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There is a light at the end of the tunnel...(could use some support tho)

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Some history:

May 2006, I suffered a back injury at work. It was declared permanent in 2007, it's in my upper back and there's no remedy. Fine and dandy. It doesn't affect my quality of life much. Some yes, constant low grade pain, and physical limitations of anything involving moving my shoulder. (ex. folding laundry, I cannot do. Driving, I can't drive for longer than a couple hours. I need a special chair to support my upper back. I cannot lift over a lb from my waist to shoulder. I'm ok lifting floor to waist. To some it may seem more serious, but wait till you read below and you will understand why I find it ok to deal with)

Feb.14, 2007: I woke up in the evening (worked midnights, sleep during the day) and I literally could not move either of my hands. They were swollen and seized, excruitiating pain. Went to the hospital, diagnosed with inflammatory tendinitis.

This was not out of the blue. My hands/arms/elbows had been giving me problems at work for about 6mos prior. (I was an industrial cleaner at an egg plant...meaning I played with pressure washers, did alot of repetitive gripping/squeezing/pinching... maintenence on heavy equipement, etc.)

Extensive physiotherepy helped me regain some ROM (range of motion) and some strength. Reached a plateau where I was not getting better, but not getting worse.

Declared a permanent disability as well.

I also had furthur medical which showed that I have DeQuervians tendinitis ( http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00007) in both thumbs, as well as both medial epicondylitis (golfers elbow http://orthopedics.about.com/cs/elbo...lferselbow.htm) and lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow http://orthopedics.about.com/cs/elbow/a/tenniselbow.htm)

You can say that my arms/hands are totally messed up

Summer of 2007, I entered the WSIB (workers comp) LMR (labor market reentry) program as I would never be able to work my job again. I went to school, got my Gr. 12 in Dec. 07. Started college for Web design/development in Feb. 2008), with assistive aids n' such to accomodate my disabilities. Not a smart program choice but the disability company thought with the assistive aids (voice software to limit typing, arm supports, custom braces, etc) that I could do this program. If they had researched properly, this would not have been appropriate. The voice software works well for typing the english language. It does NOT work well for typing programming languages, or graphic design (not usable at all).

By August, when we started some of the heavier programming courses, everything flared up because I had to type it. I am stubborn and don't know how to quit LOL. Eventually it got to the point that I was missing alot of classes due to not physically being able to drive into school, somedays not being able to dress myself or tend to personal hygiene (showerring, using the washroom, etc).

Nov. 2008, WSIB pulled me out of school pending furthur medical. I have been at home since then, doing nothing. I play on the comp (via voice software) and sit on my butt all day.

Rest usually helps tendinitis subside. Hence the reason I was ok for the first part of schooling (getting my gr. 12, I used voice software... and it was in town, so I only drove 5mins, I still had the tendinitis but the inflammation had lessened so for the most part I could function, with pain medication.... college, driving 45mins 2x a day, unable to use the voice software for alot of my course...my dr. will not prescribe stronger pain meds than what I have).

My family dr. is a moron. I've been at home, resting for 3mos and finally got the appt. to go to the Hand and Upper limb clinc for a reassessment (had been discharged in Oct. 2007).

Feeling not too bad, I had my appt. yesterday, and was incredibly worried because I'm doing better than in Nov. and was having a "good" day. Some days are worse than others depending on if I actually do something or not. So on the outside I look fine, although my pain on a daily basis ranges from a 5 out of 10, to a 10 out of 10 (and that's on strong narcotic pain meds). But I had more functionality than I did when I was pulled from school, so my thinking was that it could appear I was "faking it".

Ummmmm. No.

Upon physical examination, I have not gotten as well as I feel, nor has the inflammation gone down as it should with 3mos of rest.

The Dr. highly recommends surgery FINALLY. For the De Quervian's tendinitis because that is the one that inhibits me greatly. The elbows are secondary from a functionality standpoint. They think with more rest, the elbows will subside and shouldn't be a huge issue. Constant low grade pain though, but I have 90% of the normal ROM in my right, and 85% in my left.

Now I get to play the waiting game. It could be 2-3mos before I get the call with the surgery appt. But I am HAPPY, so happy that I will be getting the surgery. Something like 98% of patients who have this surgery will regain 100% functionality of their hands

Yes, as with any surgery, there are risks involved. The surgery is simple and straight foreward but the radial nerve lays ontop of the band they have to cut, and it is very sensitive to even the slighest brushing with a finger/surgical instrument/etc and could cause permanent, unrepairable injury.

It is a risk I am willing to take. My quality of life is awful, I can't even begin to describe how awful you feel when you can't even wipe yourself after using the bathroom, your kids have to open containers for you, brush your hair, help you pull up your pants. The things we take for granted untill we lose the ability to do them Not to mention living in daily agony....unless you've experienced it, you can't even begin to comprehend the effects it has on a person. I am seeing someone for the pyschological aspects of all of this...it helps, a little... as well as I've met a few people who are in the same boat (not same injuries, but dealing with no independance, little hope, constant pain, etc) and that has helped more than the psychiatrist As well as the harassment from my employer, the issues with WSIB, etc. Someone saying "I understand" who has never been through this, does not understand. How can they? They can empathasize but noone can understand what it does to you. I went from a physical active, healthy and very independant 29 yr old, to not being able to wipe my own butt. That's the most direct way I can put it so one who has never experienced this type of situation, can relate to it. I will be 32 in May... hopefully I will be having the surgery then

If anyone, is dealing with any of the above and needs support, please don't hesitate to msg me.

Has anyone here ever had the surgery for De Quervians, or golfers/tennis elbow?

If you made it to the end, I truly thank you for reading and appreciate you taking the time to do so. Any extra support I can get would be great, and I would be extremely greatful for that.

thank you.
post #2 of 25
post #3 of 25
As you say, only someone who is experiencing what you are going through could understand completely. As an independent person I can somewhat imagine what it is like to have to rely on others to do ordinary daily chores for you and how frustrating it must be.

I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers that you will soon get your surgery, it will be successful and you will have quality of life again.
post #4 of 25


I hope that when you get this surgery it works wonders for you!
post #5 of 25
Oh Honey.... I am so happy for you!!! Reading your story made me think of the Wizard of Oz... You need some oil in your joints, don't you?
I hope all the success with the surgery, and a speedy recovery!
Many many many hugs and vibes!
post #6 of 25
Thread Starter 
Thank you all. I know we sometimes underestimate the power of online support, but we shouldn't. It can mean the world to people. Even just reading and a simple one line response can bring a smile to anyones face especially if they don't have alot of support IRL. I am very grateful that you took the time to read, and wish me well.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post

I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers that you will soon get your surgery, it will be successful and you will have quality of life again.
Thank you I'm not expecting miracles by any means, but anything has to be better than this

Quote:
Originally Posted by katiemae1277 View Post


I hope that when you get this surgery it works wonders for you!
I hope so too I have faith in my hand surgeon... He did my stepfathers surgery a few yrs back. He had fallen off a train car and broke his arm in many different spots. The surgeon was outstanding, and did a great job

Quote:
Originally Posted by carolinalima View Post
Oh Honey.... I am so happy for you!!! Reading your story made me think of the Wizard of Oz... You need some oil in your joints, don't you?
I hope all the success with the surgery, and a speedy recovery!
Many many many hugs and vibes!
LOL, pretty much I need a good lube job LOL.
Thanks my friend.
post #7 of 25
.....
post #8 of 25
Wow! Making my head spin!!!

for success and you get the relief that you need!
post #9 of 25
You're right, unless a person has had the experience, it's not possible to understand how you feel in this situation. One who has done the "butt wiping" duties has some understanding, though it's still not the same. From that perspective, I offer you many that this surgery will be all you hope for.
post #10 of 25
I am sending many vibes for you..I can't imagine going through all that

post #11 of 25
you've got my support. while i never suffered the indignities your disabilities have caused you to suffer, i was basically disabled during my 20s due to chronic migraine [i was rarely w/o pain during that time]. for some unknown reason, the 'daily' part of them stopped & i was able to re-enter the workforce. but for a period of 3-5 years i was unable to work.
sending & that you get your surgery date SOON!
post #12 of 25
sending and
post #13 of 25
and for you.

for successful surgery.
post #14 of 25
I have not had any of the surgeries that you've mentioned, but I did have lateral epicondylitis in my right elbow from holding abdominal wall retractors at work (I'm a surgical assistant.) A steroid injection and physical therapy helped me enormously. I also took massive amounts of NSAIDs at the time, which put me into acute renal failure, but that has since resolved. I can understand a bit about where you are coming from.

I have worked in surgery for nearly 25 years, and have assisted on many DeQuervians release surgeries, as well as many operations for ulnar nerve or median nerve decompression. I've worked with both Orthopedic surgeons, and Neurosurgeons. Fortunately, I can honestly say that I have never seen any surgical complications that have caused permanent or unrepairable injury. There have been cases that have had little or no improvement, but often that can be due to waiting too long to have the decompression surgery.

Please keep us updated on your surgery and progress. I will certainly keep you (and your surgical team!) in my prayers!!!
post #15 of 25
Oh sweetie, I dearly hope this surgery works for you! You surely have lots of vibes and good wishes coming to you from here. Bless your heart... and everything that hurts, too.
post #16 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pookie-poo View Post
I have not had any of the surgeries that you've mentioned, but I did have lateral epicondylitis in my right elbow from holding abdominal wall retractors at work (I'm a surgical assistant.) A steroid injection and physical therapy helped me enormously. I also took massive amounts of NSAIDs at the time, which put me into acute renal failure, but that has since resolved. I can understand a bit about where you are coming from.

I have worked in surgery for nearly 25 years, and have assisted on many DeQuervians release surgeries, as well as many operations for ulnar nerve or median nerve decompression. I've worked with both Orthopedic surgeons, and Neurosurgeons. Fortunately, I can honestly say that I have never seen any surgical complications that have caused permanent or unrepairable injury. There have been cases that have had little or no improvement, but often that can be due to waiting too long to have the decompression surgery.

Please keep us updated on your surgery and progress. I will certainly keep you (and your surgical team!) in my prayers!!!
Thank you soooo much for posting

My surgeon mentioned about the cortisone (sp) injections and honestly, they scare the life outta me he knew it too, when he asked if he had mentioned them I instinctively put my hands behind me and said no. Both him and the physiotherepist laughed ...then we went on with the surgery. I like the success rate better and it doesn't scare me.

I have had bilateral CTR (carpal tunnel release) done....was in 2005.

I'm also on a NSAID, diclofenac, which doesn't seem to do squat. Honestly, with the amount of meds I take, I am concerned about my body

How was the injection? I may consider it if the elbows don't improve. My surgeon thinks that they should with exercise, massage therepy and rest. If they don't, he would do the surgery on them as well.

I am very glad you posted, it is great to hear from someone with experience in the surgery. Do you happen to know what the general recovery time is for the DeQuervians release surgery? My surgeon only explained the surgery and that the stiches come out in 10days or so. I know they'll explain it more when it comes closer to the actually date of surgery but I like to prepare... and I haven't been able to find any articles that mention the recovery time.
post #17 of 25
Wow! I'd say you're due for some really good luck. that your surgery can be moved up sooner than you expect and that it's successful.
post #18 of 25
Sending lots of vibes for a successful surgery and a quick and complete recovery.
post #19 of 25
sending losta and your way!
post #20 of 25
I hope you feel better.
post #21 of 25
All I can say is wow, you have been through alot in the last few years. I really hope the surgery helps and you are able to do some things for yourself again.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Many vibes and hugs your way.
post #22 of 25
I can't imagine how life must be for you - but I know you're a really nick chick and I hope things improve for you.
post #23 of 25
Good luck on your upcoming surgery-I hope you don't have to wait that long!

As someone who has carpal tunnel and I also can cause myself to get tendenitis in my left elbow due to overuse from landscaping I though I knew how bad my temporary pain is.

But to have constant pain and a limited range of motion and inability to perform the simplest of tasks...well I applaud you for handling it so well.
post #24 of 25
Thread Starter 
for all the support

It certainly does help, especially on days like today (not a good day). It does help lift the spirits, and keep me from falling into the "why me pity stage".

I was still sore from the dr visit, then the weather went screwy. Thurs. was like -20, Friday was -6 or so, and today we're in the + single digits. YUCK, and OUCH. My left hand is so inflammed that I my fingers are stuck in a curled position and my wrist won't flex. Blah.

Honestly, and yes ok, I posted to get some attention amongst other reasons (was hoping someone had the surgery, or has gone through similiar and can relate, etc).... moreso attention meaning support. I don't have it much at home. My husband, bless him, has been great. 2yrs of tending to me....2yrs of not having his wife around... I'm proud when I can actually cook a meal instead of throwing chicken nuggets and fries on a pan... But its taken his toll on him. He knows when I'm having an awful day, but he doesn't really "support" me persay. It's become the usual now. The support has disappeared for the commonality of all of it. (hope that makes sense)

I wish I had the money/points to give you all a gift because I really hope you realise how much support is appreciated. Thank you.
post #25 of 25
You've certainly been through a lot. I don't have any experience with the surgery you mentioned, but I really wish you the best for it.
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