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Out2gtcha

Surgery

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Well gents its finally come down to it.................

 

I debated on putting this in the staff only section, but I have a lot of friends on the site from across the membership as well as the globe, and it seemed easier to put it here instead of dropping PMs and what not.

 

Earlier this year back in late August/early September the fiance and I were camping and hiking at a state park here in Nebraska for my birthday. The trip went swimmingly and since I normally had occasionally back discomfort (had it since my mid 20s but just some occasional soreness and slight discomfort), I was actually surprised at how great I felt, with no real issue or discomfort at all. 

About 1 or 2 days after returning home from that trip, I woke up with shooting pains down my left thigh and up into my left upper glute. Later that same day the pain continued down to my left foot with tingling, numbness and a painful pins and needles feeling; constantly.

It was a wake up call for sure. I have never before had such an intense level of pain, not to mention such a pervasive kind of pain, that seemed like it leched its way into nearly every aspect of my life, effecting my sleep, work, sex life, social life and of course my modeling. I haven't driven my 6 speed manual Jeep in 3 months.

The pain really only subsided to a 1 or 2 when I lay flat on my back, which as you can imagine is not conducive to many activities. I got a couple little Bandai kits completed during all this, but not without some pain and discomfort, as during some of this, I had 3 separate rounds of Cortisone/steroid shot epidural injections,  over the course of some weeks, which did help but the effects only lasted a few weeks the first round, a week or so the second, and only a few days on  the last round. 

 

I discovered I have two heavily torn disks in my back after an MRI last year around this same time. Because I have gone through all the non invasive options (3 full rounds of cortisone shots and 7 sessions of PT) after the insurance company denied a second MRI to determine if I needed surgery or if the cortisone shots would help, now after many months of pain they finally allowed a 2nd MRI. I got the results of the 2nd MRI back and it showed since my MRI in 2017 a new herniated disk area that is severely intruding on the left side of my spinal canal, and is pushing into my sciatic nerve which is what is causing all the pain. None of which would have been helped by injections or PT, but such is the state of medical insurance in the US. 

 

The insurance company will finally talk about an actual fix to the pain, and some real relief and that according to the Dr. is "laser microdiscectomy surgery" surgery. He explained all the risks involved of possible permanent pain, nicking a nerve, infection, and a host of other unpleasantness, but I quickly explained to him that I'm desperate at this stage, as its come to I cant walk at all without severe pain, cant stand for more than a minute or two, and cant sit for more than 10 min means shuffling my weight around constantly to avoid pain. Even had to sit down in the dam shower because its excruciating to stand for more than 5 minutes.

 

Im not bringing all this up for any "poor mes" or anything, there are people round here with it way worse than I, but I am bringing it up because Im unsure of my recovery time, and access to getting on line. Im likely going to be down for a while, so I may be off line/off the forums for a bit. Im hoping its a week or less recovery time, but I have read  that some take as long as a month. Fortunately I'm going to be knocked out fully during it all, and the Dr doing the surgery is very good, with a stellar rep, so my worries are low atm, but that may change. 

I come to LSP every single day, multiple times a day, and there are no other place on the net that I go with that frequency, so if recovery is longer than I expect, its going to be weird. :lol:  I already miss modeling SO much its driving me crazy!!!!  Im really jazzed about the multi-engined group build, so Im hoping this recovery does not take me too long, as Im hoping to be back at the bench for the start of the GB.

I really dont know when surgery will happen, it may not be until after Christmas, but it may happen ASAP if the insurance company and the neurosurgeon's availability jive up. Basically I may drop off the face of things if a perfect storm happens and I have a longer than expected recovery time. I hope that is not the case, but you never know, so if you stop seeing me, you know why and its only temporary.

 

Cheers!

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Brian, I hope everything goes well, but I wouldn't worry too much. My wife had this type of surgery

two years ago performed by a well reputated surgeon who actually learned and studied this sort

of minimal invasive method in the US. I almost fainted when I came to visit her on the second day

after surgery and saw her standing on her own in front of the hospital smoking a cigarette. Recovery

went smooth, however, she's still a bit limited in her movement - like lifting heavy fhings - but most

importantly, she's free of pain ever since. Heads up, your doctors understand their jobs and know

their business. All the best from across the pond

 

Lothar

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Bad news, for sure.  Any kind of pain is torturous.  But when it's emanating from a primary nerve, it's the worse.

 

'Because I have gone through all the non invasive options'

Have you tried back stretching exercises?  I suffered back pain for 20 years.  I started doing simple back stretching exercises when I started riding a bicycle.  The pain went away.  Whenever I have back compression problems I do back stretching exercises.  Just bending over and touching your toes a couple of times a day is enough because bending over stretches your spine and allows everything to fall back into place.  It hurts to begin with because, well, your back hurts and you are attempting to realign your spine.  For sciatic pain caused by compression I swear by it.  I can't speak of torn discs.  I can't imagine what would tear the cartridge cushions between your vertebrae, but good luck with your decision and especially your surgery.

 

Sincerely,

Mark

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Thanks gents!

 

2 minutes ago, Lothar said:

Brian, I hope everything goes well, but I wouldn't worry too much. My wife had this type of surgery

two years ago performed by a well reputated surgeon who actually learned and studied this sort

of minimal invasive method in the US. I almost fainted when I came to visit her on the second day

after surgery and saw her standing on her own in front of the hospital smoking a cigarette. Recovery

went smooth, however, she's still a bit limited in her movement - like lifting heavy fhings - but most

importantly, she's free of pain ever since. Heads up, your doctors understand their jobs and know

their business. All the best from across the pond

 

Lothar

 

 

Thank you my friend!  That is exactly the type of thing I wanted to hear.   :D 

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Bad news for sure about surgery but at least you can see some light at the end of the tunnel now and should be reassured that things are about to happen to fix the issue.

It's also good that you posted about this as we are all getting older and your story may be useful to others that have the same problem but are suffering in silence or with no one to talk it over with.

 

Best wishes for the surgery and wishes for a speedy recovery.

 

Cheers

 

Dennis

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Hopefully they will have you "under the knife" asap and get you pain free.

I got hit with sciatica suddenly a couple of years ago.

I thought I'd been shot and had the numbness in lower leg and foot.

Luckily mine wasn't related to any back issues but I know all about that pain and doing simple tasks being so difficult.

I was lucky in that mine got better over time and with exercise but at least you know there is a procedure and I'm sure they will fix you up.

:)

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Been there, done that.  It was about 20 or 21 years ago now.  Had a double laminectomy on L2-3 and L4-5.   Pains sound about the same exact as I was experiencing. 

I woke up from surgery crying. Nurse freaked out thinking I was in pain.  Had to explain to her it was tears of joy since the burning pain was gone. 

After surgery therapy is very important as is your change in lifestyle.  I can no longer run since it can damage my nerves again.  Lifting restrictions, etc.  But life is much better now! 

Mine was so bad they skipped the shots and therapy.  Of course insurance here was much better 20 years ago.  

Good luck! 

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Brian, hang in there man, hopefully you'll have a very succesful operation and you'll be up and "running" (so to speak) in not too long a time.

Take care,

 

Jack.

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