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View Full Version : Pain before surgery VS after surgery


butterflylr
23rd November 2004, 12:20 AM
Ok all of you who have subjected yourselves to the ordeal of surgery, I am wondering if you had pain before your surgery and if it got better afterwords? I have heard a lot of you say that it's different pain. If so, let me know exactly how it is different. I am just trying to get an idea of what I might expect if I go into surgery. Let me know if the new pain is worse than the old pain or whatever. I want to know everything! Cause I have a LOT of pain now and I think anything would be better than this but who knows... :help:

Jonny
23rd November 2004, 12:59 AM
Before surgery I'd get general muscle achiness quite a lot, and because of the curves, when I sat up to play the violin, it felt like my whole back tensed up like it was trying to pull my curves down and that was extremely painful. Any time I sat up without my brace, really, my spine sort of collapsed on itself.

Now, four and a bit months post-op, I no longer get that pain at all. My spine has been immobilised, and now it supports me (like a spine...haha) and holds me upright.

However, a generally tiring day can leave me with a pain across my upper back that only lying down will solve. It's getting better and better, though, and I wouldn't be surprised if it disappears in a few months. The other thing is that my back is VERY numb and tender at the site, and leaning against a lot of things is painful. Although this is down to two personal things: 1. I'm thin and the rods stick out and hit everything. 2. They did a thoracoplasty which makes the area still tender and numb, and becaase they did it from the midline incision, they had to retract the muscle a lot and damage lots of sensory nerves.

But it's so, SO nice to be able to sit up and play without pain... first time I could I almost cried in happiness :clap:

EDIT: 900TH POST! :joke:

elvinwarrior
23rd November 2004, 02:41 AM
I didn't have pain before my surgery, and only a little after. (I don't mean directly after, obviously.)

Joy
23rd November 2004, 03:29 AM
I had quite a bit of pain before surgery and none for a while a few month after surgery apart from occasioal soreness and muscle spasms. But now, almost two years post-op, Id have to say that my pain is about the same a it was before surgery, but different. My neck and my shoulders spasm A LOT. But I still think the surgery was worth it... I'd do it over again (if I went back in time that is)

Marti
23rd November 2004, 05:12 AM
The old poll was on this...

I had a bit of pain before surgery. For a few months, starting about six months before my surgery, my lower back would really ache a lot. But I guess I sort of got used to that, becuase it stopped. Now I have my weird hip pain and sometimes my back hurts. Most of the time it doesn't, but somedays it'll just really hurt.

jfkimberly
23rd November 2004, 08:23 AM
My surgeries were all before I was 2 years old, so I don't remember life before them. And I don't have any instrumentation. But the only pain I get as a result of my scoliosis is some pain in my ribs in front where they seem to rub together, and some achiness in my left shoulderblade (ribhump side) and muscle ache in my middle back if I've been sitting in the wrong position too long.

titch
23rd November 2004, 11:16 AM
I've had pain before and after both surgeries. Before my first surgery, when I was just short of 21, I first went on prescription painkillers, Co-Proxamol. Before that I had pain if I stood too long - a muscular ache in my low back, which had made it difficult in the Saturday job I used to have working on a deli counter. I was fine when it was busy, and I was moving, bending, twisting all the time, but in quiet times, it could be really painful. After surgery, I was sent home with what was supposed to be a week's supply of co-proxamol and diclofenac, and still hadn't finished them after 6 weeks. Which is not to say that I wasn't in pain, but that it was bearable, and I was quite happy to let my body tell me it was time to sit down, or lie down, rather than mask it. However, my standing time was dramatically reduced, and really didn't ever come back.

Because my surgery was done by a local hip and knee ortho, I had a poor longer term outcome. By the time I started work at Amnesty in September 1999, just over 5 years after the surgery, the pain had started to ramp up again, and I had various neurological problems. These were exacerbated after a fall on ice in mid-December that year, and by the middle of 2000 I had booked my first appointment with a specialist. The NHS moves at a snail's pace, and by mid 2001 I'd finally seen the surgeon I eventually had surgery with. By that time things were getting bad, I was on full time painkillers, and just couldn't stand up straight because I'd developed a condition called flatback, and had severe degeneration of my L2-3 disc. I was on the waiting list for surgery until October 2002, when I finally had the salvage surgery. By that time, I was not only keeled over forward, I had also keeled off to the left. The pain had got bad enough that double the maximum over-the-counter dose of ibuprofen and 8 co-dydramol (500mg paracetmol/10mg dihydrocodeine tartrate) daily barely knocked the roughest edges off the pain, and I could hardly walk. I was a matter of weeks away from using a wheelchair to do the shopping simply because of the pain and the sheer exhaustion it caused when I finally got my surgery. Since surgery, I've not been painfree and haven't managed to fully come off the painkillers. The problems with my neck that I developed as part of the whole flatback thing mean that sometimes I need painillers for them, and I find that I don't sleep well without painkillers because it's first uncomfortable and then painful for me to lie for any length of time. However, I normally just take a couple of painkillers at night, and it's unusual for me to take any during the day. The surgery gave me my life back, and that's primarily due to the reduction in pain that I got.

I don't want my experience to sound scary - I was really unfortunate with my first surgery simply because it wasn't done by a specialist, and everything that's followed has been a kind of domino effect from that. What it does show is that while there are no guarantees, even when the situation is quite severe there is a good chance of getting relief. Also, I would note that even if you're swapping one pain for another, very often the new pain is far less intrusive into your everyday life, and as long as it's less restrictive to you, that's a huge improvement on it's own :-)

Blair
23rd November 2004, 01:18 PM
Before my surgery, I had pain. It was kind of an even split between muscle spasam pain and general fatigue and strain from trying to correct my balance while riding and working out.

Now I never have fatigue. But I do have an increase in muscle spasam frequency and intensity...

BlueIce
23rd November 2004, 03:17 PM
here's what I posted in the other thread:
I had pain before surgery, because of a car crash I had a year before that. Before the crash there was pain too, but only if I'd been standing all day or had been lifting heavy things (and most peoples backs hurt when they do that so it didn't bother me). The pain got worse after the crash and it started hurting when I had to study too (like when I had exams). I still have some pain from surgery, so I don't really know if that'll go away. It's a different pain though, and now it's mostly located at the bottom.

Crazy16girl
23rd November 2004, 03:50 PM
I had no pain before surgery. Only from when i first got the brace and that rubbed. But thats not to do with the curves! I didn't even notice anything untill my mum said about me looking funny when i was 15 (they think it started growing at 11-12) and it was severe when i was 15 *shrugs*
A year on now and my back does ache sometimes, but i think its the cold weather now. And im starting physio a week tomorrow so hopefully that will help, but im so glad i had the op.

Kaja
23rd November 2004, 04:13 PM
I had VERY little pain before surgery. It would just ache if I did silly things (like lay on hard surfaces). Now, I rarely have pain in my back. If I do, it's not much :D My shoulder aches though, and it's bothering me a lot. I get physical therapy for it, and it helps. It hurts because the hump caused by the top curve, is bigger now :roll: And that's because my surgeon didn't fuse that one, and it kind of change angle. I'll have to explain that better once. :P Anyways. I'm not in much pain :D