Sunday, September 23, 2007
Trip to the ER, Part two.
So you know at the end of my last post where I said I was feeling better? Well that only lasted a couple of hours. By evening time yesterday I was in excruciating pain again. Pain like nothing I have ever experienced in my life. Sharp, shooting pains that started in my lower back and radiated down both legs. The pain was so severe I couldn't even lie down. I found that standing or walking slowly helped slightly. If I was not able to sit or lie, rocking back and forth, back and forth on the couch was all I could do. A hot shower helped minimally, so I was in and out of the shower at least a dozen times. This went on for six hours. By that time I was sobbing hysterically and rocking back and forth on the couch. Joe called the emergency room to see if they could offer some help, but they said they can't give advice on the phone and I would have to come back in. At this point I would have done anything to make the pain stop, so at one o'clock in the morning back into the car and off to the ER we went for the second time in a 24 hour period. Things progressed much more quickly this time, since they already had all of my info. After I got undressed and got into the bed, within five minutes the doctor came in and gave me a shot of the same pain meds I had gotten earlier. No I.V. this time. They also upped the dose. Immediately I felt better. One hundred percent better. My pain level went from a nine to almost zero within fifteen minutes. He told me after reviewing my chart(apparently if you go to the er twice in one day, you get a chart), he said he was certain that I had disc problems with my back. He acted shocked that the doctor I saw earlier hadn't taken x-rays of my back. So off to radiology I went to have x-rays taken. The whole process took about thirty minutes. The doc comes in to review them with us, and sure enough, one of my discs has moved forward slightly and is bulging, which is pressing on my nerves, causing the radiating pain I was having down both legs or, Sciatica. He said I have a congenital problem with my L4 and L5 discs. I was born that way! I have had chronic lower back pain ever since I can remember, but when I was diagnosed with kidney disease last year, it was assumed that was the cause of it. Apparently that was not the case. He did say that the exercise is what may have triggered this episode. So now I have to go for an MRI, and have physical therapy and NOT do anymore exercises that could aggravate my back. In fact, I have to see an orthopedic doctor before I can resume any type of physical activity. There goes my gym membership(for now). Darn it. Don't I have enough on my plate without having to deal with this? I find it so interesting that one can go to the same hospital, on practically the same day and get a completely different diagnosis from two different doctors. The entire time I was going through this ordeal I was saying to my husband over and over-"This can't just be pain from overexercising and dehydration. It can't be. There has to be something else wrong. This is the worst pain I have ever had." I guess you really should listen to your gut feeling about things like this. So I am home now, laying flat on my back and I have both better pain meds(the Vicodin was not helping) and a muscle relaxant. I hope this passes by tomorrow. I have to go to work. I haven't been there long enough to start calling in sick. Ugh.