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Post-surgical nerve pain
On Sept 4, 2007, I had a partial left nephrectomy to remove a benign tumor.  When I came out of the anesthetic, I noticed some pain whenever anything touched my abdominal area.  That has continued as well as a similar pain in the left side above and below the incision scar. I don't know if this is related, but I also have had huge swelling in my abdominal area since right after the surgery.  My surgeon did not look at me at all when I went to see him about this.  He just told me that the pain is "nerve damage" and that this is "not uncommon" in this type of surgery.  He said he had "no idea" about the swelling I described.  He sent me to the pain center. I was seen by a pain specialist there about a month ago. Again no one looked at me or did any kind of tests.  The doctor prescribed Lyrical.  He told me to take one capsule (75 mg.) a day and if there were no serious side effects lasting after 2 weeks to go to 2 capsules a day.  I started with one and had immediate relief.  I only know this since I was previously taking Vicodin twice a day and couldn't function on any less and after only 3 days on the Lyrical I didn't need any Vicodin.  There is still pain, but I can work and sleep without even noticing it.  It mostly hurts when it is touched.  I'm very happy to be off the narcotics and able to manage the pain, but I'm still frustrated because I don't understand why no one seems to want to learn what is causing the problem rather than just treating the symptom.  I can't get a clear answer from anyone about what may be happening here.  I want to know if there is a test I should ask for.  I want to know if I am going to need to take this drug for the rest of my life (I'm a 60 year old female), or is it likely that the nerves will heal and I can get off of the drug.  What should I ask for and who should I ask?
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