I was wondering if anyone has any input for me. I'm 28 years old with moderate to occasionally severe back pain. I decided to write because I just spent 45 minutes in the kitchen trying to cook a Thanksgiving dessert and my back started aching badly. The fact that I can't even cook for my family without the pain is alarming to me.
When I was 12 in 1991, I had a C-D fusion for a 60 degree scoliosis curve. The surgery was a success, reducing my curve to 32 degrees or so, and I did very well for a long time with absolutely no back pain at all. However, for the last 3 years or so, the back pain has started and gotten progressively worse. Perhaps it's due to starting law school and sitting hunched over my books for hours on end, I do not know. Anyhow, the pain is unbearable sometimes, and usually brought on by being in any one position - sitting, lying down, standing - for longer than 45 minutes or so. So that means any time I'm shopping my back ends the trip prematurely, when I'm sleeping sometimes I can't stand to lie down another minute (despite going through 2 different expensive mattresses and countless pillows), and the absolute worst is when I'm sitting with my law school books trying to study for finals (like now). This pain occurs every day on and off and all over my back. Sometime it aches, but often it's a burning type of pain.
I've consulted with my general practitioner about this. He took X-rays and referred me to a spinal surgeon specialist. Both told me that nothing can be done, that I'm too young to be on a pain management program, and that physical therapy is my only option.
Is this true? Is there really nothing that can be done to alleviate this pain, which I can only assume will get progressively worse as I age? Why am I too young to go on pain management? I've taken Vicodin occasionally for the pain and it gives me incredible relief.
I went to physical therapy, but basically was shown a bunch of pilates type exercises. Instead of doing those, I've been working with a personal trainer to focus more on overall fitness, integrating some core strengthening with weight training. Unfortunately, I still have back pain. I also know that I do not have the time or patience to do the pilates exercises several times a day exactly as prescribed. Because I'm not following these instructions, is this pain my fault?
The thought of having to endure this pain for decades into the future is disheartening to say the least. Often I just break down and cry in frustration. I feel like I could have a bright future in a legal career ahead of me but I do not want this horrible back pain to hold me back. The thought of working a full 8 hour day in an office sitting in the same chair all day SCARES me.
Anyway ... Any input, thoughts, or advice would be VERY much appreciated.