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Old 02-02-2012, 07:29 AM   #1
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ANGELINMICHIGAN HB UserANGELINMICHIGAN HB User
Angry Chronic Right L5 Radiculopathy

Lyn in Michigan. Hi I haven't been on here in years and thought I might ask if anyone else can help me please.

For years I have had off and on lower back pain that starts around my tail bone and goes into my hips and sometimes the pain runs down my legs. Well in 2008 I was at a clinic for an appt. with my doctor and I had also been having problems with both of my feet turning bluish purple and they had always felt like they were going numb and tingly. The doctor did an EMG (Nerve Conduction Study) and when I went back for something else months later he said that everything was ok with those tests. I never thought any more about it. Well 3 years later I was having some routine tests for my heart, ekg,ankle brachial, carotid artery, and was still having problems with my legs and had brachial testing done for that again. Well my EKG was abnormal and so was my
ABI testing so I sent for the last EKG at this clinic and also a Copy of my Nerve Conduction Study that was done by them at this time. They said the tests at that time were OK but when I looked at them over 3 years later it says:

Lower Extremity...Based on the nerve conduction study date..consider a mild left S1 raduculopathy. This statement is based on isolated A-waves which are non-specific findings, therefore clinical significance should be confirmed. also it says
In Addition: consider a Chronic Right L5 Radiculopathy

The peroneal F-wave was normal on the left and "abnormal" on the right

The tibial F-wave was normal but an A-wave was detected on the left.

My question is: a Chronic right L5 Radiculopathy, should I not have been told this? I have pain there and should the doctor not have followed up on this? Also there seems to be a problem with a mild left S1 Radiculopathy?

He told me nothing and if I hadn't sent away just to get a copy because my feet are always still blue and purple and numb and I was getting another test done and wanted to compare!!! I was also told by this test which is for circulation, it was an Anchial Brachial Test that I have peripheral artery disease!!!

This testing was for a cardial vascular testing and that is why my feet were blue and numb and tingling but nobody took that serious either. I went to a cardio vascular specialist and he didn't see anything wrong. It says on the results, patient has PAD (peripheral aterial disease)!!!

Do these doctors take anything serious???

Anyway I was just wondering what anyone thought if this Chronic L5 Radiculopathy should mean anything finding this out on a report 3 years later basically by mistake because nobody certainly told me about it!!!!

Thanks Lyn Angel in Michigan

 
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Old 02-02-2012, 04:14 PM   #2
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Re: Chronic Right L5 Radiculopathy

Hi Lyn...I remember you. Didn't you also have a bad fusion in your neck too and were in lots of pain with that? How is that neck of yours?

On the back, I just had EMG/NCS on my lumbar as well as the bottoms of my feet are so numb I can't feel the gas pedal when driving. I have problems on both sides at S1 and the left side with L5...sound familiar?

So I have my report and it is very different from yours. It conclusively says it is from compression of the spinal nerves and yours doesn't say that. Mine confirms the problem right at the area where the nerves emerge from the spine and the signals are abnormal right there. The peroneal nerve can get compressed as it goes over the fibula head/tibia in the lower leg and it seems that in yours, there are waves change at that site so it maybe compression there that is the cause. Mine says that the signal is the same both before and after that area around the fibula head. Mine also ruled out peripheral neuropathy as the cause as the signal is the same as it was right after it came out of the spine. Yours doesn't even go into peripheral neuropathy.

EMG/NCS looks for a change in the speed and amplitude of the waves. It looks for possible areas where the nerve is being affected. Your nerves are being affected but it seems as if they don't know where...fibula head? back? somewhere else? That is probably why they told you it was okay....the doc probably thinks it's from compression around the knee and not your back.

But my last EMG/NCS was okay too and that was 4 years ago so it can change. If you have more numbness, then get another one done. It was a positive test but not for the origin being your spine.

As always, those tests are confusing! Luckily for me, it was my doc who did mine and she explained it as she went along and explained the results as she typed it up and I sat there watching her. Sometimes it pays to be a pest

Missed you!

Jenny

PS...my feet are numb but not blue/purple...usually bright red instead as the nerves aren't making the arteries contract when they should. Warm toes in a person with popsicle toes is great...only wish I could feel the warmth!

 
Old 02-04-2012, 07:56 AM   #3
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ANGELINMICHIGAN HB UserANGELINMICHIGAN HB User
Re: Chronic Right L5 Radiculopathy

Jenny, it was so nice to hear from you. I am so sorry that I didn't go on here earlier as I have been busy with grandchildren and other things again. I am so sorry you are having other problems with your feet!!!
Thank you so much for reading my letter. I am not sure I was thinking that they overlooked a major problem just that I was really upset that 3 years later I have to find out that nobody told me these test results and the fact that I am really sore in the area of L5/s1 as a matter of fact I decided to try again another chiropractor a few weeks ago for my "neck" which I am in still terrible chronic pain which is another awful story. I am going in less than 2 weeks on a vacation with my whole family to Los Cabos and my neck is bad and my leg is radiating pain from my tailbone area into my hip right down my leg and I thought maybe the chiropractor might be able to adjust it and I don't know why because I have been to the chiropractor for years and years and stopped about 7 months ago. I tried for my neck on one of those DRX9000 machines (42 times) and it didn't help it at all but afterwards he would crack my back and my hip so I thought maybe I should try that again. Maybe my back was "for a lack of a better way of describing it was getting rusty". I have moved and was walking by a new chiropractor's office and decided to go in and talk to him. Well I told him my whole tale of chronic pain, blah blah and he said he could help me, he would adjust my neck above the titanium cage and below and would go near it and he could adjust my back. Well I decided to give him a chance and he adjusted me twice and I was surprised because my neck started to feel a bit better after the first adjustment. I know you wouldn't be able to remember but above and below I am in pain also and my fusion was at C5/6 and 6/7 and 6/7 failed and is still not fused and I am still in absolute pain. Anyway he adjusted my back and he really hurt me and I think he has either bruised my rib or it has been about 8 or 9 days and it still hurts so bad there are days where I think it might be even cracked!!!! This could only happen to me Jenny!!!!
Sorry I am just complaining again and nothing ever seems to go right for me probably because I just gave up and haven't done anything about it. I had decided that no doctor could help me and then now I have to decided to get a new GP doctor who I am going to on Tuesday. I asked on another site following up on a gentlement from the UK I believe about something other than Gapapentin. I asked you if there was something else that is similar to Cymbalta??? When my husband retired over two years ago, we were able to use our insurance for 1 year after and the government helped but now we have BCBS and it is soooo expensive because of my Pre Existing Condition and it is over $600 a month and we have a $10,000 deductible which sucks because everytime I walk into the doctors office, through the doors it costs me $150.00 at least never mind tests, forget it. So, I don't go to the doctors for anything!!! It covers 1 check up per year and mammogram, pap-smear, bonedensity and that is it so I have got those definitely but nothing else is covered, so I am in a bad place. I have decided after having my surgery in Nov. of 2003 and still walking around not fused to send a letter to the surgeon that did the surgery and ask him if he will decide to help me now since I am sure you don't recall but he don't us (my husband, son and I to leave his office) as my son asked him too many questions) and he thought we were questioning his surgery) He is one of the top surgeons in Michigan and now he is doing re-visions practically full time!!! He never followed my surgery probably, just told me to go to a pain clinic but didn't send me until 1 1/2 years for any exrays until he finally sent me for a myelogram and found out I wasn't fused and then offered me revision surgery until we asked too many questions and told us to leave. There has to be my story in the healthboards somewhere. You have already told me your opinion but I am still in chronic pain and went to another doctor in October of 2010 and he told me he would operate and then found out that my insurance was running out in a few months and said in his report that I was trying to "make" him operate on me so I never went back and here I sit feeling so alone Jenny and in absolute pain. I have the letter ready to send to the surgery and the 3 disk package with MRI, flexion extension views, and CT scan. Do I send it or not. I am not a fan of surgeons after what I have gone through!!! I am all over the place with this story as I don't want to re-hash my problems, I am tired and am in pain. Oh yes, I got off of the subject again. I am going to a new doc. on Tues. and have to ask for something other than Cymbalta because it is just way to expensive and I know there is not going to be a generic until next year. Do you know what the best drug would be, it is not only for an anti-depressant but also for fibromyalgia. I do take gabapentin also and I don't really know what that is for, they say nerve pain, don't know whether that helps either but I have been on it for years, also topomax (generic) and I take ambien every night have for at least 15 years, no pain pills, lots of new supplements for health food or homeopathic doctor. Also just found out I am hypothryoid and am taking levothyroxine but can't get a pound off!!! Sorry for rambling. Take care

Lyn in Michigan

 
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