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Nerve Pain

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Old 01-29-2012, 06:48 AM   #1
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Nerve Pain


Was hoping that someone in here is having similar issues and can offer me some suggestions.

I have been suffering from back pain since 04. I have had numerous work up done yet no doctor can seem to find what is causing my excruiating pain. It does show problems in the L4/L5 region. My low back will be sore during the day time but get horrific pain at night while sleeping so my best guess is its pressing on a nerve. I have had two injections done this past year but to no avail. My doc at the time wanted to burn the nerve but he couldn't really define which nerve it was, so didn't want to go that route. My pain starts out in my right knee and will travel down to either my foot or shoot up to my hip and if its really intense will transfer the pain the the left knee. Or it will start out in my right hip and travel down to my knee. I'm thinking of 86ing my current doctor and going to see a neurologist since I believe it is nerve related. I'm already in physical therapy which isn't helping. I'm just so frustrated with all of this not being able to sleep at night. Pain just doesn't appear out of no where, it has to be coming from somewhere!

Thank you!

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Old 01-30-2012, 12:21 AM   #2
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Re: Nerve Pain

Wow! Sorry to hear of your misery. I wish I could offer you some advice but your symptoms are fairly different than mine.
I am up right now due to being in significant pain and unable to sleep. I have ruptured at L4-5 twice now and had 2 microdiscetomies. I am still having fairly severe nerve pain in my right leg, but mine runs from my lower back all the way down my entire leg pretty much to my toes. Your pain pattern is quite different so I wouldn't know what to suggest might be causing that. Have you had an MRI?
I wish you the best in determining the cause and finding a workable solution. I have been in search of a solution for almost 17 months now and am really no closer than I was back then. Only difference is now, I am a year out from my second surgery, so I can seek out other Doctor's opinions on my own whereas before no one would touch me because I was within that year's surgical window, so I was technically still under 'that' surgeon's care.
Best of Luck finding a diagnosis and treatment. I'll be curious to hear what it is. Take care.

Old 01-30-2012, 08:34 AM   #3
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Re: Nerve Pain

You may be having some degenerative issues with a facet joint. That is a common pain generator when one's pain is worse overnight while sleeping and gradually improves as the day goes on.

A neurologist is trained to diagnose diseases of the nerves such as MS and Parkinsons, deal with stroke and run tests pertaining to the nerves, but they are not particularly skillful at diagnosing a problem in the back or neck. For that you are better off seeing a spinal specialist, either an orthopedic spine surgeon or a neurosurgeon who limit their practice to issues of the back and neck, or a physiatrist.

While it is common to have nerve pain originating in the spine and radiating out to a limb or another part of the body, it is unusual to have it begin at the knee. Usually it runs down the buttock and thigh stopping at the knee or going on down the leg to the ankle or foot. Nerve pain runs out from the spine. It does not travel from a limb up into the spine.

If you have a disc issue at L4-L5 or anything else that affects the spinal nerves at that segment, the path of pain usually, in most people, runs down the side of the leg, over the kneecap, down the top of the calf and into the big toe for the L4 and the three middle toes for the L5 nerve. You can look at a "dermatome map" to see the paths various nerves take.

For an accurate diagnosis, I would suggest you see a spine specialist. Then hopefully, you will learn what is wrong and will come out with a plan for treatment. Nerve pain is a symptom of nerve irritation or compression.

I hope you can get some relief soon. You might want to try one of the "nerve" medications for the Lyrica, neurontin, gabapentin....

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