During 2010 I visited a pain specialist who was treating me with acupuncture and this specialist suggested I have an epidural injection in my lower spine to see if I might have pain relief and if so continue with one or two more consecutively.
I went to visit my Orthopedic Surgeon, Mr Roy Carey for an update (and dreamt he was going to say, ‘we found the cure for chronic back pain’ which he didn’t of course), but also to discuss the injection idea and he recommended to aim the injection more specifically into the coccyx.
I had that done and my pain relief was only from day two to about day four. But this was enough for Mr Carey to understand my pain issue was not mechanical but rather neuropathic. He referred me to Professor Peter Teddy (professorial fellow in Neurosurgery in the Department of Surgery at Melbourne University) at Precision Neurosurgery.
Prof Teddy listened (and heard!), asked for one more scan, then took my scans, and presented my case to an international conference of surgeons, and also back home to the Department of Surgery at Melbourne University. The suggestion was, rather than take drastic action (which I was willing to take at that point I was so desperate) and remove my coccyx, that we first try a Peripheral Nerve Stimulation device?
In my case, the procedure was much less complicated as I didn’t need the leads to go through the spinal canal but rather along the right side of my sacrum and coccyx. There is a trial period in which the unit sits outside and is ‘plugged in’ via the leads that, yes, are sticking half out/half in your body. Look I know that might sound gruesome to some but please… we’re talking about chronic pain here… it was nothing. A cinch… it worked, it’s in now and giving me great pain relief.
But that’s my experience. This is an operation, infections are a serious consideration here (so is the anesthetic effect, weeeeee!).
This x-ray is me now!!
Continue Reading: The way Relief continued…