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Forum Name: Neurology Topics

Question: Pain shooting down groin, leg, and pelvis after nerve block


 saint1 - Sat Mar 31, 2007 7:43 pm

I am a 50 year old woman who had uterine prolapse surgery in June 2005. I had excruciating, unbearable pain afterwards, mainly on the right side. I was put on Neurontin my my primary dr., for fibromyalgia. This must have masked the hip pain, because when I went off the Neurontin, the hip pain flared. I went back to the dr. who did the prolapse surgery and they gave me nerve blocks. After the last one, I developed terrible shooting pain down my groin, vagina, and right leg. I AM SCARED. I've been to the ER twice and treated with pain medication until I can get an appt. to see a neurologist. I can't believe they are so hard to see.

Can you please tell me what is going on, and if it will heal? Should I rest or exercise?

I would sincerely appreciate an answer asap.
 Carolyn Merritt, LPN - Tue Apr 03, 2007 9:30 am

User avatar Dear Saint1:
The nerves that go down your legs are the same nerves that innervate your groin, uterus, and vagina. So it is not uncommon that pain would be felt in any of those areas from the same nerves in your back that cause back or leg pain. To know for sure you need to consult with a neurologist who specializes in the nerves and the limbs and/or organs they affect. Sometimes when injections are given they can irritate a nerve and cause more pain but this needs to be checked by the neurologist. A gynecologist while they deal with the uterus, does not treat nerve pain and this seems to be what is happening with you. Hope this helps some.
Carolyn LPN
 saint1 - Wed Apr 04, 2007 5:57 am

Thanks for your reply, but I'm still somewhat scared. I did see a neurologist yesterday, who told me basically the same thing. The only thing I didn't remember was to ask her if I should exercise or rest. Can you tell me which I should do? I want the nerves to heal. God help me if I have to live with this pain! I could hardly stand in work to do my job. Afterwards I did the food shopping and had to sit on the next register hunched over in pain. It was embarrassing, but I couldn't help it. They had to find someone to load my groceries and take them out and put in my car.

Can this ob/gyn be held accountable for doing this to me?? When my husband took me to the ER the dr. there told me they didn't tell me the truth...that there are other ways to treat the pain other than the $1,000 a shot nerve blocks they were giving me. I'm scared and angry. I now have to go to physical therapy and acupuncture. I'm already on overload.
 Carolyn Merritt, LPN - Wed Apr 04, 2007 11:08 am

User avatar As far as holding the OB/GYN accountable you would have to seek an attorney for that.
As to exercise or rest, exercise is important for overall health. However if you feel the pain worsening with certain types of exercise or activity you should stop and try to find other ways to do the activity that don't increase the pain. Also should you feel numbess, tingling or lose feeling in your legs, have bowel or bladder incontinence you should get to the ER immedicately as this is a serious matter that could lead to permenant damage and/or paralysis. That doesnt mean it will happen just something to be cautious about. Spending a lot of time in bed resting can actually weaken the muscles and cause the nerves to flare up when you start using the muscles again after periods of inactivity so you don't want to become bed-bound by any means but rather learn what positions you can get into without increasing pain and find better posture techniques to do activities so as not to inflame the nerves any further. It is a trial and error type of thing, only you know what worsens the pain and what relieves it. Hopefully the Neurologist will do and EMG to see if the nerves going down the legs are already damaged. I wish you well in this difficult situation.
Carolyn LPN
 saint1 - Sun Apr 08, 2007 11:10 pm

Can you please tell me what an EMG is?? The neurologist did not order that. Is it something I should have done??? She put me on Neurontin, which covers the pain - so I don't even know if there is any numbness or tingling!!! What do you think I should do?
 saint1 - Sun Apr 08, 2007 11:45 pm

I'd like to ask you another question. I was in a lot of pain, and my family urged me to contact an attorney. This was their response:

Unfortunately, many cases
exist which view your type of nerve complications as an "acceptable" risk of
a procedure. This means that it is something which can happen even without
negligence, and therefore is not preventable by exercise of care.

However, neither the doctor or his associates, even though I complained of pain, ordered any diagnostic procedures done, before doing these nerve blocks. Is that the way "normal" medicine is practiced? You GUESS at what the problem is, and perform a medical procedure on a person without using the available diagnostic tools to ascertain, at least to a HIGHER DEGREE, what the problem is?? I even ASKED the dr. to write me a script for an x-ray, and he refused. He told me to have my primary m.d. write it.!? The shots hurt so bad that I asked him "Isn't there anything else that can be done?" and he answered "No". Is this the truth????
 Carolyn Merritt, LPN - Mon Apr 09, 2007 2:42 pm

User avatar Dear saint1:
I cannot answer your legal questions, you need an attorney to do that. I cannot answer to your specific case as well because I am not a diagnostician, doctor nor do I have all your information, medical records, history and such to refer to. I can only give you generalities.
When signing consent for any test or procedure, it usually includes either a list of specific possible complications or a generalized statement that you are aware of all the possible complications and are accepting the risk. If you signed such a consent, which you probably did, you agreed to the risks and this could certainly be detrimental to being able to hold anyone accountable for injury that may have occurred to you.

An EMG is a test that measures the abiltiy of the signal from the brain to travel down a nerve and innervate, or act on, a specific area, such as a muscle. It shows whether the impulse is traveling down the entire nerve to its intended location or is being blocked somehow by either damage to the nerve or a disease process.
Your doctor may not have ordered an EMG because the Neurontin was helping with the pain and therefore showing it was reaching the intended area. If you were having numbness or tingling you should be able to feel it even if the pain is eased. If you have a sudden loss of sensation in your leg(s) or lose the ability to stand on it or have a loss of bladder or bowel control, this is a medical emergency and you should be seen in the ER immediately.
If you feel your neurologist is not taking your symptoms seriously then you have the option of seeking advice from a different one. You should feel that the one treating you is willing to listen to you and to explain everything to your satisfaction.
I wish you well.
Carolyn LPN
 saint1 - Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:52 pm

Thank you very much for your informative answers. I scheduled an appointment with another neurologist. I am really finding out the difference in the quality of different doctors. I did not sign any consent form before receiving the nerve blocks. I am angry at having this pain and expense put on my back. My burdens are already too heavy to carry. Because the nerve blocks were so painful, I asked the dr. if there was anything else to treat the pain, and he said "no". (His answer could have been guided by the fact that he was charging my insurance company $1,000 per block. When my husband took me to the ER, a dr. asked me why I was getting the nerve blocks. I told him because the dr. told me it was the only way to treat the pain. He shook his head and said "noooo". I am trying to contact him to ask him what other modalities there are. Do you know of other ways to treat it? I was in so much pain, and so discouraged at not being able to find a doctor who actually did his/her job. I scheduled an appointment at the University of Pennsylvania hospital, thinking I would get a "quality" doctor (one of top 10 hospitals in U.S. - my foot!) I had to have all of my medical records sent to the dr. in advance, which we did. My husband took off a day from work to take me over. They took our insurance and made us pay the $30.00 co-pay. We went in; the dr. was in there all of 3 minutes and told me he couldn't help me." We were in shock! I said "You made me send my records here in advance, my husband took a day off from work, we drove all the way over here from South Jersey, and you tell me you can't HELP me???" I told him to give us our money back then! He said "You can't get your money back." Now, on top of my pain, I'm fighting this hospital to get our money back. They should pay us for the loss of a day's pay! It is so crazy. How can they get away with this???I saw the hospital ombudsman and all they did was shoot a load.

The Neurontin hasn't even been working, which confuses me. Why would it have worked before, and not now? I hurt so bad today that I had to take an oxycodone the hospital had given me (they only gave me about 6). When I saw a pain specialist, she told me I had bursitis in my back hips. Could this be contributing to the pain? I know some of the pain is definitely from the surgery, because I can't even press on where the incision was. Do you think acupuncture will help? I'm supposed to get acupuncture on Monday. I was also thinking about hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Please tell me if you know of anything else I can do.

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