Viewer Comments: Cauda Equina Syndrome - Treatments

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Cauda Equina Syndrome - Treatments

What was the treatment for your cauda equina?

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Comment from: Trackieb, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 24

I was doing my dishes one morning and I coughed and I felt pain in my lower back. The pain was unbearable. I went to the hospital and they sent me for an emergency MRI. I came back and they just advised that my disc had slipped. I was sent for neurological block injections, which didn't work. I was still in a considerable amount of pain. One night it got unbearable, and I rung for an ambulance. I was taken to the hospital that would do my operation a few days later, due to the snow. When I came round after the operation I was told I had cauda equina syndrome (CES) and it was bad. No bladder/bowel function, paralysis in my right leg and the most unbelievable pain. I was sent to rehabilitation and spent six months learning to walk. I can now walk with two crutches, very short distances. I am mostly confined to my wheelchair I would not wish CES on anyone. It has changed my life forever and it will never go away.

Comment from: Whitney T., 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 14

Twenty years ago, while being a letter carrier, I ruptured two discs, the L4-L5 & L5-S1. I then, periodically, suffered from severe pain and bouts staying in bed for weeks at a time. About 3 yrs. ago the pain became chronic and I went to an orthopedic surgeon who said "by no means should you have an operation!” I was actually pleased that he said that and began seeing a pain management doctor for the moderate daily back pain and started physical therapy. Approximately six months later my L5-S1 collapsed onto my spine causing CES. I lost feeling from the top of my thighs to my waist, could not urinate or defecate and had no sexual feeling in my genital area. I had emergency surgery and was told there was no spinal injury but my spine was "shocked" and it may take up to 2 years. to get the paralyzing feeling to get better but it was told in may never recover completely. Two yrs. later I have almost complete bladder function, minor sexual feeling, but I have a paradoxical sphincter which makes it impossible to deficate without a fiber diet and I use diluted saline enemas to remove any bowel movement that does not come out by pushing normally which for me is straining. Another issue which arose about a year after my disc collapsed was my uterus prolapsed, possible from lack of muscle usage or from straining repeatedly while have BM. I have been told if any symptoms worsen I should have a discetomy on my L4-L5 with relief of severe compression with small cushions? between the discs. I am hoping that eventually less invasion operations using lasers and smaller incisions might be possible in my case. I do feel as if my paradoxical sphincter will never return to its normal state although the inner muscles have been tested and have normal strength. All in all I feel lucky in most senses but I wish the surgeon had operated before the collapse had occurred.

Comment from: grandmahouston, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: December 02

My husband had an epidural. After the epidural he experienced severe pain and blood clots developed. He had surgery about seven months earlier and an epidural was used. He was on his side when he had this epidural and now the doctors say it was manipulation of the spine.

Comment from: SouthernLady, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 18

I had two disc laminectomies prior to my CES in 2013. I went to the ER by ambulance when I was in agonizing back pain and was sent back home after many hours there. The next day I went back by ambulance, still in agonizing back pain. After doing an MRI, my surgery was scheduled for about 60 hours afterward. The fusion at L1-2 was fine, but because of the CES, I was in a rehab hospital for 28 days. Please, if you have CES, stay with exercise - no matter what baby steps you have to take. The pain doesn't matter. My PT said if I didn't exercise every day I would one day find myself in a hospital bed with even more problems than I have now.

Comment from: JustamommyandLPN, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 28

I was diagnosed with 5 fractures in my back my S1 to my L4 about two years ago. After getting to the ER doctors did X-rays which, showed something abnormal, so they did an MRI and then I was in emergency surgery! I had a laminectomy and discectomy! It was successful at first now two months later I'm right back in the same pain. I have lost bladder control. Doctors are telling me that at 30 years old, I'm too young for further surgeries.

Comment from: sandra, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 15

I have been diagnosed with CES and I had a discectomy. I am still suffering with pains in my feet and the back of my heel. I was left for 18 months crawling on my hands and knees to A&E before any MRI scan was set up. The doctors at A&E just kept on telling me to go back to my GP and get referred for a scan. It was only when it was too late did they do something. I ended up with emergency surgery. My GP still won't listen and my mobility is horrendous. I can't stand for a longer than a few moments.

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Patient Comments & Reviews

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Cauda Equina Syndrome - Symptoms

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