My problems started in 2006 when I turned 30. My story starts with the classic back injury, twisting and bending whilst putting a tool box down. The first time I knew what it felt like to “put my back out” as they say. I found that the first day I wasn't too bad. After an awful night sleep, I could move, but it was incredibly painful. I only had general mobility. 6 weeks recovery and all was well. I didn't see my general practitioner, as an appointment takes weeks.
Over the next year, I was plagued with general back pain, but I dealt with it. The following August, I was camping at a music festival and whist packing the tent, I bent over and my back went again. Again the pain on the day was bearable, but the next day, I was in agony and stiff. Another six weeks of recovery. I went to see the GP after a week and he prescribed anti-inflammatory medications and said get on with it.
Another year passed, this time I bent down to pick up a leaflet and my back went out yet again. Two hours later, I waddled over the road to collect my daughter and I experienced the most awful crippling spine crushing sensation in all my life. This was my first and most unforgettable lumbar spasm. I literally fell onto the road and crawled to my front door, screaming in excruciating pain, begging my husband to call an ambulance as my spine had snapped. I had a natural urge to crawl to my bed upstairs and there I stayed for three days in tears. I tried to go to the toilet but I could not move even an inch in under 10 minutes. I had to plan every movement with military precision.
Moving my left leg 1 inch took 5 minutes. Shuffling my right leg over took 5 minutes. I repeat the process until my legs are on the edge of bed taking 45 minutes. I attempt to sit up, with help from family member, taking 20 minutes. I hobble to the toilet whilst holding onto my hubby for 20 minutes. I won’t delve into the toilet process! This back spasm incident has scarred my very soul. I have labored three children naturally and I have a very high pain threshold, but this back pain incident was off the scale!
I gradually recovered and pulled my back out many times until last year. In June 2014, I leaned forward slightly whilst sitting and it went out. Four weeks later, I got up off a chair and it went but the pain was like a bolt of lightening across my lower back. In August, it felt unstable and had a dull ache. I knew it was going to go out.. I felt it building up. Someone at work made me jump and it went big style.
That actual day wasn't too bad, but the next day I had to go to work to cover summer holiday leave as no one else was in our office. I struggled to go in but spent the whole day in the most excruciating spine-ripping pain. I sobbed like a baby. I couldn't eat or drink. Nausea flowed through me. I wanted to die!
I managed to get home somehow. Hubby took me to a chiropractor who gave me ice and took an x-ray. He said I had disc degeneration but he couldn't help as I was in too much pain. The next morning, and for following two days, I cried and cried until I could take no more and called an ambulance. The paramedic gave me co-codamol, naproxen, and valium so I could sleep. After five days, I crawled into my doctor’s office and begged them for help.
I fainted twice due to severe pain, another first time experience! Physiotherapy was offered and more drugs. I took them! After numerous doctor visits and begging the physiotherapist to refer me, I finally got an appointment to see the orthopedic surgeon six months later! He gave me an MRI which showed a herniated disc L5-S1. By now the herniation was probably a lot less severe than six months previous. He said he didn't want to touch it as the bulge was central but could offer spinal injections. That was February of this year.
I live in fear that every time I move an inch that my back will go again. The last episode took around eight months to heal and I am petrified. I have become obsessed with finding more information and apart from this website; no one else really gets back spasms and understands the effect they have on your mentality and your actual soul.
God help anyone else who is living with the back spasms. I can live with the daily back pain, but not the spasms. When people ask me what is the first thing I would buy if I won the lottery, I tell them I would arrange an appointment with the best spinal doctor in the world. That is the honest truth! If it meant I never had to feel that pain for one second more, I would pay a million pounds.