Epidural nerve damage? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 14 Old 04-05-2009, 11:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just curious to see how many other women have experienced nerve damage from previous epidurals. Did it affect your next pregnancy or labor? What did you do to remedy it?

I've been living with pain off & on since DS was born over 3 years ago - DS2 is due *today*, and the pain is really flaring up now. Acupuncture helps greatly, so I'm going in for another treatment ASAP...but I'm worried it will flare up again and cause problems during birth.

Guess I'm just wondering if anyone else has gone through something similar...supposedly the odds of nerve damage are slim (like 1:10,000 - aren't I the lucky one??) But I don't think that's accurate, since there aren't really any comprehensive studies on the subject, and most women probably don't report it or don't know the cause of their problems. Thoughts, anyone?
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#2 of 14 Old 04-06-2009, 10:25 AM
 
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Guess we are the 1 in 10,000. Although I think the numbers are higher too. While giving me my epidural I had my leg jump straight out and they didn't even address it at the hospital. I had nerve damage down my whole left leg and actually it went into another condition. It has been 4 years for me and still have problems due to it. I am hoping for a great and problem free delivery.
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#3 of 14 Old 04-08-2009, 09:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, I hope you have a problem free delivery as well! I was really worried because every time I got my period, the cramps would be excruciating and pain would shoot down both legs...I was afraid that would happen in labor. But just yesterday our little guy made his way into the world, and everything went fine. In fact, it went so fast that we got to the birth center just 1.5 hrs before he was born, and I only had 3 contractions that were really intense (in transition). I guess Mother Nature has a way of taking care of us.

For the record, I think they need to do more research on those epidurals, and women need to be more aware of the risks of any type of anesthesia duing labor...it's just too crazy, these OB's are messing with things they don't need to, at the expense of our health. (ok, off my soapbox...LOL)

Anyway I wish you all the best, and hope your birth is a wonderful, healing experience! Good luck with everything!!
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#4 of 14 Old 04-08-2009, 09:40 PM
 
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Not sure if it was "nerve damage" per se, but I had excruciating back spasms after the spinal for my c-section. I got adjusted a dozen times that 1st week and they subsided. I haven't had much of a problem since, but my back pain from pregnancy does tend to radiate from that area.

I tend to believe that there are many, many people (not just women, bcause they precribe epi's for all sorts of stuff nowadays) who have lasting damage from an epi or spinal. I work for a chiropractor and have seen many a patient come in with that complaint. We even have a question about that specifically on our intake forms because many times people don't even realize that's what its from. It is very hard for an anesthesiologist to get the needle in the right area. Epidual means "upon the dura", which is a VERY fine membrane that surrounds the spinal cord. Most of the time they go too far and end up in the actual spinal cord between the discs, which can affect the nerves in that area greatly.

I'd suggest to anyone who is experiencing side effects of an epi or spinal to see a chiropractor. Actually, to anyone who has ever HAD an epi or spinal, because unfortunately we can suffer the effects of one well after we get it, and it's not always in the form of pain. Only 10% of the nerves in the body perceive pain; the others are function nerves which can affect how well your organs and tissues work.

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#5 of 14 Old 04-08-2009, 10:17 PM
 
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monkeymommy,
I am so glad the labor went well. It gives me hope. Good luck with your little one and congrats!
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#6 of 14 Old 04-09-2009, 07:49 AM
 
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Don't know much about future births after nerve damage. I do happen to know 2 women who both had rather severe paralysis (one in both legs, the other just down one) for weeks after their epidurals. One of the women was bedridden for over a month. It was pretty crazy, both babies were born at similar times (just before the birth of my first), at different hospitals. Seems like a higher probability than what the experts say.

Be, happy momma to Liberty (12-31-02), Henry (3-17-07) and Prudence (7-02-09)
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#7 of 14 Old 04-09-2009, 04:00 PM
 
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#8 of 14 Old 04-09-2009, 04:08 PM
 
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I had debilitating pain for 18 months after one of my epidurals. I was on prescription pain meds. It did eventually get better on it's own so I'm not sure of the actual cause of the pain. I had numbness on the whole right side of my body during that time as well. I had a spinal with DD and was terrified I'd have the same pain issues after but thankfully no pain.

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#9 of 14 Old 04-09-2009, 07:17 PM
 
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#10 of 14 Old 04-09-2009, 07:28 PM
 
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My MIL still has pain from her epidurals 25+ years later.
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#11 of 14 Old 04-10-2009, 11:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murphysaangel View Post
I tend to believe that there are many, many people (not just women, bcause they precribe epi's for all sorts of stuff nowadays) who have lasting damage from an epi or spinal. I work for a chiropractor and have seen many a patient come in with that complaint. We even have a question about that specifically on our intake forms because many times people don't even realize that's what its from. It is very hard for an anesthesiologist to get the needle in the right area. Epidual means "upon the dura", which is a VERY fine membrane that surrounds the spinal cord. Most of the time they go too far and end up in the actual spinal cord between the discs, which can affect the nerves in that area greatly.

I'd suggest to anyone who is experiencing side effects of an epi or spinal to see a chiropractor. Actually, to anyone who has ever HAD an epi or spinal, because unfortunately we can suffer the effects of one well after we get it, and it's not always in the form of pain. Only 10% of the nerves in the body perceive pain; the others are function nerves which can affect how well your organs and tissues work.
very interesting.(bolding mine)

l, <>< wife to my sweetie, proud mama to 3 cubs, 2 who clw & 1 that i i ep for . baby was evicted early by induction due to severe pre-e/hellp syndrome
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#12 of 14 Old 04-11-2009, 11:58 AM
 
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I haven't had an epidural but I'm a labor doula and have met lots of women who have had prior epidurals. I've heard of everything from numbness, to spinal headaches that last for weeks, to pains where the epidural was placed. I think it happens a lot more often than anesthesiologists like to admit.

Zen doula-mama to my spirited DS1 (2/03), my CHD (TAPVR) warrior DS2 (6/07) & a gentle baby girl (8/09)
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#13 of 14 Old 05-08-2013, 01:42 PM
 
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Reporting 17 years of pain and agony due to nerve damage done with an epidural. I wish there was more information available. Today, I went to see  a neurologist with the hope that he could offer some evaluation and he told me that he was not familiar with epidural nerve damage and to search in Google for a neurologist that has experience.

 

I want to share a little in case someday a poor mother finds herself seeking for answers and information regarding nerve damage caused by an epidural.

 

The day after my son was born, I realized that I was paralyzed from the waist down. My doctor told me that if I did not walk on the fifth day that the paralysis was permanent. I walked on the fifth day but I had no strength on my back to raise or keep raised by upper body; so I was walking folded in two with my face to the ground. Now, what follows this sentence is delicate and some may not want to continue to read.......Well, I am going to continue.... What happened when I got up from the bed the first time is that my rectum descended. I was horrified. This happens when there is nerve damage.

 

Well, I have to stop now, but would like to add that after the damage I was unable to have more children or intercourse due to the excruciating pain it causes when space is taken up inside.

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#14 of 14 Old 09-25-2013, 05:35 PM
 
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My experience with the epidural began to happen with my second child. I am currently pregnant with my fourth and I'm at 18 weeks and it's excruciating. I've had three prior epidurals and here's what's been happening. With my first child I was fine. With my second child I had my right leg lock up when I was walking for weeks afterward and I would have to stop and wait for it to unlock before I moved again. I also had back pain with my second. With my first I had no back pain. My back muscles were stronger I suppose. Not sure. Anyhow, with my second child it became intense and then after her birth I forgot about the pain. Then I got pregnant with my third child. My movements slowed and I noticed my left leg would lock too and again more back pain, worse than the second child. Now here I am a fourth time pregnant and I have back pain so severe it causes my legs to give out and I can barely walk. Slowly I must go. So I emailed my doc to see what's up and hopefully he replies and is able to give me some advice. I just deduced that the pain I get has to be because I had three epidurals because the place where it hurts the most is in my lower spinal cord right where I had the epidural and I guess the tissue between my spinal and my pelvic must be weak, so weak that I can't stand or sit for long periods of time, I also can't walk. It's like with each pregnancy my body has weakened. I believe that I am done having children now. It feels like the pregnancy pains are way worse than the labor and delivery pains and I've also been diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum. When I went into the hospital the doctor said she couldn't see how I had four kids with all the vomiting and throwing up each pregnancy. I said I can't either but it always catches me by surprise, the pregnancy part.

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