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Electric Current in back
Meloria posted:
Hello everyone, I am an L4-L5 fusion with 2 rods 6 screws. My surgery was 5 years ago. My surgeon told my family after surgery that my nerves were all tangled up in my back and he had to untangle them. I am having a bad flare up of pain and it feels like I have an electrical current running thru my back. It's hard to explain. I am on MS Contin 120 mg twice per day, Zanaflex, Neurtontin, Flexeril, Mobic and Zoloft. Does anybody have these issues? I don't know if I would have been better off to not have had the surgery. I am always in pain. And yes I get that feeling of hopelessness as I do not have insurance and am only able to work part time.

Can anybody help?
Meloria responded:
Also, I can't sleep on my back or right side. If I do, the pain is horrific. What does that mean?
darlyn05 responded:
How often do you experience this or is it ongoing/constant, and would you feel comfortable telling us the diagnosis from your Dr or details of your testing results?

I have pretty much the same sensation. There are times I experience what I call an electrical surge(like when you need a surge protector for electronics, putting a finger in a electrical socket, or putting your tongue on the positive end of a battery) that will originate in my lumbar area and streams of the electrical sensation will travel down the backs of my leg(s). For me this generally occurs after certain activities that utilizes my L5 and down joints/discs. I also experience an ongoing electrical sensation that is weaker, and occassionally an electrical burning sensation on the top side of my right ankle. This is due to my nerve impingements from various abnormalities at the L4, L5 and S1 level that is diagnosed as Lumbar Radiculpathy.

When sleeping on your back try using a pillow under your legs, and for side sleeping try using one between your knee(s) and/or the mattress. This will help keep your spine more aligned and straight. I also use one for sitting and driving, putting it behind my back and a bit at my tailbone region. I actually was using a pillow for sleeping well before my back issues.

Hope this helps.
Meloria replied to darlyn05's response:
Thank you for validating this feeling, I felt crazy for saying it because I was afraid no one would understand. I usually only experience this when I have a flare up. Blood pressure 168/108 due to severe pain. My doctor really doesn't have a diagnosis except it is a flare up. My problem is that I have no insurance. My doc wants me to have another MRI but I can only work part time due to my back. I have applied for disability but of course had to appeal my case. I do use a pillow between my knees, that's the only way I can sleep on my left side. The doc also says that I have Fibromyalgia, could that have anything to do with me not being able to sleep on my right side?
bj1208 replied to Meloria's response:
Hi Meloria - welcome to the support group -

Darlyn05 gave you some great advise, as always~~

I, too, have this as I have permanent nerve damage in both legs. this was not found out until my surgeon had released me and a year had gone by. I had just gone to a new pain doc, a PHYSIATRIST and they noted several problems I was having especially when I walked so they had one of their docs do a EMG AND NERVE CONDUCTION test - it's 2 parts - they check the nerves in your legs and can tell if it's nerve damage based on the readings.

also you indicated you don't have insurance. try to get on your states Medicaid program (MEDICAID.GOV) or if you live in a big city there should be a big university hospital where they have departments set up for those that do not have insurance where they do offer free treatments and/or reduced fees. they will have all the departments you will need. I think also you should be examined by either a ORTHOPEDIC SPINE SPECIALIST or NEUROSURGEON SPINE SPECIALIST and get another opinion of your back. there could be new things going on that could be affecting the areas where you had your surgery.

Hope this helps - let us know what you find out~~
~~ Click on my name or picture and read my story ~~

Take care ~~ God Bless ~~

~~ Joy ~~
darlyn05 replied to Meloria's response:
As Joy, bj1208, pointed out, seeing the right type of Dr is crucial. Not only for your health, quality of life and proper treatment options, it will help with your SSDI application and benefits. Even if you have them review your older MRI images and notes. I think it would be beneficial to have an updated MRI. Without Joys' advice and suggestions I wouldn't have gotton the RIGHT type of Dr and the RIGHT diagnosis for the RIGHT treatment my condition(s) required. My "Orthopedic Spine Specialist" Was the only one of my Dr's that could read the images correctly.

Do you have an atty handling your appeal and SSDI case? That is very important. I don't know all of the ins and outs of SSDI, and each case is different. If you haven't listed the Fibromyalgia to your case you will need to add that to it. And it is very beneficial having a diagnosis from your Dr with any restrictions. Here is a link that may help you, you can click on the other areas/chapters listed at the top left side for add'l info:

I don't know much about Fibromyalgia, there are many articles and other information available on medical websites. You can use WebMd's search area at the top cnter of this page to search here. I do know that Fibromyalgia causes sleep difficulties and more. Plus just the facts of life and living (getting older). Here is a link for WebMd's Fibromyalgia Support Exchange:

Hope this helps. Let us know how things go and what you find out.
Meloria replied to darlyn05's response:
You guys are awesome, I think the old adage "2 heads are better than one", or three in this case is very true. If anybody else has any suggestions I would appreciate it. I applied for Medicaid but all I could get is the Family planning part of it. Well I'm 49 years old, my kids are grown, don't need any birth control. I do have someone handling my case, and I have listed the Fibromyalgia.

My Dad took me to UAB in Birmingham, AL to the ER and they told us about a charity program they have for people like me. So I am on my way to fill out the application and then see someone there from Spine NET.
darlyn05 replied to Meloria's response:
Hey Meloria! I'm glad something is working out well for you. You mentioned seeing someone from Spine NET, the name has me concerned about quality care, please check the credibility/credentials and such of the person you are/will be seeing. I know Nothing of them, but am going to check into them now. lol

Let us know how your doing.

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