On Friday morning, I had my dad drive me back to Bone and Joint for a cortisone injection into the pseudo-joint at S1/S2 on the right side of my lower back. Just like the prior injection appointments I’ve had there, I was checked in and taken back to the pre-op area where they made me pee in a cup for a pregnancy test (it was negative). Then they checked my vitals and the doctor came back to check on me.
After about an hour of waiting, they wheeled me back and had me move onto the other bed. I was face down and they prepped my lower back. They set up the X-ray machine so that the doctor could be certain that she was in the right spot. After a lot of poking on my back, she double checked the placement of the needle by injecting a contrast dye to make sure it was in the right spot.
She injected a steroid and a pain reliever (lidocaine/bupivicaine). The injection burned a little bit, but that is to be expected. After the injection, she asked me to rate my pain. Honestly, there was no difference. After they wheeled me back to the recovery area, and I got up to use the bathroom, the doctor came back to see how I was doing. She asked me to stand and bend and to rate how I was feeling.
I didn’t notice anything different. Actually, I was hurting more because I had been lying down for a while and I felt tight and stiff. She told me that if this didn’t do anything for my pain, that the only other option she had was to address the SI joint. She didn’t go into any details about that. I will follow up with her in another week.
She told me to take it easy the rest of the day. I could use ice for pain relief, but I should avoid using heat. She also told me to hold off on physical therapy until after I follow up with her.
To day that I am disappointed would be a huge understatement. In the couple of days since the injection, I have been holding onto a glimmer of hope that the pain would decrease. No luck. I guess I will wait until my follow up appointment to talk with her about what the next step is.
On Friday afternoon, I saw my primary care provider for my yearly physical. I love her. She is really fantastic. She is a runner who knows what it is like to be inured and not able to do the things that I want to do. We chatted about how I was feeling and how I was dealing with not being able to run and always being in pain. We came to the decision that it makes sense right now for me to go back onto an antidepressant.
I don’t think that antidepressants are bad or wrong or evil. I know that many people need them and that they can be very effective. I took them for a time after my older son was born, to help treat post partum depression. When I was pregnant with my second son, I went back on them because I was so concerned about getting PPD again. I thought that running was going to be the thing that saved me from ever having to rely on medication again. And it did for a couple years. But I haven’t been able to run with any intensity since February. I have been in pain every day since the end of January. And all of this has significantly effected my mood.
So, I’ll go back on the pills. We decided to start with half of the typical lowest starting dose. If the the side effects are too bothersome, I will probably quit taking it. But I will try this for a couple weeks and see if it helps.
In other news, I registered for a race! Actually, the whole family did. There is a local 5K in a couple weeks and I registered Tim and Jaden and I to do it. Jaden set a goal to run five 5Ks this year and because of my injury, he has only done three so far. Tim and Jaden can run the race and I will walk it (I’m still allowed to run one slow mile). I wish I could be competitive, but at least it will give us a fun family activity.