Posted By Charleen on May 06, 1999 at 12:02:52
Thank you for your responses before to me regarding my spinal operations and recovery process. I am currently waiting for the MRI results that I recently had done.
Brief History: L4/L5 Discetomies with one lamenectomy: 5/88, 7/88
Very little pain for 9 years since 7/88 until January '98. Had a fusion done at L4/L5, posterior with no instrumentation except bone grafts from right hip, 9/98. I began having symptoms again around Dec. 98....since then my pain is worse than before the fusion. I have had flexion/extension x-rays which demonstrated zero bone problems causing my nerve pain, left leg weakness and numbness from the thigh down in my left leg. (left leg has always been my most affected side) I had an EMG that demonstrated L5 nerve root compression, demylination (sp?) on the left side, and now am waiting for MRI results.
My question is: I have all the nerve pain normally associated with L5 nerve root problems, and the neurologist that did my EMG stated that I had something also going on at the S1 nerve root area. Is deep thigh ache correspond with all this? I also had 2 ESI's and the anesthesiologist that performed them questioned if it wasn't fibromyalgia. I mentioned that to my ortho surgeon and he said I don't have the trigger points that would make him think that, but he was not totally certain what was causing this. Between the nerve pain and the deep thigh ache that keeps me awake at night I don't know which is worse. The ache is worse than any tooth ache could ever be. Medications I am taking: 600mg of neurontin 4x/day....100mg of amitriptyline at bedtime.....10 mg flexeril at bed time....I am also an insulin dependent diabetic. thank you in advance. This thigh ache is unbearable at times.
Posted By CCF Neuro[P] MD, RPS on May 08, 1999 at 15:01:09
I am sorry to hear about the pain. The MRI should help in telling you if there is boney compromise of the L5/S1 nerve. This latter test is alot more sensitive than simple x-ray, and it should give some hint of whether there is inflammation of the nerve. It is difficult for me to tell you whether the thigh pain is from the nerve root or not. The area of the thigh is not in the nerve distribution of L5/S1, however, the pain still could be involved because of secondary problems as a result of the L5/S1. (such as changes in gait, body positioning, etc.). The MRI will hopefully help in this. These type of surgeries do take time in healing and the rehab is often as painful (at times) as the previous pain. You could consider increasing the neurontin dose alittle. I hope things get better soon. Let us know how the MRI turns out.
CCF Neuro[P] MD
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