I am interested in hearing from anyone that has been diagnosed with an AVM/AVF or anything similar in your spine. I haven't officially been diagnosed, but the malformation is very evident in the MRI's and I have been having excruciating back pain for a couple of years now. Of course, I'd been told everything from I'm depressed (well, pain has a tendency to do that to people), to trying to get out of work (I really enjoy my job), to it's the DDD, the old fractures, arthritis, you name it. Well, I'd done PT, muscle relaxants, arthritis medicine, and several types of pain medicine. Nothing eliminates the pain completely, but I manage with Tylenol 3 and that helps me cope. Through it all, though, I am still the chipper, happy-go-lucky person I was before, although I've been through my ups and downs.
Anyway, to the point, this past year the back pain went from a few days once or twice a month to EVERY day. It didn't matter if I stood, sat, changed positions, lifted anything, etc. They'd found a vascular malformation in 2004, but I considered that pretty trivial & not the root of the problem and didn't follow up. I guess I should have. My MRI in Sept. found, pretty conclusively that I had an AVM or a dural AVF at T-12; I suppose I won't know which or anything further until my nuerologist appt. I have, for the past 3 weeks, been having numbness, tingling, muscle weakness and cramp-like pain throughout my legs and feet. I've had a couple of days with only minimal symptoms, but it seems to be compounding and getting worse daily/weekly. I still have sensory feeling (pin-poke) and can walk, though I cannot walk for long distances. If I walk too far, my leg muscles lock up and it feels somewhat like muscle failure. I did stub my toe this morning, but it didn't hurt (although I ran into the door jam with my shoulder, too, and it still hurts!) and my reflexes seem (to me) to be hyperreflexive.
Really, I just want to hear from anyone else who has had this and to hear what your symptoms were, how they progessed, and any helpful information you can give me. SORRY this post has been sooo long, but I'm a long-winded person!
Chris - age 23