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Extra Vertebrae/L6

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Old 08-17-2004, 10:48 AM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 58
sambo99 HB User
Wink Extra Vertebrae/L6

Has anyone been diagnosed with this extra vertebrae? Had surgery on L5 S1 3.5 months ago and have been treating that disk for over a year now to only find out I have this extra vertebrae that may be the pain generator, along with sacrialic pain....This new doc doesn't think L5 S1 is causing he pain! Very frustrating...Still in pain after all of this and only 30% functional! How I could see 8 different spine gurus to just find this out, I'm not sure....I'm becoming quite skeptical...
Has anyone had this kind of explaination?
Done accupuncture, PT, exercising, chiro, electrical stem at home 3/day, icing, antiinflammatories, pain meds, steroid injections.....
So glad to find this board....Appreciate any words of wisdom...
Thanks a ton in advance!

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Old 08-17-2004, 03:36 PM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Texas
Posts: 68
texjoann HB User
Re: Extra Vertebrae/L6

I was diagnosed with this condition as well. It's official name is Berotlotti's Syndrome, you can look it up on a search engine.
I had this at birth evidently, (the bone cannot decide whether to be L5 or S1, in the womb) and I never had any problems, not a single backache in my life until I slipped in grease at work and went down from side to side splits. I dealt with workers comp for three years and finally got tired of being given pain pills and epidural steroid injections and it never stopped the pain. Since my husband is retired military I went to the base Dr and told them what problems I had and within a week they scheduled me for surgery.
I had surgery in April, I had a choice of a fusion (which limits motion) or removal of some of the bone. They made a tiny incision and put at ube in and then the cutting tools. After they removed part of that bone I have had no more pain. The only complication I had was the sciatic nerve that was pressed on for the 3 years started to wake up and the burning was near intolerable. They put numbing medicine in my leg and foot to stop the burning but I still had sciatic nerve pain so I was sent me to pain medicine, where they gave me methadone, which killed the pain. They then did one more epidural steroid, which has gotten rid of most of the lingering pain. Now I just have to get off the pain meds.
I would highly suggest to ask about this surgery, it did wonders for me. After being in constant pain for three years, the pain was gone as soon as I woke up form surgery. I went in at 4 a.m. and was home by noon. I could have stayed all night in the hospital, but once I got to the room, I got up and walked around, and they said as soon as I went to the bathroom I could go home. The sciatic pain didn't set in for a week and in between I was totally pain free.
Hope this helps. I have someother posts on here you can look up that chronicles my experience.

Old 08-20-2004, 09:55 AM   #3
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 58
sambo99 HB User
Re: Extra Vertebrae/L6

Thank you, thank you. I appreciate all the info...I just went to my original doctor who did my microdisectomy and he denies that I have this. I am so confused now. How can the pain mgmt/anesthisiologist say I have an L6 and my orthopedic surgeon say I don't? Isn't it pretty easy to see this on an MRI/xray?
bulged disk L5 S1 microdisectomy May 2004

Old 08-22-2004, 03:25 PM   #4
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Texas
Posts: 68
texjoann HB User
Re: Extra Vertebrae/L6

Yes it is. In fact my Dr showed me on the Xray. Also I had a bone scan, that shows up the pain areas. It evidently lights up on the film, because when I had mine done they did my whole body, and I had been having pain in my thumb after I jammed it and I asked them if anything showed up and they showed me. For my thumb I had to use a brace and wear it every day for two weeks, without taking it off for the pain to stop. Believe me when you see the actual films it makes you realize where your pain is.

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