Re: Unknown cause Thoracic Back Pain
Unfortunately because you do have "small" herniations and scoliosis this may be the source of your pain. Even the smallest of herniations can cause some pretty excruciating pain depending on their location.
I too have scoliosis in my thoracic region, thankfully the curve is very minimal but oddly has increased over the years. I do have pain in that region as a result. I can't imagine how hard it must be for you.
The only thing I can think of outside of traditional tests is to have your vitamin D level tested. Low levels cause early osteoporis and severe back pain among other things. Also your body can not process calcium without D and A.
Docs don't normally test for this, I had mine done last winter and was horrified at the results, I basically had no vitamin D. Under doctors watchful eye I was take large amounts of D which has helped some with the pain.
As far as the Vicodin goes, do not take any extra acetominophen. Staying under 2500mg a day is optimal. I took it for years without issue but do get my liver and kidney tested every 6 months. Because it's not helping fully with your pain it may be time to seek out a pain management specialist who can prescribe different medications without acetominophen in them that you may find better for your pain coverage. Because you are not a daily drinker the risks are even less (or so i am told by my pain management specialist)
There are other muscle relaxors out there that you might find better suited. Some MS medications are actually pretty benificial to those without MS but have back pain so don't give up, be assertive.
Wanted to add something, individuals who suffer from chronic pain such as yourself rarely to never become psychologically addicted or abuse medications, the number is said to be less than some 3 percent, that number varies by studies but have never seen it over 5%. Phsyical dependance does happen but it is not the same as addiction. Addiction is defined by the psychological need to abuse medications and abusers will often use any means they can to get medication to get high. Individuals who are true chronic pain patients such as yourself don't abuse medications and often do not get the same high feeling that an abuser does.
In a nutshell, get another MRI, get a second opinion, if both are indecisive perhaps it's simply time to seek out the assistance of a pain management specialist. They do not rely soley on medication, therapy, topical treatments, TENS units, meditation etc should encompase treatment.
No matter how great your illness or pain, there's always someone else who may be worse off.
Last edited by Kissa; 09-19-2008 at 06:13 AM.
Reason: added info