On Friday afternoon, I went to go see the orthopedist and after reviewing my history and symptoms, she concurred that I have indeed royally fucked myself. She had medical terminology for that, but that was the gist. She needs a MRI to know exactly how broken I am, so she put me in for the first available one, which will happen tonight at 10pm. MRIs are painless, but I need to lay flat on my back for the scan, which is not a painless position for me. Since I need to stay still in that position for 30-45 minutes, I'm going to take a pain pill. This means my husband gets to drive me while I'm loopy on pain meds, that lucky guy.
After the MRI tonight, I'll go back to the orthopedist first thing tomorrow morning to go over the results and talk about treatment options. The treatment plan will hopefully address my top two concerns:
1. Regaining sensation in my leg and foot.
2. Pain management. I still can't do daily activities without significant pain, let alone something wild like cook dinner or the dishes. I'd be more optimistic about the pain if it was improving at all, but it's been pretty constant.
Before I get comments and emails about how your aunt's best friend Sharon had back problems and went to go see some shaman who did magical chiropractic acupuncture combined with a gluten free diet and now she's totally fine and I should do that too, please save yourself the time and effort.
First of all, I don't have an official diagnosis yet so there is a chance that this could be more than just a spine issue. Second of all, if you'd feel comfortable pursuing alternative medicine instead of first doing conventional medicine when you have significant sensation loss, then you are either more patient or stupider than me.
Chances are that I'm going to get epidural steroid injections into my spine and if I'm lucky, those will help. If I'm not that lucky, then there is a fairly non-invasive procedure that could remove the part of the disc that's pushing on the nerve and numbing my leg. The surgery wouldn't be to "fix my back" (so don't feel the need to point out how lower back surgeries don't solve back pain), it would be to fix my leg. Most of my pain is in my leg, so this would be a huge break for me.
This is all assuming that it is a disc problem, which can't be known for sure until after my MRI tonight. After tomorrow morning, I'll know a lot more about my recovery timeline and treatment plan, and until then it's all just conjecture.
I'm not bashing all alternative medicine options. If it works for you, that's fantastic. One of my old kung fu instructors used to burn weed-smelling incense and tell people their problems were from clogged qi in their kidneys and using microwaves to cook food.
Although, I bet some powdered endangered seahorse mixed with white tea would fix me right up...
On a totally unrelated note, I saw a commercial for this new Subway sandwich last night:
This is totally the kind of sandwich an 8 year old "invents" when they are hungry after school. I don't think I'd ever try it. Is Subway smoking weed now?
Would you eat this Frito...sandwich?