HELP! Nerve Damage from Cesarean - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 11-22-2006, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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After my second emergency cesarean, I now have an EXTREME amount of pain. It is a burning sensation, as if a hot sword was being stabbed into my side. It is slightly above the scar line, but only on the far right side.

The pain is always there, but normally at a tolerable burning level. However multiple times a day (maybe 10) the pain becomes intensely acute. This happens if I wake after a few hours, then the pain is severe when I try to move out of bed. It often takes 10 minutes. If I cough or twist in a certain way (ie side lying position to breastfeed) the pain becomes intollerable. Once the pain was so bad I thought I was being ripped open internally and shook violently from fear, thinking I needed to be cut open again to fix the problem. I had to be given extra morphine to get it to stop. The pain normally goes back down to a tolerable level after I change position or walk around for a minute.

Unlike other labor pains, this horrible pain has not lessened over time. My cesarean was Nov 16 (5 days ago). For example, my hemmorhoids, tailbone pain, sore nipples.... all of these things get better, day by day. But this burning, when it comes on strong, never lessens in intensity.

Three midwives, two nurses and a doctor have looked at my scar and said there is no inflamation or internal damage. They can press the area without hurting me. I have been told that nerves were cut, and that nothing can be done to fix it. Somehow the cut nerves send pain signals to my brain. The nerves must grow back together on their own and it will take about two weeks. In the meantime I am on heavy duty drugs (Panodil - its like tylenol, Diclofenackalium, and tramadolhydrochlorid). This is the only way to make the pain tollerable and I can not cut down because then the pain is so severe I tense up and my daughter can not breastfeed. Yes, some small amount of the drugs go over into the milk, but it is that or no breastfeeding at all.

Has anyone experienced this? What is it called? And how long does it last? Will the pain dissipate, or suddenly disapear, or do I have a chance that it will not be resolved without further surgery? Any help is greatly appreciated.
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#2 of 13 Old 11-22-2006, 07:49 PM
 
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I"m so sorry to hear you're suffering like this. Have you looked into adhesions? There's a massive website solely devoted to them that a quick search would throw up for you. I've seen a lot of success with acupuncture and also, for some women, counselling of some form eases c-sec pain as well. I hope you find some relief soon.
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#3 of 13 Old 11-22-2006, 08:01 PM
 
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The *only* things I've ever found to help nerve pain like that were alcohol and first gen antihistamines (which shouldn't be taken together, but . . . ). I don't think those are options if you're nursing or even just caring for a baby.

Basically, I have to just let my CNS be deadened, but not so much that I die.

I get nerve regeneration pains very quickly after surgery--it means your body is knitting a bit more quickly than most folks'. Not a lot of comfort now, but it'll be nice later when you don't have so many numb spots.

Diclofenac is anti-inflammatory, right? And tramadol is better for muscular pain. Not sure about the first. I've taken many meds for chronic and surgical nerve pain and always return to the simplest: gin or vodka. It doesn't take much to quiet down the impulses, but this is obviously *my* body, not yours, and I've never had to deal with this while being a mom.

Good luck. I hope you find something which works.

Chasing DS since April 2007 and pumping for DD March 2013.

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#4 of 13 Old 11-23-2006, 06:53 PM
 
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Just a thought, but when someone has a part of them amputated they may feel considerable pain for sometime, maybe this is similar what with nerves being cut??? They might not be able to actively do anything but surely they can make you comfortable pain wise?
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#5 of 13 Old 11-24-2006, 02:56 AM
 
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If internal, I don't know. Sorry for your pain.

If external.... My bet would be tape burn. It was AWFUL for me. Worse than the incision. Advil, rest and cold packs helped.
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#6 of 13 Old 11-24-2006, 03:04 AM
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Originally Posted by AllisonR View Post
Has anyone experienced this? What is it called? And how long does it last? Will the pain dissipate, or suddenly disapear, or do I have a chance that it will not be resolved without further surgery? Any help is greatly appreciated.
Yes. I was so angry, too, because the surgeon said, "Oh, well." I know in my heart he did it on purpose. I called lawyers but they said there was nothing they could do.

It took about 6 months for the pain to diminish and another 9 months before I had feeling on the right side of 'down there'.
He completely severed all the nerves, I was peeing on myself because I had NO feeling at all. I still have no feeling like I did, but I can now feel when my bladder is full. I still can't feel when I have to pee, though.

That particular c-section was in 2002. They wouldn't give me any pain meds and were complete UA violations. Did a lot of self-medicating. : Helped a lot. Never drank alcohol, though.

With my c-se in 2005, I did take Visitrol, which is an anti-histimine, and ibuprofen. That helped better than anything else. I guess it works for some people but not others.

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#7 of 13 Old 11-24-2006, 06:16 AM
 
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hi there sorry your feeling so uncomfortable.. my girlfriend suffered a bit after her csection with after pain etc for quite a while..

MITB -- why do you think your dr would do it on purpose?......
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#8 of 13 Old 11-24-2006, 01:12 PM
 
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There are a lot of anti-seizure meds such as Neurontin (gabapentin) which are easier on the body than narcotics or NSAIDs, and work MUCH better on nerve pain. Not sure how they are with breastfeeding, but the Dr. Hale site would probably have info. If you want to try that route and the GP doesn't want to prescribe them, try a neurologist. Also when I had nerve damage in my leg, physical therapy helped (they do things with ultrasound and massage), if any of the cut nerves are superficial.
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#9 of 13 Old 11-24-2006, 01:51 PM
 
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It has been 5 days? I had similar intense burning pain after my c/s - the OB was also dismissive of the pain (told me it was due to the cathater - apparently he wasn't listening when I described where the pain was). I later came to the conclusion that it was afterbirth pains, made intense and horrible by the fact that I had a c/s. They happened several times a day, as you descibe. My recollection is that they lasted a few weeks? I had a very hard recovery and just kept taking the pain meds (for 3 or 4 weeks). After that I had a lot of muscle tenderness/scar tenderness but not the intense epsidoes of of burning/stabbing pains.

I hope you feel better soon!
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#10 of 13 Old 11-24-2006, 03:52 PM
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Originally Posted by sarah73 View Post

MITB -- why do you think your dr would do it on purpose?......
That story is posted somewhere on MDC. It's too long and painful to recount here.
Short story-he hated women and was extremely racist.
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#11 of 13 Old 11-27-2006, 09:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ladies,

Now day 11 and I am off all the drugs. Ive been cutting down over the last three days. Only slight pain remains. I had my zone therapist come out and she gave me massage in the area to stimulate the nerve growth. The burning sort of changed and then improved somewhat. I had DH do followup massage once a day and it steadily improved. It could be conincidence, and my body was healing anyway, but I will not dismiss the massage because I think it really helped.
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#12 of 13 Old 11-27-2006, 11:22 AM
 
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That's great Allison. I often find that gentle touch/massage can help to some extent with nerve (and other) pain, simply because it gives my brain a different sensation to concentrate on. There are days when just having my hair brushed will make me feel better for 20-30 minutes. I'm glad you're seeing such great improvement!

Chasing DS since April 2007 and pumping for DD March 2013.

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#13 of 13 Old 11-27-2006, 12:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by AllisonR View Post
Ladies,

Now day 11 and I am off all the drugs. Ive been cutting down over the last three days. Only slight pain remains. I had my zone therapist come out and she gave me massage in the area to stimulate the nerve growth. The burning sort of changed and then improved somewhat. I had DH do followup massage once a day and it steadily improved. It could be conincidence, and my body was healing anyway, but I will not dismiss the massage because I think it really helped.
That's similar to what my physical therapist did when I had nerve damage in my leg. Works amazingly well, doesn't it?
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