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Spinal Stenosis and Fibromyalgia

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Old 08-19-2005, 03:44 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 14
judith4d HB User
Spinal Stenosis and Fibromyalgia

I was diagnosed with fibro 3 weeks ago and with spinal stenosis of the lumbar area as well as bone spurs on my spinal column which I just found out about this week. Anyone have injections for these spinal issues? I'm scheduled for some but still need to talk with Dr's office to get details. We are waiting for o.k. from insurance. Do shots help with pain? Has anyone found them helpful enough to avoid surgery ? Anyone got both or all three of these issues. Guess I don't do anythng in a small way. !! Judy

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Old 08-20-2005, 06:55 AM   #2
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: New Berlin, Wisconsin, USA
Posts: 338
EmtShirl HB User
Smile Re: Spinal Stenosis and Fibromyalgia

judith ~

I suffer/ed from two of the three conditions with both cervical and lumbar. The one I don't have is FM. I have tried all kinds of injections. I had ESI's, Nerve blocks, and facet injections and I am sorry to say none of them helped me. Don't let that scare you because what doesn't work for one may work for another. In my case what helped was fusion surgeries. Right now I have had a total of 7 spine surgeries and I am feeling better then I have in a long time. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the other levels that show signs of trouble do not act up.

I am pretty sure most of us have to go through the steps which include injections before surgery is considered. Who knows it might help you. Keeping my fingers crossed for you.


1980- Transaxillary resection of 1st rib and division of band (left side)
1982- Diagnostic Laparoscopy
1985- Transaxillary excision of cervical rib (right side)
1991- Laser stapedectomy (right side)
1992- Fractional D&C
1992- Diagnostic Laparoscopy
1996- Lumbar hemilaminectomy
1999- Left knee arthoscopic surgery
2001- Laparoscopic assisted vaginal hysterectomy
2002- L5-S1 Microdiscectomy
2002- L4-L5, L5-S1 Anterior inter-body lumbar fusion with cages and my own bone from left hip for bone graft
2002- Neck problems Surgery??????
2002 DEC 21- C4-5, C5-C6 Anterior Cervical Corpectomy with Fusion and Internal Fixation (Bone from the bone bank)

Old 09-20-2005, 01:39 PM   #3
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 377
mabent HB Usermabent HB Usermabent HB Usermabent HB User
Re: Spinal Stenosis and Fibromyalgia

Hi - I have talked about this in a post to Marcia about spinal stenosis. I have had three injections in three months for this, and the third one worked really well. Sometimes it takes three for them to work. I agree with EmtShirl that it's a good idea to try everything before having surgery.

Old 09-20-2005, 08:08 PM   #4
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 1,692
lfoster21 HB User
Wink Re: Spinal Stenosis and Fibromyalgia

I have all three of the problems and then some. I did try the shots, unfortunately the longest they lasted was 4 wks. Deffinatly try everything before you decide on surgery. As it turned out, I did end up needing surgery. I have found out, that with the Fibro. not only are you in more pain than most w/ back problems...if you have surgery, you may recover a lot slower. That was my situation. And your Fibro. may get a lot worse, before you get better. The pain from the back keeps you awake and as you probably know, the less sleep you get...the worse the Fibro. pain. I had my Fibro. under control for the past 3 years...unless I over did it. Since the surgery, it has come back in full force. Mainly, becasue of the lack of deep sleep. Now, the neurologist is having a hard time distinguishing the pain from arthritis, fibro., spondy., sciatica or a combo. of any combo of those.

I truly hope you are able to find what works for you. If you can keep the fibro. under control, you are that much more likely to be able to control the back problems.

You are in my thoughts and prayers,


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Old 09-21-2005, 08:44 AM   #5
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,291
Quietcook HB UserQuietcook HB User
Re: Spinal Stenosis and Fibromyalgia


Sorry you have joined those of us with so many problems, especially the back and Fibro. You are doing good by asking and becoming informed because you will be your own best advocate.

What I can tell you is that I did the injections and got so little relief for myself that it was not worth it for me. But, just as it is with any other medicine, it may work great for some and even have no effect or even adverse reactions for someone else.

Don't know who you have as a primary doc, but hopefully you can get them to work closely with the doctor treating your back. From here, there are two points I wish to make and other readers probably get tired of me saying this, but especially with Fibro, I urge you to have a spine specialist treating your back problems and not just a general ortho or general neuro. If you are not familiar with the difference, the two more important points to check when looking at their credentials and licensing is that they have completed a spine fellowship (better if a two year fellowship) and they truly specialize and devote their actual practice to the spine thereby are not doing brain surgery if neuro and are not doing knees and shoulders, etc if ortho.

The reason I stress this is that only a true spine specialist is going to be up on the latest and greatest techniques AND already experienced iin the procedures as they are the ones the companies are going to cater to and train first. These specialists devote their time to the one, very complicated area of our body instead of spending maybe 15-25% of their time on it like a general ortho or neuro might do. Does it make a big difference? Definitely!

Why have your doc work with the spine doc? With Fibro, my Osteopath is my primary care provider and by his willingness & my spine specialists willingness to keep each other informed, along with my own attempts to make sure that my Osteopath knows where I am regarding treatments, the Osteopath has made adjustments in my other meds in preparation for surgery and injections and this has made things a LOT easier for me in that I've not experienced any significant side effects to make the Fibro worse, the asthma worse, the migraines, etc. For instance, the spine specialist being aware of my conditions may have been even more alert and spotted several areas of fluid seepage that he patched and considerably reduced my migraines, and was willing to do further films when they increased again, confirming all was okay and that the new increase in migraines was medicine related. He made changes and worked with the migraine doc so that things were brought back under control in no time.

So, back to the injections, they are worth trying, as they do work for some individuals and you won't know if they will help you unless you do them. But just be aware of how many you get. You do want to limit the amount of steroids you get, with no more than 3 injections within a 12 month period, so that doesn't mean just spinal injections. Keep track, because with Fibro, if you've had shoulder or other problems, you may have had injections within the last 12 months. Steroids in excess are a major problem creator.

For instance, not only do I have the Fibro, the back, heart, etc health problems, but as a chronic asthmatic, had to have prednisone in order to live. In the high doses that was required to control the asthma, there has been a lot of damage to the vertebrae from medication. Between that, hard work and a wreck which broke a prior spine fusion, I have had 8 spine surgeries. The last was a 10 level fusion in Dec including yet again addressing the stenosis along with all the other conditions in my spine, BUT because of the right doc's working so well together, adjustments were made to meds on a frequent basis, as my Ostepath insisted on seeing me right after I came home from the hospital, and every 4-6 weeks until now it is every 3 months, and I was able to rebound quickly and strongly. Thankfully, even with 10 levels fused I was able to return to a lot of activity at 3 months and this summer have been able to do a lot of yard work and repairs on the house. Oh, I'm probably older than you; I'm a 59 year old female and still going strong. So, if I can rebound so well against the odds, work with your docs and get them to work together to ensure you get the best techniques for your condition and body and not just what a general ortho or neuro is limited to doing, and may you have many good pain free days and years ahead.

Best wishes.

Last edited by Quietcook; 09-21-2005 at 08:47 AM.

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