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NCB w/Sciatica plus other back probs


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  #1  
October 22nd, 2010, 08:50 AM
MamaMandy's Avatar is it Spring yet??
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Maine
Posts: 383
I am really discouraged and scared about my VBAC ability and am hoping you ladies will have some inspiration & tips to share. Trying to keep it brief, this is an unplanned pregnancy that happened as I was preparing to start spinal injections, hoping it could delay surgery to fuse my spine and for disc herniation, AND being treated for fibromyalgia. In other words, this body is not in ideal baby making condition! I plan to VBAC, a c/s will speed up need for spinal fusion and I just hate everything about the idea of another c/s. I don't want an epidural, if they'll even touch my spine for an epidural, it's likely not to work, so I guess you could say I've found myself in the NCB first out of necessity, 2nd by choice!

Was feeling pretty confident until Monday, when I took a step and had this EXPLOSION of pain, couldn't walk or move & barely breathe for a good 15 minutes, and I am used to pain! Finally let up, I could walk/sit/rise very carefully through the pain, ok I can do this, OB says not a big deal. By Tuesday it was walking with crutches and several more explosions, on Weds even more severe/frequent, when my whole right side went numb and even crawling was too much I caved & went to the ER. Turns out the broken part of my spine & herniated discs have shifted with baby, and go from just pressing on the sciatic nerve to crushing it. Great. Severe sciatica & spinal compression, lucky me, take these narcotics & lay in bed for the next month. How the heck am I supposed to deliver a baby when I can barely move to even dress myself?! I so, so do not want a c/s under general anesthesia. I know regular sciatica happens in pregnancy, and I figured if any group here knew of ways to ease the pain at home w/out taking those &*%^ drugs, or maybe to shift baby & solve the problem, or to get through labor with sciatica, this group would! Sorry to whine & vent so much, I am just so depressed & angry...but still hopeful there's some way! Thanks so much to anyone who takes the time to read this!
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  #2  
October 22nd, 2010, 09:15 AM
ChicaChels's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I really don't know much, but I would look into chiropractors and acupuncturists..and maybe a massage? I'm sorry you're in so much pain
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  #3  
October 22nd, 2010, 01:11 PM
FusionGirl's Avatar Formerly TTC#1inNC
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I would call around for a physical therapy appointment. I feel for you - the bones that held my spine in place were broken causing my vertebrate to shift foward giving me a disc herniation and horrible sciatica. I did have my spine fused at L5-S1. The injections made the pain worse for me. I am surprised they want you on bed rest for the next month unless something is affecting the baby? Bed rest is one of the worst things for back pain, it lets your muscles atrophy from disuse (it happens faster than you think).

In PT they may be able to help you with some stretches and exercises to east the pain. I would personally stay away from a chiropractor - if you think about it your bones are already out of position and broken and then you are going to have someone adjust you. That thought is horrifying for me. They can do some real damage.

If you want to PM me about the spinal fusion feel free. I know it can be a scary decision but for me it was well worth it. Recovery was difficult but I have not had any back problems since. Surgery was April 2009.

If you do decide to go to PT I would look at the spinning babies website and ask about some of the positions they suggest to get the baby in the right position so you do not have back labor.

Good Luck!
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  #4  
October 22nd, 2010, 03:03 PM
Caelen's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I was also cautioned against being adjusted by a chiropractor. I don't remember the explanation, and it wasn't because I was pregnant, it had more to do with it not really solving anything.

My real suggestion would be physical therapy where they can teach you exercises and stretches to do. If you have a local college or gym where you can sign up for water aerobics that might be helpful for you as well. Weight works a lot differently in water so just being in the water may help you because it will take some of that weight off of your spine for you. Maybe just have someone with you just in case it doesn't turn out to help at all and you need help getting out.

Massage can be awesome. I had (and have this time too) what's considered run of the mill sciatica due to being pregnant. This time I haven't gotten a massage, but did during my last pregnancy. I just went to a place like Massage Envy, they had employees that were certified to work with pregnant clients so they know which pressure points to stay away from etc. Oh. My. Goodness. It was heavenly. I didn't hurt for close to a month after ONE session. Typically you can get a discount if you sign up for a packaged deal so if the first one works, you might consider that.

A lady in my DDC also suggested getting a pregnancy support belt. Not a tummy sleeve, an actual support belt. It will help take some of the weight of your growing stomach off of your back so it may help those pains not become more intense. Like I said earlier, I have the run of the mill sciatica and it does help me. Not sure what it would do for you, but its worth a shot! I got Maternity Support Belt | Motherhood Maternity there are cheaper ones, but I figured this one would be my best bet. Check consignment places that carry maternity stuff too if you want to try to find it cheaper.


As for labor- with my son, sciatica really didn't effect my labor much. It was painful either way. I don't say that to discourage you! Just saying sciatica really didn't come into play. It may for you though since yours is more severe. I avoided laying flat on my back and that helped a lot, counter pressure helped a bit and DH did a lot of massage during labor. You can also use rice packs (rice in a clean gym sock, heat in microwave for 2min, don't apply on stomach) to apply gentle heat to your hips and legs, that might help during labor and even during pregnancy. Your doctor and the nurses can probably help you prepare for NCB with more severe sciatica.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FusionGirl View Post
If you do decide to go to PT I would look at the spinning babies website and ask about some of the positions they suggest to get the baby in the right position so you do not have back labor.

Good Luck!
Maybe that's why sciatica really didn't come into play much for me during labor. I know my son was in an ideal position and didn't have issues with back labor.
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  #5  
November 4th, 2010, 01:56 PM
MamaMandy's Avatar is it Spring yet??
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Thank you ladies - I did pop on here a while ago and your advice was helpful. I decided to stop seeing the chiro after reading this, found some stretches that helped, and "modified" my bed rest. It WAS making things so much worse! My legs were giving out & they were worried I'd hurt the baby falling, understandable, but by walking around more bracing myself off things & using chairs like walkers it got better. Laying in bed is painful, strange but true! Careful, careful movement & lots of pacing, and I think little Miss Emily shifted so that helped too. I'd probably still be miserable in bed if you guys hadn't enlightened me!

Christine- that is the same spot in my spine that's messed up...and you are right, the idea of fusion is scary. I'm sorry you've had to deal with all that, but glad the surgery was a success & worth such a tough recovery. The ortho surgeon said I'd lose normal mobility, and could have to relearn everything from bending, twisting, even walking and that there's a chance I won't be able to bend/twist, period. Not what you want to hear, esp. as a single mom who's only 32! I know every person is different, but did you lose mobility and/or have to re-learn movements? Thanks again! Such a HUGE relief to be able to hobble around & be at least somehwta functional! 10days to go OMG!
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Raising my kids with boundaries - NOT battle lines.

Children are not little adults, but they ARE people too!

There's a reason they are called dependents...

AP is not alternative to those who see no other choice

http://helpguide.org/mental/parentin...t_disorder.htm



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  #6  
November 4th, 2010, 05:07 PM
FusionGirl's Avatar Formerly TTC#1inNC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaMandy View Post

Christine- that is the same spot in my spine that's messed up...and you are right, the idea of fusion is scary. I'm sorry you've had to deal with all that, but glad the surgery was a success & worth such a tough recovery. The ortho surgeon said I'd lose normal mobility, and could have to relearn everything from bending, twisting, even walking and that there's a chance I won't be able to bend/twist, period. Not what you want to hear, esp. as a single mom who's only 32! I know every person is different, but did you lose mobility and/or have to re-learn movements? Thanks again! Such a HUGE relief to be able to hobble around & be at least somehwta functional! 10days to go OMG!
OMG - Definitely get a second opinion! I had a nuerosurgeon do my surgery. He did a minimally invasive surgery with 2 parallel incicions on my back about 2-3 inches long. It is a faster recovery since they aren't doing one long incicsion and stripping the muscle away from your spine. Also look for a Dr that doesn't want to take a bone graft from your hip, that is another incision and more recovery and pain. My Dr used BMP, bone morphogenic protein (helps the bones grow and fuse), and donor bone I beleive.

If you are looking at getting fused at L5-S1 I don't think you will lose any mobility unless you have other issues. If you think about it L5-S1 is as far down on your spine as you can go and there isn't much movement out of that joint to begin with. I can bend over and touch the floor without bending my knees and I live life movement wise just like I did before the back pain started. There is a 6 week period after the surgery where you can't bend or twist. After 6 weeks of that you are very stiff but with a month or so of physical therapy everything relaxed and stretched out again. I wasn't anywhere near having to learn how to walk. Walking after the surgery was difficult and I used a cane for quite a while for extra support. It almost felt like my top and bottom half were separate entities those first couple of weeks.

With kids you will definitely need someone home with you those first few weeks of recovery. It was really hard just to get in an out of the chair and it took me about 5 minutes just to walk to the front door If you have any other questions feel free to ask!
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Last edited by FusionGirl; November 4th, 2010 at 05:12 PM.
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  #7  
November 9th, 2010, 01:34 PM
MamaMandy's Avatar is it Spring yet??
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Maine
Posts: 383
Thank you thank you THANK YOU for sharing!! I had no idea about the more technical parts, and will definitely be getting a second opinion. It's also a huge help to hear about the recovery from someone who has actually been there, the real deal so to speak. I know every case is different, but wow there's night and day between what yours was like and the horror story this doc told me! Pain is one thing, relearning walking scares the bejeepers outta me! Again, thank you - this could be literally life changing for me and my family!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by FusionGirl View Post
OMG - Definitely get a second opinion! I had a nuerosurgeon do my surgery. He did a minimally invasive surgery with 2 parallel incicions on my back about 2-3 inches long. It is a faster recovery since they aren't doing one long incicsion and stripping the muscle away from your spine. Also look for a Dr that doesn't want to take a bone graft from your hip, that is another incision and more recovery and pain. My Dr used BMP, bone morphogenic protein (helps the bones grow and fuse), and donor bone I beleive.

If you are looking at getting fused at L5-S1 I don't think you will lose any mobility unless you have other issues. If you think about it L5-S1 is as far down on your spine as you can go and there isn't much movement out of that joint to begin with. I can bend over and touch the floor without bending my knees and I live life movement wise just like I did before the back pain started. There is a 6 week period after the surgery where you can't bend or twist. After 6 weeks of that you are very stiff but with a month or so of physical therapy everything relaxed and stretched out again. I wasn't anywhere near having to learn how to walk. Walking after the surgery was difficult and I used a cane for quite a while for extra support. It almost felt like my top and bottom half were separate entities those first couple of weeks.

With kids you will definitely need someone home with you those first few weeks of recovery. It was really hard just to get in an out of the chair and it took me about 5 minutes just to walk to the front door If you have any other questions feel free to ask!
__________________
Raising my kids with boundaries - NOT battle lines.

Children are not little adults, but they ARE people too!

There's a reason they are called dependents...

AP is not alternative to those who see no other choice

http://helpguide.org/mental/parentin...t_disorder.htm



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  #8  
November 9th, 2010, 05:24 PM
FusionGirl's Avatar Formerly TTC#1inNC
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 5,154
And be careful about joining back pain forums - I joined one, I think it was Spine Health and while the people there were a good source of info they have some scary stories. Even they will tell you that most of the people with success stories have moved on and no longer post so the people you are posting with are the ones that are in pain and have had problems with recovery.
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