DDD and Constant pain — Scope | Disability forum

DDD and Constant pain

Ian4614 Member Posts: 4 Listener
This is my first post on here, so I am sorry if I get some etiquette wrong, 

I have been living with serious back pain for almost 18 years now and it ended my career about 6 years ago. My work has been amazing and I now have a role which allows me to manage my condition. A few years ago it was diagnosed as DDD and Spinal Stenosis, (L5S1) however after seeing the Neurologist last year, he compared my 2012 MRI with my 2018 MRI and told me that I now have 8 prolapsed discs and that I will be fine until I am about 60 before I need a wheelchair (thats only 15 years away for me)...

Just lately, for the past few months the pain is getting worse and worse, and I struggle with things like getting dressed, getting in or out of a car or move from a sitting to a standing position without feeling serious pain. I hate that my wife and son have to see me like this but I don't know what else I can do. My painkillers seem to be having no effect any more, I have been on codeine and paracetamol for what feels like forever and I take Naproxyn also, but thats not really doing anything any more. I find it harder and harder to hide how depressed this is making me and I just don't know what to do for the best. 

I have lost 5 stone in weight to try and help relieve my symptoms, and at first it did, I felt so much better, but now the pain is back as bad as it was before. I am due to me my neurologist again on 28th October and I think I will tell them how I feel, but i just think they have given up and want me to just keep popping pills forever, 

I am not asking for a solution, but I would be keen to know if I am the only one who feels this way ?


Below is my 2010 MRI (Left) and my 2018 MRI (Right)


  • April2018mom
    April2018mom Posts: 2,868 Connected
    Hello @Ian4614. Welcome to Scope!

    When you next see the pain consultant, tell him how you are feeling. Have you done exercise? That can help with pain. Light stretches in particular are recommended for pain sufferers as they are particularly beneficial in alleviating pain. 
    When the pain is really severe, try breathing slowly and deeply. This is a excellent way of staying in control and remembering to remain calm. Also learn a new skill or take up a hobby to distract yourself. You are definitely not the only one who has to cope with pain. What about art? Another good way of coping with pain is to keep a diary of symptoms. Here are some more ways to reduce/cope with pain of all types  https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/10-ways-to-ease-pain/

    You can see a list of self help books on the British Pain website https://www.britishpainsociety.org or ask at your local library or bookshop. Read books and leaflets on pain too. Have you considered meditation or mindfulness courses or not? I also recommend a counsellor or therapist as they can give you more strategies to try out at home as well when the pain is bad. Speak to your GP and ask for a referral. It can help. 
  • Ian4614
    Ian4614 Member Posts: 4 Listener
    HI April, 

    Thanks for taking the time to reply. 

    I think I will be honest with him when I see him next, you're right, why hide it... In relation to exercise, I have been swimming and going to the gym, thats how I lost the 5 stone (not bad in 6 months !!).... and ref art, I do photography, but the pain is making that harder for me these days, but I am doing my best to keep it up. 

    Thanks for the tips on breathing etc, and for letting me know I am not alone....

  • April2018mom
    April2018mom Posts: 2,868 Connected
    No problem @Ian4614

    Have you ever heard of pain management courses or not? Not only can you make new friends, you have the chance to swap stories and pick up tips on coping. Most likely you will need to bring a pen for note taking and something to put leaflets in as well. One of the goals is to enable pain sufferers to do some light exercise and relax too.

    Ask your consultant if he knows of any in your area or not. The British Pain Society has produced a useful leaflet on pain management courses for people to read. https://www.britishpainsociety.org/static/uploads/resources/files/book_pmp2013_participant.pdf
  • Ian4614
    Ian4614 Member Posts: 4 Listener
    Thanks for the kind replies guys, I am working on it day by day,, but appreciate your comments..
  • Peter12345
    Peter12345 Member Posts: 55 Courageous
    Hi Ian,  I was wondering if you have heard of Dr Alan Mandela?
    He has a YouTube channel which he  posts lots of videos about pain management and simple exercises etc  ?
    Check him out. 

    Best wishes and kind regards,