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Spinal tap injury?
lisa2774 posted:
I have been trying to find information on this subject and am having difficulties.
I am 17 months out of a c-section and am still having tremendous pain. It is the exact same pain that I felt when the hospital administered a spinal for my c-section. When they inserted the needle, I felt the most tremendous pain travel from my lower back to my hip. That pain still remains today, and is sometimes crippling. I initially went to a physician who took an MRI and then sent me to physical therapy. After 5 months of the therapy, I decided to quit, as I couldn't commit to 4 times a week with a newborn. I never felt any kind of relief from the therapy as well. I need to see someone about this pain, but am not sure which kind of doctor to go to. I am fairly certain that there is something wrong with a nerve in my back, but cannot find any documentation on the web to support my theory. Is it possible that there was a problem administering the spinal? I remember the anaesthesiologist voicing that I had mild scoleosis and that he was unsure of the position (not sure what this meant, but at the time the comment made me extremely nervous). I am interested to hear some other comments, as I am not sure which direction to head from here.
bj1208 responded:
hi and welcome to the support group -

you need to get a copy of your MRI and written report - then I would suggest seeing either an Orthopedic Spine Specialist or Neurosurgeon Spine Specialist. They will examine your and let you know what your options are (this does not mean surgery but they are the best at reading results).

they may order other tests to be done to see if there were any types of injury by the spinal tap -

Please keep us posted as to what you find out - take care - Joy
Ari Ben-Yishay, MD responded:
Dear Lisa,
Have you seen an orthopaedic spine surgeon yet. Your pain is very unusual. An MRI might be helpful. It is impossible to further speculate without knowing your symptoms VERY CLEARLY and being examined.
Hope you feel better
spectator28 responded:
I understand your frustration. I had a spinal tap in June of 2011, in which the doctor was having a hard time finding the spot, and stuck me 3 times or more. Each time the needle went in, I felt a tremendous amount of pain, like a nerve was being hit. The doctor finally ended up trying another spot.

After the procedure was done, I was in a great amount of pain, and cold hardly walk. No-one at the hospital understood the great amount of pain I was in, and only gave me over-the counter Ibuprofin. I talked to the doctor, who told me that the pain would subside in 3 months. It is now February 2012, and I still have the pain. I take Cymbalta, Moloxicam, go to physical therapy 3x a week, it's helped some, but my quality of life have significantly declined. I've been to several doctors, all of whom have no answers as to what's really going on. they all claim to not have heard of spinal taps causing these kind of problems, but I've Googled it, and found several situations like this resulting from epidurals and spinal taps.

The most information I've gotten form my experience is that it's possible that the spinal tap triggered rhemetoid arthritis in my spine, which caused swelling of the disc material, which is pressing on the nerves. Someone else said it's fibromyalgia triggered form the procedure. I think the first make more sense, since it feels like a problem with my nerves.

Hope you find a solution...!
spectator28 responded:
I forgot to also mention that I also have scoliosis, and the doctor mentioned something about how small the space was. Of course didn't pay this any mind because I trusted the doctor's judgement. I was later told by the doc that if I would have said something, they would have stopped at any time-like this was my fault. Now I'm stuck with pain, limitations, and no real answers.
lisa2774 responded:
Thanks everyone, for your replies. I saw my neurologist, who has put me through some initial tests. He confirmed my suspicion....that my spinal hit or knicked a nerve. He gave me some Lidoderm patches, but that has not helped. He has informed me that this type of issue is usually very hard to control without major pain meds, which I will not take, as I am nursing. I figure that I will just deal with the pain.
jenlewi responded:
Yikes! I had to go to a high-risk clinic when I was pregnant with my daughter, and was told by the main doctor at the clinic that I couldn't have an epidural because of the risk of spinal injury. He even put in my chart what type of pain meds I could have administered IV. Unfortunately, it was at a teaching hospital, and the twit who the nurse told I was asking for pain meds came in all set to administer an epidural. Thankfully, the main doctor had explained everything to me, and I told the one who was trying to give me an epidural that I couldn't have it and to check my chart. He looked at my chart long enough to write "Refused pain meds." By the time anyone thought to question this, I was already pushing, but I accepted the offer of the drugs I should've had hours earlier. Unfortunately, the drugs didn't make it through the IV until AFTER my daughter was born! I remember seeing her for the first time, trying to hold her, and feeling the meds kick in in time to ask someone to take her. I was in a room before I woke up again.

There don't seem to be any good options for pain management during delivery for women with conditions that make epidurals too risky.

I hope you find a doctor who is able to fix the damage, but until then I suggest alternating forms of topical pain management. There are a number of over-the-counter rubs and patches that are fairly good, but none of them seem to work for long if you use them exclusively. I find that using ones with different active ingredients and changing the one I use every two days keeps them working for me.

Good luck and take care!

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