial diagnosis of fibro. calves, low back, fingers, arms...tough to do fine motor skills. Tingling and numbness down both arms, and some numbness in my R thigh.

Oh right....I've been diagnosed with depression and GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder).....just the cherry on top.

I'm glad I found this support forum, and I hope I didn't complain too much. Glad to have somewhere where chronic pain is understood.

Thanks for listening.

xoxo cry cry

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 1276
   Posted 12/27/2011 3:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi justtakeitaway, and welcome to the forum. I'm glad you've found us, but I'm sorry you've had need to. More sorry that you've been suffering for so long. You definitely haven't complained too much - we're all here to listen and support each other - no matter what the cause of our pain is, we've all got pain of some sort and we all have times when it does our head in.

Has your doctor not explored other 'nerve pain' medications? It's true that Lyrica is the one that springs to most peoples' minds, but there are others - Cymbalta and Amitriptyline for example, are two different types of anti-depressants used for neuropathic pain. Topamax might be another - like Lyrica it's an epilepsy medication, but of a different class. The problem with opiates and nerve pain - as you seem to be finding - is that they're often just not as effective for this type of pain as for other types of pain :(

It's great that you've found a physio you are happy with. It's so important to have a treatment team you get on well with and you trust. I hope that she can help you.

Please stick around and let us know how you go :-)

Moderator - Chronic Pain Forum

Full body CRPS with spasms, dystonia & contractures, gastroparesis, orthostatic hypotension,bradycardia/tachycardia, bursitis, CTS, osteoporosis, multiple compression fx, disc bulges.

Oxycodone ER/IR, Topamax, Mobic, Somac, Cipramil, Midodrine, Vit D & C, SCS, baclofen/bupivacaine pump

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 175
   Posted 12/27/2011 3:28 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Justtakeitaway
First let me welcome you to the forum. I'm sorry to hear your having such a rough time. You'll find out pretty fast that your not alone. So many of us have faced and face the same problems. Doctors who are completely insensitive and uncaring to plain out dumb. I've had my fair share of arguments over pain meds and treatment options or the lack of. You came to a good site or should say a great group of people. You'll find the people here know exactly what you're going through. Not because they've read about it but because they live it everyday. We're not doctors but we do try and support each other the best we can. Please don't think your complaining. Here it's called venting or sharing your day to day struggles.No one knows better the hardships that come with chronic pain than the people here. So again welcome to the site and hope you find it as helpful as I have. Take care, hope to see more of your posts or even try the chat rooms if your up for it. A Lot of nice people there too. Wish you all the best.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 974
   Posted 12/27/2011 6:51 AM (GMT -6)   
If you are having numbness & tingling in both arms I'm surprised no one has mentioned some type of surgical intervention to you. Of course though with the insurance companies like they are you have to go through all of the non-invasive procedures first. Have you had an MRI of the lumbar spine. The numbess in the leg sounds like it could be nerve related in the lower spine. Just my thoughts anyway.

I think I'd be looking for an orthopedic doctor that specializes in backs along with a pain management doctor that does procedures and prescribes meds. It is pretty obvious that the doctors you have now aren't helping your situation so it may be time for a change. I hope your new physio can help you but I wouldn't wait too long with the nerve thing going on in the arms. It sounds obvious that there is nerve impingement going on and the longer this goes on the worse it will get. Before my cervical fusion I was having tingling in the arm with numbness in my fingers. Eventually I lost use of my left arm and knew that it was time for surgery.

Hope you find a good plan that works for you.

DDD, osteoarthritis, facet syndrome, fusion surgeries C-5/7 & L-4/5 both in 2006, torn meniscus surgeries left knee 2000 & 2002, buldging disc L-2/3 & L-3/4, fibromyalgia, polymyalgia rheumatica

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2861
   Posted 12/27/2011 7:57 AM (GMT -6)   
Yes, the numbness in limbs is disturbing and I agree with Jag that it sounds like nerve impingement and opiates will not normally help, merely dull your senses. My husband had the same symptoms after a work accident and when his arm went numb after 2 weeks, they scheduled neck surgery w/ graft and metal. He has almost full use of neck (11% deficit) and no nerbe pain now.
He went to an orthopedic doctor as Jag has suggested. i am a little surprised that your docs have not sent you to one yet. Think about it and welcome to you...i hopeyou can find some answers very soon

"We never realize how strong we are, until being strong is the only thing left"
Major Depressive Disorder, ptsd, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, l3/4, L4/5 gone, bursitis arthritis sciatica

cymbalta seroquel hydrocodone klonopin magnesium potassium

Screaming Eagle
Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 12/27/2011 10:37 AM (GMT -6)   
Good morning justakeitaway!

I'm late getting here….but non the less….I'm here!……to "Welcome" you to the Chronic Pain forum. wink

As I looked through all the replies to you….I realized that there is not a whole lot more to add here,... with the exception, that if surgery becomes a future possibility,….well!…then I believe I would rather have a neurosurgeon doing the operation.

I'm also curious if you have been offered Epidural injections?…..or have done PT? Also,…. 5mg of Oxycodone once a day….seems silly to me….especially when the Dr, knows full well that it will give 4 to 6hrs max relief at best…..and then to script it once a day?

Hopefully this new PM will get you on a better pain relief path. Surgery should be a last resort, however it shouldn't be discarded all-together out of fear.

I'm glad you found this forum, and hope you continue to visit us for support.

Take care,

SE wink
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Weekly Quote!

"I hope to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am" author unknown

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9664
   Posted 12/27/2011 11:32 AM (GMT -6)   
I would say like the others to seek out help from a pain management clinic, to maybe
get better treatment...other things could be tried...and I agree with Screaming Eagle Surgery should be
last resort, as once surgery always surgery...Have your doctor tried you with tens units and ultra sound therapies,
those can be of help...many many well wishes...and keep us posted as we do care...
Find yourself some better doctors....
* So many dx's I could write a book* "It would be nice if we could use the edit button in real life"...

Betsey Ross
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 1056
   Posted 12/27/2011 7:36 PM (GMT -6)   
You received great suggestions from the other members. Welcome to Healingwell Forum.

Keep us updated on your health. It was nice meeting you.

crushed lower knee and vertical fx of tibia/external fixator placed/plates and screws and tried to place big pieces of cartiledge under knee cap/tremendous pain in affected leg continously without improving/allergic to metal in left leg/leg isnt straight/ metal removed in July//then total knee replacement/straighten out leg/more phsyxical therapy/take oxycontin,flexeril,cymbalta,vicadin for BT

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 2024
   Posted 12/28/2011 6:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to our chronic pain forum. I am glad you found us but sorry that you are suffering so much. You will enjoy the support you get here from the members. Everyone is so caring and non judgemental. We all suffer from chronic pain of one sort or another.

Hope you keep posting with us.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 615
   Posted 12/28/2011 8:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to CP forum so sorry for your reason for being here. I also think you have recieved alot of great advice I do not have much to add. Never feel bad for venting it is good for you and we don;t mind we all have done some at one time or another. Keep us updated on your progress.

Bless you, Amy
Chronic Pain(nerve), fibro, mild depression and a few others

spinal soldier
Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 687
   Posted 12/29/2011 7:06 PM (GMT -6)   
the suggestion made about adjuvant medications with opioids is how neuropathic pain responds best for the most part. the fentanyl patch is a popular opioid analgesic for this type of pain because it is theorized the more steady release of medicine is better, Methadone is big because it has some additional pain blocking properties. it seems most people with big nerve pain need higher doses of opioids, honestly 1 or 2 5mg oxycodone tabs up to 50mcg/hr fentanyl patch is a big jump but like me the patch might not be the best thing for you. certainly it would be nice to have more breakthrough pain med doses and maybe a different med like Dilaudid or Morphine but the real goal is to find a long acting formulation that works for you so ideally you only need 2 doses of breakthrough/activity pain meds. the best i have ever had is Opana ER but it is pricey, Opana IR is great for breakthrough pain and a generic is available now in 5mg and 10mg. then coming in with a anti-depressant/neuropathic pain med like: Cymbalta a SNRI, Amitriptyline a tricyclic anti-depressant-others: Nortriptyline (Pamelor), Doxepin (Sinequan)(also good topically), atypical antidepressants Remeron or Trazadone are used. Then anti-convulsants of various sub-divisions: Topamax or Topiramate also can take extra pounds off, Lyrica/Neurontin same action pretty much but Lyrica is about 6 times more potent so a lower dose is used, Lamictal or Lamotrigine, Oxcarbazepine or Trileptal (less side effects than most), Gabatril or Tiagabine. some Benzodiazepines: Ativan or Lorazepam, Klonopin or Clonazepam, Valium or Diazepam. some muscle spascisity meds like: Baclofen, Zanaflex or Tizanidine or it's relative Catapres or Clonidine. some say Soma or Carisoprodol helps. a push is on now about topical opioids for nerve pain and it seems to work well. a ton of supplements can be helpful.
L4,L5,S1 bilateral Laminectomies, Foraminotomies 2002
L4-S1 PLIF with instumentation 2008,

current Rx: MScontin 100mg q8hrs. , dilaudid 8mg q6hrs. prn, oxymorphone IR 10mg q6 ,vistaril 50mg prn nausea, Lyrica 150mg 2x,Adderall 20mgs 1x A.M. 10mg PM prn, Soma 350 mg 3X, Elavil 25 HS, diazepam 10mg bid prn, Supplements: CO-Q10 100mg, Vitamin D 1000IU, Fish-Oil1000mg EFA, B-Complex50 3x/day, ALA

White Beard
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3702
   Posted 12/29/2011 9:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to Healing Well Chronic Pain Forum! You have received some excellent advice, I think Jag, really gave you the best. The numbness and tingling in the arms is troublesome, and I know I have had three fusions done in my neck, and the ACDF Anterior Cervical Deskectomy and Fusion relieved the arm discomfort immediately! If you are having nerve root impingement, no amount of pain meds is going to fix it, and as Jag indicated it can get progressively worst over time. With the symptoms that you  say you are having, I would be pressing the doctors for answers, change doctor if you must, but do not let it go! I am telling you this from personal experience, I had to pound my fist on a doctors desk and demand that he do something about my pain and numbness and tingling in my arms. He finally did a myleogram and I ended up having emergency MRI done and then went to surgery! As I had a massive herniated disk at C-6/7 with free floating fragments in my spinal cannal. I was told I should have been and quadriplegic with all the damage I had in my neck. But my only smyptoms was burning and tingling and numbness in my arms, hands and fingers!  Anyway, I was put on allot of different pain meds prior to my final diagnosis, and they did not touch the pain. Until the impingement is taken care of, pain meds will do little,.... as in giving relief!
So when I hear stories such as yours I cringe, I cringe allot! I would not wish my experience on anyone, I think that Jag and  most of the others that have had such experiences,  would agree with me. So Please get it checked out, and if need be, go to a different doctor, (I went through several before I got answers) But do not sit and suffer!
I do wish you all the best and 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!
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