I started having heaviness in the legs and the little toe on right foot turned blue and was gangrenous. I was told by my first doctor, a podiatrist, that I had a vascular problem. I went to my GP and he disagreed. He noted that I had just broken the bone under that left toe (the blue toe) a few months before (it had healed well by then) and thought I had RSD. He sent me to several doctors, a rheumatologist, a vascular doctor, etc. The initial vascular screening did not show anything, but I was told by the podiatrist that I had a vascular problem because the toe looked ischemic and my legs felt very heavy (both legs). I started to have terrible leg pain. It never stopped. It was constant, aching like the flu. It nearly drove me crazy. I took vicodin with little success. Finally found a young doctor (too young) who found I had a 98% blockage of the abdomina aorta which was causing the heaviness and leg pain. He gave me plavix and the ischemic toe (which burned 24/7) finally resolved. But, my legs hurt constantly. I was scheduled for surgery using a cook zenith stent. It did was not scheduled until October. I started seeing doctors early in the year. Now, I have suffered chronic pain in my legs that is so bad, I am on meds 24/7. I hate being on medication. My Pain Mgt. Doc wants to do pain stim, but I am so frightened. I have read some awful things. I tried the fentanyl patches, but I do not like them as I get sleepy especially when it is hot. I sweat easily and I feel they trigger an early release of the medication. I am scared of them, but they do work, but to what end. I want to work. I am self employed and have some wiggle room, but to be successful, you have to be there when your clients want you to. I am at a loss. I have been tested and the stents are working just fine. One vascular surgeon told me the condition was diagnosed too late and I have nerve damage from a lack of onxygenated blood and nutrients reaching my lower extremities for too, too long. All the doctors at the clinic where I was treated say it is coming from my lower back. My back did not hurt during those early days. It does now because I am out of shape and my back is not strong like it used to be. I don't know what to do about the pain stim. I had a client who got an infection from it and almost died. I have read these forums that also don't seem to give me much hope. I am so tired of being on pain meds, but I want so much to live and love those around me. I suffer all the time. What can I do? I need some advice and hope. I feel my mind is so full of interest in life...but my poor body will not cooperate. What a dilema. Anyone have any advice?