So all my teenage and adult life, I have always struggled with back pain.
I saw several doctors and chiropractors, pysio’s etc to see if they could help, but nothing anyone did helped. Doctors just wanted to put me on strong pain relief, chiropractors wouldn’t touch me until I had xray’s and MRI’s done, and even after they saw the scans, they wouldn’t touch me.
They never told me why they wouldn’t help. They just said I need to see a doctor to get the help I need. Well I knew what they doctors would say, and that was I needed strong pain relief.

In 2014, I was at work, I went to stand up from my desk and fell back down in extreme pain. I had sharp stabbing pains in my lower back and shooting down the back of my left leg, right down to my toes.

I was sent to a chiropractor by my manager, and the chiropractor would not touch me.
I started working from home, as most days I couldn’t move from my bed due to extreme pain.
I was worming away a few days later and went to get up for a drink of water, and again, I was struck down in pain and couldn’t move. My partner at the time, called an ambulance because he had had enough of seeing me like this.

I was taken to the hospital, and they did ct scans, xrays and MRI’s, and found that I had “Fibrodispacia”, spurs on my spine, and prolapsed disc.

I was immediately sent to another hospital for quarterzone injections by CT into my spine at the L5 S1 region. These were meant to help ease the pain, but did nothing.
Due to the injections not helping, they then booked me in for surgery.
I had a microdiscectomy on my L5 S1.
This surgery helped a bit, but did not fix the entire issue I have.
So I still to this day, suffer from lower back pain and regularly get numbness down my leg, which causes me to not be able to walk, and I get sharp stabbing pains down the back of my left leg, still.

I then fell pregnant with my daughter in 2018, the doctors told me that it’s possible that the growth hormones from being pregnant, could either help heal my back issues, or it could make them worse.
Lucky for me, the growth hormones helped a lot more than what the surgery did.
So now, the pain has eased a lot more and I usually only get the pains now, if I’ve been doing any heavy lifting or repetitive movements or bending too much. I have learned my limits, so I generally am okay.

Then, in 2018, I was rushed to hospital by ambulance again, as I was sitting on my verandah having my morning cup of tea, when my daughter wanted a cuddle, so I picked her up and almost dropped her, and was stuck in the position of trying not to drop her, so my partner at the time had to grab her off me really quickly. She thought she had hurt me, but we had no idea what had caused this sudden pain in my right side rib area, that stopped me from being able to move and was severely extreme pain. I couldn’t move into any position, couldn’t stand, couldn’t walk, nothing.

My partner had to carry me from the verandah to my bed. Thinking that maybe if I lie down, it might help, but it didn’t.
He called the ambulance and they came and gave me the “green whistle” that helped get me from my bed to the ambulance. They took me to my nearest hospital, where they checked out previous scans and MRI’s I’d had in previous years to see if they could find a problem. They did scans on me as well to compare old to new.

Turns out, the hospital that did my back surgery, had found a Cyst growing on my 9th rib bone (right side front), and had never informed me of this.

So I was once again told I just need strong pain relief.
Well, this did not go down well with me, even though I needed the pain relief, I was not happy about living on that all my life. I wanted this cyst removed asap.

My new GP, who has been a huge help to me, put me onto a surgeon at another hospital, who could help me understand the process of having the cyst removed and advise whether it is the best option for me.
So I spent a few months dealing with this surgeon, who advised he wanted to look into a medical treatment to reduce the size of the cyst and possibly get rid of it that way rather than having surgery to remove it.

Turns out, there was no medical treatment available that could do what he was wanting to do, so surgery was the only option.
Due to Covid-19 surgery could not be done straight away, so I had to wait a few more months. During those months, pain had dramatically increased and the pain relief was no longer helping at all. It was just making me into a zombie, which meant I wasn’t alert enough to look after my daughter alone, (single mum), and I couldn’t do mum stuff with my daughter, which breaks my heart! I was also unable to hold her, cuddle her, or have her weight on my in any way. This broke my heart too because my daughter and I love our snuggles and we love playing together.

So I got onto the surgeon again, and said that I cannot keep living this way, I need the surgery asap because the pain is too severe now and the pain relief is simply no longer working for me.
He agreed to book me in for surgery straight away. 2 days later, I got a call from the hospital he works at, to advise that I was booked in for the surgery on the Monday, (3days after the call) so I had to be admitted to hospital on the Sunday (day prior to surgery).
So, now I am 5 weeks post-op, and already feeling 10 x better than I have in years!

I now have 15cm of my 9th rib bone removed, cyst removed, and I have medical mesh in place of the rib bone to protect my internal organs, like the rib bone used to do. I have a nice big 15cm scar on my back where they cut me open, I also have a nice scar on my right side under my arm area from where they had a drain to deflate my right lung, and I have to do breathing exercises and use ventalin with a spacer, to prevent my lung from collapsing.

Then, about a week ago, I received a call from the assistant surgeon, who advised me of the lab results from my rib bone and cyst. He told me that both were benyne, (not cancerous), however, on the remaining rib bone, they have left behind some tiny cyst cells, that could potentially grow into another cyst in the future, and could also potentially turn cancerous.

So I am still not out of the woodworks, however, I am feeling so much better and pain has dramatically dropped, and changed now into a “recovering from surgery” pain instead.

Now I have to have regular scans in the future to keep an eye on those cyst cells to make sure they don’t turn into another cyst or turn cancerous. But all in all, I am doing great, feeling so much better, and I can cuddle and play with my daughter again, better than I have ever been able to before! She’s only 2.5yrs old so, now she has the mummy she needs and deserves, and it was all done for her! So that she had a mummy that can play with her and cuddle her and be alert and happy for her instead of seeing her mummy in constant pain or all drugged up on pain relief 24/7.

I would do absolutely anything for my daughter, and these surgeries have proven that!
I can’t thank my surgeon enough for everything he’s done, all the support and understanding her gave me, for doing such a great job fixing me, and for going above and beyond to make this surgery happen for me as quickly as he could!

So, just goes to show, if there’s something not quiet right with your body, seek several opinions and do not stop until its fixed! There are some really great doctors and surgeons out there, you just have to keep trying and looking until you find one.

Posted by Allyssasmumma, 26th June 2020

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