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"Twisted Vertebrae?" Anyone else have this, or know anything about it?

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Old 03-25-2008, 08:31 AM   #1
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"Twisted Vertebrae?" Anyone else have this, or know anything about it?

Hello everyone! Although this is my first posting, I have been reading this board for several months now...and would like to say thank you to everyone who has written in. I had been waiting for the FDA to approve multi-level disc replacement surgery, but after spending time on this site, along with my worsening condition , I have given up on that idea, and I've been seeing the doctors at a local spine institute.
For about 20 years, I've occasionally had disc ruptures that resulted in a "twisted vertebrae", where L-5 would shift, and then get hung up at an angle. I'd be in intense pain until it would get back into it's proper place. I had a laminectomy (L-5 S-1) in 1992, and the twisting stopped, although I began to rupture L-2 soon after. I finally had a fusion (L-4 L-5) in 2000. About 18 months after the fusion, I woke up with L-5 again twisted. After several years of ruptures, I finally had two disco-grams done, and they determined that the upper part of the fusion had failed.
I was told my best option would be to wait until the FDA approved the multi disc replacements, and also told that if I had any other kind of fusion done, that I would be unable to much of anything, and would be on permanent disability. This was 4 years ago, and I have averaged two incidents a year, along with bouts of stenosis and other arthritis symptoms (My first rupture was when I was 17, I'm now 52)
Last September I had an incident of L-5 twisting, and again last month...and it feels as if it has been out of position for the last 6 months. I've recently had several x-rays (standing and bending) a CAT scan and an MRI done for the spine institute, and there is a large bulge in L-3 and a tear in L-2...and the doctors are of the opinion that my twisting is actually referred pain from these upper discs. The x-ray they took clearly show that I'm "bent", and the doctor even commented on this. Since I've had the twisting for over 2 decades, and I've had people even feel my back when it's happened, and they can feel the displacement...I'm very wary of following through with another fusion until I have a better answer about this bone movement.
I'm now in the worst pain yet, and unable to work. My job is computer related, and I have a lot of freedom as far as positions and movement is concerned. I'm taking 20mg of Oxycontin twice a day, and if I'm immobile, it takes about half of the pain way. If I do any walking or other movement, it's like I'm not taking anything at all. I have another appointment at the spine institute in two weeks, and they may decide on a disco-gram or other tests.
Has anyone else had this "twisting" of vertebrae? And if so, is there a medical term for it??

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Old 03-25-2008, 02:46 PM   #2
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Re: "Twisted Vertebrae?" Anyone else have this, or know anything about it?

Hi Sunset, and welcome to our little "back"-wards world.

I do not have this and have never heard of it before, but I wanted to let you know that we do commiserate with your pain. There are lots of us here, and this is a very encouraging and supportive group of folks. We have a variety of back issues, but back pain is back pain and we all understand that!

I hope someone will post who's experienced exactly what you're going through, but even if not, please know that we're all behind you and wish you the best.

Take care,

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