Never in my life have I met a more supportive and responsive doctor. I know in my heart that he cared about my outcome.
My name is Brett and my pain started after an appendectomy in 2011. It's hard to write or speak about it. I don't think anyone understands how debilitating and awful injury to the ilioinguinal, iliohypogastric, or genitofemoral nerves can be. The symptoms profile is awful and I dealt with most of its worst manifestations: hypersensitive skin around my penis, electric-like nerve pains in the scrotum, base of penis and innermost thigh. Nondescript abdominal pain that worsens with stretching. Pain that, while not interfering with sexual function, somehow reduced its pleasure.
If that's not bad enough I saved the worst for last: urinary urgency and frequency, a symptom collection so bothersome that some days I would pee every 5 minutes, and the sensation of urgency never actually went away. It’s enough to drive someone to where I ended up: A deep, dark depression where I was hopeless and suicidal.
Worse yet is how clueless the medical profession is to peripheral nerve damage. I lose count of the doctors I saw, and the treatments that I endured. Here are the ailments I was diagnosed within the first year:
- Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
- Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome (CPPS)
- Blade Pain Syndrome
- Interstitial Cystitis
- Hip Labral Tear caused by Femoral Retroversion: had my leg broken, rotated and my hip fixed to no avail
- Psoas Tendonitis
- Lumbar Radiculopathies
- IBS (pain dominant)
- Anxiety and Depression
Another surgeon I met with regarding lingering groin pain told me he thought I had a nerve issue. A nerve issue, huh? Had to think about that for a minute and in that minute a light bulb went on. It was 2022! No doctor in all these years mentioned that! Not one!
Up one night, armed with more knowledge and even more pain, I found a paper written by Dr. Lee Dellon. I reached out to Dr. Dellon and he introduced me to his colleague, Dr. Eric Williams.
Dr. Williams is the one doctor in all these horrific years who helped me with my awful symptoms! I flew to Baltimore to see Dr. Williams. A nerve block in the office confirmed his diagnosis of nerve damage. The nerve block eliminated my pain and gave me a glimpse of the future without pain. Dr. Williams performed a bilateral resection of my ilioinguinal and iliohypogastric nerves in December 2022. Within a few days of the surgery, my pain and urinary symptoms began to improve! He is in Maryland and I am in Southern California. And I flew the whole plane ride back without having to use the restroom once. On the way there, I used the restroom 20 times!
The operation ultimately changed my life for the better and I am very grateful for his help. But it is more than just performing a successful surgery that makes a good doctor. With my history, I know the difference. Never in my life have I met a more supportive and responsive doctor. I know in my heart that he cared about my outcomes. I am writing this testimonial because I believe in my heart that he is easily the best doctor I have worked with. To anyone else dealing with pain, like I did, Dr. Williams cares about you. He is going to take care of you, end of story. He is a problem solver with the ability to think outside of the proverbial “Box”.
Today, I live a good, active life. My pain levels as related to IIN and IHN are non-existent and I no longer pee every 5 minutes. It is much more normal now and this has allowed me to be a better and more present father and huntsman and a better human being.
Thank you Dr. Williams and Dr. Dellon for what I consider to be groundbreaking research into this horrific condition. More Doctors and patients need to understand this research because many people are still suffering.