My Husband Stabbed My Leg!

I am taking a low dose of amitriptyline for nerve pain; sciatica.  I am 3 weeks in and it has almost stopped my back, hip, stomach and leg pain completely; it is working as it is meant to, pretending there is no sciatica. Unfortunately one side effect of amitriptyline is that my spatial awareness has gone out the window and I am constantly walking into things, causing bruises that have me hastily explaining to all and sundry that R has not completely lost his patience with me, and really, yes, I did walk into a Mother and Child Parking sign, while R howled with laughter in the car.

Talking of bad impressions. Reduced pain is great, but I am now left with constant pins and needles in my left foot, calf and thigh. Yesterday I was pretty sure I could sense numb patches on my calf. R walked into the kitchen and looked on in amazement as I sat at the kitchen table, casually tapping at my calf, foot and toes with the sharp point of the parring knife to check if I was right. However I learnt that you can’t check your own leg with any useful results.

Two minutes later, my slightly unconvinced husband was also sat at the table holding the parring knife to my calf. ‘just do it!’ I said, with my hands over my eyes to make sure the test would be accurate. ‘I am!’ said my husband, alarmed at how hard he was tapping my leg with the knife to no response.

And there is the confirmation. I have an actual numb calf. The nerve damage is being hidden by amitriptyline, the wonder drug. I’m not entirely sure what, if anything I am going to do about that. No-one medically seems to listen. What more do I want than the handfuls of drugs that turn me into a dribbling shell of my former self? I am not in lots of pain; the sciatica is under control, so I should be thankful. And I hope that the numbness was always there just hidden by the pain.

It’s not often that one can say their husband stabbed them in the leg without it leading to a criminal conviction is it?


2 thoughts on “My Husband Stabbed My Leg!

  1. Hello, I stumbled across your blog via mumsnet but can’t seem to find the original thread to comment on. I hope you don’t mind me commenting here… Up until 2 weeks ago everything you’ve described had been happening to me. 18months ago my disc at L4-L5 slipped for the third time, I was unable to sit for 4 months due to the pain and even as that slowly got better the constant ache in my back did not. My highly regarded osteopath advised me to have private physio/pilates instruction, biggest mistake of my life, I am convinced that the exercises are what caused the disc to slip onto the left sciatic nerve root. The nerve pain began as a slight twinge in my left foot and rapidly spread up my entire leg and buttock, I look back now and I do not know how I survived it, my heart goes out to you. I suffered for almost 10 months to the day and have been on gabapentin, tramadol, naproxen and cyclizine ( for the painkiller nausea) as well as having a fucking useless nerve root injection which was traumatic to say the least, felt everything including the needle hitting the nerve root directly multiple times.

    Anyway that is the condensed version but it ends positively I promise, I was eventually very very reluctantly put on the 3 month list for discectomy, I held out hope that it would heal itself but 2 weeks after going on the list the disc slipped to the other side and compressed the Other nerve root! I was so used to being in pain it didn’t occur to me it could be the disc moving but having been barely able to walk with one compressed nerve, I was stopping every 2 steps in agony and praying to a god I don’t even believe in to give me the strength to keep moving. And that was with one compressed nerve! When the other side went I had had enough and was broken, I took myself to A&E and they took me very seriously and admitted me. My right side had gone numb and I was unable to empty my bladder so was catheterised. And then amazingly my good luck began, because I had seen the neurosurgery team just a few weeks before they were happy to take my case and after going to A&E on the tuesday I had emergency surgery on the saturday night and WOW I am like a new person!

    The nerve pain in my legs has completely and utterly gone, I have some residual numbness down my right side which may go in the next 6 months but no leg pain. I honestly thought that the left leg was permanently damaged after 10 months of compression but strangely it’s the right leg that was compressed for a week that has suffered. But NO pain. And I am not incontinent at 29 years old. After the op I took oramorph for a few days and then ibuprofen and paracetamol but am now off them and just taking the gabapentin as recommended while the nerves heal. It’s interesting to me that the fogginess and heavy headed feeling that I attributed to the gabapentin has also gone, I think it was the pain clouding my thoughts, not the drugs. I’m sorry this is so long but I wanted to tell you my story to show you that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, I did not want back surgery, everybody said don’t do it you’re too young, your body can heal itself blah blah blah. But my body was not healing itself and they didn’t have to suffer in complete and utter agony every second of the day. My soul is permanently scarred from that pain, I will never forget it. I spent a week on a neurology ward and every patient there had a positive outcome from back surgery, I wish I had known that was possible before I went through it myself. I am up and walking slowly, a bit further each day, being very very careful not to overdo it, all I want to do is walk for miles and ride a bike, telling myself that soon enough I will. I’ve been in pain for 6 years all together and I’m hoping that these 2 weeks are a sign of the years to come.

    I wish you the very best in your journey, my sister used to tell me to have faith that it would end one day and I wanted to punch her but she was right, it did end. Now I am not naive enough to think I will never have back problems again but for now I’m grateful for any periods of relief and normality after that red hot nightmare of pain.

    All the best

    • Thank you so much for your post. I hope you don’t mind, I will reply in full as a blog entry so it is visible to others, maybe they can learn something from our experiences. Best wishes, I wish you all the luck in the world for a full recovery and no repeat of the hell you have gone through x

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