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Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

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Old 12-08-2006, 07:11 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Rural NH, USA
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Suzy-Q HB User
Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

Hello To One and All -
You'd think I'd know better than to have to ask this but - anyone have deep joint aches in the knees as part of disc or spondy pain? I am very used to shooting pain in my knees. I have been having a great deal of sciatic pain from my bum and into the outside of my knees. I know that pain too well. But for some time now I have had a recurrent but intermittent pain deep in the joint. It is not a sharp pain, not a burning, and not even a lasting pain. This is a deep ache that lasts for 2 seconds but often repeats many times before subsiding. I would call it a sickening pain. So far as I know, I have nothing wrong with my knees and the joints move freely.
I seem to have bouts of it and then it passes for a few days. Funny thing is that I am now having strange and similar aches in the muscles in my calves and shins. Again, it isn't very terrible but something new and distinct from my usual repetoire! Just wondering if I can get some idea that it isn't unusual. Thanks - Suzy-Q

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Old 12-09-2006, 01:09 PM   #2
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: CA
Posts: 54
sbbo97 HB User
Re: Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

Hi SuzyQ,

Sorry - I have no explanation for you. I'm experiencing the same thing. Mine has now progressed down into my ankle & across the top of my foot where the ankle joint is.

Have you experienced any sensation of coldness or a numby/fat feeling in your calves in addition to the pain? I'm getting that too.

This is frustrating and so far you are the only other person I've seen mention this. I have problems at L5/S1 also... small central disc protrusion.

I hope you find some answers, if you do find out anything, can you post about it? I've mentioned it to my Dr. and he just kinda looked at me like: "um..... yeah.... sure"


Old 12-09-2006, 02:30 PM   #3
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Berryville, Virginia
Posts: 2,381
Justoneofus HB User
Re: Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

Hey Suz! Yes to your question. I have no problems with my knees at all, and after the fusion, oh maybe week 4, I started getting achey pains in my knees. At times it was as though it was just behind my caps, then at times into the joint itself. They came and went. They subsided mostly now, but it returned a few times last week. None since. Weird eh? I think it's just our nerves misfiring is all. I have had muscle issues in my calves, shins and ankles since the surgery. It comes and goes. For me, the worst is evenings before bed, and then of course.. in bed.

Have you weened yourself of some of your meds lately? I think you said you were thinking on it. Have any of these symptoms been pretty close to your stopping any meds? Any correlation in timing?

I have been stubborn with meds. The only things I take as needed is vicodin and skelaxin. I have a script for cymbalta but have yet to fill it. I am currently doing alright and not miserable, so I see no need to fill it unless I get miserable again, which I hope I dont.

Leave it to my warped mind. I was just thinking if someone got on our last nerves.. then there would be no more nerves to act up then! hahaha! Yah, I know.. keep my day job!

"believe in the beauty of your dreams"- E. Roosevelt

L5/S1 bulging @ 18, now 46; still there (but no pain)
Fusion at L4/L5 Apr -2006
Solidly Fused Nov-2006
A Success, but still improving!

Old 12-09-2006, 02:30 PM   #4
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: KC, MO
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yvette777 HB User
Re: Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

I have those to, and the pain across the foot and side of ankle, sometimes bottom side of calf sometimes top, sometimes top of thigh, sometimes bottom. Sometimes burning, or tingling, or dull ache, or bad knife like.

I think I am screwed lol. Mine is L5-S1 to. I don't know if you can post websites on here or not as I would like to show you a site where the doctor answers questions. It was very insightful.

Old 12-09-2006, 02:40 PM   #5
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yvette777 HB User
Re: Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

Well I talked to Dr. Joshua where you can ask him a question. He is a neurosurgeon. I can't post his site here I think its against the rules. He went into depth of the difference in noniceptical pain and neurpathic pain, god I hope I spelled those right. I told him what my symptoms are and what my MRI said and he went into alot of detail. My disc problem is L5-S1 and I have spurs and bulge to. From what I got out of it, the S1 can be causing certain pains, the spur another set. Also, he was telling the difference in what can help by surgery and what can not. He said noniceptical pain usually moves around and that can be helped by surgery. But the other one neuropathic pain is nerve damage that usually won't be helped and will actually make it worse. He said that nerve damage can be helped by certain types of meds. He went into great detail, but I have a hard time relaying it here. He explained the symptoms and differences and said, diagnosing that is first.

I would search the two different pain's and see if you can understand better. If I could just post the site it would be easier sorry.

Old 12-09-2006, 06:23 PM   #6
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Suzy-Q HB User
Re: Strange Joint Aches- Part of the Same Old Pain?

Gosh, I'm sorry for you all but it is a relief to know I am in good company! Right now the aches are mostly in the front of my knees - just as Tammy described-sort of behind the knee cap. What a hoot this back pain is, eh?
Well, I will be having a Ct scan and an xray next week along with a visit to my neurosurgeon. Maybe we'll get some answers then. From the start, I have had a centrally located protrusion on L5-S1. No one looking at my scans has felt it was a significant source of pain for me. Nothing has been done to this disc in either of my surgeries. I don't know what to think. We, of course, attributed all of my pain to the failed fusion at L4-5. Makes me wonder now if we overlooked something. Then again, if I am not fusing this time I don't have to look very far for an explanation.
But this knee stuff is quite new. It only started maybe 6-7 weeks ago. Tammy, I have titered down on the Cymbalta to about 15 mg/day from 60. Could this be related? I think so. Cymbalta is reputed to have strong pain relieving qualities for exactly our kind of issues - musculoskeletal stuff. I can say that the past few weeks have been harder for me and I have a resurgence in sciatic pain and so on. Once I am done with the Cymbalta, it will leave me with just Neurontin, Toprol (beta blocker), Simvastatin (cholesterol), and vicodan. I take the vicodan PRN right now. I can usually hold off until bedtime but almost always have to take one at bedtime to sleep.
I think you are wise to be conservative Tammy. I am beginning to think we are all more sensitive to these meds than our docs want to admit. They all have side effects and the interactions are considerable. I miss Bextra and Celebrex every day. But they both just tore up my intestines so I had to give them up. Vertigo is my latest side effect (I hope it is a med effect anyway) and not any fun at all. And on it goes. I need pain relief like anyone else so I am very glad I seem to tolerate a few narcotics pretty well. But my motto now is 'less is more'.
Sbbo - I have not had the type of sensation you describe in my calves - coldness or numbness. I mostly notice the aches in my calves and all over my lower legs once I lie down in bed. It isn't so great a pain that it distracts me at other times, I'm guessing. I find I often tell docs of pain or sensations and they seem to have no response at all. At least my neuro (just a super person along with being an attentive doctor) always listens and tells me that though it isn't something that 'adds up' for him, nothing much would surprise him and a bad back can create a host of pain and symptoms.
Thanks for the info, Yvette. I'll do the research. I really should not get too panicy but I think I've become very focused on pain. I guess I was dreading that this could be something new starting up. You have all helped to calm me down and I thank you for it.
Just as an update Tammy - I am hanging in there. I am being really careful not to bend and especially not to lift too much. I did both about 6-7 weeks ago and it kicked off a misery episode I am just starting to come down from. And what I lifted wasn't a rock but a plastic box with some decos in it. I should be able to safely lift that amount but I can't and I need to accept that and leave such things alone. I have been faithful with all of my PT but I don't seem to make any progress. My pain levels are real high. That is, I always seem to stay at about a 2-5 pain level. I am rarely pain free but I am rarely in great pain. To get to a low pain level I'd have to lie down and rest a lot more or take more meds. Plain and simple.
Well, I've written a book. I do hope you are enjoying the holidays as best you can. Take good care - Suzy-Q

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