I have two discs bulging. The first is the neck at C6-7, which is described as follows in the MRI report: "There is right paracentral disc bulge, extending into right neural foramen, which is severely narrowed. The left neural foramen is widely patent at this level, but there is mild mass-effect on the cord.
The second disc bulge is at L5-S1. The MRI report states: "There is minimal diminshed signal in the L5-S1 disc consistent with early degeneration. There is a mild diffuse disc bulge at L5-S1. There is a small midline focal disc protrusion.
I have had three ESIs and the last one included a nerve block as well. All were done on the lumbar region (L5-S1).
The problem is that my pain in my legs seems to baffle the doctors at Duke. For a while I was getting a shooting pain in the right leg. This then turned into a stabbing pain in the shin and a burning sensation. I took Neurontin and the pain abated somewhat, but then I started getting numbness/tingling in my right foot. Then cramps on the bottom of the right foot. What's baffling is that the doctors believe the pain should be in the left leg.
So last night my left leg got into the act. I had the sensation of something extremely heavy being placed on my shin. Each step hurts, with this pressure. In addition, the nerves in both legs went nuts. I had twitching so bad I thought the bed was moving. As expected, my legs fell as if I had run a marathon yesterday.
Has anyone else experienced this type of moving pain? What solution did you find?
By the way, when the ESI and nerve block were done, the doctor doing the procedure noted the extreme level of pain and recommended to my regular doctor that I have lumbar surgery. Unfortunately, my doctors are more concerned with my neck and the potential that I may need surgery there and in one of my arms. Obviously, I am falling apart .
First the good news. There is no spinal cord in your lumbar spine so that is why the doctors are more concerned with your neck. Any pressure on the spinal cord is serious and that has to be your doctors first prioity.
I would get another opinion on your lower back so that if down the road you have to have surgery they get it right. You must make sure that nothing else is going on besides DDD. Have you seen a good neurologist? I have pain in both my legs and it is a very searing hot pain but my left leg is worse. Also my pain is much greater at night when laying down.
Bulges can get missed in MRI depending on the angle and placement of the disc herniation. Have you had contrast dye injected in your lower back for better imaging? If not I would ask about it.
Classic case of TMS (Tension Myositis Syndrome) Get a copy of Dr. John E. Sarno's books , ."Healing Back Pain" or "The Mindbody Prescription: Healing the Body, Healing the Pain". I had three years of similiar pain and after reading his book am pain free. Very interesting theory that has had tremendous success.
Thanks for the replies. They have never done the MRI with the contrast dye. I suspect that may be next, plus an MRI of the middle of my back. The burning sensation I had was on the right leg between the knee and ankle, along the shin. It felt like a match was burning me. It was usually worse at night. This new pain on the left seems to be day and night.
We'll see what they recommend next. My frustration is high and patience is low.
Boy I can really identify with the burning shin pain. My pain is very much in that area. I get it whenever I lay on either side. It can be quite painful. The nightime has been a nightmare for me and I even tried sleeping upright in a chair. My back pain was very mild while the shin has steadily been the worse it even pains as I walk. At one point no weight could be put on my leg because of the severe shin pain that it caused. I have to be assessed but I already know that trouble with L4 nerve root is definately a possibility. My L3 level is shot and L4 root is probably involved as a result. Let me know what the final diagnosis is of your shin pain as I sure would be curious to know as I haven't read or talked to anyone that has experienced that specific pain.
Do a google seach on Tension Myositis Syndrome or go to Amazon and read the reviews on the book. I would not believe it but it worked for me almost immediately and is backed by scientific basis. Dr. Sarno has over 25 years of experience and over a 90% success rate. Well worth a $10. investment. I suffered with low bac, sciatic, hip and leg pain for over three years.
Pooby.There most certainly is a spinal column in the lumbar spine.If you meant to say no spinal canal in lumbar spine,you are wrong there as well.You need more anatomy instruction.Nerves in fact exit the entire spine in between each vertebral level including the L5S1 and sacral region.There are many reasons why pain and symptoms move around and if the pain radiates into the hips groin butt and feet It would be wise to investigat pressure in the nerves in the lumbar region as well as the sacral region.
I said no spinal "CORD" not spinal column. Believe me I am not beyond enlightenment. The Cord is dangerously sensitive to any pressure hence permanent damage can be done very easilly.
The spinal cord finishes at the lower border of the first lumbar vertebra and then becomes a leash of nerves (the cauda equina). Below this point only nerves are present and no spinal cord is present. Consequently most surgery on the lower back is on and around nerves rather than spinal cord. The spinal nerves in the lumbar spine supply strength in the legs, sensation from the groin down and bladder and bowel function. Injury to one nerve may cause no problem or may affect some or all of the previously mentioned modalities.
Yes Frank we need no more pain in the neck....lol Now for the anatomy lesson....he he Do you think perhaps I was being insulted...duh boy am I thick didn't even feel it. You know some of us on here just might be in the medical field "believe it or not" and some of us have the same miserable problems. Keep us posted on how you are doing with your docs.