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Can Arachnoiditis be caused by multiple attempts of epidural from labor?

By Anonymous February 24, 2010 - 11:47pm
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started complaining about back pain and headache immediatly after birth of first child in Aug 2008. Doctors in hosp did nothing so i figured it was normal. After 6 months of back pain and headaches every single day my husband finally made me go see our PCP a mri was performed and revealed synovial cyst and protruding disc. i hae exhaused every avenue of pain relief. every thing from facet and epidural injections to chiropractors and medication, massage and losing weight i also had my nerves cauterized by radiofrequency nothing has helped. it just keeps getting worse. i am having tremendous problems standing, walking, sitting . which is affectingmy job in which i stand and bend and twist all day. while i have not been diagniosed with arachnioditis, i just happen to come across it on the internet and think it matches my symptoms perfectly. basicly i have been i pain that has worsened since the epidural during labor. I have vericose veins in the location where the epidural was. i should mention that it took the doctors 2 hours and 9 attempts to get the epidural to work, during which i was sitting on the bed hunched over the whole time. my symptoms since then include debilitating low back pain started out only in the area of the injection but has since spead to all of my lower back my hips and legs. i have muscle spasms in all the previously mentioned areas and also a lot of twiching in the same areas. i now have numbness and tingling and burning electrical type pain from my back to my toes. i have started falling down due to muscle weakness. my pcp has done every type of bloodwork imaginable sent me to rheumo and neuro and pain managment docs who began to do complete work ups all of which turned out nothing. for a while they even thought i might have M.S or lupus or another auto immune . while i do have symptoms of ms, my mri of brain showed no lesions and my EMG was normal i am awaiting the spinal tap results but my neuro thinks they will be normal as well. my condition worsens every single day i have also started having urinary problems. i have to go all the time some days overy20 times, and when i get there i have to push very hard to make the steam start. and must continue to do so that all of the urine gets out. i am also having blurrred vision and extreme memory loss and thinkin problems. my question is it possible for me to have arachnoiditis caused from my epidural attemps. if so why haven't they seen it when i had the original mri of my back...or is it possible that the synovial cyst (2) they found could really be arachnoiditis. also is this caused by malpractice/negligence. anyone with same symptoms i urge to respond. before this i was independant and strong now i am dependant on others to help out with daily living and rely on meds to get through another painful day. info on meds now used ( i had never had any pain or nerve meds before this pain) Neurontin 600 mil 3 x day

oxycodone 10/325 4 x day-------they are planning to switch to morphine next week
baclofen 10 mil 3 x day
cymbalta 60 mil 2 x day

indiana mama

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EmpowHER Guest

Yes I think you have adhesive arachnoiditis caused from the injections. I suffered severe spinal trauma from a work injury, my injury was on the job and due to workers compensation in Canada, everything was used to deny me timely diagnosis - timely medical care. My injury happened Nov 2004; Even though x-rays question spinal fractures, I was denied further diagnostic study. Multiple trips to emergency at different hospitals then doctor to doctor trying to get help for specific complaints were all denied. In Nov 2007 I received my 1st spinal injection under fluoroscope , ( marcaine + celestone ) within a few months a different type of pain started. I developed a whole bunch of side effects, each year since my pain has escalated. In 2009 I received another spinal injection (depro medrol) which caused immediate severe pain. this injection was done "Blindly". Never in my life would I have allowed any doctor anywhere near my spine with a needle had I been warned or even told, right on the bottle it states; "Not for spinal injection" Intramuscular injection ONLY; I was NOT told that the doctor was using a medicine in the injection "Off Label" On Pubmed, studys show injections for spinal trauma are of little value and the risks outweigh the benefits; When suffering in extreme pain you will do almost anything to stop the pain. However had I been WARNED or even told the truth, I would never allowed the doctor to inject me. Since receiving the injection in 2007 and 2009 my life is a "Living Hell"

Dr. Aldrete in Birmingham Al. is one of the leading specialists, here is his contact info; Dr. Antonio Aldrete MD, PO Box 4627, Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459-4627. If you have any questions you can call him at (205) 240-4231 Send your scans or/and go see him. There are treatments to HELP with the pain that are better than pills and patches. Lidocaine / Ketamine infusion was told to me to be very good at attacking the pain and getting relief;
Bruce Junker,

November 1, 2014 - 6:53am
EmpowHER Guest

Holy crap, I've been looking for somebody that had a similar experience that I have, you just explained my entire epidural. Only after it was all said and done and I went to dr after dr and chiropractor I finally went and got my report for me epidural, and he lied! About how many attempt, which was 7, and how no blood was present and no problems, which was a lie. And now I'm in the middle of suing them because I can't even begin to stand for over an hour. I'm glad you got relieve and know what's wrong.

October 7, 2014 - 7:33am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I have had the same problems but only had one epidural. My nurse left me on my side for 45 minutes while my son was literally coming on his own. When Ethan was here and it was all said and done I snapped on my nurse and she yanked the epidural out of my back. I have 2 cysts in my spine. one in my thoracic and one in my lumbar region. I have been on pain meds for 4 years, I have scan after scan, gone to chiropractors, done PT, I have done it all but no one has been able to figure it out. My doctor has finally after 4 years referred me to a spine specialist. I was tested for lupis but not ms. I have been wondering how to get my records from the hospital and try to figure out if this has been caused do to that epidural. Any help would be great here as well.

December 1, 2014 - 10:50am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

Doctor tried that LUPUS diagnosis with me also; Its amazing how easy it is to diagnosis Adhesive Arachnoiditis, but doctors (radiologists) deliberately refuse to diagnosis the condition due to being a doctor created disease;

December 2, 2014 - 3:32am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I have an appointment on the 8th to meet with a spine specialist. Should I bring up the Adhesive Arachnoiditis diagnosis? It's not something that I had even heard of until coming to this forum. Infact, out of the 4 years of being poked and proded by doctors, all I have been diagnosed with is "chronic back pain." I had thought maybe Synovial or Tarlov Cyst's, but it doesn't explain the other symptoms that I have.

December 2, 2014 - 6:57am
EmpowHER Guest

Sorry to hear of your pain. I am a 44 yo man with similar problems. I was strong and healthy before my back began to go. I have had major
Back surgery double fusion and work done on my entire lumbar. I thought I was feeling improvement six months after my operation but soon started to deteriorate I had to apply for Ssi and am on disability now. I have had an MRI which shows multiple areas of concern but the worst being arachnoiditis. I am going to get a second opinion because it is my understanding that arachnoiditis is a one way ticket to being bed bound! Get another MRI with contrast and ask your doctor about trying subutex for pain... It is used to ween opiate dependent people off their drugs... Even though it is a narcotic it doesn't have the same effect on ones thinking. I have been on it for a month and it has been working much better than the oxicodone that I have been on for 6 years+ now! It is 30-40x's better analgesic than morphine! I am searching now for a Doctor or clinic that works with arachnoiditis but no luck so far. Most doctors do not want to get involved with us because as if now they have no treatment or cure... At least not yet! Again get an MRI with contrast and ask your doctor about subutex for pain... I think you will have a much better quality of life not felling like your in a haze all of the time. Good luck!

September 24, 2010 - 6:20am

hey purple, the next step is to get another MRI to see how far the nerves are adhered so they have ordered an mri of the thoracic spine, i have never had one that far up before , then after that we are going to do a trial of a spinal cord stimulator , if that doesnt work than maybe do a morphine pump. maybe we could set up a good time to talk on the phone one day, to be honest it would be nice to actually hear your voice. plus there is just toooooo much info that our tired fingers just cant type. let me know,
but u need to make sure that the mri technician knows that arach is the issue to look for. also make sure to ask when you get the results, dr's are busy and sometimes forget the reasons why they ordered the test, so if they say no we didnt see that then you want to say " so there wasnt any scar tissue or nerve adhearence or clumping" that way they have to answer the question more specificly. i think this might help.. also it never hurts to make sure that at every appt you remind your dr that you had a causative factor that could have led to the nerve damage. have you been getting all of your records and office notes from all the dr's you have seen for this , make sure that you do and review them..i guarentee.lol you will find some mistakes , i have found so many , some even big ones within my medical records
indiana mama

July 14, 2010 - 9:47pm

When i started this I only expected to get a few responses, of either a yes or no nature. Remeber the title of this blog..can mult. epidural attepts cause Arachnoiditis?........Well the answer is YES. A few days ago as i continued my search for what was going on with me (especially after the surgery) I went to a new neurosurgeon...long story short he confirmed it. i have adhesive arachnoiditis. But of course he didn't know the cause it could have been the epidurals or the surgery...whats weird is that I like this guy, mainly because he wasn't afraid to diagnose me and tell me what to expect (i already knew all of it though) but when I started asking about the cause . of course for legal reasons , he stopped me and kept telling me he was only here for the " now" issues not for the " why" and "how come" issues...i even offered to let him see any of my 4 other MRI's from before the surgery..which he declined. So it leaves me to wonder...He really doesn't want to know which one caused it. and that really sucks, because how can you have a good relationship with you Dr if he expects you to be honest with him, but not the other way around.
So now that I have my diagnosis, I'm going to take a break from all the message boards and researching for a while, I need some time to enjoy life again, without the pressure of being undiagnosed...I now, need; to just BE!
So my advice for anyone who is having problems getting a diagnosis, or even having your doctor rule it out/ or look into it is...get another Dr. that doesn't mean that you have to change records and move across town , i just mean keep making appts until you beleive that a dr ha taken your concens seriously . make sure you have done your homework so that you know the test and procedures that should be run, this way you'll know if they are doing what needs to be done. If they dont do something that you think they should, make sure you ask about it. Sometimes it may not be nessesary, for many reasons...anyways the point is , if your not getting anywhere or getting any answers with your current team of dr's then you need to try new ones, get some fresh perspectives, ya never know it just might work out...it did for me.

indiana mama

July 11, 2010 - 9:20am
(reply to indiana mama)

congrats!!! im sososososo happy for you!! sounds like a positive and a negative wrapped in one doctor but at least you got the diagnosis!! what is your next step in terms of treatment? from what i have heard there is not much for arachnoiditis..?? how did this doc diagnose you? could it be seen from MRI or other tests? i promise i wont keep bugging you, especially since you need a break from all of this!! but i am about to see a new doctor and any info would be sooooooo helpful for me!! i only have 6 months before my statute runs out and if i dont get some sort of diagnossi by then, the doc who did this to me will be off the hook. (other than the karma he will get for what he did)

at any rate i am very happy for you. i hope that your new doc will eventually coem to his senses and be ok with at least looking into what the cause of the arach is. he has to have some conclusion and at least if he diagnosed it maybe another doc will be more open to id'ing the cause. if your new doc were to be questioned he would have to have some sort of conclusion!! anyways, i hope this helps your peace of mind!! it has been so comforting to know i am not alone in this, although i wish i were so that you nor anyone else would have to suffer this pain!! take care!! keep in touch!!

July 13, 2010 - 7:57am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to purplehaze_ck)

purple, where you been at? anything new going on did you read my response to you? Let me know, I am busy applying for SSD online right now so not alot of time to type, but i would be willing to talk on the phone if you like , let me know, hope you are doing well
indiana mama

July 24, 2010 - 9:30pm
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