Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Marty Moose » Fri Feb 01, 2013 11:15 pm

More the physiological acceptance that this is probably going to be the eventual outcome. Bit like doing a warmup before the race :) I think this is what Winstow was implying ;)
Just hope it gives you some relief from the constant pain, as you probably know it really is wearing.

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by BNA » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:10 pm

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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:10 pm

The pain has greatly reduced today. It's basically pins and needles down the lower part of my leg but 200% better than previously.

TBH I'm resigned to having the microdisectomy done soon unless something drasticly improves.

At least it feels like I'm heading in the somewhat right direction ----- less pain
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Dr_Mutley » Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:22 pm

Snagdog wrote:The pain has greatly reduced today. It's basically pins and needles down the lower part of my leg but 200% better than previously.

TBH I'm resigned to having the microdisectomy done soon unless something drasticly improves.

At least it feels like I'm heading in the somewhat right direction ----- less pain


Good to hear snap
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Marty Moose » Mon Feb 04, 2013 10:06 pm

How is it going Snap any better. Is the extra sleep nice :)
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:44 am

The honeymoon period is over. I was in some pretty serious pain this morning after trying to wean myself slowly off the pain meds over sat - mon as recommended.

However I ended up back on them all, as previously prescribed last night so I could sleep but still was in constant throbbing pain throughout the night.

I ended up having more meds this morning than I had had previously done before just so I could get going and some relief.

Dr Lucas nurse / assistant was meant to be ringing me sometime soon to see how I'm going but I'm ringing him today to say lets get this show on the road. I really don't know what else to do.

I went back through the paperwork that we received from him at the consultation and looks like we are up to step 3, microdisectomy.

Thanks for your thoughts ill keep ya posted. Hopefully i can book in by the end of the week and hope for the best.
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Dr_Mutley » Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:59 am

Yep crack on mate, good luck
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Tue Feb 05, 2013 1:04 pm

Just spoke to the assistant and she said the nurse won't contact for 10 days after the guided injection as that's the standard OP.

I tried my best to state my claim using my best manners so the assistant said that shell try and get back to me ASAP
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Tue Feb 05, 2013 3:14 pm

Got the call back and the nurse was a bit reluctant to speed up the process but she was nice enough to listen to what I was saying and I'm booked into see dr Lucas again on Thursday
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Thu Feb 07, 2013 2:42 pm

Surgery booked in for next Wednesday 13th. At this stage I have been more than happy with the doctor and his practice for really listening and understanding to what I was going though.

I was worried that he would be unable to perform the surgery for weeks ahead however he's made it happen for next week.

Finges crossed relief is on the way and rehabilitation can then begin. The wife had to drive into Brisbane this morning from sunny coast. Due to the pain meds not being as effective nowadays since I've been on them for 3 weeks I had to ride out the 1 1/2 drive in some pretty solid pain...... Trying all the mind of matter tricks I could try

Lesson learned for me ------- if you have back or neck related issues / tweaks / knocks its best to seek medical attention within a reasonable time frame and if ever in doubt seek a MRI. DEMAND ONE.

If I had done this 4 months ago who knows where'd I'd be now

Listen to your body....... Sometime HTFU is the best medicine but when it comes to some things it's very reckless and potentially life changing for the worse
Last edited by Snagdog on Thu Feb 07, 2013 9:50 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Marty Moose » Thu Feb 07, 2013 6:22 pm

Good to hear you are getting what you need quickly. +1 on the mri wish I had have known that myself,demanding one if needed is the way to go.

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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:12 pm

The dr was good, once I explained the amount of pills I was digesting to get through the day, he acknowledged it was enough to bring down an elephant and he then made me a priority .

I'd be to embarrassed to say what im up to now.

if i had to wait for a public Operation i would be a heavily dependent pain med addict. I reckon I'm getting close now already.

And next time your bitching about your private health monthly bill, think again because without it I'd be in the physical and mental stress as well as the financial stress and that could be enough to serious break you

I'm lucky to have a good wife, job and family
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Dr_Mutley » Thu Feb 07, 2013 10:36 pm

Welcome to our health care system ;-)
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby winstonw » Wed Feb 20, 2013 9:50 pm

Snag, as I alluded, I thought it was a given you would require surgery if frank sequestration was involved.
When you are up to it, I'd much appreciate a short summary of the conservative measures you were informed of to ease your pain, as an alternative to medication.

Here's some thrown around our clinic: For pain with a suspected discal origin:

1. McKenzie's Extensions
if these exacerbate the pain, then revert to 2 below...

2. unloading and decompressing discs with home bed rest and regular home traction...stop if pain or neuro symptoms exacerbated.

3. Using a hired lumbopelvic brace, rollator, wheelie walker, or crutches to unload the discs when standing or walking.

3. avoiding sitting with the back higher than 45 degrees above horizontal. prevent back from flexing/slumping.

4. aggressive sports med protocol icing to the lumbar level of the involved disc.

5. an explanation of movement likely to increase pain.

6. bed rest in any position that minimizes pain supine, prone, sidelying with any number of pillows that helps, along with regular traction.

7. importance of staying well hydrated, and eating appropriately during reduced energy expenditure and while taking opiate based meds.


I am particularly interested in whether you were advised or instructed about doing home traction. This is out of flavor at the moment in physio and GP clinics, hospitals, etc, though can ease pain dramatically. The same applies to aggressive icing.
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Marty Moose » Wed Feb 20, 2013 9:55 pm

Winstow is home traction gravity boots or is this to aggressive ??

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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby winstonw » Thu Feb 21, 2013 8:03 am

Marty Moose wrote:Winstow is home traction gravity boots or is this to aggressive ??

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hanging vertically upside down vertically is not recommended. too extreme and there's only so long most can tolerate their head down, and it's not good for the circulation to the head, especially the eyes.

incline benches or similar set to no more than 45 degrees have less potential problems.

though better to rig a pulley and rope at the end of your bed, attach with appropriately padded ankle strap, and progressively increase weight up to 50% bodyweight, and duration no more than 15-20 minutes.
I wouldn't recommend heavier wt or longer periods without having it assessed by a doctor/physio/osteo/science oriented chiro.
But in general, the great majority of acute disc pain sufferers benefit from decompressing the disc with traction.
There's contraindications to using heavier weight (say over 20% bodyweight) - moderate to severe osteoporosis, certain arthritic conditions, tumors, hip/knee jt issues, pregnant or post partum.

Australian hospitals in which I've used traction had a protocol of no more than 5kg (whether you weighed 40 or 120kg :roll: ) attached to the ankle on the side of most severe symptoms, but it could be left on 24/7. This was generally ineffective though. Hospitals can be like that.
As I said earlier, traction for acute pain relief has gone out of favor with most physio practices, because when a patient gets up off the traction table feeling pretty good, then walk out the door and back to work/shopping/etc, their discs can be more vulnerable to further damage.

I recommend more intense traction only for the worst pain, in conjunction with bed rest, as an option to sustained high levels of opiates.
If the pain or significant neurological symptoms are not settling significantly after one week, and scans over the preceding weeks/months haven't been conclusive, then further imaging is warranted. Often, clinicians rest on the result of a scan done anything up to 2-3 mths earlier, when there's likely to have been increased damage (in the presence of increased symptoms). And as I said earlier, it's rare for kinematic MRI to be done in Australia, which would give a clearer indication earlier.
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:03 pm

Went in for op Wed 12pm - waited till 6pm before being taken into thearte

By these last few days the pain relief i could get was from Valium. Also i had to sit up in our car due to baby seats for the drive in so I was on some very high doses due to despartion for pain relief. 30mg - 3 days pre op, 40mg - 2 days post op and prob 50 mg on the last day. i told all staff what i had taken etc...

I left thursday morning after only about 2 hours sleep due to having 2 heavy snorers beside me but all leg pain had gone

Then on sunday morning i developed these crippling headaches when i moved to a standing position. I just thought i was dehydrated so didnt do anything about it on sunday. Same thing monday but only worse so we ring the neurosurgeon consult nurse and she doesnt get back to us until about 5pm monday arvo. She basically says that Ive got Valium withdrawl and I need to get a step down program from a GP. Hard to do at 5pm

So my wife rings this after hours doctor who is concerned that its something spinal due to conditions appearing only when I stand up. He advises that I need to get an ambo and get to the hospital due to possiblity of seizure. Wife panics and agrees. So I get to the hospital monday night at 7pm and when the head doctor comes to see me he basically gives me the third degree about this and that and I actually had to fire up back at him and tell him to lose the chip on his shoulder and stop being pissed off at me Im only doing what people are telling me. He then goes on to say he isnt angry at me but he feels I have been biven poor advice......... So take it out on me .... go figure.
His diagnosis was post lumbar puncture and Ill have to keep taking pain meds and come back if headaches dont cease within a week.

At this stage my headache while sitting up or standing was horribly painful, right up there with my original sciaitic pain....hahahaha the irony..... And also while i was waiting outside the hospital to get picked up i was struggling that much i had to lie down on the concrete and wait..... God only knows what the security guard was thinking.

So i go and see a new GP (my original GP has taken leave prior to surgery) to get step down val program and he reckons it isnt valium withdrawl but some spinal leakage problem and he books me in for an urgent Brain MRI.

I then ring back the neurosurgeon consultant to let her know that this is what people are telling me and she advises against it but will do up the referral for a lumber MRI while still having crippling headaches when in a standing or sitting position. that night it took me about 3 attempts to even eat my dinner the pain while sitting up was that bad

So I forgot to say the head ache was a frontal area...... across the front of my head just above my eyebrows

MRI report comes back clear, much to the neurosurgeon consultants delight and she still saying its valium withdrawl.

And funny enough today I have been able to sit up for 5 - 10 mins, infact I just cleaned the pool and Im up writing this now where as a few days ago that would have been impossible. I'm actually feeling 200% better than I have since Sunday

So hopefully it continues to improve and I can get on with my rehab which was the frustrating thing about the headaches was that i couldnt get on with parts of my rehab.

And to be honest I was getting really pissed off with people accussing me of using valium for fun, where I was using it for desperate pain relief. Honestly after about 3 weeks the pain really started to break me and i found the pain hard to keep fighting off when the pills could take make it easier to handle

I had a couple of val in the day or 2 after the op but i found that since i wasnt in pain they just made me feel like i was getting high as opposed to the pain relief so i stopped taking them and havent had any since. I have just had panadol and anti inflammatory drugs.
Last edited by Snagdog on Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:18 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Snagdog » Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:07 pm

Win,

1 - made it worse - i found through internet search
2- worked out myself a position on the couch and i had pillows under left leg - and this was the basic go to position the whole time pre op
3- never told
4 - own internet search
5 - as above
6- as above
7- dr explained

NO instruction of home traction.
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Re: Back Injury - herniated L5- Help advice plz

Postby Riggsbie » Thu Feb 21, 2013 2:28 pm

Crikey.....

Hang in there !!

On a similar note, I had surgery on L4/5 2 years ago.....have had regular back 'lockups" every 3/4 months but usually passing with deep tissue massage etc....and only lasts a few days or a week at most.....

In December I snagged my back putting on a sock...then it reoccurred on Dec 30/31 for a couple of days and then again on Jan 12 but excruciatingly painful for 3 weeks this time and massive knot of rock hard muscle a bit further up lumbar spine.....

Anyway, it settled and the last 2 weeks have been ok, the pain in the left leg is a lot better as is the referred hip flexor/glute pain.....

Had an MRI last week, saw my neurosurgeon today and he wanted to operate tomorrow.....prolapsed disc at L3/4 impinging on corda equina.....so not good.....and unexpected.....now have surgery booked for 7 March.....he also mentioned the dreaded "spinal fusion" words again...... I had a mild disc bulge after a work injury from 3 years ago so prolly just got worse over time :-(

Not good


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