For over 2 years, I dealt with chronic back pain that just seemed to get worse. I underwent nerve ablations, injections, chiropractic treatment, physical therapy, MRIs (which showed several bulging but not herniated lumbar disks - my PCP says there's not much difference between bulging and herniated), Xrays, CAT scans, etc. etc. Nobody could figure out what was wrong, though the pain was near my SI joint. I went to my PCP once and asked if it could be something internal, even cancer. He laughed and said I"d be dead by now if it were cancer.but I still had to wonder if it was a benign process going on. Even my chiropractor had said same to me - look internally.
Finally, something bittersweet happend for me. We had always wanted kids but we were amongst the 20% or so who have unexplained infertility. So, rather than ever getting any joy from my uterus by having kids, I just had horrible cramps, extremely heavy bleeding (changing pad every 1 to 2 hours - I laughed at tampons - my period would destroy them) and periods that tended to be erratic, as early as 23 days or late as 29 days, so pretty much all of my underwear was ruined (I've since had fun going thru my drawer and throwing out the bad underwent and shopped for a whole bunch of new stuff). A little over 2 years ago, I was going to the bathroom and felt something as I was wiping. I got down on the floor and grabbed a mirror and thought "Dang, that looks like my cervix. I knew what had happen. A doctor confirmed this, that it was a second degree prolapse, and I had an abdominal hysterectomy (still have ovaries - I was only 40 all the time and I probably will have them out after menopause just as a prophylactic measure - I type too many reports of young women developing the deadly ovarian cancer after having just a partial hysterectomy done). So, they removed my uterus and I spent a couple of days in the hospital. What really surprised me is when the doctor walked in the day after surgery and asked me if I had bad back pain. I cautiously told him yes and questioned why he asked. Well, I had a retroverted (tipped back) uterus that was in an extremely retroverted position (I got a lot of backaches from this thru the years but the extreme back pain started just 2 years prior) and that pressed on my back some but we finally found the cause of my excruciating back pain - I had a softball-sized fibroid pressing deeply on my spine, with the uterus causing more pressure than normal because of its position. I didn't dare to hope this would relieve my problems but gradually, over about 18 months, the pain went away. It was still really bad at first, but over the next several months, it went from daily pain to weekly, to monthly and now, I have none. I imagine it might have been to the nerves needing to heel after being aggravated for so long. You don't know how badly I wanted to take a copy of that report and show it to specialists that insisted there was nothing wrong with me. I finally felt vindicated. I know the DEA has all of the doctors under their thumb because of a few bad apples (don't get me started on Michael Jackson's doc, who gave him 3 really strong narcotic pain killers - straight morphine, Demerol and OxyContin plus 2 different types of benzodiazepines with Valium and Xanax. He had no business messing around with Diprivan, ESPECIALLY outside of an operating room) and more and more, doctors don't like to prescribe narcotics unless absolute necessary (I got Anaprox when I broke my foot. Didn't do much for the agonizing pain but at least the pain only lasted about a week). I've heard the concerns about it from physicians I've worked for. They don't know what is considered "too many" by the DEA and they fear for their licenses. And from the patient's perspective, when I went in with an extremely painful fractured foot - the muscle had also torn off the bone, I get an NSAID that does almost nothing to touch the pain and I'm afraid to ask for something stronger like Vicodin because I don't want to be labeled as a medication seeker. Gosh, can we just let our doctors practice their own medicine?
Anyway, though my condition with the huge fibroid and tremendous back pain is not very common, there might be someone out there who goes thru the same thing, and hopefully they will read this and get a CAT scan (never suggested to me) done or pelvic ultrasound. I'd hate to see anyone suffer like I did.
Take care, all