Last week I finally broke down and visited my primary care physician. I have been having back pains since Mother's Day. Clearly the pains have not been as bad as they initially were that day....I have noticed that the pain radiated down my left leg at times and was definitely more sore in the evenings.
My doctor sent me for an MRI after hearing my story and having me move around a little. On Monday, I had the MRI and it really wasn't that bad. I've heard of some people being extremely claustrophobic, but I had no problems. The tech said the test would take about 40 minutes, I was given ear plugs, and the test began. It was fairly loud, but I sorta fell asleep....Hey, I don't get many opportunities for an afternoon nap anymore!
This morning I received a call from a nurse saying that my test results were in and that I should come in this afternoon instead of waiting until my follow up appointment next week. I admit I was fairly nervous. I also admit that I should not have Googled it....seriously. Bad idea. It could be as simple as a pinched nerve or as bad as a tumor in my spine. Not exactly the options I wanted to see...
My sweet mom picked me up from work and took me herself. I was so thankful for someone to be with me. When the doctor came in, he informed me that I had multiple bulging discs that compressed down on a nerve causing the pain. He said I didn't have a severe case, but it sure wasn't mild either. He believes it will heal with time and rest, but it will take some patience. His plan is to start a dose of steroids and Neurotin to numb the nerve pain while I heal. Then I will start some muscle relaxers and pain meds for the rest of my recovery. Physical therapy is an option once we get the pain under control and depending on how fast I heal on my own.
If this does not work, shots of steroids in the back are another option....one I clearly do not want to explore. Surgery is a last resort, but I do not consider it an option. I truly believe that through prayer and patience, my back will heal with more conservative methods.
For now, I am taking it very easy. If at any time I experience extreme numbness in my leg or foot, surgery is probably in my near future according to my doctor. Sitting for long intervals does not help with the pain. Last week my doctor told me to take plenty of breaks from sitting...get up and walk around. I can definitely work that into my days. As far as Caleb is concerned, I am going to have to wear a back brace as much as possible. Ryan and I have been making him walk a lot more, but there's still times he needs help. The only other thing we'll have to be easy with is when Ryan and I travel 5 hours to pick up my stepkids for their summer trip to visit us. We plan on leaving fairly early and taking our time getting there. I have been promised plenty of stops at some antique stores along the way! I seriously have plotted out some of them along the way for a couple of weeks!
Ryan has been amazing through all of this! He has done so much to help me and it has meant so much to me. From massaging my back to helping out around the house, he has been absolutely the best to me! I am so thankful for him.
This may have been really boring for some of you guys, but the only thing I noticed when I Googled MRI information on the lower back was that there were no real person accounts listed. Sure there were all of the forum questions, but no one ever wrote out what happened after they had the MRI done. If this information helps someone else, I'm all for it.