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Prolapsed Cervial disc and working

hi

At long last I have had my consultation about my neck. On the positive side I'm not having the op! I have disk bulge on c4/5 and to a lesser degree on c6/7. Fortunately I have only had the shooting arm pains a couple of times, mostly the pain is in my neck and shoulders. I have oa in my hands and feet and now use a stick to wobble around with lol!

I've now been off work for 5 months and I want to go back. I work in a call centre, although I don't particularly enjoy the job (I am almost literally chained to the pc for 3 hour stretches) the people I work with are fantastic and I couldn't ask anything more from work regarding support at this stage. I haven't had any OH advice as my doctor wants to take one step at a time, now the neck problem has been discussed she will get my arthritis looked at.

The crux of the problem is this, I asked the consultant if I could go back to my job role and he said that it was unrealistic. I realise that I can't sit at a desk and type for 6 hours a day. Work is 24 miles away and driving that distance is quite painful, I also find it wipes me out - before going off sick I used to come home, pick the kids up from school then go to bed for 2/3 hours before I could face cooking. Fortunately the kids aren't too little or it would be a nightmare!

If anyone else has a similar condition I would love to know what type of jobs they do. I'm quite happy to retrain, I've enquired about an occupational health degree which I'd love to do but physically I don't think travelling/loads of study is possible due to fatigue. I'm a "crafty" person so was thinking about floristry as a possibility, I can always dose myself up on painkillers for hands but long term I'm not sure if that is realistic either!

Any suggestions or advice would really be appreciated. I'm not ready to give up work, I need the mental stimulation and I'm struggling to accept whats happening and I need to find a way forward.

thanks in advance for any help you can give

haze x

Comments

  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Haze,
    I am glad you don't need the op on your neck but am sorry you're having such a rough time of it with having to think about a different job.... ':('

    I don't have any suggestions about what jobs might be suitable but just wanted to answer your post so's you know there's folks wanting to support you.':|'

    As you have just had the consultation maybe it would be a good idea to ask to see an OT either through the hospital or your doc..they will have lots of experience of working with peeps who have the same condition as you so might be better placed to give advice. ':?:'

    I'm sure there will also be other folks in the forum who will want to help too. Iris x
  • clickysticksclickysticks Posts: 14
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks for replying Dorcas I really appreciate it.

    Sorry I didn't reply earlier but I have been quite down so haven't been near the pc until now.

    On the positive side, work finally got the OH lady to visit my house with my boss although I don't think she was a trained OH person but a pyschotherapist (sorry for the spelling lol). I had to explain the condition to her and she seemed more concerned when I told her I was becoming more isolated - please don't get me wrong she was lovely, it's just a little frustrating speaking to professionals who don't understand. That's why this site is so fantastic, finding someone to talk to face is face is really hard for me.

    I'M GOING BACK TO WORK OMG I DON'T BELIEVE IT!

    She's trying to get me back for two, three hour days initially. There isn't any other job role that they can offer me so I have to try to get back to my old job. Part of me is delighted because I am so bored and I have been getting more and more isolated recently. Apart from the school run I don't go out of the house without my hubby as my confidence is rather fragile.

    The problem now is that I'm terrified. I feel stupid but the office holds over 1,000 staff and I haven't had to deal with many people for so long. I'm also scared how I will cope with the pain as well, overdoing things means I literally can't get out of bed without help the next day. I haven't had a work station assessment yet, I'm still waiting for jobcentre plus to call me about that and the consultants words keep niggling at the back of my brain.

    So sorry if this sounds like (another lol) moan, just wanted to share how things are with people who understand :oops:

    haze xx
  • dorcasdorcas Posts: 3,538
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Hazel!
    good to see you back on the forum!!
    sorry you've been feeling low...remember the forum is there for the good and the bad days so please don't ever feel you are moaning! we all go through difficult times and the forum is our way of supporting each other...

    Not surprising you feel a bit scared of a return to work....I don't know of anyone who's been off work for a long period and not felt nervous about going back! like you said part of you is looking forward to working again...so hang on to that thought! I'm sure some of your work mates will be really pleased to see you back.

    You're right to want to pace yourself especially with the pain you have and the fatigue and it is reasonable for your employer to take account of this when deciding on your work pattern.

    The OH person who came out to see you can definitely arrange reduced hours as part of a phased return to work....check with her or the union as your employer's ill health policy might cover you to be paid full time especially if reduced hours is part of the OH recommendations.

    I hope you hear soon from jobcentre plus about the workplace assessment; once they have appointed an assessor it only takes 10 days for the report to be submitted. It can make a big difference to have the right supports in place and 'they' have the funding available to do just that!

    Keep your chin up and keep in touch Haze...any time. Remember too that you can call the helpline if you need to talk things through in more detail or need support or advice......they are great.

    PM me if you want to. Iris x
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