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Urgent advice - Discectomy or not?

Discussion in 'Injury Recovery Rehabilitation Massage' started by B-ron, Mar 9, 2012.

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  1. JoShY,.<>

    JoShY,.<> Guest

    in theathre at 1230 today
    1.5hr later came too. Sore. Morphine x 3 shots. walked to toilet in bed since its now 1030pm
    still have back pain mid way but legs better. but slight twinges. hard to judge with so much meds.

    worst part is decsion to do then its recovery and get on with life, doog the disc is burst and nothing will change that. it is a serious op but if your happy with surgeon and your decision then the stars are aligned.

    Have tv and web in room on overhead stand. Id say 2mrw qill be sore. my wife has been my rock today. she's amazing.

    keep the head up doog. its not too bad. stop the reading and web and thinking. focus on the after. the guy next to me had a hip replacement.
  2. Propane Cylinder

    Propane Cylinder Member

    Apr 7, 2010
    Nice one Ricky, sounds like it went well, take it easy on the morphine pal

    (btw my brother had a hip replacement last year but I was trying to make out this was more serious bugger )
  3. Ent for Rent

    Ent for Rent New Member

    Oct 15, 2010
    off the narcs today. thank god. Still have leg pain but he reckons thats a brused nerve and will pass.

    The lad next is coming back in 3 mths to replace his hip on the left side!!!

    going home 2mrw.
  4. Roloch

    Roloch New Member

    Jul 28, 2010
    Fantastic news!! May the healing process continue apace!

    All the best for Monday Doog - may it be the answer to your problems!
  5. paejauwgigeijpeii

    paejauwgigeijpeii New Member

    Jan 31, 2011
    United States
    I must say Ricky, it's good to hear you sounding in such good spirits and so positive. Despite the twinges of pain, do you feel relieved it's over and done with? 1.5hrs was really quick, it must have gone smoothly with no complications, which is excellent news!

    How does the op site feel? I think that's my main concern being the baby that I am when it comes to pain. Are you able to get out of bed to the toilet etc ok? Sorry to be so nosey, but I'm just so unsure what to expect.

    Good sign also that you're off the narcotics already. I hope you have a speedy recovery now.

    And good luck for Monday Doog, I hope your op goes as well.

    cheerio for now and chins up all
  6. NekoDorei

    NekoDorei Member

    Sep 16, 2009
    CatMac - i won't lie it is sore. but not as bad as i thought it would. Toilet is fine, no problems since im off the morphine. while on it I got cold sweats and felt faint but once off morphine that went very quickley. For the relief it gives take it and just take it easy. Its perfectly normal apparently. They shud really tell u before hand.

    It really hit me tonight what a roller coaster it has been since dec. After the MRI i knew i was in trouble so its defo lovely to be on the other side of that now. So glad to have it over with. And focus on healing well and strenghtening my core and swimming when i can.

    walking, lying down is fine. Sitting is not allowed for 3 wks and its probably best as its sore anyway. Don't be afraid. It can be done and i have relief already. no sore buttock or lower back. Did'nt realise how bad that actually was. The twinges down the leg are minor and not too worrying.

    Loads of visitors today so im wrecked. Bad nights sleep last night due to next doors tv til 1/30am so ive got a sleeping tablet and im going to chill out. My 3yr old is coming in to get me 2mrw i can't wait.

    Good luck Doog. You'll fly it.

    Thanks to everyone for their support and kind words. Its a tight corner to be in so its nice to talk with people in similar situations. thanks
  7. OG LOC

    OG LOC Member

    Apr 27, 2010
    I have two boys!! no girls.. so its all go. Im 2 days home and still taking it very easy. Pain is easing the worst part is sleeping on my back. First night home i did'nt sleep til 5.30am - not with pain just uncomfortable on my back. So im taking sleeping tablets if i need to now. But trying not to get used to them - plan is to take them if i really can't sleep as i'll have to get used to sleeping on my back at some stage.

    Twinges in original leg - the pain is easing more or less gone. The numbness in my left buttock (New or unnoticed due to right side pain) is there when i lay down. So its a balance between walking and laying down. The incision site is slightly sore but not bad at all.

    Otherwise i'm in total bliss pain free happiness!!! Just feeling a bit fragile over all. No limp or nerve shocks.
  8. Gay Jesus

    Gay Jesus New Member

    Nov 12, 2010
    Hi all

    I am back home.I went into theatre at 0915 yesterday morning and came out 2 hours later. The surgeon stated all went well. I then had a very rough 24 hours where I felt like I had been run down by a train.

    I got out of bed at about 1900 hrs that night and did a small shuffle down the corridor and visited the loo where I just managed to pass water although it took me a good 10 minutes. I had 4 shots of 0ramorph with the last being at lunchtime.

    Pain wise, in the area of the wound and lower back I had and still have acute/chronic pain, however the sciatic pain in the right leg,the pain in my toes and the pin and needles have gone. However this could of course be down to the meds I am on now.

    I was in a small ward with two other chaps, we were all operated on about the same time and we all suffered and got through it together, sharing the ups and downs and the joy of the hourly blood pressure etc checks throughout the night -in other words not a lot of sleep.

    Its strange how the different surgeons use different post op techniques. Two of us had compression socks,both left today and were given corsets to wear. The other chap had none of that and it still in tonight yet we all had the same operation.

    I am now home on codeine and paracetamol. I have been told alternate between lying down and walking around every 20 minutes or so for 2 weeks- like ricky I am not allowed to sit, although to be fair I cant anyway- its too sore.

    Anyway its good to be home, although I am a little surprised as I could barely walk when they released me.

    Hope you are doing well ricky and thanks to everyone. Hopefully I will have my life back.
  9. Chris Anderson

    Chris Anderson New Member

    Nov 8, 2010
    Just another quick update,day 3 post op. Codeine hasnt worked so I rang my GP and am back on the morphine as my pain was back big time. I know I dont want to get addicted to this stuff but can see no reason why I should be in such pain when drugs are available to control it If it can me through the next few days then that will be a result.

    Im still camped in bed but getting up every half hour to hobble about a bit. I also have leg pain back on the level of pre-op which is a concern but I guess with the Injury occurring in 2008 there may be some long term healing of the sciatic nerve to take place, or it could be permanently damaged- I dont know- however ankle /toe pain and pins and needles have gone.

    I might venture outdoors tomorrow.
  10. Lizard

    Lizard Member

    Mar 31, 2010
    Hi all

    Hope the recovery goes smoothly. A difficult time for you all.

    May I point you in the direction of post no 10 on another thread which has advice on diet and EFT that both may help somewhat. Both are well worth a try.
  11. Mrs. Monday

    Mrs. Monday New Member

    Dec 6, 2010
    Hi Ricky,

    Hope the op went well and you are recovering well.
    I was just wondering whether you have had your op on the NHS or private?

    I have been having back problems for around 10 years now, and have been to various GPs on and off. I tried a chiropractor, but after spending nearly £600 I felt like they were just clicking my back one way one session and the other way the next, and I was getting no relief from the pain.

    The GP eventually referred me to the physio at the local hospital, who said that my lower back pain was a result of me having short hamstrings, with the nerves also being short. I stuck with physio for over a year, and it did nothing to help the back pain.

    Then in Feb last year during a particularly bad episode with my back, I woke up one morning to agonising pain in my right leg, it almost felt as if it was being flattened by a steam roller. I went back to the GP, and had 2 40 min appointments with a trainee GP who checked all my reflexes, and advised me to wear more sensible shoes ( I am a teacher and wear Ballet pump style flats).

    Over the next few months I experienced an increasing weakening in my right leg, with a weird movement when I walk.The leg also 'gives way' every now and then, which in June resulted in me severely damaging my left ankle as I fell. The leg is also numb down the outside of the leg and calf, and over the top of my toes.

    I was seeing the GP roughly once a month in agonising pain, and was told that my back was going into spasm, and I was prescribed diclofenac and diazepam. I tried to have a deep tissue sports massage, and found it excruciating, especially around a point in my right buttock.

    It wasn't until September, when I saw a GP at the practice that I had not seen before that I was referred for an MRI, when the results came back the GP was so concerned, that as he could not get hold of me when he called, he rang my housemate's mobile (who is registered at the same surgery).

    It turns out I have an extruded and sequestrated disc at L4/5 where the disc has migrated upwards within the spinal column the whole height of the vertebrae. The GP siad that if I had not told him about the numbness in my leg (which none of the other gps had asked about) he would not have even referred me for an MRI as I am very young for this (I am in my 20s). He told me he had spoken to a spinal surgeon who had said that I needed to be referred for surgery asap.

    I then did not get an appointment with the consultant until 23 Jan this year (4 months after the GP referred me), I saw one of the Fellows as the consultant was not in that day, who confirmed that the herniation was severe, but he was hesitant about referring me for surgery because of my age, and because the pain I appeared to be in does not match up with the MRI and he had to "treat the symptoms not the MRI". Now I am aware from previous injuries that I have a high pain threshold (I once broke a bone in my foot and did not realise, it wasn't until 2 yrs later when I had my foot xrayed for a different reason that it was picked up as it hadn't set straight), I have also been brought up to get on with things so I have forced myself to carry on with work even through the extreme pain. I also had the appointment when I was not in the middle of an episode of extreme pain. Luckily my Dad had gone with me to the appointment, and with him backing up how much pain I was in when my back got really bad, the doctor said he would put me on the waiting list for surgery, but told me that the waiting list was up to a year long.

    I am so frustrated now, it has taken me years for doctors to take my back pain seriously as I am so "young", and now I am going to have to wait up to a year to get surgery, and I cannot cope with another year of diazepam and diclofenac - which is starting to give me really bad stomach upsets........which is what caused me to ask whether you were getting yours NHS or private.

    With typical luck the weekend after my appointment, my back "went" again, I actually felt a grinding in my spine which really scared me. I rang my GPs who would not give me an appointment but gave me a prescription for tramadol on top of the drugs I already have. I then found it increasingly difficult to pass water, which I know is a danger sign in terms of disc problems, so I rang 111 for reassurance, who sent an ambulance and I was hospitalised for 2 days, then discharged as I was not 'losing control of my bowels'. Since I have been home I have researched how much it would cost for me to get the discectomy done privately (approx £6500 which there is no way I can afford). I have also since received a letter from the QMC giving me a second appointment with the consultant on 23rd Feb, and I have an appointment with my GP on Sat about referring me to the pain clinic.

    Soooo Ricky, apart from needing to offload I wanted to ask A) how you have felt since the op, B0which NHS trust you were in if you had had the op on the NHS, and C) if anyone else had any advice for me as I really don't think I can cope with this for another year.

    Ricky - sorry for hijacking your post and hope everything has gone well,
  12. Geoff

    Geoff Member

    Dec 27, 2009
    Hi Yvette

    I hijacked Ricky's thread as well as he had surgery a few days before me.....I am also interested in Rickys situation as he seems really fortunate to get surgery so quickly.

    Mine was handled very poorly by the NHS. I suffered the original L5/S1 prolapse in 2008 but because I had no real idea of the 'process' or indeed the injury, I was messed around by my GP without even the hint of surgery...so suffered for a very long time.

    When it went again last July my GP tried the same stalling process again. I paid for my own MRI scan which showed the damage and my employer paid for a consultation with a surgeon. The surgeon said I needed surgery and got me on the NHS waiting list .The wait was 4 months and I was operated on last monday.

    Clearly surgeons can get you on the NHS waiting list so I think this is the way for you to go.
  13. dashhound_91

    dashhound_91 Member

    Mar 10, 2010
    Hi Yvette
    Doog (Great to hear your the other side of it now!)

    Hack away folks! Its great to chat to others in like situations.

    Im in Ireland. I have VHI cover which is the very basic private health care after cutting back in Aug 11 to the basic package due to financial problems. Up to that point i never used it for anything. I pay in full myself without rebate any consultants fee to consult and an excess of 125euro for any procedure depending on the hospital. I delayed the first date for surgery to arrange work and in that time found out i was covered completely bar the excess in another closer hospital. otherwise it was costing 700euro in total.

    My situation is different because i went to firstly to a private sports physio thinking it was a minor strain after checking with GP and being told there was a min 6wk wait to go public to physio. I had no choice - in fact i spent grocery money to get seen in the hope id be back in work asap - i was completely wrong! He saw me walking into his room and said "your in trouble - ruptured disc" 3 sessions later and HE put me forward for MRI ( he had an inhouse Dr also ) So i think thats how it happened at the pace it did to start with. The MRI confirmed after only 3wks of pain i was in trouble.

    The second factor was the surgeon had changed from public to private and he was eager to get on with it after yrs of being held back. He said injection was first course and would not do surgery. i think 5-7 days later i returned to say i was still in trouble and he said its option A - pain management until the foot dropped or Option B Surgery. But he would not do another injection as it was pointless.

    Thats why i posted here as the pace was so fast i need advice. Many thanks to Memo as she really helped me make a decision.
    Thanks Memo.

    Im 5 full days post op. - I was outside today walking for a short period. I don't do what Doog does - i rest when i need to and don't keep alternating walking / laying down. (At least i did'nt in the beginning). Now the swelling is down im up and about as much as i can. My tail bone gets numb, i get twinges and spasms every now and then but there not painful just involuntary and minor. The new thing or maybe the right side pain was so great i missed it. is that my left buttock now gets numb while laying down.But thats easing off day b day. incision site is'n that bad at all. The muscle in that area is tender and my shoulder (probably from moving me around in theatre) is sore. After that sleeping is the only issue. The first night home i sat looking at the ceiling til 5.30am, felt like i was in a bed of glass - hard to describe. I was more fragile / uncomfortable. I got sleeping tablets and im grand now.

    I was sent home on difene and paracetemol!!!
    Very F**king sore indeed. I had meds from before surgery - tylex. So i took them but toilet action was reduced...

    Im now back on the original prescribed paracetemol and difene. I'll continue the difene for the anit inflamatory.

    As i said above the longer the compression on the nerve the longer the healing time. Thats what ive been told. Hang in there.

    So thats it.. hope it helps. I looking forward to a nice cold pint once the meds are finished and making it up to my wife for valentines being a non- event. No card, flowers or anything else!!! - Ooops.

    After a good chat with the surgeon when leaving hospital he said the nerve was "black / dark red" and heavily compressed but seeing as he got to it so quick it should heal just a quick. Im hoping im lucky! I've to go back to him march 21st and then hopefully start physio - trying to arrange that i get that through the hospital and that its free of charge. We'll see.
  14. hrshedv

    hrshedv New Member

    Jan 27, 2011
    Just an update and maybe some advice if possible...

    Im just over a week now after the surgery. Ive gone from feeling great and walking 1000 paces up the road and the following day being in agony again. Rested and now im leveling in out. Whats consistant throughout is the ache in both legs when standing. My tailbone goes numb if i lay down. Walking seems easiest but can't do it for long.

    Sleeping is very difficult laying on my back and with the lack of activity.

    Anyone advise if this is normal? The leg ache is starting to wear me down a little.
  15. Illyria

    Illyria Member

    Nov 10, 2009

    I am sorry to hear about your troubles and being 3 days behind you cant offer any advice other than I reckon its going to be long road to recovery for both of us with plenty of ups and downs.

    My understanding is that it can take up to a year until full recovery is made in some cases and every case seems different.

    I have had a bad couple of days. I have had the return of acute sciatic symptoms and my condition is far worse than pre-op . I am getting pains in areas I never knew existed ..shooting pains, back pain, my toe pain has returned...but then 10 minutes later it will go and I feel on top of the world- only for it to come back.

    I am walking twice a day,my neighbours are shocked in my appearance as I shuffle around the streets ...the cycling and running days seem like a distant memory.

    I am still avoiding sitting, so either walk, stand around or lay flat......its really frustrating

    (cant even have a beer due to the meds )
  16. cyyutegurl

    cyyutegurl Member

    Mar 29, 2010
    Thanks doog, another sleep less night last night. Had a little chat with myself today to stay positive. I find the after care brutal. No case is the same as you say so the dr / hospital just give general advice. Just did a walk with my 3yr an hr ago.

    Poxy heavy legs again.

    I know the feeling about the beer.. I saw an ad for a fresh chilled bottle of beer the other night and got a craving for one!!!

    Im going to ring the surgeons office tomorrow for advice.

    Do you get any pain in the neck? Above the shoulder blades since? Dunno if its just from laying up or tense from walking or a knock on from being down a disc. Who knows?!!
  17. jEEzaBel

    jEEzaBel New Member

    Dec 16, 2010
    Ricky, no neck Issues I am happy to say. You are right about staying positive -its vital I guess. I have had a decent day today but I know tomorrow will probably be not so good.

    I am doing two walks a day, not far of course, some very,very light stretching and taking it very easy. I am still on Oramorph but only when the pain gets bad.

    Today I had a numb left foot, which is odd as the sciatica / pain / pins and needles were always in the right and he operated on the right side of the disc.This is nuts but I guess its what happens when they do spinal surgery.
  18. aredsailjunk

    aredsailjunk Member

    Mar 18, 2010
    11 days post op and things are not good

    I now have sciatica and back pain at a far higher level than pre-op. I thought long and hard about this operation and although its early days I feel disappointed at my pain levels.

    The alarming thing is that I am on some pretty heavy medication and the pain is still there. I also have some substantial swelling suddenly appear in the area of the scar on my back.

    I may have overdone a walk the other day, I walked (hobbled) back from my GP which is about 1 mile, I am hoping its this as I was struggling big time at the end.

    Tomorrow I see the spinal team, hopefully my surgeon will be there for some reassurance.I really wanted to tell him things were going well but need to be honest and tell him the truth. I feel a bit bad really but I am now thinking I may have been hoping for too much with this op.
  19. mteukueiimliebesi

    mteukueiimliebesi New Member

    Jan 31, 2011
    United States
    Backs are tricky things to sort out - as you are very well aware

    Love, Light and Healing to you both Doog and Ricky. Hope the Doc can give you some answers.
  20. guiri

    guiri New Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Sorry to hear that Doog,

    I had the same just over a week after the op - the nerve pain came back. Total panic but it eased again after about 2 days. Bare in mind your spine is readjusting and everything is starting to settle to where it may not have been normally due to the disc been tampered with. Rest up and take it easy.

    A mile is a fair trek at this early stage. I find the day after walking is a problem but nowhere near the pain level previous (14days on - 7-10 days there was nerve pain though) - just that bloody heavy leg ache - that just puts you straight back in bed again.. I did up and down the laneway i live on yesterday twice. I normally do it once per day. Woke up this morning with hamstring pain. Ive been off meds nearly 2 days. Contemplating whether to take a difene today or not or even to do a small walk or rest. Leg ache is consistant no matter what in my case.

    I did a bit of reading again during the week about the disc themselves. it take nearly 2-3 times longer for them to heal. So when you feel better - your not! Still take it easy for another week or two after.

    Be careful Doog, Take it easy and play out the long game. Resting now will stand to you in time. Good luck with doc today.

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