bulging discs, are they a surgical issue or not?
I have several bulging discs, both in the cervical spine and the lumbar spine. One of the ones in the lumbar area has a tear in it and at times is excruciatingly painful. I am on two opiate pain killers, one long acting and another short acting one for breakthrough pain. I have been told it is not a surgical problem and all they want to do is injections. I also have degenerative facet arthritis in 8 facets in the lumbar area. Injections have been very helpful, after the initial few days of excruciating pain. I have heard that continuing to receive injections of long acting pain and steroid medications can be harmful. How much is enough and how much is too much and to start worrying about osteoporosis, which I also have. I use heat, rest, pain meds and patches to deal with the pain. Any other suggestions? I definitely do not want surgery, but would like to try some more injections. I have had two series for the disc issues and one for the facet. I moved and am now going to a new pain doctor who has agreed to do more injections, but I am hesitant and afraid. I guess I just don't know enough about their safety. Anyone with some sugesstions or advice would be welcome. Thank you. bbnrse