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Old 08-09-2004, 06:48 AM   #1
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Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

I have been so out of commission for so long from this back problemsthat my hamstrings and muscles all around are a mess. My hamstrings especially making my knees hurt because I think the hamstrings are pulling on the back on my knees or something.
This has been going on for a couple of years and I'm so afraid that after the L4 L5 fusion, I will never get them back to normal. They are just so knotted up and painful!
Anyone know anything about this?
Thanks,
Christina

 
Old 08-09-2004, 06:53 AM   #2
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

I'm sorry but I don't have any answers for you!! Just wanted you to know that you're not alone in this, 'cause I'm having the same problems you are!! None of my drs have ever given me any explanations are even acted like this was a problem!!
I also have alot of other things going on with my back & neck (read below) that the drs don't seem to take too seriously, including the fact that I've lost complete control of my legs and fell more then once!!
I wish all the luck in the world and hope you're able to find the answers to all your questions!! Take care!

 
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Old 08-09-2004, 07:26 AM   #3
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

I have similar problems as you (with regards to hamstrings due to disc herniation), and to top it off, I hurt my knee a year ago, and should be doing physical therapy for it, but my back is first priority, so that's on the backburner. My hamstrings were so messed up that I thought I had strained/torn my hamstring at some point. However, according to my PT, it's probably partially due to the nerve issue with the herniation, then because of that, since I haven't been as active as I should, my hamstrings have further tightened.

All I can suggest is to go to PT and have them work on your hamstrings. Definitely consult your doc/PT, but they'll probably have you stretch it and use it more...a heating pad helps to temporarily loosen it up...may want to try that. I know my PT suggested using a heating pad before stretching, when my muscles were really tight. I don't have all the answers because I am working on these problems too...but I hope that helps.

 
Old 08-09-2004, 09:09 AM   #4
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

Hello Mistina, I too have a lot of muscle pain and stiffness and I'not sure what to blame it on, my back problems or my Parkinson's. So, I guess I'll split the difference! At any rate the problem is there. Both my surgeon and my nero have told me to walk and do stretches.I saw a PT for awhile and he gave me some stretches to do. So guess what I do every day, I walk 2 to 3 miles a day and do about 20 minutes of stretching. It really helps me out. If I get lazy one day and skip my work out, I pay for it. Just thought this would give you something to consider. I just know it has made a real difference for me , an I've had 3 back surgeries. So good luck and I truley hope you can find an answer to your problem.
GranEEjay8

 
Old 08-09-2004, 09:31 AM   #5
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff



Tight hamstrings here also. I went to a doctor to ask him about them. I had tried every exercise and stretch that I could find on the net to try to loosen them. They were part of the cause of my lower back problems. When your hamstrings are tight, they pull on your lower back. The doctor told me to keep on trying. Finally, after about ten years he told me that some people are just born with tight ham strings and that it just takes dilligence. Everyday I stick my legs, one by one, on the counter top to try to lengthen the ham strings and to loosen them, but stll, no such luck. Walking seems to help a bit, but I found the most beneficial one to be; standing about a foot or two from the wall, facing it, then leaning intowards the wall and placing my hands on it. This way it stretches the back of the legs and hamstrings. Each day I move a bit further away. At the same time I do what is referred to as wall pushups to strengthen my shoulders and arms.

Maybe, it is like the doctor states, some people are just destined to have tight ham strings, but it is my belief that one should never give up.

My prayers are with you in this endeavor.

 
Old 08-09-2004, 01:51 PM   #6
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

I also have very tight hams, and probably always have. However, the right-legged one, where I have most of my problems, is considerably tighter. So it definitely seems connected with my back problems on that side (hams got tighter as other back things got worse).

As others have said, it seems very important to stretch _after_ you are already warmed up. For me, that means at least 30 minutes of walking or treadmill. The most effective stretch for me is lying on my back near a wall. I keep one knee bent with my foot on the floor. I put the other foot up on the wall, so that my leg is raised and slightly bent. Of course, you have to be very careful not to overdo this (or any) stretch--just the angle where you begin to feel the stretch. Then don't push it or "bounce" the stretch from there. I get at least temporary help from that sort of stretching.

Good luck,

Spiro

 
Old 08-09-2004, 02:18 PM   #7
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

Aloha all,

I am a tight ham...I mean I also have tight hamstrings, along with most of my other major muscle groups. We are all (surgery survivors) susceptible to muscle atrophy, not only your hamstrings but also in your core muscles which support your spine. When you don’t use your muscles they actually start to shrink. This is especially true when you have had nerve pain in one or both of you legs and or arms if you are having problems in your upper spine, pain will definitely put a dent in the usage of one’s limb, so not only do you get shrinkage you also get weakness, and, well…non usage, what a vicious cycle. And the disheartening part is, is that it takes a lot less time for your muscles to get weak and shrink than the time it takes for you to get them back into shape again. This is why it is so important to stretch your muscles out before you start any type of strengthening exercises, if you don’t…Mr. Pain is going to visit. It is also important to keep ones self hydrated…lots of water folks...lots of water! It only gets better with time (at least this is what I keep on telling myself…it will only get better with time…it will only …well you get the idea.). Good Luck all.

Carl
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Old 08-10-2004, 08:42 AM   #8
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

Carl, do you have any idea how long it takes before muscle atrophy/ permanent nerve damage sets in?? I've had all these symptoms and then some, especially the sciatica, and therefore am quite worried!! My hamstrings are so tight, whenever the therapist would try to stretch them, my knees would make a disgusting popping sound LOL!! No matter how many times I stretch them, it always happens, and has for 7yrs now! Take care!!!

 
Old 08-10-2004, 10:56 AM   #9
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

Thanks guys,
I didn't think I was alone in this although, I swear I have the worst problem.
I can only do a simple stretch with them and that is sitting down on the edge of the chair and putting my leg out and keeping it straight and if I can slightly lean over (not bend), that works a little bit and boy are they tight!
I cannot do to much though cause of my back problem and needing a fusion and all. If I were to stretch to far something I'm sure something will just rip and tear in there, it's so much pain.
I hope to god that my muscles don't atrophy permanently and get better. That would be awful. Though, as long as I have been in pain, I can't imagine myself being back to normal at all. Has anyone else been out of commission for so long that they dont' think it is possible to be better? I can't imagine a life like this at 29.
I'm so frusterated. This fusion will be my last resort and I pray that it gets me back to feeling like a human being again!
Thanks guys!

Christina

 
Old 08-10-2004, 11:50 AM   #10
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

My therapist said to lay on the floor in a doorway and put my leg up straight against the door jam... as the muscle gets longer, you will be able to scoot closer to the door jam (i.e. raise your leg higher).

I have heard that most back pain (the 80% or so not related to disc/nerve/bone problems) are mostly caused by tight hamstrings (because it is a large muscle that connects to the tiny muscles in the low back - when it is short, it puts incredible stress on the tiny muscles in the back and tends to tear them) and weak stomach muscles that allow the spine to go out of shape and put extra stress on the small back muscles.

When I was feeling better, I was doing a Stott's low back care video tape. Even if I felt bad when I started it, by the time I was done I felt much better.

 
Old 08-12-2004, 12:04 AM   #11
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Question Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

I also suffer with extremely tight ham strings and muscle tone loss. This all occured after I awoke from a massive herniated disc surgery. I have knumbness down the whole one side of my left spine,hip,leg,foot. I suffer with acute spasms ans awful tighness,burning and tightness, and swelling across my left foot and toes. After physical exsertion my foot feels very very heavy and can be difficult to walk with. My drs, say I have nerve root damage but he will not discuss it further. I wish I had some ideas to give you, but I do not know how to help myself. I feel for you.

Last edited by Rammy; 08-12-2004 at 12:07 AM.

 
Old 08-12-2004, 04:44 AM   #12
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

The best thing that i do for my really tight muscles in many places,plus horrid spasticity in both legs, caused by rather extensive nerve damage is taking nice long hot soaks in the tub with epsom salts.The magnesium in the salts is a natural muscle relaxant and it is actually absorbed right through the skin.after the soak, I will usually try and massage in some flex all or other type of muscle relaxer in a tube.Just some suggestions.Marcia
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Old 08-12-2004, 05:07 AM   #13
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Re: Anyone have tight hamstrings and other muscles from this back stuff

christina,
physical therapy and daily stretching are an integral part of conservative treatment.i have problems from L2-S1 and stretching every day helps so much.muscle tightness comes with the territory and can definitely increase lower back pain.most stretching exersizes can be don laying on your back.a physical therapist should instruct you on the routine...good luck,scotty

 
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