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Feeling lost

hey guys, new to this page and am feeling myself spiralling down. Dec 2015 I injured my back.. A disc bulge on my L5 impinging on the nerve, after 5 months of swimming, weights and a hell of a lot of walking I go myself to the point where I could surf again and enjoy life. 6 days ago I had a relapse and a small back strain, after icing and heat packs I manage to get myself into a decent state but I used a spiky massage ball and have triggered my sciatic nerve and am now getting severe pain down on the outside of my calf and numbness on my toes and calf area. I have spent the last week in physio and doctors trying to sort out what I have done but am still in pain. I just got prescribed Lyrica and I'm not sure if I want to take it?? To top things off is if I can't work by Monday I will be unemployed... Hoping to find some positives on this page as I really need them right now!!



  • Sorry to hear this and hope they discover the problem soon.

    Not sure about procedures in Australia but here we get signed off by a doctor, which prevents somebody ending your employment. Maybe you are self employed?  hope you can work out the work problem before Monday



    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015
    L4-S1 TLIF with decompression June 2017
  • SooveritSooverit Finger Lakes region of NYPosts: 459
    Hi there :) 

    What your concerns with lyrica? 

    My experience with lyrica was that it does work well for nerve symptoms- not other pain, though. It made me feel like I drank a few glasses of wine, then tired in the morning. The longer I took it, the stronger the side effects. Also, I found myself searching for simple words...."what is that know...when you watch someone's kid? Ah! Babysitting!" Stuff like that, lol. I took it for about nine months, then had to stop due to being so tired (have a toddler to chase).

    If your symptoms are primarily nerve related (pins and needles, tingling, buzzing, zaps, burning), it can be very, very helpful with tolerable side effects. But that was just my experience.

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  • AlphabetAAlphabet AustraliaPosts: 58
    edited 05/05/2016 - 3:47 PM
    Thanks for the responses guys, I am a casual employee doing full time hours so not to many rules apply to me unfortunately. When I first injured my back they told me they would have to let me go but I managed to prove my worth.

    I tried Lyrica for the first time last night, only a small dosage of 75mg to see if it helped with the pinching in my buttock and cramping feeling my calf and it did nothing, I may need to have more. I guess my concerns are they same as yours... I have a 10month old and job that requires me to walk and sit in a car all long do I have to use this for?? And will I be able to work??

  • dilauroddilauro ConnecticutPosts: 12,072
    Those are questions only your doctor can really answer  
    Generally, Lyrica and Neurontin, nerve medications take some time to be in your system before they start to work.  Its not a causal, use it when i want type of medication.  It is meant to be taking as prescribed.  So, they could mean several weeks before you start seeing results.  But everyone is different

    As far as work, in your job do you need your wits and dexterity at all times?  Lyrica can slow  you down a bit.  But overall I worked for years as a pogrammer while taking Neurontin.  But again, everyone is different so there are no set golden rules.
  • AlphabetAAlphabet AustraliaPosts: 58
    I have read it can take up to a week to take any effect,I do feel rather spacey this morning though. I do need to be alert and responsive at work as I track and capture wildlife. I'm hoping once the pain has gone I can do my job until I can sort out this problem.
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  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,212
    hello alphabet!
    welcome to spine-health
    please click on link for helpful information!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • SooveritSooverit Finger Lakes region of NYPosts: 459
    Hello again Alphabet :)

    I think you should try it for a couple weeks (if only to be able to tell your doctor you really gave it a go). After that, if it's just not working for you, ask to stop it and try something else. 

    I took topomax for a while  (not for pain, though). It's the same type of drug- primarily to treat seizure disorder, but has been used to treat nerve pain, too.

    Unlike neurontin and lyrica, it made me a little hyper instead of tired. I lost a ton of weight (the reason I had to stop taking it) and it made me forgetful and I lost words. But the side effects, for me, were not as intolerable as with the others.

    Any updates on how it's working for you?
  • AlphabetAAlphabet AustraliaPosts: 58
    The sciatic pain has backed of a little in the last few days and I have had a cortisone injection into the 2 nerve areas. I have stopped the Lyrica due to the fact that it was laying with my head to much and was not having a great  effect on my home life. I know I should  have tried it for a few more days but I didn't like what it was doing  to my head space. I am struggling with numbness in my toes and foot and found myself quite down in the dumps, I may need to go back to it.
  • SooveritSooverit Finger Lakes region of NYPosts: 459
    If side effects are too much, I totally understand needing to stop. I did that with nucynta after five days....and I wish I had stopped taking it as soon as the side effects hit  (but it did help my pain, so I wanted to try to push through the side effects).

    Has the injection helped much? 

    Sorry you are in the dumps. I know that feeling all too well these days :(

    Feel free to share your thoughts and feelings here. I'll be happy to chat with you. I'm in a similar situation. 

    Do you have other medication to help with pain?
  • SooveritSooverit Finger Lakes region of NYPosts: 459
    P.s. if lyrica wasn't going to work, it was best to stop asap. Quitting after longer term use can cause difficult withdrawal. 

    Take care :)
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