Pain After Herniated Disc Surgery

Here is my story:  At the age of 17, I noticed lots of pain in my lower back. Now mind you, I was a cheerleader for many years, so I just assumed that it was pulled muscles. I started to see a chiropractor and it helped for awhile.

At the age of 19, I got pregnant and by the 8th month, I was in severe pain. I assumed it was labor pains, since I had never been in labor before, so I wasn't sure. I went into the birthing center, they ran their tests to find that I was not in labor, but they were concerned as to why I was having such pain, so they called in their orthopedic doctor, who took a look at some old MRIs from previous problems I had in the past years.

That’s when he found them, three herniated discs. L4 L5 and L6, but with me being pregnant, there wasn't much they could do. I had to have a c-section because of my daughter’s high heart rate.

After that the doctor started me on physical therapy and cortisone shots. Nothing worked. So with a 4 month old baby, the doc told me I needed to have back surgery and if I didn't, I could face being in a wheelchair at the age of 30.

No 20 year old wants to hear that, so I agreed to the procedure. It took awhile to recover, but after I did, I felt ten times better. The pain was still there, but not nearly as bad. I went on about life as normal. The pain came back some and I had to get more shots, which helped a bit.

Now 6 years later, this is the third episode within 4 months that I have been in pain. Not sure what is causing it. The first time, I went to the ER and they just gave me medicine and sent me on my way because I wasn't having any loss of bladder or bowels.

The pain eased, I got back to life and sure enough, about two months after, the stinging pain in my leg had returned this time. The same pain that I felt before the surgery from the nerves being damaged from the disc.

As I sit here today, a week later, my back is causing me so much pain that I can’t walk right or sit for longer than five minutes without it stiffening up again. To be 26 and feel like I am 40, it’s kind of depressing. I am hoping someone out there as been through this and can give me advice as to what to do.

I’ve tried stretches and exercise, which seem to make it worse. With no insurance,  I am really at a loss as to what to do to help this pain. It’s hard to sit at my desk at work because of it.

Any advice would be most appreciated.

- Rachael

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