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A pain in his side

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posted on May, 17 2009 @ 07:09 PM
Truth be told I am not sure why I am writing this, I just feel compelled to tell about my father and his degenerative disc disease.


My father has degenerative disc disease.

For those of you who are not sure what this is here is an excerpt from telling essentially what it is.

Degenerative disc disease refers to a syndrome in which a compromised disc causes low back pain. Lumbar degenerative disc disease usually starts with a torsional (twisting) injury to the lower back, such as when a person rotates to put something on a shelf or swing a golf club. However, the pain is also frequently caused by simple wear and tear on the spine.

Wehn my father was 13 years old he injured his back playing basketball. He had to have major surgery to repair some disc's in his lower back because he could not even stand up straight. Today, doctors speculate that this is the origin of his degenerative disc disease.

For about the last year he had been complaining of hip and lower back pain. I finally talked him into going to the doctor to get it checked out and as you may have guessed, he was diagnosed with the disease.

He has trouble walking for more than a few minutes at a time because the pain just becomes to much for him, because of that he does not go to many places any more. I guess you could say that this disease has become a pain in his side, bith figurativly and literally.

In the past 6 months he has had several MRI's and other tests done by his doctor and just last week his doctor suggested a procedure for him that may help cut back on the pain.

Now I am not sure what the name of this treatment is, however, essentially what will be done is, he will be put under IV sedation (most likely with propofal). While he is under they are going to give him a shot of some type of pain medication right into his spine.

It makes me think of a sort of reverse spinal tap where they put something in instead of taking something out.

Tommorow my dad goes for the procedure. I will be taking him because he will not be allowed to drive home due to his being sedated for the procedure. He is understandibly nervours about the whole thing but I think it will be good for him.

My mom who has had a spinal tap says that a needle being stuck in the spinal chord is alot less scary than it sounds. She is a nurse and has had it done so I trust her judgement and my dad does too.


I am not sure why I felt compelled to write this... I did though because I just felt I had to.Perhaps there is someone out there who just needed to hear these words.

I will write more later about how it all went and how the procedure has affected his pain. Sort of a part 2, if you will. For now there is nothing left to write.

Peace and love


Part 2 Day at the doctor


Today we got up extra early. My dad was having trouble sleeping because he was a bit nervous about the procedure. He fell asleep at 2:00 am and got up at 5:00 am.

He was not due to be at the doctor until Noon so we talked and joked like we usually do, until it was time to go. The drive to the doctors went by quicker than expected and we got there at 11:45. He checked in clearly nervous but found comfort in talking to one of the receptionists who used to be in the same line of business as him, television production. She had been laid off a couple years back and went to school to become a medical assistant.

After filling out all kinds of consent forms and hippa contracts and god knows what else, he was finally called back. I wished him good luck as he went on his way.

The procedure itself was only to take about 15 to 20 minutes, however the doctor was running behind. He apparently had trouble getting an IV started for a lady that was called back before him.

When my dad was taken into the room for the procedure, he had to put on a medical gown and then lay on his stomach. He already had his IV in so they started loading him up with medicine. Apparently they only gave him enough to relax him and did not knock him completely out; They wanted him to be able to talk.

During the procedure he received several small shots some novacane like medicine that numbs the area up. Once he was good and num, the stuck a big and long needle into his back and directly in between two of the discs in his spine. He was injected with some type of steroid.

It is supposed to help relieve the swelling in that area and pull the disc away from the spine to relieve the pressure and pain. After bandaging him up and giving him a prescription for pain medicine, he was through. He walked out the door into the waiting room at exactly 3:00 pm.

On the way home we stopped to get something to eat. He was hungry because he had not eaten since the night before. We also stopped by the pharmacy to drop his prescription off. He was told to take it easy for the rest of the day, because moving around allot can push the medicine away from the area that is being treated.

He is tired anyway, so I knew he would have no problem sleeping when we got home. The first thing he did when we walked in the door was grab a coke out of the fridge. He drunk that and then went to lay down. he is snoring as I write this on my lap top.


Part 3 will come in a few more days, it will take time to see how this treatment works out and whether it helps or not... Stay tuned.

[edit on 18-5-2009 by mrwupy]

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 07:50 PM
My mother suffers from it as well. I realy hope all goes well for your dad. Good luck!!

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 07:52 PM
reply to post by freeyourmind1111

Thank you very much. I am sure it will.

I will post part 2 as soon as part 2 happens.

Here is hoping your mom is doing alright too!

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 08:26 PM
I am so sorry for your fathers struggle, as a person who was born with a spinal cord disorder called Spina Bifida and have recently been diagnosed with another tethered spinal cord, I can relate with his physical and mental pain.

It is something many people can't not under stand until they experience for themselves, you don't feel as if your body is a temple but that your body is a prison that is not working for you but against you, but some how some way you find the courage and will to move on with your life and find things to be grateful for.
I am lucky as most children born with what I have can not walk, but I can as being faced with the notion of becoming paralyzed it is hard, but knowing that there are others out there that still have been handed a worse card then I, I can find hope in their stories that some how some where there is a way to make it and live life and impact others no matter the means it is done.
To me the most important thing a person can do is impact anothers life to bring a smile, hope, courage.
Your fathers story will do this for others and has done so for me.
Reading your words you can see and feel the love and care for your father that you have and that is refreshing.

It may be hard to deal with this hardships at times, but it makes everyone involved a stronger more empathetic human in this world.
People like your father are the true heroes of this world.

I've had over 20 spinal taps done in my life since nine months old, they are not as bad as TV shows and all make them out to be, there is not much pain just a slight pressure, if someone is able to be in the room with him while he has these procedures done talking to him will help him a lot getting into a distracting conversation sometimes eases the pain, with my operations and things like this the nurses will always ask me questions before I go under or during a scary or painful procedure and that can help take the mind away from the pain or discomfort.

My best of wishes to your father, your mother, and you.
Stay strong, and do not let your fathers struggle be in vain.
If we all come together in this world based on our pain and struggles we can all be the hope that each and everyone of us is looking for, for each other.

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 08:44 PM
reply to post by pop_science

Thank you for those beautiful words. I appreciate them greatly. I am glad that my thread has brought a smile to your face and I hope that others with similar diseases or with family members with similar diseases read this.

I guess it was meant to be encouraging to anyone who is going through similar things. It is not hopeless.

The pain truly does bother him so much, even mentally as you have said. He wants to be able to go out there and keep up with everybody but his body just does not allow him. The restrictions that this disease has put on him really frustrates and angers him and sometimes even saddens him

You are correct in saying that I love my dad very much. He is my best friend in the whole world. We are so much alike in our personalities and habits and we get along so great.

As I said im my OP, part 2 has not happened yet but as soon as it does I will be right here to post it. I am sure it will be a great part 2. I will edit it into the OP to avoid confusion or people having to dig throught the thread to find it.

Thanks for offering your kind words.

[edit on 17-5-2009 by gimme_some_truth]

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 08:52 PM
Here's something you may be interested in GST.
I've had some experiences and done a little research on the topic at hand.

Degenerative disc pain treatment

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 08:54 PM
reply to post by The Utopian Penguin

You have had experience with this method? What was your experience?

I assume it was positive otherwise you would not have brought it up. How much did it help you?

I will check out this website.

Thanks TUP

[edit on 17-5-2009 by gimme_some_truth]

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 09:10 PM
reply to post by gimme_some_truth

I haven't had experience with the treatment, with the topic.

But from what I've been able to uncover about DDD I believe it would be the most viable treatment in most cases. It's non-evasive and doesn't lead to irreversible effects such a surgery might result in.

So if it's available I would say it would be "my" first choice.

Note I'm not a doctor and don't know the details of your fathers condition.
I'm just presenting an option that may help.

posted on May, 17 2009 @ 09:13 PM
reply to post by The Utopian Penguin

Ok, very good. I will keep that in mind. Thanks

posted on May, 18 2009 @ 04:33 PM
Hey everybody. Part two of the story has been edited into the OP so it is easier for everyone to find.

Thanks wupy


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