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EPIDURAL

Posted by DENNIS B. on 1/31/01 at 16:03 (037887)

PRIOR TO BEING DIAGNOSED WITH TTS (REF: MY 01/29/01 POST ENTITLED 'SURGERY') THE RHEUMATOLOGIST I WAS SEEING ORDERED A CAT SCAN OF THE LOWER BACK. IT SHOWED SOMETHING THAT HE WAS ALSO LOOKING FOR WHICH WAS A CONDITION WHEREBY THE LOWER SPINAL CORD IS COMPRESSED BY THE VERTABRAE, ALSO CAUSING FOOT PAIN. SO, WHEN I HAVE MY TTS SURGERY ON FEB. 07, THEY ARE ALSO GOING TO DO AN EPIDURAL WHEREBY THEY WILL INJECT STEROIDS IN THE AREA OF THE LOWER SPINAL CORD TO THEORETICALLY RELIEVE SOME OF THE PRESSURE INDUCED ON THE SPINAL CORD. ANYONE HAVE ANY EXPERIENCE WITH, OR HEARD OF THIS?

Re: EPIDURAL

Dr. Biehler on 2/01/01 at 10:52 (037963)

I have not done one but I have heard it can be very effective. Good luck with the outcome. Dr. B.

Re: EPIDURAL

Janet C. on 2/01/01 at 15:58 (037995)

I have TTS, and was given about 6 separate epidurals recently (also spinal sympathetic nerve blocks), because the doctor thought I could have developed another related disability called RSD - Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy. The nerve blocks did little to help my feet, although they seemed to be of some temporary benefit to the radiating pain in my shins and hip. Eventually, I was concerned that the cortisone steroid would cause scar tissue to form in my back, like it did in my ankles, so I discontinued them. Proceed with caution.

Re: EPIDURAL

wendyn on 2/01/01 at 22:08 (038026)

Dennis - I don't know if it's the same thing or not - but my mom had a series of 'Facet' blocks for back pain. I do know that it involved injecting steroids into parts of her back. I know there was a high degree of risk - but she was in a terrible amount of pain every day. She was more than willing to risk permanent injury for potential pain relief. They did help some, but she had some side effects like sores not healing properly. She eventually stopped them and went with surgery to her back.

My biggest concern would be that if you have a dramatic improvement - you won't know if it was the surgery or the block. Any way to do one OR the other?

Re: EPIDURAL

DENNIS B. on 2/03/01 at 16:11 (038125)

ACTUALLY IT WAS MY IDEA TO GET THEM BOTH DONE AT ONCE. I FIGURED THAT SINCE THE TTS IS IN BOTH FEET AND IF I HAVE RELIEF IN THE FIRST ONE THAT IS TO BE OPERATED ON BUT NOT ON THE OTHER, THEN THE SURGERY WOULD APPEAR TO BE THE ANSWER. HOWEVER, IF I THEN FIND RELIEF IN BOTH FEET AFTER SURGERY, THE EPIDURAL WAS THE THING TO DO. AM ALSO CONCERNED ABOUT BEING ON CRUTCHES FOR THE ONE FOOT AND IN SO DOING WILL BE PUTTING EXTRA WEIGHT ON THE NON-SURGICAL FOOT. I WONDER IF THAT WILL INTENSIFY THE PROBLEM/PAIN WITH THE NON-SURGICAL FOOT.

Re: EPIDURAL

janet C. on 2/03/01 at 16:43 (038128)

In my case, having surgery on one foot, and thereby using the non-surgical foot for all weight-bearing, did increase the pain in the other foot. Although later, I tried to have tarsal tunnel release surgery done simultaneously on both feet, and I realized afterwards what an idiotic idea that was! I couldn't stand at all for about a week, I had to crawl to the bathroom, it was VERY difficult.

Re: EPIDURAL

carol on 2/08/01 at 04:18 (038414)

Janet - I am having surger by epidural on Tuesday. Am most interested to hear if your feet are OK now as both my feet are a problem but I am just having one done! Not as brave as you. Carol

Re: EPIDURAL

Dr. Biehler on 2/01/01 at 10:52 (037963)

I have not done one but I have heard it can be very effective. Good luck with the outcome. Dr. B.

Re: EPIDURAL

Janet C. on 2/01/01 at 15:58 (037995)

I have TTS, and was given about 6 separate epidurals recently (also spinal sympathetic nerve blocks), because the doctor thought I could have developed another related disability called RSD - Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy. The nerve blocks did little to help my feet, although they seemed to be of some temporary benefit to the radiating pain in my shins and hip. Eventually, I was concerned that the cortisone steroid would cause scar tissue to form in my back, like it did in my ankles, so I discontinued them. Proceed with caution.

Re: EPIDURAL

wendyn on 2/01/01 at 22:08 (038026)

Dennis - I don't know if it's the same thing or not - but my mom had a series of 'Facet' blocks for back pain. I do know that it involved injecting steroids into parts of her back. I know there was a high degree of risk - but she was in a terrible amount of pain every day. She was more than willing to risk permanent injury for potential pain relief. They did help some, but she had some side effects like sores not healing properly. She eventually stopped them and went with surgery to her back.

My biggest concern would be that if you have a dramatic improvement - you won't know if it was the surgery or the block. Any way to do one OR the other?

Re: EPIDURAL

DENNIS B. on 2/03/01 at 16:11 (038125)

ACTUALLY IT WAS MY IDEA TO GET THEM BOTH DONE AT ONCE. I FIGURED THAT SINCE THE TTS IS IN BOTH FEET AND IF I HAVE RELIEF IN THE FIRST ONE THAT IS TO BE OPERATED ON BUT NOT ON THE OTHER, THEN THE SURGERY WOULD APPEAR TO BE THE ANSWER. HOWEVER, IF I THEN FIND RELIEF IN BOTH FEET AFTER SURGERY, THE EPIDURAL WAS THE THING TO DO. AM ALSO CONCERNED ABOUT BEING ON CRUTCHES FOR THE ONE FOOT AND IN SO DOING WILL BE PUTTING EXTRA WEIGHT ON THE NON-SURGICAL FOOT. I WONDER IF THAT WILL INTENSIFY THE PROBLEM/PAIN WITH THE NON-SURGICAL FOOT.

Re: EPIDURAL

janet C. on 2/03/01 at 16:43 (038128)

In my case, having surgery on one foot, and thereby using the non-surgical foot for all weight-bearing, did increase the pain in the other foot. Although later, I tried to have tarsal tunnel release surgery done simultaneously on both feet, and I realized afterwards what an idiotic idea that was! I couldn't stand at all for about a week, I had to crawl to the bathroom, it was VERY difficult.

Re: EPIDURAL

carol on 2/08/01 at 04:18 (038414)

Janet - I am having surger by epidural on Tuesday. Am most interested to hear if your feet are OK now as both my feet are a problem but I am just having one done! Not as brave as you. Carol