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On Chronic Pain

If one has had pain for over a year, can it be called chronic pain?  Yes?  Good - I have chronic pain. 

I hurt my back moving boxes last June and have been dealing with the aftermath of it since then, with no real pain relief ever achieved.  It's tough, because MRIs show a relatively healthy back, no bulging discs or anything like that.  I do have a labral tear in my right hip, but that likely isn't causing the stabbing pain in my lower right back or the radiating pain down my leg that makes my right foot throb.

I did physical therapy for 6 months, had 2 cortizone injections,  6 rounds of acupuncture, endless massages (which helped my mental health, thank God) and nothing has "cured" me.   I finally relented and allowed them to prescribe me pain meds, but I hate relying on them.  Fortunately (un?), they work.  But I don't want to take them.  I am currently working with my 2nd spine doc and have also seen a hip doc.  I AM TIRED OF GOING TO THE DOCTOR.

I had my 3rd cortizone injection yesterday, this time in my hip (other two were sciatic epidural and SI joint) and today, my hip is KILLING ME.  I know it hurts for 48 hours after the injection, but WOW.  Walking Derby this morning and my walk in today was awful.

I also have a script for working with a chiropractor, my absolute final alternative ("exploratory" surgery just ain't my thang).  I have to admit that chiropractors freak me out.  I've heard too many stories of endless appointments and cracking bones (eek) that make me want to stay away, but my doctor assured me that legitimate chiropractors will see you a half a dozen times and will then proceed with treatment. 

Pain sucks the life out of me, physically and emotionally.  There have been many, many things I've wanted to do in the past year that I haven't been able to.  I feel bad for my husband, as he is the one who has to listen to me complain, wipe away my tears of pain and frustration, and do things solo while I sit on the sideline, unable to join in.  It just sucks.

Do any of you know what I am going through?  Care to share some secrets as to how you dealt with it?

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Reader Comments (6)

Ugg. Back pain or any other pain for that matter is the worst. I have no words of wisdom. Can you stay home and rest? Let us know how the chiropractor goes!

August 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSugar

I know what you are going through! I have hip troubles (at 27) from competitive cycling. I live by my chiropractor. Without her, I would go nuts. It took me a little bit to find someone I really liked and who listened (just like any other Dr's) but once I did, it was heaven. Actually, I am addicted to my chiropractor. You just feel SO MUCH better after they work their magic.

August 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSteffanie

Steffanie, that is great to hear! My great friend says the same thing and I am going to keep that in my (open) mind as I start going.

Sugar, I will definitely keep you posted on the progress. I rest as much as I can at night, but I do have to work all day. It is especially painful today...eek!

August 18, 2010 | Registered CommenterKristin

So sorry you're going through this, Kristin! I have had some back/neck problems over the years, and 4 years ago it was really bad. I had weekly appointments at the chiropractor and it helped IMMENSELY. I would go in with back pain and headaches, and I'd leave with my headache completely gone and no pain. Sometimes it is a little scary hearing the cracking that can come out of my back/neck, but I got used to it and really trusted my doctor.

I could swear that my 4+ months of regular appointments made such a difference that I pretty much never have the same pain and headaches that I used to have... and I haven't been back for a visit in a few years. Now instead of major tension in my neck (there were times that I could barely turn my head to check my blindspot while driving), I feel generally much more "loose" and it's so much easier to stretch on my own now.

Good luck! I hope you get some relief soon!

August 18, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbrooke @ claremont road

I popped over here from That Wife blog, and I just wanted to say, loudly and enthusiastically, that yes, I understand what you're going through! I had a terrible hip/tailbone injury from cheerleading at the age of 18. So bad that when it would go out, I couldn't sit or lay on my back without excruciating pain. It went out for *four months* my final semester of undergrad, and I therefore had to stand in the back of class to take notes- I even took tests standing up. People had to drive me everywhere so that I could lay down, on my side, in my passenger seat. It was awful.

Fast forward to two years ago, when I started doing yoga. It may just have been my specific injury, but it seriously cured me *knock on wood*. Now, when my hip starts to feel wonky, I have an arsenal of different yoga poses, and I can actually pop it back in to place/adjust it myself. It was crazy the first few times I did it, because all I was doing was a gentle pose, and pop, there it went, and I would feel as good as new. While have tweaky days every now and again, it hasn't full on gone out since I've started doing yoga- compared to going out 4 times in 5 years before that, and waking up in constant pain every day. I only read a few posts, so forgive me if you already do yoga or if you've tried it and hated it, but I swear by it. The thing is to find a good teacher who knows what he/she is doing. Also, check out Yoga Journal's website, they have certain routines for specific problems. Good luck!

August 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCortney

I've had two big issues similar to yours. The first involved moving as well. I hurt my shoulder and back moving a heavy aquarium and other furniture over a year ago. And then earlier this summer I started having major lower back pain from a bad office chair.

I have a great chiropractor that has been amazing. He does a lot of construction and sports injuries with rehab, so he knows how to work with all sorts of injuries. Plus has a massuese who is fantastic. He is located in the Andersonville area of Chicago. Let me know if you want more info.

August 23, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNaomi

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