Medical Questions > Conditions and Diseases > Back Pain Forum

cervical spine epidural & shock

Must Read
What happens during labor? What do contractions feel like? And how do I know that labor has begun? Read on to learn about birthing basics....
Signs of labor occur after 36 weeks of pregnancy. Learn about the difference between real and false contractions. Plus, we outline signs of delivery complicati...
Almost all women worry about the pain of childbirth. Preparing for childbirth includes thinking about how you'd like to cope with the pain of labor. Read on for...
I was wondering why I would feel an electric shock down my arm with excruciating pain while having a cervical spine epidural. I about jumped off the table. Dr. said..."electric shock no good...all the way down good". I have had more weakness in that arm since shot and am in greater pain than I was before. It has been two weeks. I will see my pain Dr. in three days, hopefully she will be able to answer questions. I do know one thing for sure....no more shots for me! I guess surgery will be next...Am at the end of my rope with pain. PT could not help me. I have two herniated discs in neck, four in lumbar spine with siatica. PT said no help until neck is resolved....I also have DDD and stenosis along with sponlylosis in both parts of spine. I am no longer able to work, been off over a year and my husband does all the housework...feel totaly helpless. I take vicodin and methocarbonal, doesn't touch the pain. Any suggestions??? Dr. told me I was at risk for spinal cord injury but does not want me to have surgery.
Did you find this post helpful?
|

replied September 29th, 2008
Iam In the same situation
I have stenosis, 12 herniated,slipped, bulged or degenerated discs. Iam on oxycotin and lyrica and this does help somewhat.
I have had DDD , stenosis, arthritis,sciaitca,and much more
I cannot do mush at all, Iam in pain 24/7.
just pray that stem cell research can help us one day
dont reaally have any answers, but wanted to let you know your not alone.

I had cervical epidural and 1 hour later I suffered a heart attack. The heart center installed a stint in my LAD.
I am at a lost for the reason why it stressed me so bad, I felt real bad afterwards and could not even make the 100 mile drive home before calling the emts at a bernilllo store.
god bless and good luck with your pain
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 29th, 2008
a1stonemason
Thank you so much for answering...I don't have any answers either, am so sorry to hear you are in pain as well. I guess it justs helps to know we are not alone with our suffering. God bless, and let me know how you get along.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 2nd, 2008
so much for helpfullness
Well, I guess I thought I would find more encouragment at this site. Went to Dr....found answer I was looking for about shock. I have apt. on Monday with surgeon. Well wishes for everyone.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 2nd, 2008
Extremely eHealthy
Hi Jennysu1,

Sorry, but i missed your post or would have responded to your original post.

What information did you find out from your doctor?

I don't understand why, if you are at risk for spinal cord injury, the doctor wouldn't want you to have surgery. Did the doctor explain that to you?

Good luck with your spine surgeon appointment.

I would suggest that you get a second opinion from another spinal surgeon before deciding on surgery or using the surgeon you will be seeing.
It's always a good idea to get at least one other opinion before having surgery of any kind, especially spinal surgery.

I got several other opinions before having my first spinal surgery in 2006. I used the same surgeon for my second one this past June.

Fran
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 2nd, 2008
Spine surgeon
Fran,
Thanks for responding. I was told the shock was because they got "close" to a nerve. Felt like they hit the nerve to me. Anyway, she didn't want me to have surgery because she felt the risks with the surgery were equal to the risk of me doing something to damage my spine. Anyway, she could not open my mri when she had referred me for the epidural and when I saw her on Wednsday she saw what she had to work with. Said it was not worth trying another epidural and referred me to surgeon. I have already seen two other surgeons, this will be the third one. The first one said I shouldn't have the surgery because of DDD, the second wanted to do it that week. I felt like he was looking at me as a "surgery" and not as a person, if that makes sense. Anyway, the one I am seeing Monday is very good and the Carle Spine Institute is the best in Central Illinois. It will be interesting to see what he has to say. I just know that I can't continue like this as they can't even begin to help my lumbar spine until something is done with the cervical and if they keep giving me the run around I won't be able to walk by the time they get to it. Thank you so much for answering this post as I feel like a burden to my family and friends and I know they are sick of listening to me. It helps to know that someone understands where we are and how we are feeling. At times it makes you wonder if it is all worth it. I know the Lord loves me and promises to never give us more than we can handle, but some days it is very hard indeed to handle. Thank you again for your concern.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 2nd, 2008
Extremely eHealthy
I've been there and no the feeling of being a burden all to well.

It's hard for others to understand what we are feeling with spinal pain and spinal problems when they have never had anything like it before.

They understand pain, but can not understand the kind of pain that comes with a spinal problem, the nerve pain and how pain in the spine affects every part of your body, how you can and can not move and almost anything you do or try to do, increases the pain.
It's hard to be able to think with this kind of pain.

It sounds like you had the epidural done without fluoroscopy. That is an x-ray going that would allow the doctor to see exactly where the needle should be placed to administer the epidural.
An MRI would not have helped with this, you need to have the fluoroscopy going at the same time the ESI is being done.

Any kind of ESI, nerve block etc, should never be done without fluoroscopy. It can be be dangerous as well as resulting in the horrible pain you felt when it was done and afterwards. Nerves where touched when it was done.

Having DDD is not a reason to deny a patient surgery or suggest that you shouldn't have surgery because of it.

There are a lot of spine doctors that don't even use the term, degenerative disc disease, anymore. That's because the name is a misnomer, DDD is not a disease, but rather a process of aging and because you have it in one or 2 areas of the spine does not mean it will progress and get worse in other areas of the spine.

It does sound like surgery is in your near future, starting with your neck. It will take time to recover from that surgery before they would do any surgery on your lumbar spine.

On the other hand, you may find that some conservative treatment will be available to you as well.

Also, in the hands of a well qualified pain management doctor, ESI for the cervical spine, and lumbar spine can be done very effectively and provide relief of pain.
A well qualified pain management doctor will use a flouroscopy machine and is well experienced in what he/she is doing. You would not have a repeat of your first ESI.

As for the doctor that wanted to do surgery the same week you saw him. I can understand your feelings. You where not comfortable with him and that is a good reason to find another doctor.
Did the doctor give you a reason for wanting to do the surgery the same week? Sometimes, the doctor will see a real reason to do so, but, that should be carefully explained to you.

I would advise you to have a list of questions to ask this next doctor you see. Have them based on what you have been told by the other doctors and be ready to ask questions about the specifics that you hear from this doctor as well.

I would also suggest that you bring another person with you so that you have a second set of eyes and ears.
I say eyes because I feel it is important to have someone other than you actually see and watch how the doctor interacts with you, the patient and the person that you bring with you. How relaxed does he/she appear, how does the doctor respond to your questions, what kind of look is on the doctors face. Is it relaxed and ready to answer all your questions or is there that look of not wanting to answer all the questions, explain things etc.
Ears, so that someone else can hear everything that the doctor says. you may not hear everything that is being said because you are the patient and it's difficult to absorb everything that is being said. With a second pair of ears, you have another person to pick up on what is said and to also ask questions as well.

If you have a doctor that is not eager to explain things, answer your questions, you need to find another doctor.
A good doctor will appreciate the questions, and be glad to explain things so that the patient, family and friends are well informed about the entire situation.

Good luck and if you have any questions you want to ask me, just ask away or PM me.

Fran
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 3rd, 2008
fluoroscopy
Fran,
I did have my epidural done with fluoroscopy. I took my mri with me and had the Dr. doing the shot review it before I would let anyone touch me. I'm afraid I clogged up their system a bit with him reviewing and calling the pain managment Dr. I have. At the clinic I go to they have a shot center right there, seems to be big buisness to me. I have no doubt the epidural was done correctly, it just didn't work as it should for me. As far as taking someone with me, my daughter took me to my first surgeron appt and my husband was with me the second time. The reason for the haste in his case was the threat of spinal cord injury. My own personal Dr. is very concerned about this as well. I just don't think the Dr. was looking at the whole picture of me. I was having problems with my face and left side going numb and he didn't address that problem at all. I had all my records and reports with me and he didn't even look at them, shoved them aside. He said I could not have surgery but I would have to spend my life in a recliner, a bleak future at 56 years old as far as I'm concerned. I am hoping that once the neck is taken care of my lumbar problems can be resolved with PT and shots. The shot itself was not bad at all, just the nerve thing was very uncomfortable. I do one question, my pain managment Dr. does not prescribe pain medication, I have to get that from my personal Dr., is that normal? Makes me wonder how they control pain? She does prescribe muscle relaxers? Confuses me a bit as the muscle relaxer makes me dopier than the vicodin? My husband will be going in with me on Monday and I have my list of questions ready to go. Thanks for your concern.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 3rd, 2008
Extremely eHealthy
Jenny,

You can get facial numbness with cervical stenosis.

As for the doctor that said no surgery, toss his opinion and statements out of your mind. He was crazy to say that.

You are only 1 year younger than me, and yes, his comments gave a very bleak picture for you.

It is true that the longer the nerves are compressed the better chance of permanent nerve damage happening.
Problem is, no one can really say how long it will take for that to happen. Some people take years and years and others can be very quickly.

One test that can be done to see if there has already been permanent nerve damage is an EMG. but that isn't always 100% accurate either.

I have seen and read various ways that pain meds are given to patients. Some have to get them from their personal physician, others continue to get them from their spinal surgeon and others get them from their pain management doctor.

Then there are various other methods. such as post op, the spine surgeon will prescribe for 3-6 months and then if there is still a need, the patient will need to see a pain management doctor for further treatment and meds.

In my case, I use a huge sports medicine orthopedic practice that has their own pain management doctor as well as a physiatrist to do EMG, xray department and an MRI facility downstairs in the same building.
My spine surgeon prescribes the pain meds for up to 6 months and then if needed, he turns the patient over the the PM doctor who continues to prescribe pain meds and I don't get them from my PCP.

My personal opinion is that there should be a coordination of care between the spine surgeon, pain mamgement doctor if involved and the PCP should be kept on top of all that is going on.

I prefer using a practice that has all the specialties located in one place, spine surgeon, pain mangagement together. Everyone can work together.

There is also the pain contract that many doctors have you sign as well and you can't go elsewhere to get any pain meds or you have broken the pain contract and the doctor will not treat you any more.

My pain contract is a 3 way contract. Either the pain management doctor can prescribe, the spine surgeon, or my PCP. They all have my medical records and can see what is going on, when the last prescription was written etc. and have all the details.
If one is on vacation, then one of the other 2 can fill in for a prescription if necessary. Or if the weather is bad, and I can't drive the 30-40 minute drive to get the prescription, then my PCP can write it for me and he's only a mile down the road from my house.

It makes for excellent care for the patient and pain control when needed, but doesn't restrict the patient, but does keep watch over the risk of abuse as well.

Good luck with the doctor on Monday and let me know how it goes, what you where told and what you think.

Fran
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 7th, 2008
anterier cervical diskectomy with fusion
Back from visit with sergeon. I will be having anterier cervical diskectomy with fusion on c 5-6, c 6-7 on Nov. 14th. My husband and I feel comfortable with this decision. The sergeon took over an hour explaining and answering questions for us. I go up on the 7th for pre-op and another visit with Dr. and his nurse. I am scared, but am sure it is the right thing for me to do. I will be having another MRI on the 7th as well as the one I have is almost a year old. The second Dr. I saw was not asking for a newer MRI and he was fusing into c 5-6 that is herniated as well. Was only doing one level, instead of two. I find that very interesting and I wondered about it after we had left his office. Anyway, am feeling like this surgeon is doing what is best for me.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 7th, 2008
Extremely eHealthy
Jenny,
That's great news that you found a spine surgeon that you are comfortable with and feel confident in having your surgery done by.

That's so important, to trust the surgeon that will operate on you, regardless of what type of surgery you have.

Having a new MRI is really important, if the prior one is more than 4 months old. Far to many things can change in just that little time. The fact that yours is almost a year old, makes having a new MRI now even more important.

I would really have concerns about the second opinion doctor that you saw, if you was going by an MRI that is almost a year old. IMHO, the surgery he would do would be more of an exploratory surgery as he is unsure of what is going on and what the problem is. Not a good idea.

Keep us informed on how you are doing, and what the new MRI shows.
And good luck with your surgery.

Fran
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 8th, 2008
Thanks
Thank you so much for your concern. Will keep you posted.
|
Did you find this post helpful?