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My spine.

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Old 05-14-2011, 07:10 AM   #1
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My spine.

Hello Everyone,

I posted here a couple days ago. I was basically a hysterical mess. I had a few symptoms that really made me worry. I still have a muscle twitching mainly in the right calf muscle. I today it started to feel kind of limp and numb-like. I did have a bit of a foot drop. I do understand though that my symptoms don't come on that fast. Maybe I just didn't notice it..

I went to the hospital a couple days ago and got some blood work done. My b12, potassium, magnesium, vitamin D and electrolytes were fine. Then I got some x rays done of my spine. I would like to tell you all the results

There is a reversal of the normal cervical lordosis with mild kyphosis centred in the lower cervical spine.

There is moderate to severe left C4-C5 and mild left C3-C4 neural foraminal stenosis. Remainder of the disc spaces, vertebral body height, ailgnments and neural foramina are normal

CONCLUSION: dominant finding is left C4-C5 neural foraminal are normal.
There is mild dextroscoliosis centred in the mid thoracic spine. There is increased kphosis in the thoracic spine. There is no fracture, no focal bony lesion

CONCLUSION: scoliosis and kyphosis
There is mild levescoliosis centred in the mid lumbar spine. There is moderate disc space narrowing at L5-S1. Remainder of the disc spaces, vertebral body heights, and aligments are well maintained. There is no spondylolysis, fracture no bony lesion. SI joints are normal.

CONCLUSION: scoliosis L5 S1 DDD- degenerative disc disease.

The doctor was really shocked. He said I was really young to have this. It may have been a birth defect. She said that i basically had arthritis. It does run in my family. It was a great birthday surprise . I'll be 22 on Sunday.

I was wondering if any of you had any spinal problems before ALS diagnosis? I'm scared out of mind. I'm scared that my legs are the first thing that are going to go.

It just confuses me that someone my age has degenerative disc disease and such major scoliosis. My doctor said that I'm so young to have these things. If i have the surgery I hope it helps. I'm so sad. Stenosis is also caused by degeneration most of the time too

I waiting to speak to a surgeon.

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Old 05-15-2011, 12:07 PM   #2
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Re: My spine.

Over 100 views , yet not 1 reply...very interesting. Thanks

Old 05-15-2011, 08:02 PM   #3
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Re: My spine.

I'm not sure why you think this is ALS. I had difficulty understanding what your test results revealed, but it sounds like curvature of the spine. I imagine your symptoms could be related that. Nothing makes me worry about ALS. Continue to seek for an answer. Document your symptoms in a journal. Good Luck. Try not to worry

Old 05-21-2011, 07:52 PM   #4
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Re: My spine.

Thanks for your kind words Anxiousme
It's just been a hard couple of months.

My dad told me that it would be best if I got a second opinion. We decided that we should go to Sunnybrook hospital. We went to the emergency for them to take xrays of my entire spine. The results stated that There was NOTHING wrong with my spine. I had a little bit of disc degeneration in my lumbar spine but it was not significant enough to cause the symptoms I am having. Also, according to the hospital I do not have cervical stenosis. My cervical spine is fine. I have mild scoliosis on my thoracic spine but it's nothing major. Now, not only am I scared and sad, I'm also incredibly confused. I went to a local walk in clinic perviously and they must of took about 12 xrays of my spine. Sunnybrook took about 5 in total.

In a strange way I was happy they found something wrong, so it can be fixed. Now I feel like I'm back at square one. I was thinking of getting a third opinion but I'm scared about the amount of radiation I have exposed my body to. I also had a CT scan of my brain done. I went to my GP and she said she would get a MRI appointment booked for my brain and spine. That was on a Monday. I have yet to get a phone call. I was also suppose to get an appointment booked to see a orthopedic doctor and a neurosurgeon. My doctor still has not gotten them booked.

I still have the same symptoms. The fatigue and the twitching (especially) in my calves and palms of feet are out of control. My right calf seems a bit smaller than my left and I have weakness. The twitching has made it's way to my eyes now. My back is still hurts. My ears make a clicking sound when i tilt it to the left. My head is also really heavy. I'm in this alone and that's one of the reasons I'm here. I'm not really sure as to what I should do. I'm thinking of getting another blood and urine test done and probably changing doctors. I don't think I can possibly be more depressed.

Old 05-22-2011, 01:37 AM   #5
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Re: My spine.

Denise, I wouldn't be depressed at this point. Many people are born with scolosis and live without serious problems; as for DDD everyone will have it at some point (or at least 80% of us eventually have DDD). As for the difference in Xray results between the local clinic and the hospital, this is not unusual and most likely not cause for concern; ask for copies of the films any time you are having a repeat test (or having additional tests such as the MRI). That way you can have the films compared and explained to you, and you reduce your exposure to the radiology by not having to have the same xray done over again. My personal opinion, Local walk in clinics are fine for some minor have to remember though they treat patient after patient all in a short amount of time - the doctors are often overworked or short staffed (rushing and such). That said, many local walk in clinics own radiology equipment which is old and out dated - it's not uncommon for a local walk in clinic to miss a small fracture in someone...happens all the time people are seen in a local clinic, told they have a sprain; later when still in pain, they go to an ER ...guess what, they have a fracture.

My best advice, save your concerns for when you see a specialist.....maybe the ortho. Be sure to ask the ER for copies of your films for comparison; the ER can forward them to the ortho - all you have to do is ask them. You may want to get the films from the local clinic also.

As for having to have back surgery, you have many options before that, options which are noninvasive. If it gets to a point a specialist (not a PCP)says you need surgery, certainly have a second opinion. You'll definately want to have a spinal surgeon perform any surgery needed.

I think you have many choices other than ALS. You are 22, don't worry so much. As someone said, I think someone on this said posts, get a journal and start documenting your symptoms - how severe, when you had them, what you tried, etc. A journal is especially helpful when symptoms come and go or when new symptoms develop you can say when. Journals are also helpful when (and if) you see multiple doctors - who said when and what. A journal is also a great place to jot down your questions; then when you seeing a doctor you'll remember to get answers.

Good luck and I hope your back feels better

Old 05-30-2011, 10:23 PM   #6
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Re: My spine.

Denise, You might want to post your results on the Back Board. There are people there that can interpret word for word what your x-rays mean. Also, remember that x-rays only show bone. The best test of your spine would be the MRI with contrast dye because the MRI shows soft tissue,nerves,etc. And, they normally don't take an MRI of your entire spine either. Just the part that hurts. Hope this helps some...janiee

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