A LIFE WORTH LIVING
My pain story begins in 1980, when I was hit as a pedestrian by a car going 40mph; I was 20 years old. The accident resulted in severe fractures to my left side including left tibia, fibula, fractured pelvis, tailbone, shoulder blade, crush injuries to my left thigh, and head injuries. I not only have severe back issues but pain issues throughout my body.
The severe back pain is a combination of two herniated discs and age-related arthritis. My body self-compensated and my left leg became one inch shorter after the accident. I put most of my weight on my right leg, to this day. I have been walking with a limp for about 40 years.
My pain was aggravated when I took on all the heavy lifting for a decade after my husband became disabled in 2008. After many years of declining health, my husband died in June 2018. I was entirely alone for two years after his death, left with no help to maintain a huge house. Within months of this, my two beloved boxers were diagnosed with cancer and needed to be put to sleep, all while having to pack up a 3,000 square foot home to sell. In April of 2020, the packing, moving, and hauling, all exacerbated the back pain back until I could not even sit in a chair comfortably; The nerve pain was excruciating.
I had been seeing a spine specialist in Nevada for 10 years. They only option offered to me was major surgery on my back, which I refused to do. The success rate for that type of surgery was only 50/50. I had no one to care for me after any surgery let alone a major back surgery. I was not going to take the risk for only a 50/50 chance of positive results. In order to handle daily tasks such as grocery shopping, maintaining my home, etc., I have been on pain medication in addition to trigger point injections from my neck to the base of my back. I also get steroid shots in both hips three to four times per year.
I found Dr. Kristine Watford at Allied Pain and Spine through my health insurance. From my very first visit, I could not believe the attention to detail Dr. Watford offered and I had never felt so listened to. She discussed with me a treatment option called Vertiflex and that I could be a good candidate for that procedure. I immediately went for x-rays and an MRI to see if my spine was aligned correctly for the Vertiflex procedure. I was incredibly excited as I drove home to tell my sister about the newfound hope that Dr. Watford had presented to me.
Dr. Watford has treated me for my various pain issues but her greatest gift thus far has been to give me marginally invasive options for my unbearable back pain. Dr. Watford has changed my life. I still have many other serious pain issues but severe nerve pain from my spinal stenosis is minimal most days thanks to her. Until you have nerve pain so bad that you cannot sit up, it is difficult to understand just how small your world becomes.
There are no words to express my deep gratitude to Dr. Watford. I never thought I would have this level of relief from the Vertiflex procedure. Dr. Watford gave me all the information I needed to feel confident in having her operate on my back. I am thrilled with my care from Dr. Watford and have been telling other family members about her.
Dr. Watford has been able to change another human being’s misery and pain into a life worth living again. She is my hero.