Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Happy Anniversary to ME!!

Quote for the Day:
"It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver."
~Mahatma Gandhi

One year ago today, I sat in my primary care physician's office and heard these words, "We need to think about putting you on disability.  Not today, but soon."

I was at the crossroads.  My pain medicine doctor could only offer me radio frequency ablation of the nerves to help with my day-in, day-out back pain.

  • The physician uses x-ray guidance (fluoroscopy) to direct a special (radiofrequency) needle alongside the medial or lateral branch nerves.
    • A small amount of electrical current is often carefully passed through the needle to assure it is next to the target nerve and a safe distance from other nerves. This current should briefly recreate the usual pain and cause a muscle twitch in the neck or back.

    • The targeted nerves will then be numbed to minimize pain while the lesion is being created.
    • The radiofrequency waves are introduced to heat the tip of the needle and a heat lesion is created on the nerve to disrupt the nerve's ability to send pain signals.
    • This process will be repeated for additional nerves.

    Burn my nerve to stop pain impulses???  Ummm...no...thank you very much. 

    My neurosurgeon said I wasn't "bad enough" to qualify for surgery because "we don't do surgery for pain, we do surgery for function"...and I hadn't lost "function"...yet.  "But call me when you can no longer use your hands or fingers, or when you start falling, or lose bowel or bladder control."  

    Ummm...gee, thanks for that encouragement, but that doesn't sound like fun at all!

    By this time I was in my second go-around of physical therapy, but it didn't seem to be helping at all with the pain.  

    I was barely able to keep up with the part-time work load of my Recovery Room job that was 2-12 hour shifts/week.  I was definitely at a crossroads and didn't know what else to do or try for what was, by that point, a three year stint of back pain.

    As I sat in my primary care doctor's office, I told her that I wanted to try one more thing before we gave up.  I had an appointment with a new chiropractor that afternoon.  She told me to try it and see if it helped.

    Later that afternoon, I sat in Dr. Leonette's office at Enliven Chiropractic while he looked over my MRI and x-ray results that I had brought in with me.  He looked me in the eye and told me, "I can help you".  And that, folks, was like throwing a drowning person a life preserver.  He had such conviction in his voice that I couldn't help but believe him.

    He proceeded to do the initial exam, x-rays, etc.,  When he was done he said he would look over the x-rays and I was to come back the next day for my first adjustment.   

    Here it is, a year later, and not only am I NOT on disability, but I am actually working TWO part-time jobs...my Recovery Room 2 -12 hour shifts/week, AND 8-12 hours a week for Dr. Leonette!!

    Cured???  No.  But my life...and health... have been given back to me, and for that I will always be grateful!!  I am once again able to do activities of daily living that most people take for granted...but I never will again!!!




    1. I am so happy for you dear nursey!!! I had to have the surgery...was dragging my right leg...but the surgery helped, so that was good. Happy Anniversary!!

    2. Happy anniversary indeed! So glad that you are doing so much better. And the most important thing, of course, is that you can still sew! All the best!

    3. I'm so glad you are better and we could spend the day walking when we were at your place last month. Bev

    4. I have missed your blog postings....

      What a miraculous difference in just 1 year...what a touching & encouraging post!!

      Luv u,

    5. How wonderful! I am so happy for you!