So I feel like a bit of a wuss posting ehre with people that have what I would expect, much worse pain. But here is my story:
I moved from an aprtment into a house in Feb 2010 with 2 sick guys over a weekend. Since both were sick, I helped on every piece of heavy furniture so they could take breaks. I'm pretty sure this is where I caused a bulging disc. However, it just started off with a crick in my neck. So I went to see my doctor who had an X-ray done and said it looked slightly compressed. He gave me some muscle relaxers, naproxen sodium and a small (15) 5.5 Lortab prescript
It just kept getting worse though. I went to see a chiropractor and the relief was amazing when my neck was cracked...but it only lasted a short while. After 2 months, it was down to the relief only being 45 minutes before it started to hurt really bad again. And the pain began to spread, slowly. My shoulders started to ache, with the pain seeminngly settling the worst in my right scapular region and I started having almost daily tension headaches.
I went back to the Doc, he gave me more muscle relaxers and a regular dose of 1 per day Lortab. It kept getting worse so I went back and he sent me to Physical Therapy.
It got worse so he referred me to a Physiatrist who took over all my meds. He changed me from Flexeril to Skelaxin and started me with trigger point shots.
Then one day I woke up in the middle of the night, sneezed...and screamed in agony. I had no idea what happened but that was Sunday night. I called my Physiatrist first thing in the morning and he gave me very deep shots to alleviate the pain. I think this is where I went from a bulging disc to a herniated disc.
After that, it went downhill a bit faster. So bad I went back to my regular Doctor and asked for an MRI. After looking up my symptons I thought I had a herniated Cervical disc. Doc said there was no way without fingers going numb and instead put me on Gabapentin (300mg) at night.
2 or 3 months after that I woke up and couldn't turn my neck. Driving was extremely hazardous, I had to twist entirely at the waist to see behind and check blindspots. This was only 7 days after getting trigger point shots (some in my neck), so I went back to the Physiatrist and he asked if I ever had an MRI. I said regular Doc refuses, so Physiatrist send me for an MRI and puts me on SOMA for the week until the result. Soma is terrible. That week I had to make a deal with my boss. I would come in work until noon, take my computer home and take Soma. I'd sleep and try to work a little from home. That stuff is heinous, couldn't get anything done.
I should mention I am a lightweight when it comes to any kind of strong drugs, when I started taking Lortab I started with 1/4 to 1/2 a pill and it made me loopy as all get out.
Anyway, back to the story- turns out I indeed have a herniated cervical disc (between C4/C5). Physiatrist gives me an epidural. It lasted 8 months with trigger points every other month.
Pain got bad again, hard to turn my neck so I got another epidural this one lasted 4 months. After 6 months got my last epidural, it lasted 3 weeks. I said no more, this does no good and Physiatrist agreed with me so I tried no injections at all for 5 months. Pain has gotten so severe. The pain from my neck radiates into my face. I have muscle knots ALL over, face, neck, shoulders, arms, back, butt (feels like it's in my hips) and makes it hard to walk, in my legs and in my feet. I'm exhausted from the constant pain. I am now on Gabapentin 3x a day (300mg), Lortab 10-325 1.5x a day, Flexeril (Skelaxin wasn't working and would occasionally make me nauseous) 10mg 3x a day and Diclofenac Sodium 75mg 2x a day.
I'm at a loss, all the meds and pain have me emotional all the time but right now I am working 2 jobs since I am supporting me and my fiance who is going through Med School (1st year).
Physiatrist says I have acute myofaschial pain syndrome and has started me on vitamin weekly IVs. I am at a point where I am either in ridiculous pain or loopy as a jaybird and I am only 35. This craziness has occurred over 3.5 years and right now I am at a loss of what I should do. I've only had the first IV so it's possible it will help a lot but right now I am so tired.
My question is this- what are my other treatment options? I can't imagine feeling this way my whole life and I want to have kids in 2 years (1 or 2) but I can't imagibe having to be off my meds for 9-12 months for each kid.
I tend to think it may be caused by the constant pressure of the disc against my spine. Right now I am waiting for my insurance to cover artificial disc replacement in the cervical spine. They cover it for the lumbar area so as this is "newer" I am hoping they will cover it soon. Fusion is not an option for me and both my regular Doctor and my Physiatrist say it's a bad idea. Not to mention 4 family members that all had fusion and it only marginally helped 1 while it caused other discs to ehrniate in 2 and the 4th said her back hurts worse now then it did before the surgery.
I should also state I don't go to Doctors unless it is really bad. When I was in my late teens and early twenties I had 2 bouts with Pneumonia because I didn't go to a Doctor earlier. :/
Post Edited By Moderator (Blessedx8) : 8/27/2013 11:08:18 AM (GMT-6)