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    Old 06-03-2004, 05:11 PM   #1
    Glady
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    severe lower back pain and leg pain

    hi, i am new to this board. My name is Gianna. I have been having lower back pain for 3 months and now the pain escalates to my hip and down my right leg and my arms get numb and tingly.I have been seeing dr.s for this problem. I have had xrays, ct skan and an MRI, they say i have a couple of herniated disc. I am on alot of pain medication, I have been to therapy and have taken every medication they have given. I go tomorrow to see the orthopedic dr. to get results of my lumbar MRI, nothing seems to be making me better. I can't take the pain anymore and i am starting to feel depressed. I am hoping someone can help me and give me advice through their own experience.

    Gianna

    Last edited by Glady; 06-03-2004 at 10:41 PM.

     
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    Old 06-03-2004, 05:54 PM   #2
    TAZMZN
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    Arrow Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Thats to bad you only what women to reply! I had a few sugestions! I hope by saying you only want womens views is because you feel the womans body reacts different then men. If it is becuase you don't like men I don't see you getting help here!

    However, I wish you the best!

    A back is a back male or female!!!

    Take care,

    Taz all male

     
    Old 06-03-2004, 09:29 PM   #3
    lori j
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    What type of PT did you have? I had PT McKenzie type for a herniated disc in my back 5 years ago & have not had to have surgery. I was in a 10+ pain then & now I have no pain from it at all. My leg hurt to my knee, it burned like the nerve was on fire all the time, 24/7, no pain meds touched it.
    I am now, 5 years later back in therapy for my hip, which gives me bad lower back pain, due to my own fault, was lifting bags of soil & pea gravel working in the yard, knowing I should not do it. Last week at this time I could not sit at the comptuer due to the horrible pain in my lower back & leg. I had PT last Friday & tues & today & the pain is gone, I due get a bit sore if I sit here too long, but nothing like it was a week ago.
    Some people can be helped with PT, and there are others that nothing helps but surgery. Explore every option before surgery. Many have success stories from surgery, but there are many who also have the same pain a few months or a year later after surgery.

    I don't know why you only want a womans opinion. it was actually a man on another support board that 5 years ago talked me into trying Mckenzie PT and I thank him everyday of my life since then.

    Let us know what the orthopedic dr. says.

    Last edited by lori j; 06-03-2004 at 09:30 PM.

     
    Old 06-03-2004, 10:34 PM   #4
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Sorry for the offense, it is not because i don't like men, i just feel more comfortable talking to a woman.

     
    Old 06-03-2004, 11:00 PM   #5
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Lori, thank you for answering me back. I have had back problems in the past, nothing that a little motrin wouldn't take care of. I am a waitress for 17 years, i imagine it has taken a tole on me. About 3 months ago i was working and the pain came on and didn't go away, i went to the emergency room and it has been a roller coaster ever since, at first they said it would go away in 2-3 weeks, gave me motrin and flexiril, it didn't even touch the pain, i returned back to my dr. and they gave me naproxan and another muscle relaxer and that didn't work. I went back and forth to the dr. and emergency room for about 6 weeks and then they put me on vicodein and valium and that helped alot and then they started ordering test, x-rays, ct and mri, since then i have been getting progressively worse and they have changed my medicine to norco 10 and i take it regulary or i can not do anything, the pain gets so bad, it starts in my back, goes into my hip and down my leg and i get this burning sensation in my lower tail bone, it is horrible and everything is such a long process with these dr.s, they are always telling me something different and when i call to tell them the pain is worse and the numbness is worse, they always tell me to go to the emergency room, they just give me a shot of pain med and it makes me throw up and they tell me to see orthopedics. I started PT about the second month of pain, it was just stretching exercises and some electro shock treatment to numb the area, but evertime i left therapy, the pain was worse and one time during pt i started having muscle spasm, so orthopedics stopped my PT and told me not to go until they find out my problem, well i wound up in the emergency room last week and they told me i had a herniated disc in C5 and C6, that was from my cervical MRI, i really don't understand alot about this, the dr.s haven't been real specific about things and they still haven't given me the results for my lumbar MRI, i will know more tomorrow. I cant sit very long either or stand or lay down for long periods of time, it just hurts all the time and i am really not trusting towards the dr.s, because it has been 3 months and they have not done much for me, but pain medicate me. I not real familiar with anykind of surgery or other treatment, i am a little scared, but maybe you can tell me more about your PT.

     
    Old 06-03-2004, 11:03 PM   #6
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Lori, what kind of pain meds did you take, cause my pain meds do not take the burning away at all, what other options are their besides surgery???

     
    Old 06-03-2004, 11:05 PM   #7
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    lori, what kind of pain meds did you take, cause none of my pain meds gets rid of the burning at all, what other options are there besides surgery????

     
    Old 06-04-2004, 12:29 AM   #8
    Fiona_Jo
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    [QUOTE=Glady]hi, i am new to this board. My name is Gianna. I have been having lower back pain for 3 months and now the pain escalates to my hip and down my right leg and my arms get numb and tingly.I have been seeing dr.s for this problem. I have had xrays, ct skan and an MRI, they say i have a couple of herniated disc. I am on alot of pain medication, I have been to therapy and have taken every medication they have given. I go tomorrow to see the orthopedic dr. to get results of my lumbar MRI, nothing seems to be making me better. I can't take the pain anymore and i am starting to feel depressed. I am hoping someone can help me and give me advice through their own experience.

    Gianna[/QUOTE]

    Gianna,
    I'm sorry about all the pain you are in and believe me I can relate to how depressing it can be when there feels like there is no end in sight. I have had many of the symptoms you describe, and completely relate to what you're going through.

    I had a microdiscectomy in 1999 for a large herniated disc at the L4/L5 Level. It was causing severe compression which caused tremendous pain and difficulty even walking .. sometimes I would feel like I would screem just taking a step. In addition, I had severe muscle spasms and pain in the lower back. Fortunately, my Doctor worked very swiftly, and scheduled the surgery when it was evident of the nerve compression which could have easily led to permanent nerve damage. The microdiscectomy was very successful and I left the hospital walking better than I had in the months prior and not needing pain medication anymore. It was amazing.

    I was painfree until January of this year, and by the time I got into see my GP I could barely walk. Xrays revealed DDD and a collapsed disc. Unfortunately, this time around things didn't move as swiftly as before; it seemed like my insurance was dragging it's heals on every test I needed run from the MRI to the EMG (nerve study). It's ironic because months later the EMG was finally approved and once it was completed it revealed nerve compression so severe that my Surgeon felt an immediate fusion procedure was necessary. Here I suffered for so long waiting for approvals and really feeling like I was getting the runaround and it turns out surgery had to be immediate. On May 25, I had the procedure and stayed in the hospital until May 28. I am already noticing strength returning to my leg. Though I am definitely still early in my recovery; I can't help but feel I did the right thing.

    I am sorry if my response is so long; but I just wanted to share that I undersstand how frustrating the waiting can be --- especially when you're suffering, it feels like your life is on hold (at least that is how I have felt).

    Please let us know what you find out tomorrow, and keep us posted on how you are doing. You are in my thoughts.

    Jo

     
    Old 06-04-2004, 04:19 PM   #9
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    jo,
    I had a horrible experience today with orthopedics, first ** all this dr. had never seen me before, he did a quick exam, said he read my mri and told me i had herniated disc in cervical and lumbar, he said ***re was no surgery or pill to fix me, that i needed to go back to my primary care and i needed to get stronger. I asked him why i was in so much pain and why it went into my hip and down my leg, he said "i don't know, i am a surqeon" he went on to say nothing that would answer my questions, his reply to everything was "i don't know" and ***re was nothing he could do for me, i just broke out crying, *** man showed no sympathy, i walked out ** ***re so upset and i feel like i am at square one, i don't believe anything he had said, which wasn't much, i waited almost 3 months for this appointment and results, my insurance company took forever and i keep telling everyone how much pain i am in and how my lower tail bone burns and i get nothing, except to return back to my primary doctor, where i first started from. I know something is definetely not right. I just don't know where to go from here, i have been depressed all afternoon and i have to work tomorrow and i know i will return home in great pain. who should i see now and what do i do??????

     
    Old 06-04-2004, 04:21 PM   #10
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    jo, thank you so much for replying and being concerned.

    gianna

     
    Old 06-04-2004, 06:20 PM   #11
    Fiona_Jo
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    Angry Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    [QUOTE=Glady]jo,
    I had a horrible experience today with orthopedics, first ** all this dr. had never seen me before, he did a quick exam, said he read my mri and told me i had herniated disc in cervical and lumbar, he said ***re was no surgery or pill to fix me, that i needed to go back to my primary care and i needed to get stronger. I asked him why i was in so much pain and why it went into my hip and down my leg, he said "i don't know, i am a surqeon" he went on to say nothing that would answer my questions, his reply to everything was "i don't know" and ***re was nothing he could do for me, i just broke out crying, *** man showed no sympathy, i walked out ** ***re so upset and i feel like i am at square one, i don't believe anything he had said, which wasn't much, i waited almost 3 months for this appointment and results, my insurance company took forever and i keep telling everyone how much pain i am in and how my lower tail bone burns and i get nothing, except to return back to my primary doctor, where i first started from. I know something is definetely not right. I just don't know where to go from here, i have been depressed all afternoon and i have to work tomorrow and i know i will return home in great pain. who should i see now and what do i do??????[/QUOTE]

    Gianna:
    I'm sorry about your experience today, that is horrible and frankly it makes me very upset that this Doctor you saw would be so cold and uncaring. I think at this point you need to call your Primary Phy. and give a detailed account of what happened today and let them know you need to be referred to a spinal specialist immediately. It does not sound like this particular Dr. you saw today specializes in injuries of the spine or he wouldn't have acted like he had no idea what to do. My goodness, you went to him for a treatment plan; not a response that leaves you feeling hopeless.

    There are many excellent spinal specialists out there; so I know there is hope that you will find the right one for you that will really listen to you and provide the necessary treatment. Believe me I can relate to how you are feeling; I have an excellent Doctor; yet I was feeling like I was getting the around not from him; but from my insurance carrier; who seemed to drag their heels on approving every necessary test. It got to the point where I felt like I was filing more grievances with my insurance carrier about delays with test referrals than anything else. But, it paid off; because it seemed like everytime I sent a grievance to my insurance; I would find out the test I was needing was approved the next day. (Most carriers have forms right online for you to file a complaint.)

    At this point I would recommend that you call your Primary and file a report with your insurance carrier about what occurred today. All I can figure is you were sent to the wrong type of orthopedic specialist, who doesn't specialize in issues of the spine. Explain to your carrier that that you have herniated disc and be very detailed about the symptoms that are occurring and that you need to see a Spinal Specialist ASAP.

    I really feel that the right Doctor for you is out there. I'm just so sorry you have to go through so much to find him or her. I'm sure many others on this board will be able to provide you with input as well.

    There is a lot of support here, so please know we will be here for you. Please keep me posted.
    Jo

     
    Old 06-04-2004, 10:53 PM   #12
    lori j
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    I must have the greatest PT availiable in my area. They work with me on every pain I mention. They have been able to keep me from surgery for a herniated disc for 5 years. In fact, the past 5 years I've been fine til I injured the hip area, which is the same area as you would feel sciatica pain, way down low, a burning & down the leg. My disc pain (5 years ago) was so bad, not one pain pill or injections touched the pain, I just couldn't imagine going on like that. I never slept til i was so exhausted & then I'd wake up with the same pain.
    The therapists used McKenzie method for my disc, it took 3 months but for 5 years I've been fine now. The hip thing I did to myself, being over zealous in the yard work.
    My first appointment with them was last friday, I've seen them 3 times this week & the burning is completely gone from the hip area.
    They adjust my spine, but not with popping & cracking like a chiropractor, they know where to work on it, nothing they do hurts me, they always say that I should not be leaving my appointment with pain & if I am, then they want to know about it. I cannot do the press ups for the disc right now as they say they compress the lower hip area, so thru manipulation they simulate the press ups for me. When i get there they put me on heat to relax my back, then the PT works on my back, then I do a series of 3 mild exercises to strengthen the hip area muscles. Then they do ice & stim on my back. No matter what I tell them, they fix it. I was doing the one exercise wrong at home & felt something pull in the soft tissue above my right hip, they have worked on that & adjusted my exercises so I won't hurt anything. They are just so knowledgable, I cannot believe how good they are..
    What questions do you want answered about my PT. If I have not covered them, feel free to ask me.
    IMO, it's hard to believe with all the tests you've had that they cannot come to a diagnosis of what is wrong.
    All the pain meds & injections will not cure what is causing your pain, they need a paln of action to remedy what is causing the pain. Ask your doc about different PT, try everything before surgery. I know the pain is horrible & some people rush to surgery just to get out of the pain, but many do not even need surgery & also some say they have the same pain months or years after the surgery.
    Don't get me wrong, there are some people who for them, surgery is the only answer, but I tried other options & surgery would have been my very last!
    Let me know if I can help more.

     
    Old 06-05-2004, 08:41 PM   #13
    Glady
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Lori,
    what is the McKenzie therapy? I don't know what that is. I went to therapy 4 times and each time i left, i was in more pain and i told the therapist and they said "they don't know why i would be in more pain, so the orthopedics told me to stop my therapy until they found out what was wrong with me. I don't understand i am confused. I feel so bad for you cause you have been going through this for 5 years and for me it's only been 3 months. Take it easy on your hip.

     
    Old 06-06-2004, 12:48 AM   #14
    lori j
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Gianna, do a search for McKenzie on the internet, there is a lot of info about it & it will explain it better than I can. My PT's said if I leave there after an appointment in pain, then they are doing something wrong. They said when I leave each time I should feel better, not worse. They have had to adjust many of the exercises when I told them one would hurt, they are excellent PT's that I go to. My doc was writing up my prescription for therapy for the hospital & I said NO WAY, I want to go back to the ones where I went 5 years ago. they are the ones who saved me from surgery.

     
    Old 06-06-2004, 05:04 AM   #15
    jenin
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    Re: severe lower back pain and leg pain

    Glady,
    I feel with you. I have a herniated disk in lower lumbar, I had 2 injections, doing regular excercises, and lots of ice packs. This has been going on for 4 months. I was in extreme pain like a 10, now my pain is between 2 and 3. I kept getting worse before I got better. PT actually was worse for me. What I did was do my excercises on my own, at my own pace, and then I started to improve. This took weeks. I recemmend you get PPO insurace, flexible insurace where you don't need approval from your PCP. I had HMO for a while, now I switched and am much happier. I pay more, but being without pain is priceless for me. I have 2 children and I have to be healthy for them (and of course the spouse). SO, cut something out from your monthly expenses to compensate for the increase in insurance premiums for flexible inurance. Look for a excellent ortho. My doctor is in the top ten doctors in my area.

     
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