Herniated disc agony

(85 Posts)
user1497873278 Sat 06-Mar-21 15:19:44

Anyone else suffering mine is L5 S1 can barely move, can’t sit for longer than couple of mins, it’s been 5 months and I’m really struggling now, anyone had any experience with this or had it operated on any advice would be helpful

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Stormdennis Sat 06-Mar-21 15:56:47

Hi, so sorry to read this. I do understand this sort of prolonged pain. It's simply awful. Have you seen a specialist and have they given you any options?

GeidiPrimes Sat 06-Mar-21 16:04:58

Hi OP, I've had surgery for this and was completely successful, ie no pain whatsoever anymore. The medication you need for relief is pregablin or gabapentin because even strong pain relief like codeine won't work with nerve pain.

What is your GP saying? Have they referred you for physio or an MRI? They should have done by now, but I realise the NHS is all over the place atm.

You really have my sympathies, it's a hellish pain.

user1497873278 Mon 08-Mar-21 14:43:34

Thanks for reply’s I have been offered injections but due to covid there is a long waiting list, I’m also really nervous of them, but that seems tone only option, I have tried many conservative options tens pt acupuncture, no difference and couldn’t do pt made it worse, I’m so desperate

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PragmaticWench Mon 08-Mar-21 22:31:55

I herniated a disk, months of agony where I couldn't move, sit, stand etc. 30 seconds of standing and the pain would be too much, like childbirth but non-stop for months.

9 months later I did it again and so went privately for the injections. Lots of money but I couldn't live through it again. The pain relief was just about total.

Gabapentin was the only medication that touched the pain, and I tried a LOT of others.

user1497873278 Tue 09-Mar-21 09:37:03

Pragmaticwench how do the injections solve the problem, I just can’t get my head around it. I’m also worried as I have read they can make it worse, and I’m as you explained, so can’t take anymore pain

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colouringindoors Tue 09-Mar-21 19:59:56

Sympathies OP I also have massive L5 herniation which is compressing my sciatic nerve. Happened last June. It's improved a bit (osteo, acupuncture I think helped) but still v painful.

I had a steroid injection in Dec (which was fine, really worth considering) unfortunately it didn't make a difference but anaesthetist said sometimes one angle works one doesnt. Was due to have another - caudal epidural in Feb but that was cancelled cos of Covid. I saw a surgeon privately in Jan who said I need surgery but not likely to happen on NHS this year. Am considering private injection. GP mentioned Gabapentin today as it's making me very depressed.

Physio suggested TENS machine this week. I have a physio regime from osteopath.



colouringindoors Tue 09-Mar-21 20:03:04

Injections put a load of steroid (anti inflammatory) right at the spot, so much more potential to significantly reduce inflammation and therefore pain. v unusual to cause more pain.

user1497873278 Wed 10-Mar-21 11:07:57

Thank you I’m having some very dark moments it’s relentless, and I can’t look after my little one, I can’t even cook etc, it just feels like it’s worse than when it started

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colouringindoors Wed 10-Mar-21 17:23:55

Sympathies user I am the same with the dark moments. It's so painful, exhausting and no end in sight here. Have you got anyone you can have a good moan to/cry on? I know it's not the smartest, but I do find wine does help with the pain. There's some chronic pain boards in general gealth now with some lovely people who may have more ideas than me. Take care.

user1497873278 Thu 11-Mar-21 10:31:51

Colouringindoors thank you, yes I have looked at the chronic pain thread, it’s so hard to deal with thank you

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PragmaticWench Fri 12-Mar-21 06:53:13

With my first herniation I read loads about how injections were only as good as physical therapy for recovery, so didn't go for them. The second time I decided to just throw everything at it and thankfully it worked incredibly well!!

You definitely also need to continue with physio to help prevent another herniation but personally I found the injections a miracle. They put anti-inflamatories right into where you need to reduce the inflammation that is occurring from the tear in the disc wall. That reduces the pressure on the nerves.

After the two herniations I've been left with some permanent foot drop, my physio described it as where the nerve has been compressed for so long like a garden hose with a chair leg squishing it and it didn't completely recover.

colouringindoors Fri 12-Mar-21 09:53:47

pragmatic thanks for your post - really helpful. I'm pushing for injections for exactly the reasons you describe re anti inflammatories.

Really glad they helped.

user1497873278 Fri 12-Mar-21 17:57:27

Thank you pragmaticWench, I’m so bad just not sure worried it might be worse, and I can’t cope as it is

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Diclofenac Sat 13-Mar-21 12:15:57

To my knowledge, the point of a nerve root block is to reduce inflammation in the nerve while the disc has time to reabsorb so it stops compressing/irritating the nerve. They don't cure anything but they should give you some pain relief just where it's needed.
I feel your pain OP, I've had it for a year and a half! Herniation at L4-L5, too small to be operated on so my only options are physio, excercises, drugs and a nerve root block (waiting for one).
Gabapentin, amitriptyline, co-codamol did sod all for me but Pregabalin has improved it a bit, physio and excercises seem to be more effective since I've been on it.
Amazingly CBD oil had some effect too but I'm not taking it at the moment as I'm already on Pregabalin.

user1497873278 Tue 16-Mar-21 15:07:46

Diclofenic is it stopping you doing everything, I can’t even sit, can’t cook or anything

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colouringindoors Tue 16-Mar-21 16:10:45

Really down today. Had telephone appt with spinal trauma team. Severe pain and sciatica since June. Had one injection (s1 nerve block) in Nov, was recommended caudal epidural and listed but that was cancelled Jan cos of Covid. Got told today there's no list yet cos they're not doing any, when there is (no idea when that will be) they'll mark me as urgent. Pain, and no prospect of any change is really getting me down now.

colouringindoors Tue 16-Mar-21 20:11:43

Resorted to wine. It works.

user1497873278 Wed 17-Mar-21 10:15:45

I wish wine would work for me I would down a bottle, are you able to do much, it’s such awful pain, I have heard the same about them not restarting them yet

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colouringindoors Wed 17-Mar-21 18:17:44

I can do more than when this first started (last June) and pain is better than then. But I can't live my life like I would normally. Walking more than 20 mins is vv painful. My hamstrings constantly feel like they've on fire.

I did end up getting marked as urgent on the Caudal Epidural list after going into lot of detail about home situation.

Sorry wine doesn't work for you flowers

Diclofenac Wed 17-Mar-21 19:28:40

OP, I can do most things but it's agony. Standing still sends electric shocks down my leg into my foot and it's an unbearable sensation, similar to when you hit your "funny bone" in the elbow. Sitting or lying down have the same effect and walking hurts my foot. The only thing that gives me some relief is lying on my unaffected side but that takes a good 20 minutes to feel some benefit and as soon as I stand up again I'm back to square one.
Wine works for me but unfortunately I'm not in a position to be able to spend my life lying down with a bottle by my side grin
The only bit of advice I can offer is to try some excercises specific for herniations at L5-S1, it took me forever to work out which ones gave me some relief but now the "angry cat" or "cat/cow" allow me to function for a bit without wincing.

doadeer Thu 18-Mar-21 17:50:16


How are you doing?

I've got facet joint damage so I think very similar area to you - it's hell.

If your injections are steroid ones, I've had 9 injections up my spine on two occasions so happy to talk more about it if that helps?

I'm having the nerves burned tomorrow

Join us here if you need a moan

CHRONIC PAIN - share your moans and achievements http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/general_health/4188376-chronic-pain-share-your-moans-and-achievements

adviceinpainconfused Sun 21-Mar-21 06:06:50

@user1497873278 hello!

I've just read your thread and can totally relate to how debilitating L5/S1 can be. Has surgery been mentioned?

After years of agony and taking a cocktail of drugs it was decided I should have a microdiscectomy.

Due to Covid this would be a 12-18 month waiting list NHS so I opted to go private (although expensive I had to balance up loss of income over coming months as the pain unbearable and meds wiped me out).

To cut long story short I had surgery last week and I am already feeling so much better pain wise. Now to get back on my feet and reduce pain relief but I would recommend in a flash

skippetyskoo Sun 21-Mar-21 06:40:32

I had the same Herniation last year. After 7 months it did ease. The first months were agony and I was offered surgery privately but it was easing slightly every month so I wanted to give it time. I tried physio, osteopath at first which helped mobilise it. Eventually I started amitriptiline which dulled enough of the nerve pain to start walking/swimming. I did avoid bending/lifting/sitting for a few months to help it to heal. It was truly horrific and I live in fear of it happening again. I am left with a very mild burn, more noticeable when I sit too long. But I can live with that. Good luck with your recovery.

user1497873278 Sun 21-Mar-21 10:32:16

Thank you for the replies, it’s been 6 months now and the pain is non stop, I am reluctant to get the spinal injections as I have bad reactions to so many drugs, which is the reason why I’m only on diazepam on naproxen, I can’t sit at all, I spend hour after hot pacing then laying, it’s the only way I can get through the day, not easy with a 4 year old. When I did my L4L5 18 months ago the pain was still bad at this point but I could sit for short periods and was definitely improving slowly, I’m just worried it’s not easing, so low

OP’s posts: |

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