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Dr office saying they won’t extend CA short term disability!!

im freaking out a bit guys.

Had a microdiscectomy in sept 2017 (l5-s1) after having bad nerve pain for almost 2 years. Recovery has been slow, I’ve had 12 PT seasons and am still having bad flares. This past week has been one of the worst since starting PT. I’ve had to take a norco to sleep for 3 nights in a row. 

Overall I am much better but not ready for work. here’s my situation... I had been unemployed for a short period before the surgery and was looking for work. The surgery kind of put a stop to that! :) My usual and customary work for 20 years is in IT. I need to be able to Lift computers, servers, crawl under desks and lift some pretty heavy equipment at times. Based on my previous roles I need to be able to lift up to 50lbs frequently and 100lbs occasionally. My Physical therapist just last week said if I’m up to it I could maybe start doing machine/isolation exercises at the gym. He doesn’t want me doing free weights and I’m still on a 20-25lb lifting limit! 

I just spoke with the clerk at my surgeons office and basically had an argument with her as they are only extending my sdi 4 more weeks. She said if I’m not working I need to go on unemployment!! (Haven’t I been forced to pay into sdi for 20 years in case this happened?) She wouldn’t listen to reason so I told her I needed to see the surgeon but of course he can’t get me in until after my sdi expires. I’m hoping maybe she was just a nasty person and the dr will be reasonable. 

If I was with my previous employer I would probably be able to be at work with restricted duty. Starting a new job I won’t have that luxury. 

I haven’t lifted that sort of weight for a year, if I go into a new job/project and have to spend days loading inventory and doing the sort of work I used to do I’m terrified I’m going to injur myself or worse, re-herniate very quickly. 

I’m not sure if I should just go back to my pain mgt doc and see if he can help me. I’m sick with the standard of care and feel like I’m being abandoned by my surgeon. 

Any suggestions or thoughts? Anyone have experience with sdi issues in California? 

Thanks for reading my long vent!




  • L4_L5LL4_L5 Posts: 1,139
    edited 01/30/2018 - 7:21 PM

    If all else fails go on unemployment. It won’t be forever and far better than risking a reinjury.

    By the time the SDI expires you’ll have been off work appx six months for a microdisectomy. 

    Verify with your surgeon if that’s the norm. It seems like a decent allowance of time for such a procedure but I could be wrong. 

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