I have had back and neck pain 10+ years. I have done meds, pt, pain management, chiro... Finally got referred to a Rheum who dxd fibromyalgia, but am now getting iritis. Rhuem ordered MRI to look for Ankylosing Spondylitis and found that SI joints are fine,
L4-5 broad based and soewhat asymmetric posterior bulging. Greater on the left than the right. Focal area of increased T2 signal just deep to the posterior longitudinal ligament which indicates presence of an annular tear.
L5-S1 Moderate broad based posterior disk bulging seen. Axial images show contact with both S1 nerve roots in the lateral recesses. However, ample epidural fat surrounds these nerve roots over much of their circumference and there is no evidence of impingment.
There is desiccation of several lumbar disks. No stenosis or impingement is seen.
Also had an MRI on my neck:
C 2-3, 3-4, and 4-5 levels look normal.
C 5-6 mild hypertrophy of the joints of Luschka bilaterally. This results in mild right foraminal stenosis.
C 6-7 Mild broad based disk bulging is seen
C 7- T1 normal
There is dessication of all cervical disks with mild bilateral joint of Luschka hypertrophy at C5-6 and mild central bulging of the c6-7 disc.
My question is: What is the Luschka joint and what are symptoms that it causes? Is this neck stuff causing the numbness and tingling down my arm and into my fingers? And is there actually anything that can be done?
Also, is the stuff going on in my lower back enough to cause rump pain and numbness/ tingling into my leg? My doctor has told me that there is "arthritis" in my low back and neck. He acts as if it is no big deal, but I am hurting everyday, all day.
Any help with understanding these results is really appreciated. Thank you, Linda
The of Luschka are the uncovertebral joints. These are the lateral aspect of the vertebral body and has a projection called the (uncinate process). As our disks become dried out and shrunk these projections start rubbing on the body of the next vertebra. This rubbing will results in a degenerative joint change, causing a rounding of the surface - called the joint of Luschka. So then bone spurs grow and start compressing nerve roots and causing radicular (shooting or referred) symptoms.
So in laymens terms you have arthritis growing in there causing larger ridges of bone spurs narrowing the canals the nerve roots pass through as they go on to our body in this case arms, and that is why you have tingling, pain etc.. For this type stuff they tend to try conservative therapy like rest, ice, heat, nsaids, medications, physical therapy and sometimes injections. When all else fails and pain is to great to live with they may do surgery to clean it out.
On your leg/butt pain- that is very common for L4,L5,S1 problems. In fact I am dealing with lots of this myself right now. You have some bulges in there and they do not need to be compressing the nerve all the time to be causing inflammation and pain. You might inquire with the doctor about trying epidural injections if the pain continues. They are found to be very effective for the lumbar problems. I use lots of ice/and heat and cycles of injections.
When you say pain do you mean high level pain or just a low level nagging pain? Try everything you can before any surgeries! If you want to see the paths these nerves take look for something called a Dermatome Map and it will compare the level you have a problem like L5 and show you where the nerve path runs.
Chiro might make yourself worse. You sould see a neurosurgeon or orthopedic surgeron for a consult and get their opinion.
Last edited by PNo; 01-08-2010 at 08:53 PM.
I am not going to do the chiro any time soon. I tried that over a year ago and it made me dizzy and nauseated. My pain was better for a short while, but it wasnt worth the other effects. I have never encountered that kind of effect before and dont want to do it again. I do have a referral to a neurosurgeon and am waiting to here what they want to do. They collect all charts and scans, a nurse called to do a phone interview regarding symptoms and what not, then they have a pow-wow with all the docs to decide what to do. So I am waiting to hear. I should hear something today or by wednesday at the latest.
My low back has been getting progressively worse and I am looking forward to some injections. PT was short lived relief and too much money for the minor relief I got. My neck on the other hand...Sometimes I feel like it is unstable and it shakes. I am considering a collar for when it gets this bad. I always hurt somewhere. And I know there is something wrong in my upper back where my bra strap lays. I cant bake and cook anymore. Just typing is making it ache. I have a patch of skin, just below my neck toward the right of my spine that has no feeling.
To tell the truth, I am really worried about what they are going to say when I finally get an MRI of that area. I dont understand why this is happening. I have never injured by spine in any way. No car accidents, no amusement park rides, no skiing either water or snow, no major falls. I am hyper careful. As the years have passed I know I dont have the balance I used to. My mom had back/neck pain for years before she passed and I really wish I would have had them look for the cause of that pain. Maybey this is hereditary. All my blood work looking for arthritis is neg or normal, although I have had two bouts of iritis in the last 1 1/2 years. My rhuem thinks it might be ankylosing spondylitis, although my SI joint shows no signs. But my neck does...Doesnt it? He wants me to go on Humira, but wants to wait until the Neuro decides what they want to do.
Any one have thoughts on the idea of the Anylosing Spondylitis? The thought of Humira scares me. I have 4 kids in school always bringing home something and I would probably end up getting everything they bring in while on the Humira.