The MRI showed that at one point in time I had a rupture in my lower back and now I have a tear in the same spot. He said while that can be extremely painful, it is nothing to be concerned about. I am assuming the rupture could have been from when I broke my tailbone a couple years back?! 😁
The reason for me getting in to the neurosurgeon so fast, however, is due to the fact that I have a herniated disc. He went on to explain that my MRI results were “quite scary” to look at due to the herniated disc being so extremely large. He also said that it showed to be affecting some of my nerves as well.
After a physical exam and me praying not to say something I might regret to him because he was moving my legs around and triggering every stinking sore spot possilbe in my back and legs…he felt I still had enough strength to not jump straight to surgery. This is definitely what I wanted to hear!
We discussed options and it was decided that I would try epidural injections, something I’m not thrilled about, but it beats surgery. But, he of course couldn’t stop there. He continued to say that due to the size of my herniated disc, it was very improtant for me to call him if my symptoms worsen or if I had any bathroom accidents! Uh, what?! He stressed the importance of getting in immediately as if I began to experience any of the symptoms he listed, it would be a medical emergency and I would need to have surgery within 24-48 hours from the onset of symptoms.
This was a red flag to Tim and as we were waiting to schedule my injection, Tim suggested I get a second opinion. I questioned him as to why, even though I knew his answer. To make the situation even worse, I will be waiting probably another week before I get in to see the other doctor who will then set up for me to get the injections! I was left with the doctor telling me to do what I have been doing for pain management…even though I had told him nothing is helping me!
So, now I am in the position where Tim wants me to get another opinion, not because he wants me to have surgery, but he doesn’t want me to get to the point where it becomes an emergency or where I could have permanent damage, while personally, I would rather try injections first over surgery. I have not heard any good turnouts from anyone who has had back surgery. On the other hand, I already have some minor symptoms that the doctor had pointed out could be leading me to have surgery.
I think my plan is to call tomorrow and see if I can get in sooner to the next doctor in order to get my injection as soon as possible. If they can’t then I might call my doctor to get a referral for another opinion and express how miserable I am. Like Tim said, I have a high tolerance for pain and I’m not the best at describing just how bad it is, so if the doctor is waiting to do the surgery based on me telling him how I feel, I’ll be dead. Haha.
I have been a lot better at describing my symptoms but after 13 years of doctors not listening in regard to my other health issues, it’s very easy to tell myself “what’s the point” But, I have also learned that nothing will get done if I don’t advocate for myself and push for answers and push for doctors to help me. I am getting better at not just replying with, “I’m fine.”
So that’s where things are. I was extremely discouraged and frustrated most of the afternoon. They make a big rush for me to get in because obviously my MRI is horrible and it freaked the doctors out, yet now I wait another week just to see the next doctor who then has to set up the injections.
As I was driving Nathan to football practice, we hit traffic which literally took us 20 minutes to cross town, usually it’s about 5 minutes. My back was killing and I was hot because of no air 😉 and I kept thinking about my situation. In the midst of this Leah chimes in and tells me to look at the beautiful clouds. In an instance I was able to see the world through the eyes of a five year old. She didn’t notice the heat, or the fact we were sitting in traffic, she wasn’t frustrated with how long it was taking to get through town. She was appreciating the drive, soaking in the beauty around her. So, I took the opportunity to do the same by discussing with the kids, images we saw throughout the pretty clouds floating in the sky. The night got that much better…and I thanked God for using Leah to help bring me back to what really matters!