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Old 11-25-2003, 09:02 PM   #1
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pomcoach HB User
what do I do?

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Hi, I'm new here and am finding that I am not the only one with these frustrations. I've had about 6 MRI's and nothing is coming up. They've done medial branch blocks, cortisone injections, etc. I've tried acupunture, pt, chiropractic, and massage. I have mid back pain (left side) and now I've got radiating pain all over the place. I get spasms really bad. Some days it's so hard to even go on. They can't seem to find out what is wrong, and my life seems to be falling apart. I am on anti-depressants, but I don't want to do a single thing outside of my house. Anybody else share that feeling? I feel like if I have one more problem I will really lose it. The docs are wanting to put a stimulator in, anyone have any opinions on that? Thanks!

 
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Old 11-25-2003, 09:29 PM   #2
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lucyvanpelt3 HB User
Re: what do I do?

[QUOTE=pomcoach][FONT=Arial][COLOR=Black]
Hi, I'm new here and am finding that I am not the only one with these frustrations. I've had about 6 MRI's and nothing is coming up. They've done medial branch blocks, cortisone injections, etc. I've tried acupunture, pt, chiropractic, and massage. I have mid back pain (left side) and now I've got radiating pain all over the place. I get spasms really bad. Some days it's so hard to even go on. They can't seem to find out what is wrong, and my life seems to be falling apart. I am on anti-depressants, but I don't want to do a single thing outside of my house. Anybody else share that feeling? I feel like if I have one more problem I will really lose it. The docs are wanting to put a stimulator in, anyone have any opinions on that? Thanks![/QUOTE]

Hello, Pomcoach, fellow "newbie." (Why don't they just call us the 'walking confused and dazed?')

After six MRI's, nothing? What did the write ups from the Imaging Clininic tell you? Did your doctor go over them with you? I hated those darn cortisone injections. A lot of anxiety for nothing, was my experience.

I'm sorry to hear about your anxiety. Maybe there should be a board just for pain anxieties... No responses needed, just people to read that you are NOT a happy camper at this time.

I have "lie in bed because I hurt so darn much" periods, also.

Are you taking any pain medications? What kind of stimulator are they considering "putting in," and where? There must be some reasoning behind that move.

Doesn't sound like you're getting enough data and feedback on your concerns.

LucyVP3

 
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Old 11-27-2003, 08:02 AM   #3
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Location: Spring Lake, Mi. USA
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acme HB User
Re: what do I do?

Pomcoach,
Maybe you need to see another Doc! Get Opinions 2nd-3rd! It's your body.......You have the right to get other opinions! I did before Fusion surgery! Glad I did.......I'm in Great shape since.......No pain anymore.....Research/ ask questions! Good Luck! JMO
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Old 11-27-2003, 08:31 AM   #4
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Location: Tucson, AZ
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xavier213 HB User
Re: what do I do?

Hi and welcome to the boards! I have mid back problems that are undiagnosed with lots of spasm as well!! Believe me, I know how frustrating it is! Mine has been going on for a year and a half now and I'm only 25

Unfortantly for us, not that many people get mid to upper back pain. It's mostly low back pain that everyone seems to have. Did you work with a PT that is use to treating people with Thoraric problems? My dr said that can make a huge difference because if you do a lot of low back exercises you can make your mid to upper back hurt worse! I'm doing PT myself right now and it has helped some, it took away the pins and needles in my arms and legs and now the pain is just in my back again. (how it started) My PT told me that mid problems take a LONG time to heal because of your ribs being in the way and exercises aren't as effective as they are if you have low back pain.

One thing that has helped me a lot is a physio ball. I stretch backwards over it to try to loosen up the T spine a bit and stop the spasms. The worst part for me is not being able to sleep! Every time I lay down my back goes into instant spasms. I don't know if you have that as well, but it is horrible. I can't stay in any one position for more than 30 mins or so. I constantly have to be in motion to feel ok.

I know there are a few others on this board with T spine problems and one thing they mentioned is a bulging Thoraric disc? Sometimes drs write them off as being nothing, but up in that area even a slight bulge can be causing what you have. (and maybe me as well, who knows!) If you want, try searching under Thoratic or mid back problems on here to bring up some of the older posts.

Good luck to you and please keep us updated!
Take care ~ Katt
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Old 11-27-2003, 11:28 PM   #5
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pomcoach HB User
Re: what do I do?

Hi again! Thanks to all who replied, makes me feel better about the situation. They are looking at t 7-10 as to placing the stimulator around there. Yes, I do have a huge problem sleeping. I am presently on Norco, Skelaxin, Gabitril, Zanaflex, and Ultram (near worthless). I also take Effexor, but I think I need to get back to the doc for that because I am getting back down again. Well, not "down" exactly, but I just don't give a flying fig about anything anymore. I feel like I don't care one way or another about a thing. Anyone else get that? I'm glad to hear that some of you have had great results are your pain is minimized! That's fantastic! I do feel bad for my husband as he has to deal with my pain too. I have been to a pt, but she did more manipulation than exercises, and I didn't get much relief out of it. I went to her for about 4 months. Anyway, it's good to vent here! Thanks for listening. I have been to 2 doctors, and they both saw a "dark spot" on my t spine, but both seem to think it "could be" just normal for me. They have gone over the MRI's, but basically to say there isn't anything there. Right now I am just going to a pain management guy. I have lost track at how long I've had this pain, I think it's been about 5 years. Man oh man! Again, thanks so much for your support and ideas, it's so nice to talk to people that can really understand!

 
Old 11-28-2003, 06:49 PM   #6
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Ohio
Posts: 747
mokita HB User
Re: what do I do?

Hi pomcoach!

Has anyone ever suggested a discogram? My MRI only showed a small bulge and some compression. That 'small' bulge turned out to be a fissure in the disc which is wreaking havoc w/ my life. It took a long time to get properly diagnosed...and many times I thought I was just losing it...that maybe it was all in my mind...but, I kept at it.

I even have had 2 discograms. The first ~ I was oversedated...I knew it...the doc HAD to know it...but, he said the test was Negative for discogenic pain. I told my regular doc that I was oversedated and he sent me to the Dept Head who ordered another discogram which is positive. I was able to respond to his questions cuz the sedation was correct.

My point is ~ never stop until you find out what it is. Yes, it's frustrating. Yes, depression sets in. But, you know yourself better than any other human being! Trust your instinct and don't settle for anything less than answers!

Good luck and God Bless you.

Karen

 
Old 11-28-2003, 11:04 PM   #7
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Georgia
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ribbit HB User
Re: what do I do?

Hi there... I am sorry to hear about all of your pain. I experienced severe upper back pain after a lumbar discectomy and thought I was going crazy. I thought "first it's lower back, now upper back, what next?" Anyway, after a very thorough doctor and some in-depth testing they found that I was extremely B-12 deficient and this was causing all of my upper back and arm pain. After going on B-12 shots (which I will be on forever, but that's okay with me!) my upper back got 100 times better. Just thought I would mention it in case it might be worth looking into before doing any kind of surgery. Best of luck!!!

 
Old 11-29-2003, 12:52 AM   #8
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Location: ontario
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out2lunch HB User
Re: what do I do?

I think a discogram is my only way to find out what's truly going on with me too, but I'm scared to death!!! Like Karen, my test show bulging discs and they can't rule out nerve compression! So I believe a discogram would show the drs just how bad things are in there, and therefore explain why I'm having such intense pain!! I wish there was another pain less test that I could have instead though LOL! Take care!!

 
Old 11-29-2003, 09:29 AM   #9
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Location: Georgia
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ribbit HB User
Re: what do I do?

Hi out2lunch. I just had a discogram (this past Wednesday)... and it wasn't pleasant. But it was worth it! I too was scared to death to have it done, but now that it is over (and I was only sore for a couple of days) it was definitely worth the information it provided. Not that it was good information but it helped me face reality. If the you and your doctor feel this would be a good test, I would say go for it. And then go treat yourself with something very nice afterward! I wish you the best of luck!!!

 
Old 11-29-2003, 10:41 AM   #10
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: phoenix, az usa
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sunnydaz4me HB User
Re: what do I do?

[QUOTE=pomcoach][FONT=Arial][COLOR=Black]
Hi, I'm new here and am finding that I am not the only one with these frustrations. I've had about 6 MRI's and nothing is coming up. They've done medial branch blocks, cortisone injections, etc. I've tried acupunture, pt, chiropractic, and massage. I have mid back pain (left side) and now I've got radiating pain all over the place. I get spasms really bad. Some days it's so hard to even go on. They can't seem to find out what is wrong, and my life seems to be falling apart. I am on anti-depressants, but I don't want to do a single thing outside of my house. Anybody else share that feeling? I feel like if I have one more problem I will really lose it. The docs are wanting to put a stimulator in, anyone have any opinions on that? Thanks![/QUOTE]
Hi there, I am new here and just was browsing..I have a girlfriend that had the stimulator implant, (size of a deck of cards) put in because she was having severe pain due to pressure on her spinal cord. She had the procedure done in order to elimiate the pain. She had it in for 1 year and now is looking to have it taken out. The nerve actually healed itself and she is much better performing excerices i.e. yoga, jazzercise. It worked out great for her! Thought you might like to hear a POSITIVE SUCCESS story

 
Old 11-29-2003, 05:23 PM   #11
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 127
xavier213 HB User
Re: what do I do?

[QUOTE=ribbit]Hi there... I am sorry to hear about all of your pain. I experienced severe upper back pain after a lumbar discectomy and thought I was going crazy. I thought "first it's lower back, now upper back, what next?" Anyway, after a very thorough doctor and some in-depth testing they found that I was extremely B-12 deficient and this was causing all of my upper back and arm pain. After going on B-12 shots (which I will be on forever, but that's okay with me!) my upper back got 100 times better. Just thought I would mention it in case it might be worth looking into before doing any kind of surgery. Best of luck!!![/QUOTE]

Hey ribbit, I have the same upper back problems with constant spasms in that area and my drs are pretty clueless about the cause. I'm curious about this B 12 thing? What test found and would normal blood tests find this, ie like CBC, etc. I've had about 8 viles of blood done in the past few months to rule out arthritis, diseases, etc but never heard of B12 deficiency before.
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chronic back & foot pain & now severe allergies! Just shoot me!!

 
Old 11-29-2003, 07:16 PM   #12
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Location: Georgia
Posts: 30
ribbit HB User
Re: what do I do?

Hi xavier213! My B12 deficiency is caused by an inability to absorb Vit. B12 from the regular foods we eat. (B12 is in about everything.) It's called pernicious anemia. I have to say that before I was diagnosed, I didn't know much about it.

I know how it is to research anything that might be the cause of your pain so I wanted to mention this to you but there are other symptoms that I had too. It might be a long shot in your case, but from my experiences, when things get bad enough you want any advice about anything. Do you have any other symptoms other than upper back spasms? I read a previous post that said that you were having pins and needles in you arms? Are you having any balance problems? I am not 100% sure if a B12 deficiency will show up on regular CBC. I know that B12 is crucial for your red blood cells but I don't know if a deficiency will show on a RBC count which is included in a CBC. I had been treated for iron deficiency anemia for 1 1/2 years before my B12 deficiency was discovered and had had several blood tests through that which didn't show the B12 def. I know that to get a specific B12 level a special blood test is needed. It may be worth researching some on the internet or mentioning to your doctor that maybe he/she could order the B12 serum test.

I am just about to turn 25. All of this stuff with my back started when I was 22. I know how it feels to be young and hurt and not exactly know why. Mine started out with what I thought was a pulled muscle from working on a rehabilitation unit with spinal cord patients. Well, it turned out to be a little more than that. Anyway, if you need anymore info. I'll be glad to tell you anything I know. Best of luck with everything and keep your chin up whenever you can. Don't let it get you down! Hope this helps!!

 
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