HealthBoards

HealthBoards (http://www.healthboards.com/boards/)
-   Spinal Cord Disorders (http://www.healthboards.com/boards/spinal-cord-disorders/)
-   -   Daughter has severe back and neck pain and more. (http://www.healthboards.com/boards/spinal-cord-disorders/918720-daughter-has-severe-back-neck-pain-more.html)

luvsun24 09-16-2012 04:16 PM

Daughter has severe back and neck pain and more.
 
My daughter is 18 and has been in chronic pain for the last 4 years, following a soccer collision that left her with an L5 fracture on the right side and pars defect, which could have been there since birth... we don't know exactly. The pain has gotten progressively worse but she was still able to play soccer. In the last year though she has had nerve pain down both legs that has kept her from running or playing. She feels it even walking up and down stairs. Additionally, through xrays we have learned that she has a 20% curvature to her spine (borderline scoliosis) as well as bulging discs and an L5 vertebrae that has slipped backwards.

We have also noticed other things... many of which could be caused by a diet high in processed foods. We have tried to steer her to the fridge instead of the pantry but she loves carbs and sweets, particularly chocolate and hates fruit. She is a big meat eater but doesn't really like fish other than fish sticks. I can also get her to eat raw carrots and salad (sometimes broccoli), and she will drink milk,lemonade and sometimes OJ (no other fruit juice). She loves soda but I won't buy those. I've noticed that she is chronically fatigued and has lost interest in everything. Headaches are frequent. She complains of a messed up rib (it is indented) and a shoulder that constantly pops. Her lower back is in a great deal of pain but so is the upper back as well. It hurts to bend backward and it also hurts her to sit up with proper posture or stand for more than a few minutes. Recently she has felt like she is in a fog and has started transposing letters when she types, as if she has acquired dyslexia.

I am googling like crazy and have come up with many possible underlying factors. It seems like she may have anything from low estrogen (long intervals between periods) to low magnesium to neuropathy to fibromyalgia. IDK. We have been to physiatrists, orthopedic surgeons, chiropractors, physical therapists and massage therapists. No one has been able to untangle this web. The physiatrist has ordered a bone density test to determine if the fracture and pars defect are still causing any pain. If not, then she will get an epidural to try to eliminate the nerve pain. Once that is done, they will give her injections to help manage the back pain. in addition, I have recently purchased an inversion table and she is getting a small bit of comfort from using that daily. We are also starting to do yoga for scoliosis. Hoping that helps a little.

I am at my wits end, trying to identify an underlying problem that can be the cause of so many other symptoms. I hate seeing my daughter in pain. Please help if you can.

teteri66 09-18-2012 04:58 PM

Re: Daughter has severe back and neck pain and more.
 
I don't have any suggestions for some of the issues, but I would like to comment on the pars defect and the spondylolisthesis at L5-S1.

Perhaps one of the specialists told you that it is not uncommon for adolescent athletes to develop a spondylolisthesis, usually at the L4-L5 or L5-S1 segment of the lumbar spine. Any sport or activity that puts the spine in extension, such as gymnastics, diving, dance, etc. is particularly suspect. Also kids who play football or other sports involving impact can develop it. Often there is a pars fracture that leads to the one vertebra sliding over the top of the adjacent one. This can go unnoticed unless it begins to cause pain, usually when a nerve becomes irritated or compressed.

Spondylolisthesis can cause an instability which can lead to even more problems down the road. Once there is an issue that is producing pain, the body naturally compensates for it by favoring one side. This can lead to muscle imbalances, ligaments and tendons being pulled or stressed, etc. which can lead to the development of other problems.

When one area of spinal alignment is pulled out of balance, often another area of the spine will develop a problem, too. Posture affects more than most of us realize. It could be that the scoliosis is putting some additional stress on the chest cavity or some organs that are affecting her health.

With the spondylolisthesis, your daughter should avoid doing anything that puts her spine in extension -- things like swimming on the stomach, any yoga posture that involves bending backward, etc. Actually, until you have her back problems figured out, I would suggest she avoid any type of bending at the waist...as that L5 segment may be unstable.

Be careful of giving your daughter too many injections. At her young age, I wouldn't think a steady dosage of steroids would be too healthy for her...and, other than possibly helping with the pain, injections will do nothing to help to resolve the spinal issues if her problem is mechanical.

You might want to look for an orthopedic spine surgeon who has a special interest in scoliosis. This type of doctor might be able to tie her symptoms together and figure out what is going on.

It can be extremely frustrating when trying to unravel an issue involving the spine. And I'm sure it is even more frustrating when it involves one's child. I hope you will find some answers soon.

If there is a multi-specialty children's hospital near where you live, you might want to consult with an orthopedic surgeon from there.

luvsun24 09-18-2012 08:07 PM

Re: Daughter has severe back and neck pain and more.
 
Thank you Teteri66 for your reply. Good information. She is having the bone scan next Monday. The physiatrist said it would indicate whether or not she is still having pain or issues with the fracture or pars defect. She continued to play soccer with the pars defect for three years after the injury with mild pain. Once the nerve pain started she could no longer run and had to discontinue soccer until we got everything resolved. I am hopeful that the bone scan will show no pain resulting from the pars defect.

By the way, The yoga we are doing thankfully does not include any backward extentions. It is specifically called Yoga for Scoliosis. I hope that's okay. Thank again for your reply.

luvsun24 09-18-2012 08:08 PM

Re: Daughter has severe back and neck pain and more.
 
Thank you Teteri66 for your reply. Good information. She is having the bone scan next Monday. The physiatrist said it would indicate whether or not she is still having pain or issues with the fracture or pars defect. She continued to play soccer with the pars defect for three years after the injury with mild pain. Once the nerve pain started she could no longer run and had to discontinue soccer until we got everything resolved. I am hopeful that the bone scan will show no pain resulting from the pars defect.

By the way, The yoga we are doing thankfully does not include any backward extentions. It is specifically called Yoga for Scoliosis. I hope that's okay. Thank again for your reply.


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:36 AM.