Surgeries, oh, Surgeries
avatar
jls826 posted:
Dear Community,

It has been awhile since I have posted.

My symptoms are still the same - no relief and somewhat worsened. 13 herniated discs (every thoracic level + 2 lumbar). A recent Thoracic CT revealed that many levels have developed a posterior osseous complex (told that meant hardening/clacifying), including T3-T9.

They have recommended doing a fusion from T3-T9. I'm concerned as it doesn't address the noted nerve issues at T10-T11. By looking at a nerve body chart, it is T10 & T11 nerves that serve the areas of most of my pain - pain that prevents me from lying down for even 20 minutes without extreme pain, which has killed my sleep since January 2011.

Even after sharing that with my doctor, he still didn't say anything about T10-T11.

I could live with the back pain if that was all there was, it's the sleeping/lying down pain that has me beyond words. I do like my doctor and he is truly the only one in NYC that has the depth and breadth of Thoracic Spine experience, not only here but internationally. There really is not anyone else I would see here so....

In addition t othe spine, they found a liver tumor and they want to remove it. The surgery is quite extensive. It's really annoying as I can't comprehend having a surgery that will require 5-7 days in a hospital, several weeks of limited activity, 4 weeks from work, etc., without FIRST addressing the spine issues so I can HOPEFULLY ly down without the iliac crest hip pain I have that is believed to be referred from the T-Spine. UGH!

Yet, the doctors are refusing to collaborate, offer any type of plan, etc.

I would need to have the liver tumor removed first as it would cause regression for my spine recovery if I didn't. But I can't comprehend spending a week in the hospital, 4 weeks off of work, then have the spine surgery that will require about the same.

So, I'm just venting.

I would love to hear from someone who has had Thoracic spine surgery and whether or not it was helpful. My surgeon has claimed that it will make lifethings (pregnancy down the road, etc.) safer but form what I've read people seem to be in as much, if not more, pain after the TSpine surgery.

Thanks!
Reply
 
avatar
trs1960 responded:
Wow, somone I can relate to. I'm fused from T4-L3 so you got me by one. I just had another epidural Thursday and go talk to my doc next week. I've been working like this for 12 years and I'm at my wits end. I have good disabilty insurance, but my wife would her insurance. Now she says she doesn't even like me because I'm always in pain and don't do fun things like her friends do. I feel betrayed as I basically gave up what life I had for her, now she's threaening with divorce and all that crap...I'll see your venting and rais you one.

My Tspine was crushed so it always hurts I don't know if its from being fused are being crushed nearly 4" and artifically curved so the muscles are always in conflict with the spine?

Best of luck to you.

Tim
 
avatar
trs1960 responded:
I also wanted ti say that your thoracic section is really just the back of your rib cage making up the box around your organs, You don't flex muxh in the thoracic like you do in the cervical and lumbar, So if your having disk pain or nerve impingments this is the best place to have such surgery.

With 12 fusions, 9 in my thoracic, I still have a lot of mobility. It's my lumbar that is bothering me now. With the fusions ending as L3, L4 and 5 are about shot amd then what?
My thoracic is still most painful, but like I said I beleive that is muscular skeletol issues.

I hope this helps.

Tim
 
avatar
jls826 replied to trs1960's response:
Thanks, Tim!

They still are not addressing the issues of the nerves at T10-T11 or Lumbar and the T3-T9 fusion is scheduled in less than a month.

My concern is the pain that prevents me from sleeping and none of the nerves from T3-T9 seem to be in the area of the pelvic bone or hip. While that area may be more "stable' following the fusion, I certainly do NOT want to experience worsened mid/upper back pain than I do now in that area.

I'm very sorry you are still experiencing pain but, unfortunately, that seems to be common among fusion patients - one reason I am apprehensive.

I do have midback and upper back pain with shoulder pain, etc, but not enough that would by themselves push me to even think about another surgery.

My lower back/lumbar pain is much worse than the mid/upper back pain - something I can't seem to get any type of answer from other than a vague, they don't "think" it's lumbar.
 
avatar
trs1960 replied to jls826's response:
Pain attacks your body and your body reacts. Some of the nastier side effects are bleeding ulsers from the acids in your stomach and the change in brain function; seratonin issues, increased base brainwave frequency make sleep impossible and sleep deprevation is torture!!!

It's a downward spiral if you can't sleep. I remember going for about a month without any real sleep. The only way I can describe it is, it's like someone tightining a guitar string...tightening and tuning. The pitch keeps increasing as the string gets ever taughter, but it never breaks. It's pure hell!

I gave up and started taking ambian.It's not perfect, but without sleep I would have blown my brains out...it is that bad!!

Good luck

Tim