Sunday, December 27, 2009
Shaun's latest procedure included five needles last week. This one was a diagnostic one to inflict pain in areas that are problem areas in his neck. The goal is to pin point where the pain is coming from and to verify to see if there is disc degeneration. It is called a discogram. The doctor inserts small tubes in the front side of his neck. Then they insert thin needles into each of the tubes. The needles then inject dye between the vertebrae. The goal is to see if any of the vertebrae hurt more than the rest when the dye is injected. If all points hurt then the test in inconclusive, since the test itself is uncomfortable. A positive test is when some areas hurt and other areas don't or are just uncomfortable. They did five injection points, three of the five had varying degrees of pain.
C3- 4 no pain
C 4-5 lots of pain
C 5-6 almost as much pain as above
C 6-7 pain, but not nearly as much as the previous two
C 7 -T1 no pain
This is the report that the DR gave us, since Shaun was awake, but remembers none of this. This makes his 9th time under anesthetic in a thirteen month time frame. Though this was a bit different since there was no pain medicine in the anesthesia for obvious reasons. Next week will be number 10, when he goes in for his radio frequency ablation in a new location than his last one that did not take. The original plan was to do the C 3-4 area, but the DR who did the discogram is recommending that the C 4-5 be done in addition. Even though this cauterizes the nerve, it is still considered temporary relief, since the nerves grow back and reconnect. Hopefully this will buy more time than the others have provided since it is in right area.
This procedure left some pretty good bruises. He will have some battle wounds to show off for the next couple weeks. Additionally, it was his lucky day for bruises. He has great veins and has yet to bruise with all the IV's he has gotten, until this time. I am not sure what went wrong, but I have never seen an IV bruise this bad and they got him on the first try. So right now he has a couple of areas he is pretty black and blue. Hopefully next week will be better.