Hey, I am new here and am hoping that someone can give me an idea of what is going on with me. I am 28 years old with major back problems! About 4 years ago I was lifting heavy flagstone's in my backyard when lanscaping and after lifting a few I twisted my back wrong and heard a *POP! Later that evening my body became numb from right above my left hip all the way down to my left toes. I have been to a very good clinic and had x-rays and an MRI done and no noticable damage except for 2 vertebres are fused in lower back and deteriorating disks (which dr. says comes with age???) but nothing that could be causing this major pain. He gave me anti-inflam & muscle relaxers and sent me on my way. I have seen this dr. several times throughout the 4 years and he keeps doing tests and still.... nothing! Initially I did research and the closest thing was problems with my Sciatica, but dr. says no. I deal with uncomfortable pain in my back every night when trying to fall asleep if pressure is put on that leg and occasional inflamation of the lower back and leg. If there is anyone that has had a similar occasion or that can give me a bit of advise I would be forever greatful! I am looking at Neurologists now to see if they can help me or even Acupuncture! *Thanks
If you have degenerating disks, how can they not find anything wrong? That's weird, I never heard of that. I've got one deteriorating disk and I had it explained to me how that can cause pain. For me, since the disk is deteriorating, then the vertebrae above and below that disk will eventually begin to shift to accommodate the changing disk. When the bones are moving, that's causing me pain and inflammation near the joints that surround the bones. So, that's what's causing the pain for me. It's the facet joints. Yesterday I had an injection where they numbed the nerves that feed into the facet joint and let me tell you, I had 5 hours of relief and it was wonderful. (the reason it lasted so short is because they wanted to see what deadening the nerves will do, they have another procedure they'll do since it worked). This is masking the pain however I believe it's buying me time that I could do the exercises that I couldn't do before and hopefully can make my muscless strong enough to support my back. I've been dealing with this pain for the third year now and I'm only 20. If I were in your situation, I would maybe see if pain management has something to offer you. So far they have been doing a good job with me. Wish I could tell you more! Good luck! OH I do have one question....when you did the research about sciatica, did the doctor explain why that's a "no?" I'm just curious...they're supose to tell you why. Then from there you can do some more research. -Anita
Last edited by aestrella411; 01-19-2005 at 01:56 PM.
Thank you for your reply and sorry that you also are having to go through so much at a young age! The answer to your question about the sciatica is that no nerves showed up on the MRI as being pinched or whatever it's supposed to show. I believe he just listed it on the form as a lumbar strain but I'm the type of person that hears something is wrong with me and instantly freaks out and forgets everything the dr. says. Also it was a while ago. I am trying to get my x-rays and all medical records from this clinic to review and take to a neurologist. I have read a few things about Pain Managment in this message board but wasn't sure if that is where I take my next step or even if that was the right place for me to go. As to the degenerated disks, that posted a problem with me being that if they are deteriorating maybe one day I will not have the back support I need but dr. talked about age and possible osteoperosis or osteoarthritus (i believe) & (sorry about spelling errors). I wish I had the records in hand to give a bit more valid information but the one thing I have is the pain and it is very frustrating!!! Everything that I have looked up on the sciatica pain is so relevent to what I am feeling and hope maybe another source can give me the information so I can get this fixed. I just got a wonderful opportunity to work for a designer in the field I am going to school for and had to quit the 2nd day because of the pain from standing on my feet all day. That was just the smack in the face and now it needs to be taken care of... Thanks, Reese
What kind of pain do you have? Where is it? Would you say it's mostly back pain or a little bit of leg and back pain? Oh I'm so sorry about you having to quit your work! I strongly agree though that it is best to seek a second opinion. If you can get a neurologist/neurosurgeon that would be great. Perhaps even an orthopaedic doctor. I've heard those neuro guys try to push surgery but on me they didn't. What my HMO people has told me is that I have to try all the conservative methods of treatment first before surgery is even considered. That's where I am right now. Oh I hope you get rid of your terrible pain. I've read before that sometimes people have the darndest time trying to figure out what's causing their pain. I certainly hope you don't have to go through the best years of life in that pain. Well, nobody should be in pain but well, hopefully you know what I mean. Take care. -Anita
Sometimes a nerve can be interfered with and it not show up on an MRI. Have you had an EMG done? That's a test that tests the function of your nerves. No test is foolproof though. When I had my fusion 2 weeks ago, my surgeon found things that hadn't shown up in any of the tests (such as a fracture!). Have you had a discogram done? That can show if you are having discogenic pain or not. Although I would save that test as a last resort. What kind of symptoms are you having- more leg pain or back pain? Good luck!
Thank you everyone for your input... I saw my general dr. on friday and she gave me more information in 20 minutes than the others did in several years. I picked up my x-ray's, MRI's and records from this ortho clinic and have an apointment with a neurologist early Feb. This one was recomended to me by a well known dr. in the area who's son had back/spine surgery about a year ago and have only heard good things about him. Friday I am going in for another MRI, it was 2000 when first was done, then supposed to start on physical therapy until I make it to neurologist. I'm on anti-inflam's and muscle relaxers daily that have helped soooooooooo much! At my recent dr. visit she said she could definately feel the inflamation and as well as you suggested that their may of been something missed when dr's were looking at MRI. With my L-4 & 5 fused since birth, that is also causing pain and probably pinching a nerve when I sit to long or stand. As for the EMG, I will ask the dr about it and find out what further steps need to be taken if nothing found again. I can't take this pain anymore, very frustrating, so I am willing to try anything about now to get rid of it. I am also looking into Yoga or Tai-Chi for when I am healed up a bit better, hoping that will strengthen my muscles back up. Thank You all for your input on this, I really mean it, not having any idea about what is going on makes it hard and with all your help and questions to ask the dr's, it helps me out alot. Thanks - SilentMeowz
oh god, can't find anything eh? I just had TWO discs removed that were degenerating b/c they CAUSED MY PAIN> Get yourself a second opinion. If you feel so, ask about a discogram. That will tell ya if the discs are the culprits. I had a fusion a month ago and could tell day 2 after that the discs were the problems! I still have some nerve pain, but that is to be expected. I had more pain in my back when surgery came around than my legs, but it was enough to halt my life. Jessie is so right, the discogram SUCKS, but you'll know after if the discs are to blame. Wishing you well.OH I am 27 and wasn't willing to feel 100 for the rest of my life-nor deal with pain either