This is my first post please bare with me. I had an MRI back in Oct and have not gotten anywhere with the doctors since then (good ol Kaiser)
I am unable to stand or walk for more than 5 to 10 minutes at the most without a horrible sharp burning in my buttock hip and down my left leg. I have to sit or lie down all the time..thank goodness I have a sit down job. her are the results of the MRI ANY Suggestions????
Focal area of T1 hyperintensity superior aspect of the L4 vertebral body that is likey focal fatty infiltration versus hemangioma. Vertebral bodies are of the normal height and alignment. Intervertebral disk space is mostly preserved. Nomenclaturing is predicated upon identifying the last fully formed disk as L5-S1 which corresponds to lumbosacral transitional angle. there is moderate scoliosis of the LS spine, with curvature to the right.
L2-3 diffuse disk bulge, osteophyte complex with facet hypertrophic changes and flavum hypertrophy contributing to severe cnetral canal stenosis and severe biforaminal narrowing.
L3-4 Same as above
L4-5 same as above only moderate vs severe
L5-S1 facet hypertrophic changes contribute to severe biforaminal narrowing
Advanced spondylotic changes of the LS spine as described
Last edited by peggity; 01-28-2009 at 03:55 PM.
Reason: NEED NEW TITLE
I don't know much about your MRI, sorry however I grew up with good old Kaiser and had many years of run around with them. I wish I could give you some great advice. Hang in there and keep going back, the squeaky wheel gets the grease they say. I was like you before my fusion, I could not stand for more than 10 mins without burning pain in my hip and leg, I could not sit straight in a chair without pain either, I had to slouch and recline back to get comfortable prior to surgery. Life was not meant to be lived that way. Keep asking questions and make them listen! Goodluck
peggity, do you mind if I ask how old you are? I used to feel the same way...thank goodness for the desk job...but now I can't even do that.
I'm no expert on the MRI stuff. I've spent weeks looking up my own results. They should do a patient version in plain English.
From my few weeks of "Internet Medical School", I think that "osteophyte complex with facet hypertrophic changes" is on mine and I believe the Doc said that's arthritis. The narrow central stenosis and the biforaminal narrowing means your spinal canal is severely narrowing, I think. Mine is also, and over time, you will find yourself even less able to stand or walk based on my history.
You can search each term and get decent information but there may be others more experienced than I am that can help you (or correct what I wrote). Good luck!
I hope your insurance company comes to its senses and lets you do something about this. I'm "not a surgical candidate" whatever that means and I'd hate for you to end up that way.
Last edited by moderator2; 01-29-2009 at 08:27 AM.
Reason: posted disallowed website(s)
Hi LadyVols thanks for replying. I am 53 and feel like my back is that of a 90 year old. Do you know whay you were not that you are not a surgical candidate? Is there any thing out there that can correct this other than surgery? I am supposed to go see another doctor tomorrow since Kaiser did not sign mine back on this year which hopefully will be a good thing. I do not even know what sort of questions to be asking? I do not think though that physical therpy or acupuncture is the answer for buldging discs narrowing canal etc...and I feel like they are trying to keep me happy offering these types of fixes. How long have you had your back problems and how old are you? Is there anything they can and will do for you? Any suggestions on what to ask my doc tomorrow? I had one shot a couple of months ago and not really sure what kind it was exactly. I do think I would like to try another. I did not realize there seem to be different types out there until I started reading some of these posts. Did you ever have any yourself? Thanks again for the info and all the best to you as well.
Hi Back Ache I appreciate your response on the Kaiser situation. Was it Kaiser that did your fusion? How long were you unable to go to work etc? I know what you mean if I am in the store longer than a few minutes I have to bend over at the waist to strech out the nerves or whatever it is or sit against a shelf etc. It kinda like not really even having a life....Any suggestions on what sort of questions to ask and how do you make them listen??? thanks again How are you feeling now any pain ? Are you able to go walking etc?
I don't read MRI's so I have nothing to offer you there...but I can tell you that I experienced excruciating back pain which had my physician baffled. My pain disappeared on its own when I switched blood pressure medication. Doctors denied it was the bp med but clearly listed on the package insert it listed back pain as a side effect. Since that time, I have read of many medications that cause similar symptoms.
I mention this in case you may take medication that may be causing the problems.
For what it's worth, I blamed my pain on a herniated disc that I had 40 years earlier! Not so, my pain went away within hours after discoing the med...and I was pain free for over 2 years until last week when I took a different med that caused the same problems within 72 hours after the first dose. I don't have to tell you that I am no longer taking that medication.
Kaiser did not do my fusion. I was in a car accident when I was 16 and still under my parents insurance. Kasier insisted I was in no pain, that it was all made up. My parents knew I was in pain because I could not even handle being in a car because the bumps in the road made me jump and squirm. I was very active in sports and activities and stopped them all because of it. It was evident that I hurt, but Kaiser would not listen. It took months and many doctors to get anywhere, finally I was told that I should put a steel rod down my entire back, I should never have children and if I choose to have children I would be bedridden for the pregnancy. And the list goes on. I refused the surgery at that time, and whet to a chiropractor ever day for a year and half. Then I left for college and decided that I could either let my back live my life or I could choose to live it myself and that is what I did. So for the next 20 years I did what I could and ignored the rest. Many things caused pain, many things were difficult. I still did them, determined to do what I could. I have worked many jobs where others will less pain refused. That was my choice. I have 3 beautiful boys and was never bedridden, however because of my back I did have to have them all C-section. I worried every day that I would have the strenght to maintain. Before finally deciding on my surgery I was working my own business cleaning homes and business. I scrubbed floors on my hands and knees, tubs, sinks, counters, vacuumed etc etc. Each day wearing a lumbar support brace and ending the day on ice for the pain. Yes, it was my choice to do that knowing how hard it was on my back. But I refused to let my back determine my life choices. It finally got to a point that the pain was too much and I was not being a good "mom". I knew it was way past time to do something. So after lots of doctors opinions, I choose a 1 level fusion of L3-L4. This does not solve all my back problems, however it does solve a large portion and the hopes to function a more typical life.
It has been 4 months and I feel really good. My pain from before surgery that drove me nuts constantly is mostly gone. The healing pain is easy to deal with considering. I walk 3 miles a day without pain. Before surgery I forced myself to walk 3/4mile and it killed me each time.
If Kaiser had helped me more than 20 years ago, I think the outcome would have been different. I know how frusterating it is to beat your head on a wall and get no where. Don't give up, keep bugging them..eventually someone will listen and you won't have to spend 20 years in agony.
[QUOTE=peggity;3867142]Hi LadyVols thanks for replying. I am 53 and feel like my back is that of a 90 year old. Do you know whay you were not that you are not a surgical candidate? Is there any thing out there that can correct this other than surgery? I am supposed to go see another doctor tomorrow since Kaiser did not sign mine back on this year which hopefully will be a good thing. I do not even know what sort of questions to be asking? I do not think though that physical therpy or acupuncture is the answer for buldging discs narrowing canal etc...and I feel like they are trying to keep me happy offering these types of fixes. How long have you had your back problems and how old are you? Is there anything they can and will do for you? Any suggestions on what to ask my doc tomorrow? I had one shot a couple of months ago and not really sure what kind it was exactly. I do think I would like to try another. I did not realize there seem to be different types out there until I started reading some of these posts. Did you ever have any yourself? Thanks again for the info and all the best to you as well.[/QUOTE]
I am 52 and it's funny you said 90 year old woman because that's what they said my back looks like. I don't know for sure why they said no surgery. I have severe disc degeneration (6 severe, 5 moderate, 11 total) and the same areas have severe foraminal stenosis. There are bulging discs and "abundant" arthritis all through my back.
My back has hurt for over ten years and I just went to my regular doctor and he would give me steroid shots and send me to physical therapy. The past four years, I've had off and on insurance coverage and have been under pre-existing condition limits so I could only see an orthopedic (two) doctor last summer. That's when both told me after seeing my MRI that I wasn't a surgery candidate and that my back is a mess. I had the same job for 18 years until I couldn't take it anymore. I left and a year later, I found a part-time job, but then it got too much. My feet are going too numb to drive more than a mile.
I'm back with new junky insurance with pre-existing conditions and I'm not working because I can't sit or stand long enough to do anything (I was an accountant). I don't know that I got in this mess by not getting real treatment earlier or if it would have happened anyway. I would do anything to go back ten years and start again. My brother has been disabled since he was 40 and has a pain pump, etc. I don't want to end up like him, but here I am.
I hope you can get a good opinion from a neurologist or orthopedic doctor and not just a GP. Mine told me to learn to deal with it and I did for six or seven years, but I can't now. I hope some more people read your post and can give you better advice than I can. I do the same thing as you...bend forward while I'm seated and lean toward my legs for relief. Good luck!