Back pain


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Port Huron,Michigan
Hey guys I need your opinion on this.I have very serious back troubles,buldging disk,herniated disk and Osteo arthristus,scholeosis.Another words my back is just plain Fd up.I get very little to any enjoyment from life cause of the and I cant do hardly any work on my projects and at times I can hardly get out of bed.Im on several pain meds and been getting steroid injections for the last 3 years which do hardly anything.I have spoken to a couple of back surgeons and they told me they would be inserting 2 rods and several long metal screws in back.Im seriously contemplating having the surgery but I have heard alot of bad things but I have seen one person I knew personaly that it helped.We have some good hospitals down in the city,Henry Ford,Troy beaumont and U of M hospital.I have health insurance and the surgery will be paid for so theres no issues there.The only issue I have is that Im terrified that if and when I have the surgery Im going to be srewed up even more so.Im also changing to a better health care provider than what I have right now sometime this month an most doctors accept it.I`ll be able to get stronger and better pain meds but I have anh issue with this also.SINCE I have been on one powerful addictive med for over 5 years I`ll have to be slowly weened off of it cause if I dont I`ll suffer serious withdrawl conditions.So if you were suffering the extreme back pain I do would you wait for the surgery and see if any new meds will help or do you take the risk which is a 50-50 shot it will either help or make things even worse.My suffering tells me to have the surgery but in my mind Im severely worried that I`ll be screwed up more so.
Man, Scorpio, sorry to hear that you suffer from such an ailment.
We have a friend who suffered debilitating pain for 30 years until they developed better and more sophisticated techniques. It involved fusing 2 discs together, and then rods and screws to create the proper spacing for the next vertebra. They put some sort of matrix into the hollow space where bone had worn and chipped away and her body grew new bone to fill in the void over the course of several months. She went from pain so severe she could hardly walk to ZERO pain.

She was told she was exceptional - they usually hope for 70-80% reduction in pain and that the average is 50%. That doesn't mean that 50% of the surgeries leave you worse, just that some get from 1% to 49% reduction to make up for those getting 51-99% reduction.

The chances of actually damaging her worse in her case were fairly small - so you should make sure you understand what they ACTUALLY mean when they start bandying about all kinds of numbers, stats and probabilities.

One thing to be ABSOLUTELY sure about, before you switch coverage providers, is what's in the fine print. It's never stated in the advertising literature, but I have heard of people cancelling their 100% coverage, signing up with a new carrier because the advertising brochure or the salesman makes it sound better - only to find out that the fine print excludes them coverage on any and all "pre-existing" conditions.
This was true of our friend's drug plan, and one of the reasons they now have more money is that for years, she was not covered for any back-pain meds because the back condition pre-existed when they got the drug plan. Now she doesn't need any drugs. Luckily, in Canada, there was no risk of her losing coverage for the surgery itself. Maybe with O'bama-Care it is now illegal for the insurance companies to screw you with exclusions in the fine print, but don't rely on the literature or the advertising or the "word" of an insurance salesperson. Make sure you disclose the condition and make sure they agree in writing that you are covered for it. Otherwise stick with your current carrier.

My advice is to forget about more and better drugs - look where they have gotten you so far. . Make sure you find the best surgeon and go for it. Even if you are simply average and only get a 50% pain reduction it will be worth it.
Well Im not sure just yet how Obama care is going to affect the current health plans that I have available.I get medicade because of my dissabilties.The medicade is through the state of Michigan I beleive and they offer 4 diffent health care plans which the one I have is ok covers almost all of my med cost with a slight amount for copay.I have no copay for doctors visits and the cover most surgeries if you have a severe enough condition.Most of the doctors on my current health plan are cattle herders and pill pushers.If I change to the health care plan that Im considering I`ll have a choice of better doctors and somewhat better coverage.I`ll also have a choice of better surgeons which is good cause most of the surgeons here on Port huron couldnt save a monkey if it was dying.I have one condition that requires surgery and with my current health plan no surgeon in this city will do the surgery even though its a matter literaly of life and death and can lead to me have a major stroke.I have already suffered several ministrokes.With the alternitive health plan I`ll be able to get this taken care of.As for the pain I have been suffering its just been ting worse over time and the docs have been doing nothing but band aid fixes.Im sick of the pain its to the point I cant bare it anymore.I have to have help getting out of bed and the fitst 10-15 steps are so excruciating I can hardly make them with out assitance.What little relieve I get from the pain meds just helps me make through the day and if I try to work the pain gets worse and is worse off the next day.This is why Im considering the surgery.Im glad you explained to me how the % tage thing you explained helps me understand it better:wink2:Another thing is that Im concerned about is how much downtime am I going to have?:shrug:I dont want to be laid up for several weeks to where I cant do anything.Guess I`ll update this soon as I start getting more details and oipinions.
I understand what you are going through Scorpio. My back isn't as bad as yours, but it is bad enough. I have a hernia which is compounding my issues, but I'm also reluctant to go under the knife...

What about alternatives? Massage therapy, physiotherapy, acupuncture, chiropractic? Meds won't fix a physical problem any more than an oil additive would fix a worn engine. Western medicine is great for trauma care, but sucks for actual health care. There is more money in drugs and surgery...
Pain specially chronic pain has to be the worst. I don't suffer much from pain but my girl does. Daily headaches muscle aches serious back issues. She's been diagnosed with a rheumatoid disease. Not good for her and leaves me working a dead end job to make ends meet. I'm thinking if there's a good chance of pain reduction I'd be nervous but would opt for the surgeries. There would be a fairly long recovery but in the end it'd be worth it. So sorry you have to suffer so. I'm with Lou though Get the best Dr you can and hold them to it. Best wishes for your recovery
sorry to hear that scorps, that sucks big time.

I had a cracked L3 lumbar after and accident, but luckily it sort of healed but I eventually went to a chiropractic to sort out a twisted spine. (I'm fine now).

explore all areas first before you make a decision by speaking with more than one practitioner and take someone with you, in pain you'll agree with anything!
I have had the scoliosis since I was in my teens but it realy never kept from doing anything or caused me much pain.In 1988 I got t boned in a car accident which was the begiing of my back troubles.I had a sever lower lumbar sprain and went through a year of chiropratic care which seem to heel things up pretty well.Jump forward to about 5 years ago and thats when my degenertive/bulging disk desease started.Its been getting progressively worse of the last 5 years.I have had two disk rupture and now its pinching nerves in my spine.Also suffering severe siactic nerve damage which makes the pain radiate down my left leg.I have been using a tense unit eltrical never stimulating device,heating pads ,a varge of pain meds and other things.My current health plan doesnt cover Chropratic care cause the dont consider it a legit form of medical treatment,which to extent just like alot of doctors they are just quacks or want to run up the bill so they can collect $ from the insurance.The new health plan Im getting will cover chiro
pratic care so I think Im going to see if I can find me a good one and get a spinal alignment.Today my back feels relitively decent 1st time in a long time that I didnt hurt getting out of bed.Also I have tried therapy which helped a little.All I know I sick and tired of the pain and would like to get some normalcy back in my life.I know the older I get my back is only going to get worse.Living in a place where the winter are severe and cold dont help matters either.I love this state though and Im not moving.
Hey Scorpio, sorry to hear about your back problems. There has been a lot of really good advice on here so far. I too have had back issues for many years although not as extreme as you but I do understand your desire fix it. Just As you have done here ask many questions so you can make a well informed decision.
G'day Scorps,

Mate sorry to hear you got it so bad.

I suffer from sciatica and when i get it bad i have to crawl to the shower and run hot water on my back for 15min before i can stand up. For me, i get physio and acupuncture to help manage the pain and swim as much as possible.

All the best with sorting it out.
Based on your guy`s opinions so far Im leaning at seeing if I can find a good chyroprator or accupunture.Im not afraid of needles my back has already been used as a pin cushion.I cant remember for the life of me but I used to know someone who was strong advocate of accupuncture.Before I go under the knife Im going to try these methods out and see what kinda of releive I get.I`ll call around today and see what I can find.
Thanks guys for your support.
Heres kinda an update of whats going with switching health care providers,all the doctors take but they have such a fullpatient load that I cant get in to see any of them.I quess it such a goodplan everyone has switche over toit.SoI can sign up butI`llbe waiting upto6,omths tosee the docs on the new health plan.So Im.stuckinbetween a rock and hardplace.:banghead:
Do you need to see a doctor to get a referral to a chiropractor, massage therapist, physiotherapist or acupuncturist? Some plans encourage alternatives as they often are less expensive than doctors and meds...
Well something else I found out since I have neve damage and collasped disk along with buldging disk going to Chirprator would only hurt me worse and Id be no better off.That leaves me with 2 other alternitives accupunture or go under the knife.- or contue pain managment with use if narcotics.
Yes I Dave my primary physcian has to give me referals to specialist to treat me.
Who told you that a chiropractor would make you worse? Your wife's third cousin's friend who once went to a chiropractor and really just wanted drugs to get stoned on?

Why don't you go to the hospital and wait in emergency for a couple hours. Then complain about numb arm and indigestion. You will be seen right away, and your primary physician will see you in the next day or 2. The system is screwing you out of your health, so screw them back!
Cause of what my specific problems are with my back a chroprator would probaly screw me up more.I have 3 disk that have slip forward over the one below itand its compressing the nerve in 2-3 places.Basicaly the first 7 of vertibre in spine up from my tail bone are twisted and distorted.Also in the middle upper portion of my back I have ruptured disk that have slipped out of place.With disk that have ruptured If a chiroprator was to do an alignment or popped my back it was cause more neve damage.I also have disk that have ruptured.If anything moves the wrong way Im crippled or lose feelings in my legs.I talked to one Chirprator hisself and he said because of my condition he wont treat me.I have an appoinment next week with specilist that treat people with this disorder.When I talked to couple surgeons a while back they told me that the procedure would be to place to short rods 4-6 inches long in the 2 worst places in my back plus some srews.If it comes to surgery and this procedure works I`ll be happy.Hopefully they`re be some other alternitive.All I know is this pain is unbearable and its got to the point I cant take it anymore.
Hey Scorps, I think that the chiropractor who didn't want to work on your back was wise. Chiro can be much more dangerous than physio. Good luck with seeing the specialist.
Good luck dude! I know it must be awful. I have sciatica pain and plantar faciitis. I know what you mean about getting out of bed and needing to take 15 steps before it's bearable!
... and plantar faciitis ...
I've never had any permanent back trouble but I had this in both feet. Every morning I couldn't walk for several minutes. After the drive to work, I'd have to stand, leaning on the car for several minutes before I could walk. Unbelievable.
Luckily the exercises to elongate all the muscles on the backs of my legs worked and I have not had a re-occurrence in over 10 years.
Don't give up. If you do them faithfully several times a day, every day, they will work eventually.
To ad to the isery I have blood clots in y left leg been dealing with the now for 3 years.Same crap insurance wont pay to have the reoved.Well I have a new health care provder now so hopefully this changes.So I take hepherain and kuadan ones an oral tablet the other is an injection.If this is retired life its not any fun.