Surgery scheduled

John, USA - jmassicotte@comcast.net

Posted 2013-06-23

I have been going through this for over 10 years. Orthopedist, PT, Chiropractic, Steroid Injections, acupuncture all either no help or minimal, short term help. The Pain Management doctor suggests a neuro-stimulator implant. I take pain medication daily which keeps the pain tolerable but in recent years the pain has increased requiring more medication which causes me to feel, well drugged. My primary care physician gave me Cymbalta which surprisingly eased the pain a lot but I would wake up at 2-3 am each night... He said that I should wean myself off it & he would give me something else. Well it has been three weeks of brain zaps & fuzzy headed days. No way am I going on something else.

I decided enough is enough and started looking for an experienced surgeon, which Connecticut does not have. I found Dr. Kirkham Wood from Massachusetts General Hospital (see Doctors and specialists in the USA, Massachusetts). I went for a consultation this past Tuesday and the surgery has been scheduled for July 24th. Doctor Wood says that it is a simple surgery which takes him all of 5 minutes and I may be able to go home the same day. His study, Operative treatment for coccygodynia, shows an 85% success rate .. I am so excited. I will report back...

Update, 2015-07-26

The surgery itself, two years ago, was not horrible. Because the hospital was a two hour drive the doctor arranged for me to stay overnight (justified because I have apnea). I was a bit confused when Dr. Wood visited me after the surgery because prior to surgery my understanding was that he was going to do a complete removal. When I spoke to him he said that he removed everything he could without a bone saw, huh? If it was fused I wanted it out, not left... He also said he cut too high which made it difficult to get at the coccyx, he's done over 200 of these, a little surprising, make me wonder if his student did the surgery. Even with a shot of morphine the ride home was no fun, stopped halfway for food, it was a good opportunity to walk around and take some meds. The two biggest concerns the first couple of weeks was cleanliness and constipation. Because the incision was up high it was easier to keep clean. The pain meds which I stopped taking in a week still bound me up really bad. Laxatives are your best friend, sorry about that.

I returned to work in 4 weeks, which was too early butt I was going crazy at home. It was tough because I have a desk job, I had to stand up a lot. I got through it with the help of tramadol at least twice a day.

After a couple months I really started feeling pretty good and was very confident. Butt slowly the pain started to increase and I could feel something moving when I sat down. I went to the pain clinic and had an CT SCAN which showed a seroma (fluid pocket) at the surgical site. I tried physical therapy and chiropractors to no avail. The surgeon said that it might go away or an interventional radiologist could try to remove the fluid butt it could refill. Dr Wood said that I will improve and he hasn't had any come back in 20 years and say it didn't work, not what I wanted to hear. So at present I am still in pain, taking pain meds 2-3 times a day. I have a sit-stand workstation which helps tremendously butt I guess my next step is another doctor in New Jersey to find out what can be done if anything. I dread another surgery. I still would have done it. ..

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