SpineUniverse Community Advice
Get help and share your story with others who know what you're going through.
Please register or log in to join the discussions!

Spinal Fusion

Started by mawmawiam on 11/29/2018 6:11pm

I have had to have 4 back surgeries, which I had no choice, or could end up in wheel chair. A judge labeld me permanently disabled. In 2010 My lower lumbar was completely fused. It fell almost immediately, and fractures my Sacram I ended up having to catherise myself 6 times a day, I have a neurogenic bowel, and no intimate feeling. I was 55 years old, and had a great marriage. In 3 years my primary physician, and the next two retired, leaving me in need of a pain management doctor. I suffer from neuropathy, joint pain, and lower back pain. I've gone to many doctors, who took CT Scans, x-rays, and MRI's. I was told my back was very fragile, and a fall on ice, or in the tub, could put me in a wheel chair, and that could happen anyway. Although careful, I have 6-8 UTI's a year. I recently started to see a pain management doctor. Who told me to exercise, which all doctors have said should only be upper body, as they had MRI's to look at This doctor has done nothing in 3 months but take my money. Now he said I should use a stationary bike or stair stepper! I could use 15 pounds, but am a tall size 12, and far from obese. Former doctors, at Wake Forrest, and UVA , and hours away, have said no exercise unless walking or aerobics in water. This doctor had the gall to say I could listen to the other doctors, or him! If I did no do what he said, it was obvious to my husband and myself that it was his way or the highway. I don't know what to do. There is another doctor in that small pain clinic who I'd rather see, but how do I ask? Won't they talk? Will this new doctor think it is my fault that I want to break with this difficult doctor, who should, but does not understand my physical limitation? I have cried and grieved for my former self, I used to exercise daily. But my disability won't let me. I am now sixty three years of age, I know stair stepping is not in my future. I do use my tention stretch bands when able.What can I do to get away from this rude, arrogant doctor, he is thus far giving me the medications I have taken for years, however, I don't really know where to go to next?

Do you find this discussion helpful?

1 Response


Hi, mawmawiam--thank you for sharing your story with us. We are sorry to read about your relationship with your pain management doctor.

You should never be made to feel helpless in your care--a doctor should empower you to be engaged in all of your health care decisions and be a partner with you. The fact that you feel uncomfortable with your doctor is a good sign that it's time to find a new physician. If you have a new doctor at the same clinic who you would rather see, it's worthwhile to make an appointment.

We have some information that we think will help you as weigh whether to see a new spine specialist:
( Signs It’s Time to Find a New Spine Specialist )
( Second Opinions: Five Things About This Patient Right )

Ultimately, you are responsible for your care--and you want to feel confident and comfortable with the providers you've chosen to partner with you. We hope this information helps and empowers you!