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Bulging Disc L5 / S1 - referred Leg Pain. Sciatic nerve pressure.
I have extreme referred leg Pain - caused by assumed sciatic nerve pressure from bulge from diagnosed minor Bulging L5 / S1 disc. Signs of canal stynosis - as I have pins and needles in my left foot and calf muscle consistantly. I get severe Glutenal cramping from walking so awkwardly to lessen the impact as sitting and walking seems to aggravate sciatic nerve due to added pressure on the disc. Lying down relieves leg pain. Acupuncture and physio can not relieve my pain more than temporaraly. Physio has given me exercises and also tape strapping to keep me standing straight, not crouching. I have had a few spine stretching treatments with a machine - pulling lower back down whilst strapped to a table. Dry needling, Hydro therapy, Massage and looking at remedial massage currently. You name it - I feel like I've done it. I've got no known allergies to any other medications or supplements ever prescribed or suggested.
I took magnesium yesterday as suggested for muscle cramping. This only caused me a massive headache, dizzyness, extreme stomach cramps that then turned to nausea and vomiting. I guess magnesium just didn't agree with me.
Due to having a bulging disc, all the doctors I go to seem to laugh when I say i'll do anything to take the pain away. They tell me to learn to live with it and write me another script for one of many pain killers Endep 25, Indocid 100mg, Tramadol 100mg, valpam 5mg... nothing is effective any more and I can't help but feel so depressed that after 4 months of dealing with this excrusiating pain at 20 years old - the rest of my life is going to be unbearable.
I keep getting told by practically everybody that surgery is not the answer. The hospital has put me on a waiting list for a consultation with an orthapedic surgeon and after all the attempts in the worlds to get an earlier appointment I've only got to wait another month - but after that there will be many more waiting lists to look forward to, who knows... what surgery is considered in these cases.
Can you suggest anything that will take my pain away? I don't want to be addicted to pain killers and I'm scared it's getting worse not better, or even bearable.
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Avatar universal
Sorry you are in pain. I hope it gets better.
          I have several bulging discs and DDD, mine has been going on for about 3 yrs. It may get better. I had one pain in my leg it went away after 6mos.  I sleep with 2 pillows between my legs at nite on my left side, the only comfort position. Its possible you are irriating it sleeping at nite.  

I went to a Ortho Dr. he said I dont need surgery, just shots in spine.
and I have several things wrong. So I would be surprised is surgery is your answer.  

Ask you doctor for some vicodin 750.  I will pray you get better with time,
I have been told bulging disc resolve after awhile.
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www.messageboard.spine-health.com  This site is very helpful in answering questions & support. www.spine-Health.com (Messageboards)
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I too have the bulging disc in the L5/S1 region. My bulging disc is 4mm. Been dealing with this since July07.  I have had epidural shots (which did not work). Been on Vicodin 750mg 2x day or Norco 1000mg. Plus, in order to sleep I take Neurotin (not sure mg).  

I can walk/sit or stand in one place for too long. I even have trouble shopping for more than 15 minutes. My pain specialist has given me a handicap placard to help me so i dont have to walk far when leaving the store.  

Currently awaiting referrals from the insurance company for physical therapy and nerve testing.

Hope you get better.  I know how much this pain bites.
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i have been diagnosed w a bulging disc at L5 s1on the right side. my right leg was hurting sooo bad i thought i would pass out on several occasions after being on "bed rest" for 2 weeks..going on 3 the pain in my right leg is almost gone but now im feeling the pain to start in my left leg also when im driving the pain flares up in right leg or when i bend over the pain in my back is bad and feels like all my leg muscles are being pulled i guess i just want to know if this is normal with a bulging disc
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hi.  i feel for you.  i found that pain medication alone did not help me.  i had to take high dose NSAID.  I found relief from Torodol (have them mix it with lydicane) shots, but they only last about 72 hours.  if addiction isn't a personality trait of yours than why worry about the meds.  i had a friend who was my reality check.  i asked him to tell me if i was circling the drain.  i just figured what's the worst thing that could happen, i taper off and move on or go to rehab.  it's hard to get on the books with some docs.  i would order a current MRI from my gp & go prepared with new film & records.  is the bulging disc from an accident or overuse?  like you i went to everyone.  i didn't get relief until i addressed biomechanics (pilates is similar) and did myofascial release.  bad posture puts a lot of pressure on your discs. i've talked about it in other posts.  i came back from being paralyzed & in pain, so there's hope for you.  with rehab i looked at the days that i had relief as a victory, and i slowly crawled out of the hole.  hang in there.  kimpton
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Benny, I know how you are feeling. I hurt my back in 09/07 cutting a tree. The MRI showed nothing conclusive. I have been on pain meds since then and do not like taking them I stopped for about 3 weeks but couldn't bare the pain anymore and had to go back on them. Physical therapy actually caused me more pain and the epidural shot didn't help. I really respect my pain doctor especially since he said there isn't anything more he can do for me then prescribe pain medication. A few months ago he sent me to a chiropractor which has helped some. I use to have constant pains in my butt and calves until I went to the chiropractor. My irregular symptoms of pain baffles my chiropractor, he thinks I should be feeling better than what I am. I am just glad to not have constant cramping in my legs.

My pain doctor suggested I look outside of Western Med. My chiropractor suggested seeing someone about Chinese herbs or acupuncture. I am starting to look into that.

Have you gone to a chiropractor? I had gone to one 10 years ago and didn't have a good experience and thought I would never go again. The one I currently go to has helped me even though he thinks I should be doing better.
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I had a auto accident in March 08.  I had whip lash in my neck and back. Now the PT says I have a bulging disk.  I started seeing a chiropractor and three weeks later my leg started to bother me.   Mostly in my calf.  Now it is all over my leg.  My lower back and leg are always uncomfortable.  I'm not in a lot of pain, just very uncomfortable.  Can't sit or stand very long. Driving, or riding in a car is very unconformable.  I was check for a blood clot and circulation problems.  No problems there.  I have been seeing a PT for a month and it is not doing much good.  He said he has done all he could do.  I am so sick of this.  What do you think will be the next step?  I am 27 years old
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I have ended up in the ER a few times because of the severe pain. They also have given me a shot of Torodol that worked great. I went in barely able to walk on my own and left without pain. I had these shots a few times. They really can help. I was told to never take the oral medication of this though because it will tear up your stomach really bad. It is a good medication in shot form only. It is worth a try. I have gotten alot of relief from this. hope it helps.
Chadry
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I know what u mean by the leg pain and knowone wants to know. I have mod - severe degenerative L4/5 resulting 3mm L4/5 spondylolisthsis. posterior disc bulge of T12/L1, L1/2, L2/3,L3/4 and L5/S1. Grade 1 L4/5 spondylolisthesis L4/5 central canal stenosis. HELP I cannot move around with out winging and crying HEAPS... I have the leg thing constantly now for 18 months in both legs down the back from lower back to the ankle, and cannot do very much at all to look after my family and the home, I feel helpless.
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I have had the same problem for 6 or 7 years and tried everything including surgery.  Nothing worked until I found out about prolotherapy and have started it.  I am now off my oxycontin pain medication and doing much better.  Go to the Internet and search for prolotherapy.org and Google prolotherapy and research it.  They have an list of doctors  by state that practice it. I am sold on it!

Jerrywt77
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551683 tn?1220659708
I have battled back and leg pain for way too many years now. When it first started, it was buldging discs L4 and L5. I took relefan for years. Eventually, it would flare up now and then (never pain free) to where it was unbearable and I could not walk or anything. That's when I had a lumbar epidural. It worked for a long time. I was lucky. I have been on rounds of steroids off and on also. This last time, the MRI showed a ruptured disc w/bone fragment pressing on the nerve that runs down my right leg. I was in so much pain I just literally wanted to die. The surgeon thought I was a wimp. He apologized after surgery though b/c he found fragments that didn't show on the MRI. I had several and one was lodged in the spot where the nerve splits and goes down each leg. He said he didn't know how I lived w/ the pain that must have caused. Tests don't show everything. I have degenerative disc disease. This will not be the end of this i am sure. My mother-in-law had surgery which included a fusion. She is able to live w/the pain now unlike before, but it is not cured and never will be.
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I was in a car accident when I was 14 weeks pregnant and could not take x-rays until after I had my liitle one. I was so looking forward to this so I could Finally fix what was going on. Not sure of all technical terms but L5 bulging disc. I have been through PT since I was 5months pregnant. I have shots many times and I am so tired of taking pain meds. I can not play with my children the way I should. I can not do normal activities that a normal active 30 year old can do!!  So frusrating!!!  Between my pain doctor and regular family doctor talked me in to seeing a surgeon. I was so excited to see this man. I did some research and found out he was excellent and highly recommended. Very disappointed to have him basically laugh at me and make me feel like a wimpy house wife and mother!!  And he wants to send me back to pain doctor and do more tests and shots!  I am so frustrated with all of this! But in trying to do a little research here I am finding out that I am not crazy and not a wimp! I would never wish this on anyone but nice to know that I'm not the only going through this!! I just want to be able to enjoy my life. I can handle some of this but most of the time it is just so much!!! I cried when I saw that I wasn't crazy!!!
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I totally understand how you feel. I was diagnosed with bulging and herniated disc both cervical and lumbar. So far I have tried medication and PT. None on them have worked.

I do have better days than others. I stopped telling how I feel to my friends because they think am going crazy.

Some days I have neck pain, some days is just loower back and some others the pain will include my left ankle and hips. From numbness to tingling to feeling that I have a cell phone vibrating on my tights.

It depresses me as this pain have change my whole life style. Am trying to get use to the pain, but thats almost imposible. I only get better when I lay down, but I cant be lay down all day, I have to work.

Am almost 43 and some days I feel like am in my 60's. But am not giving up, am going to keep looking for alternatives. Hope you can cope with your pain too. If I can only be pain free for a few weeks on a row I would be happy.
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i  too have suffered these woes bulge at L-1 L-4 L-5 and S-1 along w/ degernerative which my L-1 is almost gone stenosis and several bone spurs. I went through therapy took Vicodin for months had epiderals and nothing has helped the pain. Some days I can't even stand up straight. Last week my Dr. put me on MS-Cotin. My joint pain os still bad but probably 20% better but the awful nerve pain is practically gone. About 90% better . There are some serious side effects and dependency problems from what I understand but I can finally function.
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Hi,

I just had surgery Thursday for my L1 S5  degenerative herniated disc sitting right on my nerve on the right side.  It had been going on for about 2 1/2 months.  I met with an orthopedic surgeon and he suggested surgery, of course that is scary, but nothing else was working.  Pain meds, physical therapy 3X a week.  i had a procedure called a Lumbar Microdiscectomy.  They went in and took out the damaged part of the disc and the nerve fell back into place.  I have absolutely no pain in my butt or leg.  Just a little sore from the surgery.  i am going through WD from the pain meds.  I was taking about 8 percocets a day for 2 months.  I'm not saying surgery is the best thing for everyone, but it definitly worked for me!   Good Luck
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761595 tn?1251824863
I am amazed at everyone who is on here saying they have the same pains I have.  I was diagnosed with sacroilitis a year or so ago, after years (10 or more) of back pain.  when the pain got progressively worse in a short period of time (approx. 2 years ago) my regular doc sent me to a specialist.  Got the tests - the MRI's etc., said I had sacroilitis.  The SI Joint injections didn't work, the ESI injection didn't work, the physical therapy didn't work.  While we spoke the many times we did, I for some reason told him of my carpal tunnel in both wrists.  He wanted to check my cervical spine to make sure nothing was going on there.  And wouldn't you know it - I have carpal tunnel - but they found a tumor on T3.  Fortunately it was benign, so after it was removed, my lower back pain lessened, not disappeared, just lessened.  The tumor was really pressing on my spinal column.  Now, six months later, in more pain than before, I asked for another MRI.  Now they found a bulging disc at L5-S1.  And the pain is absolutely debilitating at times.  I also can not walk in the store for more than 15 minutes, can not do household chores, can not do much of anything.  Can't walk or exercise to lose weight, because it hurts too much, but the weight is not helping my back - it's a catch 22.  What is a person to do?
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i am sorry about your pain, however your doctors are right.
i am 13 and i have a bulged disc, nerve damage, bone damage, overgrown bone, and all my ligaments are torn. i'm a competitive gymanst
and nothing helps all you do is deal with it the best you can. good luck.


but i guess you could try....
wearing a full time back brace ( i did that for a while and it helped for a few months)
and get pain releiveing shots i haven't got one but many people on my team have.
and try a weekly masachge theripy for muscle relaxing.
good luck.
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I also was in and accident ,i was being treated for bulging disc about two years ago , my doc treated it and i was back at work until this accident people think that i,am faking pain,but until they have this they will never no,i,am depressed i can,t provide for my family i have two little girls and a loving wife that i have to provide for , i,am taking therapy right now but its not working , i had the shots they work for about 3days, i have this burning in my back , legs in pain and pain at the lower part of my back while i,am sitting in this chair right now i,am in pain ,i walk with a cane to try to relieve some of the pressure off my back but its not working i even have pain shut up my spine into my head causing sever head aches my spine feels like its coming thru my chest, my arms and shoulders aches, only relief  i get when ever i go to sleep from the pain is when i wake up in the morning off my fee, and once i get up and start my day it starts all over again.
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867491 tn?1242749349
hi all, it surprised me that i am not alone in this back problem.5 yrs ago i was diagnosed with l4,l5 bulging disc and mild spinal stenosis same level and nerve impingement with facet hypertrophy. i tried medication for several months, physical therapy,muscle relaxants,pain killers but my pain didnt go away.it came to a point that i cant walk long distance and ended up lying in bed for several months.. but i never gave up, i tried to engaged in a back strenthening and stretching exrecise daily and it helped me a lot, i was back then to my normal activities but was never pain free. many years i tolerated the pain without taking any pain medication but during the flare ups, thats the time i take my mdecines. my backpain was already more than 5 yrs now and its still goes on and off,i ahve also upper back issues, i have multi level disc degeneration on my cervical spine and my thoracic ddd with osteophyte and bone spurrs.. so i have pain all over lower and upper.. i have tolerated  the pain in good spirits but my back always hurts..sometimes i have balance problem due to muscle weakness and i also gets dizzy sometimes...i dont know whats happening to my back now since my mri results was 5 years back but i am still hoping that some disc will be healed in time..i think pain is something we have to learn to live for the rest of our lives.. i know how hard and difficult we are going through but i want to let you all know that you are not alone in this battle. we all have our levels of pain tolerance.. pain is not easy to feel.. but we should learn how to manage the pain, know what activities makes our back better and what make it worse.. above all lets have faith in our creator , he is the best physician in the whole world.. i wish us all a back pain free very soon...
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214248 tn?1295907331
Has anybody tried Norflex, it is avalible otc or as an injection with a rx.
I have not had any luck with the pills but the injection works for me giving me about 7-10 days of relief. I am also using Hydromorph Contin for pain
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I am new to this lower back and sciatic pain of about 3 months. I thought my pain was just a pinched nerve caused by tight muscles. I tried to stretch and loosen and "pop" my back, which turned out to be a bad thing to do. Finally I asked a chiropractor and he said if I had addressed it earlier correctly it might have gone away. But he suggested simply arching my back in over-exagerated posture and taking some ibuprofen. This has worked wonders for me when I am driving and when not being active but when I try to bend over I get that incredible pain we all know. I am lucky I think to have found a way to create a virtual painfree inactive life. I would however like to do something active since I am a super athlete and will be interested in seeing if this will ever heal completely. I am so sorry for those who can not find any relief.
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Im Really Glad 2 read up and have some information about bulging disc's,Ive been diagnosed with a bulging disc thats Coursing me pain in my lower Back and down my right leg it even courses pain 2 my thighs and my buttocks,Its been goin on since i had my Beautifull Boy 6 months ago..allthough the leg pain was there while i was pregnant.Im 22 years Old with 3 children and Im at the point of depression,My kids need me and I cant do nothing to help them as The pain In my leg is so Painfull at times,I feel like my legs are gonna collapse,Theres even Been Times where Ive had 2 crawl 2 the toilet,Cause the leg Pains been so Painfull.I cant stand up straight as my back just wont go straight,it aches like mad when i start 2 do to much walking,A trip 2 the supermarket and I feel in agony,Ive been 2 the doctors and they keep palming me off with,Diclofenic,Co-dydramol,Nd diazepan,all off which do not help atal. My Partners had 2 quit his job just to look after kids as my lifes such a struggle 2 get outta bed,I just cry everyday hoping 1 day il get better.,Ive been to physio-therapy and wat a load of **** that is,I also went 2 the doctors and asked 4 a referal to an osteopath he insisted that there was No osteopaths on the nhs,Then i did a bit of research and found He could,But he seemed to think physio was the best Thing 4 me,In the end i just decided to Pay 4 osteopath Treatments Myself,as couldnt deal with the pain No longer,The osteopaths are very Good and Defintly Have eased the pain in my leg,The pains still there but feels so much More relieved and Bearable. Im still waiting 4 More treatment,I just think some of ur storys Make me cry cause i no excally what Your going Through and People Really do not Understand the Tremendos Pain it courses. .I just hope 1 Day I can get better and be a proper Mummy To my 3 Boys Cause i feel useless Right now :(
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It has been 4 months now since my injury and I am very close to being able to say I am completely better. I say this to give hope to those who are just starting out on this journey. At one point my pain was so bad that I thought I would pass out everytime I stood up from the table or out of a car. And there was a point at 3 months where I thought I would probably have this problem the rest of my life. But my injury must not have been too severe as it seems to be nearly gone now. Surprisingly I have found that running and great posture was the best way for me to feel better. I only took ibuprofen for about 2 weeks then stopped  since it didn't help anymore. And then it started feeling better on its own. But running and lifting weights seems to have helped me significantly, which must have something to do with blood flow to the injury. Good luck to everyone and if you are new to this, there is definitely hope. I say stay away from the drugs and believe your body can heal itself. Then give it 4-6 months!
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Thank you so much for sharing this. I am 29 years old, was active and have had disc and sciatic pain for about a month and a half now. I thought it was gettign better, but teh past week I feel like I have gone back to day one again. I am extremely discouraged and feel like it will never go away! I am very much against any painkillers or anti-inflammatories, but I started taking Advil 4 days ago because the pain was so bad. It did help, but I feel terrible when I take it. The owrst part about this is I can't run, so you telling me that running helped you actually gives me hope. I have gone to the gym like once a week but changed my routine to do stairs and walking uphill, but nothing has the same positive effect on me than running does. When did you start running? Thanks again..you gave me hope. This is misery,
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I started having back pains day after i came back from a holiday, i was diognosed with bulging disk which must have been caused by lifting heavy suitcases.  I was in pain for 6 months, i couldnt walk more then 10 min or stand more then 2 min and the pain would start shooting in my side of the leg.  The physio tried to help me with excercises, but they were not working.  Then one day I was looking for info on the internet and I started doing back arches laying flat on my tummy i did it 3 times a day, 7 streches holding for 5 seconds, 5 days into doing it I heard a pop in the back and some numb pain.  I then stood up the pain was gone.  Its been 6 weeks now i can walk for 2 to 3 hours now, do all the job around the house.  I do still have a some mild pain when i wake up in the morning to the leg, however few streches and after 30 min walking around im fine for the rest of day.
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Arthrotec 75mg 2 pills a day i have 4 bad discs L1L2S1S2 i have been taking the pill for about a yr they seem to work good also try an inversion table about 3/4 invert for 3 mins twice a day and lots of ice packs
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I have suffered low back pain/sciatic pain for nearly 30 years ( I am only 41!) due to an unexplained back injury which herniated discs at L4/L5 and L5/S1 at age 12. My parents didn't believe me when I told them I was in pain and consequently I never got treatment,and it never healed properly.At 17 I had surgery to carve off the protrusion into my sciatic nerve,but because it had been left untreated for so long,there is permanent nerve damage.I have tried masses of treatments,and have found Chiro a necessity to try and keep my spine in alignment.I have had several relapses over the years where the pain has been so bad I have wanted to die.But it seems to heal to a degree after a few weeks.I have also found Pilates to be an excellent way of strengthening the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles which takes a lot of pressure off the back.Only thing is it's expensive,and if I stop doing it,I end up in pain again.I take Tramal in high doses when I am in total agony,and anti-inflammatory meds,but I hate them since they make me very constipated.Next up,I'm going to try cortisone injections.I think you have to keep looking at what works for you,and keep trying different things.Physio is good for teaching you exercises to strengthen also.I feel for every single one of you.Good luck.
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Sounds like nerve impingement. All docs couldn't determine cause, tried to state psychological but finally got in to be seen by Neuro Dr.  I was so bad that I had foot drop and was on a cane, with numbness and constant pain.  The doc performed an EMG, determined that I had nerve root impingement, sent me to a neurosurgeon, he performed day surgery and I am walking without cane.  Though the surgery made it possible to walk again well, I never did regain feeling to the outside of the left leg or most of the foot.  It still feels like it is asleep and painful when it gets cold.  take care of yourself and get a good neuro specialist if you can...
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Good after noon I'm a 20 (just turned) year old male and I was called just today by the doctor telling me the results of an M.R.I. that was just preformed on my back. I've had back pain since January of 2009, I've gone to the doctor time and time again, and every time I went all they wanted to do was give me muscle relaxants (which only maded me sleepy) and one doc told me that I was complaining of the same symptoms a pregnant woman would have! Until I went to a differn't doctor who prescribed vicodin for the pain, when that didn't help he set up an M.R.I. and found that I have a bulging disk at my L4 and L5/S1 region. The bulged disk is putting pressure on an nurve causing my left leg to hurt. I know exactly how your feeling, that little voice saying wait Im way to young! I haven't had a good nights sleep since January because of the back pain. To put the icing on the cake I'm in the millitary so I have to wonder what is going to happen next? Do they try and fix me? Or do they tell me "Oh thanks for playing better luck next time!" as I get the boot? If you need someone to talk to thats is in your shoes don't be shy to look me up!

-cewilford
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Hi, my mri result just came back.  I have 3 bulging discs T 4-5 T 9-10 and T 10-11.  It's funny, now I feel justified to cry. I have been dealing with this pain for almost a year now but the last 3 months have been horrible.  I can't breath very well, my stomach just kills me and then of course there is my back.  I have been going to P.T. for 3 weeks and it hasn't been my relief.  I just want to sleep....because then my mind isn't thinking "more ice, more pain killers, stand up, sit down, soak in a tub, stay home because everything hurts.  I am 44 years old and I want my old life back!!!
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Hi there,
I know what your all going thru and my injury prob isnt as bad as some (bulging disk l5 ,not on siatic nerve so no leg pain)but it has put me on the floor a few times.. once when i was doing stretches my wife helped me stretch my hamstring way to far then BAM it was all over for 2/3 months. Im still in low pain everyday of my life but im learning to deal with it by slowing things down in my life and to try not to stress as much about things as my injury(hopefully)heals so i can surf again someday.
I have found relief and in anti nonsteroid inflammitories as well as doing pilate and swimming.. the pain is now only with me in the mornings when i wake up so i guess im healing well.
Hope this helps , i know what ure going thru.. just try and relax/meditate/stretch/swim/pilates and hopefully you can have relief too one day.
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I ruptured my L5 when i was 20.  I never had anything done to it at the time.  Now im 40 and cant walk right.  I've seen a neuro and he says he saw nothing on mri.  My left leg pain has been with me for 20 years.  Now its unbearable.  Off work for it now.  Dont know what to do or think.  Where is the magic pill?  
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Does anyone know what that bent over backward feeling (painful) is. Or chills up and down my legs? I've been dealing with lower lumber and cervical DDD for three years and I get knew symptoms. I also have been having teeth
Chattering and brain shaking. This lasted thirty minutes and couldn't get it to stop. Wierd.
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Wanted to say how sorry I am Benny. You are not alone.
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Well im at the 6 month stage of my recovery and its good news.. my bulging disc pain has just about gone and i no longer have that annoying glute ache that i got around 3 months into it, although i still get a numb toe (only 1 wierd!!) every now and then but hey i can live with that.. im doing pilates( 1on1 with cable machine etc) swimming and i walk the dog every morning.. ive lost 6kgs and still have another 5 to go ( 6ft3 98kg).. This injury has been a bloody nightmare as i cannot surf/run or play football anymore,but my physio has been working with me very hard on my core strength / posture and says i should get back in the water in another 3/4 months.. i guess the thing with this injury is that it needs TIME to heal properly.. Dont rush back into activity too soon or it will come back 10 fold and youll have ta start all over again..
Take care and good luck with your disc journey.There is light ahead..
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1246551 tn?1268688932
HI I'VE HAD LOWER BACK PAIN FOR YEARS DUE TO WORK. I JUST GOT ON WITH THINGS, AS U DO, UNTIL ONE DAY MY HUSBAND AND I WENT ON A LONG WEEKEND ABROAD. WE DID ALOT OF WALKING THIS PARTICULAR DAY, ALL OF A SUDDDEN MY RIGHT FOOT WENT NUMB. I  STOPPED AND RESTED BUT WHEN I STARTED TO WALK  AGAIN THE NUMBNESS CAME BACK. I WENT TO THE DOCTORS A WEEK LATER AND THEY PUT ME ON ANTI INFLAMM. DIDN;T WORK HAVING PHYSIO AT MOMENT TOLD ME NOT SIT DOWN FOR A WEEK ONLY TO SIT FOR TOILET PURPOSES AND DRIVING I HAVE TO LIE DOWN TO WATCH TV ON MY BACK, OR ON MY TUMMY. STILL GETTING THE NUMBNESS, TINGLING AND CRAMPS. GETTING ME DOWN BECAUSE I CAN'T DO MY NORMAL DAILY CHORES. ON THE SICK AT THE MOMENT.  HAD A MRI IT SHOULD THAT THE DISC WAS PRESSING ON THE NERVE, I'M AFRAID TO DO ANYTHING AS I WANT TO GET BETTER. BUT FEEL REALLY LOW AND DEPRESSED WITH THIS HORRIBLE FEELING IN MY LEG. CAN'T GET COMFY IN BED NEED LOADS OF PILLOWS TO GET MYSELF COMFORTABLE. GOT PHYSIO TOMMOROW HOPE SOMETHING WORKS.
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Hi Benny, I have the same problem that you are going through, but mine started in 2001 with an work place accident, All I can say is hang in there, I also recommend that you visit surgicaltourism.ca they maybe able to help you out, its sad that we the injuried have to go through stuff like this, also as for Doctors laughing and not really helping or waiting list to long, I also recommend talk to your MLA, or other Government official, also maybe the Media as well, so that this kind of stuff stops

again visit surgicaltourism.ca
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I'm 19, have had a bulging disc in the L5/S1 region for almost a year with the most severe symptoms for the past 6months. I have severe pain radiating down my left leg and can't sit, stand, or do much without the pain being so intense. I've had 3 rounds of cortisone epidurals, with only temporary relief. I've gotten to the point where I can't fall asleep or sleep through the night. I only have prescribed anti-inflammatories and no other pain meds. On top of all of this, I am a highly competitive college athlete and still manage to get through over 20hrs of practice per week. The pain is killing me, so much so that sometimes I simply lay on the floor and writhe in pain and it's gotten so bad that I've physically thrown up because of the intense pain. I know how you feel and I'm so desperate for ANY relief. I'm getting a surgery consult on Wednesday for a possible microdiscectomy. I'm at the point where as scary as surgery is, I'm much more scared about the idea of living the rest of my life in this pain. No one should have to hurt this bad, this often, and for this long. I'll let you know what surgery seems to look like, but my orthopedist said that any intense symptoms that last over a few months without significant improvement should definitely look at surgery as an option.
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I have been going to PT for a while now and I can honestly say that I wouldnt wish that on my worse enemy.  I was going 4 times a week, and each time I would leave there in tears.  I am refusing to go back.  I feel for you and wish you all the best
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CR8
It seems there are a lot of people with this problem. I think my latest injury was just the "straw that broke the camels back"! the doc's think that I either have a disc bulge in L5/S1 or it's Slipped.. This was the most pain I have ever been in..Writhing on the floor trying to go to sleep..Yeah right. I think when this first happened I didn't sleep for 2 days due to the pain!! I went to the ER after that.. At this point whenever I would stand up the pain would radiate down my right leg!! It was absolutely excruciating!! They put my on high dose steroidal anti inflammatory, and 4mg of Hydromorphone for the pain..Both of these did just what they were supposed to do..But the next day my pain was replaced by numbness which goes all the way down to my little toe, and I have lost the control of my calf muscle.. Before this I had been training to run a half marathon, and I compete in a few Triathlons throughout the year.. This really *****.. M.R.I. scheduled for the first week in may.. My Chiro says running is about the worst thing you can do. Due to the compression on your spine!  I can give up the running, but I don't want to have to give up the bike!  I feel for all of you, and for all of you with an open mind try a good Chiropractor.  They went to school for this type of thing..
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1277982 tn?1273381675
I also have a 2mm disc protrusion with an annular tear  and I have pain that is burning in my left leg and some in my right but alot is in the front of the legs sometimes the back.. it feels like all my nerves are moving around.. there is this "popping" like I am being shocked and weird sensations all over my legs.. it goes into my ankle, the tops of my feet seems to get worse when laying down...  this has been going on for 3 months...  

I was told by two chiropractors that there is no way a 2 mm disc bulge could cause this much pain for me..  I also talked to a PA and he said he didn't think it was the disc either..  so I am just dumb founded..

Anyone else have a 2 mm disc bulge at L5 S1 region having any kind of pain such as this?  please let me know
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I just found this site tonight and am glad theres someone else out there like me. I'm 43, and have been batteling DDD for 10 years now. Over the last 6 monthes, things have gone from bad to worse.The MRI shows the disk pushing into the nerve which, as you all know, feels just lovely. Been going to the "rack" for several weeks now. Getting streached I think is making it worse. I got done with high doses of Gabapentin, waste of time. I just finished a "streroid burst", that too is a joke. The methadone and hydrocodone isn't working anymore. At least in the doses they are giving me. Over the years, I've built up a bunch of pills that I didn't take, lately, they are coming in handy. I need to tell my doc that the meds just aren't cutting it, but don't want to come off like a junkie. My back and left leg seem to do nothing but hurt anymore.
Does anyone have a suggestion on how to increase the strength or a stronger narcotic without the stigma of a druggie?
Thanks,
Fritz
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CR8
I have recently had my MRI that revealed A 20mm disc herniation of the L5 S1 area that is putting presser on the spinal nerve root. The doctors tell me that is a very Large herniation, and that it is to big to get put back with chiro... I also have the numb leg and no use of my calf muscle on the right leg... I do not by the way have any pain, Which is weird the docs tell me.  The back is very complex someone with a 2mm bulge may have more pain than someone with a 20mm bulge... In my case it was almost like the excrutiating pain I started with when this first happend was replaced with numbness... I go for my surgical consult in one week... This neurosurgen comes highly recommended, But still nervous!
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1277982 tn?1273381675
I recently found out through my MRI that I have alot more going on than a mere 2mm disc bulge I actually have two 2mm disc bulges.. at L4-5 and L5-S1  yeah and hypertrophy.. I am still dealing with nerve pain I posted in another forum my MRI results.. I wonder if I should just try a chiro again this is just stupid now... I do stretches and exercises for it I even have an inversion table still I have all this tingling, burning stuff going on in my left leg a little in my right.. I am a pretty small gal so I can imagine why I am feeling this is coz I am so compact.. good luck CR8
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HEY TRY TO GET AN EPIDURAL STEROID INJECTION. THOSE WORK WONDERS
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I also have a disc bulge on L4 L5, but they don't think it is a problem.  My Chiro says after I have my surgery we can deal with that... Oh I haven't been on in a while.  Yup!! Going in for a Microendoscopic Discectomy next week!!  This is a very cool procedure! not much cutting they just stretch a hole to work through... All I need is a band aid when it's done, and get to go home the same day!!  I also have an inversion table! How cool are these things?? I love it!!  As far as I can see this is only going to help you and I plan on using mine as part of my daily routine.. If you aren't going to a Chiro now maybe it would help who knows... Couldn't hurt to try!!  Good luck Tiffee
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1351887 tn?1276893282
Hey all...I just had my MRI reveal yesterday that i have a L5 S1 bulging / herniated disc... i also have been down this road... for 10 years...constant nagging backpain, spasms, cramping, sciatia in my right let..sometimes left leg...tingling, numbness....

Been down the PT road too... chiropractors, physical therapy, i know every freaking stretch in teh book... foam rollers, core stabilzation techniques..etc... back school...it goes on and on...

I prefer not to take pills if i dont have to due to personal beliefs...

its depressing...im only 31 and i feel like an old man... breaks me down to tears at times... i have 3 wonderful, joyfull, energetic girls ages 10, 7, and 4 and boy they love to jump on daddy and it breaks my heart that i have to say "not so hard, dont want to hurt daddy's back...." its terrible i cant play with my own children...

Im not overweight, i practice brazilian jiu jitsu, i play softball... im fit.. .but i just got a bad deal on my back... im keep each and every one of you in my meditation prayers to heal you...

that is my next path... Reiki healing and energetic healing... i think it can help... i think we as humans possess energy that is so inline with our inner cells and DNA that we have the capability to heal eachother...

if anyone feels the need to chat... im a real person just like you looking for support, you can email me just to talk, chat, kick ideas around... whatever...

anthonynoriega [at[ gmail [dot] com

blessings.
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I'm in a similar situation to many of those who've posted here and wish I could tell you that everything related to the lumbar region of the lower back is solvable. After countless opinions, tests and procedures over the last 20 of my 43 years, I can only say that one thing is true - the lower back is still a mystery to even the most trained experts. One of my closest of friends, a heart surgeon, told me a long time ago that treatment of the lower back is an "evolving" science and is one of the most nebulus areas in our body. I sympathize with each and every person who's posted here and wish I could help, it's just not that simple. My latest round of pain has had me on my back for nearly 3 months and the end is not in sight. Regardless of what anyone says, this is a debilitating issue for all of us and we can't expect anyone to even relate to its effect on our lives. There is no roadmap to success here, hence the size of the back pain relief market - it's in the $ billions.Find support in friends and family, stay positive and do the best you can in dealing the resulting pain from a very mysterious part of our anatomy. Listen to whatever advice you're comfortable with (and you'll get it from "everyone") and find something that works for you.
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i really feel for the people on here because i am in the same boat.i had fusion on my back in 2001 i was in agony all the time before i had the op. i was fine after  i just a few pains  and twinges here and there.but in 2005 i started to get pains in my hips back and legs  and butt i had to keep sitting down all the time i went to the doctor who said it was oa and to take painkillers and rest i carried on for another three years of this i could'nt take it any more so he sent me to another specialist and he reffered me to another doc and at the finished  i was reffered back to my surgeon who sent me for a mri and found that i needed decompressive surgery.then in jan this year i was rushed in hospital because i coundnt move i was in that much pain i was sent for another mri scan  which said i had a l5/s1 disc bulge with severe distorshion with perinurul fibropic changes and disc degeneration diease and severe spinal nerve damage iam now in chronin pain   in my back i can hardley sit up or do any thing for my self  i use a wheel chair because i can hardley walk. i keep going  love to u all......
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After reading all the post, I have the same symptoms as alot of you. In 2008, while on duty as a police officer, I got hurt and ended up with lower back pain. After several months of physial therapy (didn't work) I still had severe pain in my lower back and right leg ending at my foot. I had several shots in my back (L-5 S-1) and it worked for a couple months. Ever since this injury, it has changed my life and my career. I have injured it a couple more times since it happend. Just last week, I found myself back in severe pain. I am at that point now, I just want to do the operation on my back. I am 32 years old and just had my first baby boy 3 weeks ago. I dont want to be that father that cant play or provide for my family.

Has anyone regreted having the surgery or was it for the best?
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My back pain began when I was in my mid 30s, and would come and go depending on my activity level until my early 50s, it was mostly muscle pain across my lower back.  At about the age of 58 I began to experience a sharp pain in my lower back on the right side. In a few weeks my right calf muscle had a sharp pain, and soon my right foot had pain and tingling/numbness. After an MRI it was determined I had bulging discs at L5/S1 and the discs were degenerating. I went to a surgeon who recommended fusion. I did not want that so she sent me for physical therapy which did not help, so she recommended shots (but I had heard to many stories of how they did not help) so I did not do that. I continued to live with the pain and take NSAIDS (about 1000 mg a day). Even though I had an office job I did work out frequently (which I believe could have contributed to my back pain, lifting weights can have a negative affect on your back over time).

At the age of 60 I had a major back attack and could only limp around using my left leg.
After another MRI I went to a surgeon that does microscopic back surgery and went through with the procedure (basically he trimmed away some of the disc that was pressing against the sciatic nerve). It relieved all my pain for about 9 months and then it came back just like before. He told me at that time the only next step was disc fusion. The radiologist that read my MRI told me if I did a fusion I would be back in 2 to 3 years needing another one because of the pressure it would put on the other degenerating discs.

So I am now 65 years old and using whatever means I can to deal with my back pain.
I have learned what I can do and can't do and how to pace my activities. I take Lyrica,
Tizanidine, and NSAIDS everyday. I also take Xanax XR which helps me with the anxiety the pain can cause. I have a zero gravity chair that relieves the pressure on my lower back by elevating my feet ( I would highly recommend this to anyone with lower back pain), or at least get a recliner that elevates your feet to about a 45 degree angle).

I  try to keep my weight down.  I lightly stretch my hamstrings everyday for a few minutes, it seems to help relieve some of the pressure on my lower back. I also do some light core strengthening activities everyday.

I sleep well at night on each side turning from side to side as I become uncomfortable.
I always make sure to sit in my chair for a while before going to bed.

I hope this information is helpful to someone.

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I had my second baby in Nov 2008 thru a normal delivery in Seattle, right after it I felt my right leg was numb, after 2 days I had  excruciating pain running from my lower back down to my ankle and then that pain stayed for the whole next 1 1/2 year. I saw physiotherapist for 3-4 months, but no relief, then got busy with my baby. In Nov 2009 I got MRI done for my lower back, which showed I had a slip disc in my L5-S1 region which might be pressing the sciatica nerve. Then I consulted a chiropractor, he suggested massage along with the stretches. After 2-3 massages, my pain in leg came up from ankle to knee, then after 6-7 sittings of massage, it came to hip, which tells that my muscles around the low back might be tight which is setting the whole nasty cycle. But then the pain from the hip was not going, and then I took an appointment with another physiotherapist, Martina, god...I wished I would have met her 19 months back, she told me one stretch, in which I had to lean my waist in the opposite direction of the bulge, 10 times every hour of the day, and in the next 25 days, I got the painless life back. I have come to this forum earlier, and cried when I read how about peopl's experience , it looked I have to live with this pain forever. After having my normal life back, I just want to reach to everyone out there having this problem, to let them know that this can be cured, visit Martina, if you want further details write to me.
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I'm 37 and was very much in the same position as you...although I'm not an athlete I lead a very active life. I battled wit the sciatica on and off for 5 yrs and then last May I ended up in excruciating pain. I was completely incapacitated. I ended up in the hospital because I was in sooo much pain. My physician got me in to see a neuro-surgeon very quickly and he recommended a micro laminectomy and discotomy. I have no regrets about the surgery but the recovery has been slow and steady. I actually felt better after the surgery than I had for weeks prior to it. I've read that it can take as long as a year to fully recover. Be patient you will get better.
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I have had pain for 12 years I am now told I have several tears in my L4 as well as its thin, herniated and bulging. I get pain in my hips sciatica buttocks my feet feel bruised when I walk and I constantly get cramps from toes up to well I wont say but it is excruciating and lasts for hours. I cant find a dr to help me with the pain I dont know if they will keep me on pain meds or not. It is affecting my nerves there is no response to that test for reflexes on my right side. I am not candidate for surgery it wont help me and my insurance dont cover much else. I am allergic to steroids and this has gone for 12 years. It has not healed. would love to know what I can do or what can be done because I am still young and want to live my life.
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I too like everyone on this board have had issues with disc herniations.  I have an extruding disc on L5/S1 and a very large protrusion on L4/L5.  With each of these discs come dessication as well (drying out of the disc).  It has been so bad that the top of my foot has been numb for months now.  I had surgery back in 1995, only to have the problem return.  Alot of it has to do with our habits I believe.  In my case, I did not drink enough water every day (did not drink much at all) and proper posture when twisting, turning, sitting, etc.  Anyway, as time has gone on, the episodes get shorter in duration and more painful.  Last week I finally bottomed out to where I can not stand for more than 1 minute at a time due to pain the calf and hamstring on the left side, not to mention the numb foot.  Did not want to do surgery as I feel it is a short term fix, but not longer term.  I decided to go with decompression.  Yes, it is costly, but only after a few treatments, my big toe numbess is already gone and the pain is starting to subside down the leg.  This has a more promising long term prognosis, imo as it aims at actually healing the discs and rehydrating them to a degree.  I have had a few friends go through it as well and they claim it gave them their life back.  I am optimistic that it is going to do the same for me.
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to my earlier post, I meant shorter in duration between episodes.  The duration of the eposide is longer each time and more painful.  I believe that symptoms in the past may have subsided, but that doesnt mean the disc has healed.  The herniation can still be there without symptoms, only to wait for the next time.  Best to heal it completely!
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I, too, dealt with lower back pain for many years only to be told I had DDD and would have to learn to live with it.  Then, in 2004, I had an attack that put me down for 4 weeks.  Was unable to stand or sit and spent that 4 weeks sleeping and lying on the floor 24 hours a day.  Had to crawl back and forth to the bathroom and cried just sitting on the toilet.  After 4 weeks of twice a day chiropractic treatments, it started to resolve and after 3 weeks on a walker, was able to pretty much resume my usual activity with the prior level of pain which I had been told by a neurosurgeon was sacroiliac joint pain.  Then it happened again in November, 2008.  I was able to walk from house to car, from car to office but was then in an electric wheelchair for locomotion as I could not walk any further.   By January, it had, again, resolved.  WHAM, it struck again, April 2009.  For 1 month back in wheelchair to work.  On May 1, I had an MRI which did me in.  By Monday, I was unable to stand.  Had an appointment with a neurosurgeon but not for three weeks.  On the day of the appointment, I received steroid injection in back which lasted about 10 days, then another which didn't help at all.  Finally, surgery on June 23, 2009.  I knew when I awoke it had been a success.  The morning after my surgery, my doctor told me it was one of the worst cases he had seen of a herniated disc pinching a nerve.  I still have DDD, leg cramps and restless leg (left leg only) and a weak back (especially when I first get up in the morning) but THE EXCRUTIATING PAIN IS GONE.I would recommend the laminectomy to any one who is in that kind of pain.  I have not been sorry one day.  I still take Arthritis Strength Tylenol and the occasional Lortab or Flexeril but I am functional.  Hope all of you are able to reach some sort of resolution.  I would suggest that you find a good Neurosurgeon.
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Hi everyone, God its great to think I'm not the only one in pain :-(
My pain in my lower back first started in march of 2010 with a twinge which got worse at end of april.  Wasn't able to stand for long periods of walk far. Finally in June i got MRI which showed bulging disc hitting off a nerve.  At last an answer to my agony.  Had 2 epidurals and was great after second one until I slipped in shower a few days later.  A while later muscle pain started from my head to my ankle (neck, shoulders, lower back - buttock and ankle) all on the left side.  Even getting migraines now.  Have been doing 5 weeks of physio, stretchin with a couple of weeks and short slow walks but still in alot of pain.  Driven demented now with all the pain and putting on weight again which isn't good for the back either.  Back to work in an office now in last few days and all the sitting down is killing me.  Has anyone experienced this muscle pain after a disc? Worried now that is maybe something else.
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1277982 tn?1273381675
well going on my 7th month of nerve parathesia in my left leg a little on my right..  and still no answers at all just meds..I went to a neurologist and she said I had permanent nerve damage..  I am like what??  what the heck did I do to cause that they don't even know what the cause of this is..??  my friend still thinks I have a pinched nerve somewhere..I listed my mri results this just doesnt' make any sense I am sorry that everyone is in so much pain
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I have had lower back pain for the last ten years or maybe longer.  I am 31 years old and my weigh fluctuates. I do know when I lose weight the pain is less. I have been in pain management for the last four years and sometimes the meds. work and there are other times it doesn't even touch the pain. I had a MRI about two years ago and the Dr. tells me I have good news and I have bad news! I said ok Dr. give it to me strait; he tells me " well the MRI shows nothing is wrong with your back that's the good news, the bad news is its all in your head." I felt like going home and dieing. Then  one night the pain pills where not helping so I went to North Florida and told them I feel off a ladder onto a concrete slab at my parents house. North Florida gave me a CT and a X-ray. They came in an hour later and told me I had to herniated disc impinging on my sciatic nerve. Since they thought I had recently fell they told me to get plenty of bed rest and gave me some muscle relaxers. They then referred me to Dr. Stevenson at the Orthopedic Institute on Newberry road. I have an apt. on Wend. the 25th. My father has been through three back surgeries and still isn't any better. A friend of mine has had one and his back feels worse than it did before the surgery. I keep hearing these horror stories and I am really scared. I know I am happy that it's not in my head like the one Dr. told me, but I want to be able to fix it so I can get off the pain meds. and live my life normal again. Dose anyone have any suggestions or advice?
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I suggest you go find a good neurosurgeon who is also qualified in back surgy, and take your latest MRI results to him. They should have done two types of MRI, with and without contrast dye. See what he says, and take it from there. It may require surgery. If it does, I'll tell you my experience, which was good.
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Hi Benny,
I suffered sciatic pain for 6 months last year cause by a herniated L4-s1 disc,
It started with Tingling in my hamstring, calf and foot.  And late in the day i would suffer with a extreme pain in my glute.  the more i stretched the worse the pain would get.

I tried massage Therapy, Oesteopathy, Chirpractic, accupuncture, Active release therapy, none of which helped.  

I then tried a thing called Bowen Therapy.  After 3 treatments my sciatic condition was gone. I am now working on my Core strength to help with my lower back, and i am able to play hockey again.  I can walk without numbess and tingling.  

I wish i would of have done this 5 months sooner.  
I get the odd lower back tightness now, and i see my oesteopath to resolve this

If you have questions give me a shout back
Bry



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Hi  I'm going through  the same thing i got injured at work workers comp giving me the shaft they sent me to doc off there list he said surgery for ruptured disc they sent me to second doc that didn't even look at MRI before he said jog two miles a day n stop taking pain medicines what a flake he is they wanted a tie breaker third doc said surgery they said doc that was crazy became my doc they stopped paying me benefits n want do nothing what crooks they r  i can relate to the pain is so bad i often think of ending my life but they win so knowing I'm not along helps but will pray for u all thanks
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1461944 tn?1286031542
Hey, i am almost 17 now and a year ago I started to feel the same pain all of you are feeling, the extreme indescribable pain down my right butt calf and numbness in the foot. My doctor had an MRI on me and said it was a herniated l5/s1 disc that was pinching my sciatic nerve. I went through months of physical therapy and chiropractic care of which neither helped, i received 2 cortisone injections into my l5/s1 and l4/l5 area a month later to see if either would calm the nerve or pain, they didn't help. I am a star basketball player and i was i star football player. I played my basketball season through the pain because my doctor said it wouldn't make it any worse if i played and when i played the bloodflow seemed to make the pain better (unless i would have to bend over or sit on the bench) but it still extremely affected the way i played, i was playing at about 70%. After my season my doctor laid it out for me saying surgery or dealing with my pain was my only option. I received a lumbar microdiscectomy on March 12 of last year only to have the pain come back worse than before 3 days after.. My spinal surgeon whom is my doctor didn't know what to after the 2 month recovery period when i reported even worse pain down my leg.After another MRI it was confirmed that my disc reherniated. He gave me the summer off, said i could do sports, go be normal, just deal with the pain. So i did, i played Summer basketball for my school team and not my AAU team which is a huge part of a basketball players career. In august i had my followup appointment where i received another MRI and seen the disc was still herniated pinching my nerve. My doctor scheduled me for surgery the next week. I received another microdiscectomy on August 27 of this year. The pain never went away, not for one second after the surgery. It did move though. Now, a month later, the pain is majorly in my lower butt region and bending and doing anything in which my blood gets flowing gets my pain to peak. I feel like i'm an 80 year old who can't bend backwards or forwards and am helpless. I am missing my junior year football season due to the second surgery which seems to be a failure. I started last year on varsity as a sophomore and now i can not play as a junior, almost depressing for me.

I know you all might think that surgery is your last option, and it really might work for you. But for me it just wasted my parents money,my hopes, and time. I have another appointment in 5 days. Hoping that the doc will have something other than what I've already done to try for fixing my problem. Maybe decompression or a TENS device?

open to comments and questions
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I recently had an MRI done because I was having intense back and pelvic pain (which I have had for the past five years).  I assumed because there was pelvic pain in addition to the low back pain that it was a gynecological problem and pursued that avenue for years with no problems ever found.  The MRI revealed 2 bulging discs L4 and L5 2 mm.  Would something like this cause pain and pressure in the pelvic region?  The pain will even sometimes almost go away but is aggravated by exercise or orgasm.  If anyone has any experience with this, please let me know.  I am seeing a back specialist in a few days, but after reading on many websites, this doesn't seem like a common problem. Please share any insights! I'm miserable!!

Thank you!!
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I am also in the same boat, minor bulges at L4/5 and S1. I had an awesome report saying 'no significant pressure on nerve' except I have 'episodes' of sciatic pain I presume, where I can't stand up, my legs collapse from under me if I try standing and all anyone says is, take pain meds, here have a valium, rest up and in a few days you'll be right until the next episode.... nice.
So yesterday things suddenly get worse, I couldn't get half way up, couldn't put weight on my legs and had to crawl in SOO much pain to the bathroom. My mum had to come over and help me. I thought at one point I was stuck on the floor. I called an ambulance and they told me that they totally understood, but the hospital wouldn't do any tests, they would just give me meds and send me home whether I could walk or not. In fact, if I crawled to the car crying after admission, the hospital would let it happen.
So, here I am, 30 years old in agony on and off for 10 years, and the last episode indicating to me that it's only getting worse.
I am off to the doc tomorrow at a cost of $100, with a MRI again (to see if the bulge is worse) at a cost of $300, then a follow up at the doc of another $100 all just to start and I am a private patient! The cost, the pain and the lack of answers is all too much.
What makes this the ABSOLUTE worst though, is I don't even understand what sets an episode off!!! I have no idea why I can be fine for 6 months, then all of a sudden I can't walk and cry all the way from my bed to the bathroom.
If ANYONE understands what sets an 'episode' off, PLEASE let me know!!!!!
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The pelvic pain, is exactly what I experience too. A physio told me at one stage, that possibly as a result of the back pain, other muscles were trying to compensate and my hips had gone out of alignment. So, this latest episode I am having the pain is my lower back, right glute, down the right leg but also radiating around the whole pelvis.
My L4/5 S1 incident was caused by an exercise session where I was pushed WAY too hard, had never lifted weights before  (was forced to lift anyway as I was in the military) and due to poor form and no strength I managed this damage and it has had a lot of effects since.
You are definitely not alone in that at all, just keep pushing for answers... I have for 10 years now.
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Do exercises regularly prescribed by physiotherapy doctor, regularly means regularly don't forget this word and take rest if possible
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I injured myself at work five months ago had severe leg pain and trauma to leg and back after two months of seeing doctors at a clinic for my legs they sent me to get a mri on my knee during the mri they discovered i had spasms eminating from my lower back and referred me to a ortho who did a mri of my spine he found that I have a L5 S1 protrusion affecting the S1 nerve root I have had to epidurals neither of which has helped at all and have been unable to walk or sit for long periods of time withut flare ups of horrific pain i have also been having trouble urinating for months now on and off i saw a neurosurgeon who did a ct myelogram and said that he noticed some kind of narrowing he said that the only surgery he could preform was a frontal micro laminactimy but that there was a less than 40% chance that it may alleviate some of my symptoms he told me injections wont work pt wont work and chiropractic care wont work I am 30 and I want my life back can any one help?
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I was diagnosed with DDD at age 19 with L4/L5 problems. I did extensive physical therapy and this helped for several years. At age 23 MRI showed the disc to be badly herniated. (Note: I am petite, not overweight, and was not a gymnast or athlete, so the drs were perplexed by my pain--some didn't believe me) There were times I was completely unable to walk for days and I was forced to undergo physical therapy again, although there was no relief, only aggravation. Unfortunately, I live in the South where pain med abuse is rampant, and the docs did not want to prescribe meds, so I began the first of many epidural injections. These helped for about a year and a half. I moved to Europe for a year, and the health insurance would not cover the injections, as it only delays actually fixing the problem. And the German docs I dealt with were so incredibly anti Narcotic medication that I was basically forced to have a discectomy. (Which only cost 70 Euro, I might add...There is much to be said for socialized medicine, contrary to FOX's propaganda) Once the dr performed the microdiscectomy and got "in there" he was shocked by the amount of disc material he had to remove. I had to wear a brace and avoid sitting for 6 weeks to allow my spine to readjust with less disc material. After recovery, my pain returned 6-8 months later and intensified. At this point, I was back in the US. Tried epidurals, nerve blocks to no avail. And after physical therapy at 5-6 different points over the years, I'm over it. So exactly 11 months after the discectomy, I had a spinal fusion at age 26. There were no other options. Again, due to my young age and problems in the area with drug abuse, I had to fight like heck to get any kind of pain medication. My pain was so terrible I could no longer leave my house. My neurosurgeon was extremely conservative and ordered a host of tests to confirm that there would be a successful outcome, mainly due to my age. Surgery was successful! I know there will be more at some point, but it made my life worth living again. Sure, try all the conservative measures first, but if you need surgery---get it. My surgeon used a robot, only made small incisions and didn't have to cut through lots of muscle like the traditional procedure, which makes recovery MUCH easier.  Do your research on doctors, ask lots of questions, and never stop being your best advocate.  With our current health care situation, the best decisions for the patient must often come through our own personal research and advocacy.
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Hi all,
I have a herniated disk between L4 and L5. I believe I have done this when I was around 19 years old, squating a large amount in the gym.( I am currently 22) Ever since then, I could truely say my life hasn't been the same. I have pain in both my lower back and sometimes down my leg. I have been to many doctors etc, all to just be told take medicine, get epidural shots or surgery. I have done several months of physical therapy which helped a little bit. (The best part was after the physical therapy work outs, they would lay me on my stomach and give me a deep tissue massage.. Ughhh i loved it!

Any ways, the pain in my back and leg has decreased over the years. BUT, there is always an annoying feeling in my back. Somedays pain down the legs. I always feel some type of symptom that reminds me to be carefull.

This problem has very much affected my life. Sometimes I can't help but feel scared and sorry for myself. I am in constant fear. Always worrying I am going to somehow make it worse. This type of injury I wouldn't wish upon my worst enemy.

I wanted to ask this community if this pain has also made you feel like you have lost a big part of your life.. Made you feel restricted... Fearfull and mainly depressed?
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Hi all,
I have a herniated disk between L4 and L5. I believe I have done this when I was around 19 years old, squating a large amount in the gym.( I am currently 22) Ever since then, I could truely say my life hasn't been the same. I have pain in both my lower back and sometimes down my leg. I have been to many doctors etc, all to just be told take medicine, get epidural shots or surgery. I have done several months of physical therapy which helped a little bit. (The best part was after the physical therapy work outs, they would lay me on my stomach and give me a deep tissue massage.. Ughhh i loved it!

Any ways, the pain in my back and leg has decreased over the years. BUT, there is always an annoying feeling in my back. Somedays pain down the legs. I always feel some type of symptom that reminds me to be carefull.

This problem has very much affected my life. Sometimes I can't help but feel scared and sorry for myself. I am in constant fear. Always worrying I am going to somehow make it worse. This type of injury I wouldn't wish upon my worst enemy.

I wanted to ask this community if this pain has also made you feel like you have lost a big part of your life.. Made you feel restricted... Fearfull and mainly depressed?
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I'm in the same boat as all i hurt my back back in 96' mowing my moms lawn, healded, then over the last 15 years it has gotten reinjured since 06' it has been pretty on going, have had 3 mri's, injections, nerve burning, PT,Electrko nerve conduction test, and have a TENS unit as well all have shown slight buldging but not impinging. asked doc then what is it going to take? no answer, flash forward to 1 week ago and found a new doc stated i feel a slight diffrence in leg stregnth. RT side, felt muscule spasms, you have had all the tests and then some. so i'm not going to put you through them again right now we are just going to manage your pain until it goes away or ends up in surgery, right now i'm on oxicodine 2x5mg 3 time aday, Naproxin 500mg 2x a day and robaxin 2 x 4 a day. for now still playing with meds to get it right and have a decient life i also have a very active 2yr old (like having 3 boys at his age) still love him no matter also have a 5 yr old with Bipolar, and 9yr old all boys, including my wife having bi polar 2.
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Hi Tiffee,

This is Preeti. Oh my God, I exactly have the symptoms that you are talking. I have L5 s1 disc bulge since 5 yrs now but since 2009 I am expereincing additional problem like I feel all the nerves are moving continously in my legs and also hands sometimes. I used to be very active and had healthy weight but in 2009 I lost like a lot of weight and became underweight. I am trying hard to put back my weight now. I am assuming that this problem became worse after losing all that healthy weight in 2009. I am curious, is this the same case with you as you mentioned earlier that you are compact? Also, in 2009 I went to some physiotherapy that involved lifting weights...this problem became worse since then but my MRI does not show much difference before and after the physio. Any thoughts/advise from you is greatly appreciated. Have you tried TENS unit?

Now, I know I am not alone. Hope and pray to God to give strength to manage the pain

Thank you,
Preeti
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1613542 tn?1366472143
Wow this is a long post lol. I will try to keep mine short and sweet. At 21 I herniated the disk from S1-L3 it has cause me to be paraparetic with neuropathy. I had surgery to trim the disk off but I will not get the feeling back in my legs ect. Two years later I re-herniated two disk. I have arthritis, bone spurs, a tethered spinal column the two herniated disk and I am inoperable because of all the damage I have done to my back and the scar tissue from the first surgery. What I have found to be helpful to me is back strengthening exercises, I took Gabitril for the muscle spasms but I am no longer on it, being careful when I bendover, not picking up heavy things, no twisting, and all the other common things for back problems. The doctor is probably not wanting to operate because it can make things worse. It will weaken your back and throw off it's stability. I do take black cherry extract for the inflammation. It has worked better than any otc or prescription I have taken. Do get a mri at least every two years to keep it updated. I don't know if you have went to physical therapy but you would probably benefit greatly from it.  You don't have to take the pain meds everyday, just as needed when you can't take the pain anymore. I am currently starting acupuncture and traction therapies and will try to keep you posted if they help. There is also a chart of the spinal column and nerves that may be helpful to you in the future on my profile page. It shows what can be damaged in the area you are bulging and what they can affect so that you can kinda monitor what your disk is doing and if it is causing problem. So much for short and sweet lol.

Best of luck to you, Sissie
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Hurt my back back in June 2006.  Turns out is was a 4mm herniation of the L5/S1 disc.  Pain ran from my butt down my left leg, was really tough to sit for long periods of time.  Got a few shots in my spine, and went to PT, didn't d too much.  Used advil to manage the pain.  After two years the pain has gradually subsided, now  I only experience mild lower back pain once and a while.
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I was diagnosed with L5-S1 disc hernation (via MRI). I saw a Neurosurgeon and was put on pains meds, muscle relaxors,and 2 steriod packs. I had severe pain going from my butt (about the top of my "crack") all the way down the cheek, the back of my thigh and calf to the heel and outside area of my foot. sometimes my foot would go numb and my little toes would curl under. My back really doesnt hurt...just the leg pain is killer- sneezing, coughing, and throwin up is unbearable...I had to stop the pain meds because I was throwing up, I can't eat or sleep...I go tomorrow for a microdisectomy..they did not try ESI injections because the steriod packs didn't work. I am so ready to get this over with!! Alot of people have commented good results from the surgery!! Good luck ALL!!
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I have bulging on L5 S1 causing sciatica. Pain in my left butt cheek, really bad pain in the left leg on the outside of the calf just above the ankle, and burning hot and pain in the left foot, with the big toe always feeling like it is cramped.

I went to a very, very, well respected neurosurgeon. Not only that but he had removed my child's cancerous brain tumor 12 years ago and I was told by a neurologist and radiation oncologist at the University of Michigan what a great job he did.This Dr. is in his late 70's but still does injections and carpel tunnel surgeries.

First he did an MRI and a nerve test where they stick pins in your legs and shock you. I think that test was an EMG. The Dr. did the injection and it only lasted for the day.

Next he did another test where he put a wet sponge on my back with a wire attached to it. He used something that looked like a Q-tip and touched it to certain parts of my legs and feet. He held it there and turned up the voltage until I felt it. It was minorly uncomfortable but not painful. The first time I had it, there seemed to be a place on my foot that I couldn't feel the electricity so he had to turn it way up, and that hurt, but that didn't happen this time. This test is supposedly fairly new and called a "Sensory Conduction Test." That was 2 years ago. The injection after that gave me relief for 18 months. He said he had found another nerve that was involved by using that SCT.

I had the SCT again 2 weeks ago and an MRI last week. This coming Monday I will have another Nerve Block injection in my spine to stop the pain again. Even though when the needle hits the right spot, it hurts like crap, I can't wait! It is instantaneous relief.

The Dr. did say that there is a surgery I may have to have someday, and it's tricky. For him to say it's tricky means its really tricky. If you are in Northern IN or SouthWest MI and you want to see him, let me know here and I'll give you his info. He used to have a rotten bedside manor but really mellowed over the years. How he was described to me 12 years ago was nothing like he is anymore. His receptionist jokes with him, and he says she's the boss. His main nurse has been with him for over 25 years.

I'll check back for a couple of weeks.

Ryan R.
Elkhart, IN
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Yay! Block done and feeling less pain. Still too early for full results.
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I recovered from a herniated disc four years ago largely through a chiropractor and an inversion unit. My pain had become so intolerable that I could no longer walk and had to drag myself to the bathroom. I did some steroids early on as it felt like I was losing control of my left leg. I healed slowly, but surely. The inversion unit, about five minutes a day, ended up having a huge effect. Basically it reverses gravity and gives the vertebrae a chance to open up and for the disc to slip back inside. Hence it gets to the root of the problem.

Four years later, I'm on this site because I am having trouble again, though not to the degree of before. I'm still in the process of working through the nerve pain with stretches and a little prednisone (used aspirin before), though it's especially frustrating because I always wake up in pain. I'm eager to try water exercises which I hear are very helpful, and pilates as soon as I get a little healthier. Also, I am wearing a back brace as prescribed by my PT. A nice back brace can really help. I am standing taller, and my posture has improved.

The one thing that I could not do without, and that really helped me in the intervening years is one of those blue yoga balls. Everyone with this problem needs to get one. I don't use it for sitting (yeah right), but rather for catching my back. I can lay over it on my stomach and not feel pain for the first time all day. I can also rock back and forth a little and it really helps. Furthermore, I can lay on it over my back when I am feeling good and it really makes a difference. The last position that I found, when you are really healing, is to roll forward from lying on your back to slowly dropping your feet against the floor. The ball will then roll with you by continuing to press into your back. If you hold this position, so that your feet or on the ground and the ball is against your back, because of the position that you just came from, you will have great traction. And traction is what the vertebrae need to spread apart. And be sure to get a large blue ball. I'm 5'9" and the regular ones are way too small.

Hope this helps.
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I would be interested in this provider you speak of as we are running into one road block after another working with Borgess Spine in Kalamazoo. My husband already had a partial disectomy in 2005 but since now has pain radiating down the right leg terminating in the knee. And the left leg  pain has returned. He has perminant foot drop from the last herniated disk effects on the nerve. Getting the standard of care and getting into a respected Neurosurgeon is worse than ever before. Thanks
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1742106 tn?1311080982
Hi, my name is Anthony, 26 years old and live in Australia.

I have been diagnoised with L5/S1 prominent disc issues. I have only had the pain for 6 weeks but it feels like 6 years. I'm at the point of crying beacuse I don't know how to stop the pain. I wake up, I'm in pain, I go to work and I'm in pain.

Last week i went for yet another CT scan this time with cortizone shots directly into the nerve. They say it will take 10 days to kick in and there's a chance it won't work. I know it won't. The pain is worse than before. It started to get beter for a few days but has now worn off.

I feel so down right now. Just like you Benny I'm young and want to do so many things that I may not be able to do.

I have no idea if I should now start going back and seeing my physio or start seeing a chriopractor. So many unanswered questions.

I hope everyone here reading this that your pain disappears permantly one day soon. I really do.

Ant.
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1762101 tn?1313230750
To keep things short I will just say been there done that.  3 fusions anterior and interior. They failed in fact I would say i was worse then before. I was taking two big doses of Oxycontin and burning through 100 percent every two weeks!!!!!  The Pain still was unbearable then I did the best thing for my pain I ever could.       I got a procedure that implanted a Intrathecal Spinal pump by Medtronic. The reservoir is implanted in my stomach the leads are tunneled under my side, and go  directly to my spine (nerve bundle). The pain med are injected through my skin in to the pump every 70 days or so. Thia pump gives you a constant drip of med to the area of pain. We are talking Micrograms instead of taking way to many oral pills that have to go through the entire body before they help where the pain is. Not to mention destroying your Liver. Now I'm off the Oxycontin and only take two to four Percet a day for break through pain. I am definitely not running marathons or even bending, lifting etc.., but I sure am s lot better then before.
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I practically cried when I saw this.  I too have a herniated disc with sciatic pain down my right leg.  I too have taken all kinds of meds, got physical therapy, etc.  Nothing works.  I'm 35 and have a 2 year old and 4 year old and I can't do anything with them.  I've never felt so helpless in my life.  And of course this all started a couple months ago, right before a first ever trip to Disney that we planned for a year ago.  I had to call my doctor for an excuse to give to the Disney folks so I can get a disability card becasue I cannot stand for very long. I hate this.  I don't want to feel this way, I just want to be normal again.
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I'd like to know the name of the doc. Is he in Grand rapids by any chance?
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i have 4 buldging discs that are hitting a nerve and the pain travels down my leg.  the dr. said i could do an injection in my spine but that scares me.  for now he put me on Zipsor  25 mg. and Gabapentin.  i started with 300 mg of Gabapentin but it made me too sleepy so they changed it to 100 mg and i am fine with that.  after a couple of hours, NO PAIN.  its like a miracle drugs for me and i can go about my day and get things done that i wasnt able to do with my back pain being so excruciating.  Ask your dr. about these meds.  they sure have helped me and hope they help you too!
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I had the same problem as you... disc was out 4mm in the L5/S1 region. I was told by my back specialist that walking is actually one of the best ways to relieve the pressure and pain. (I also had back injections, was on an antidepressant for nerve pain as well as some other pain killers... none very helpful.)  Mind you, it was extremely painful to walk at first and I had to go it slowly. However, after a while the pain subsided a little (enough for life to become bearable), I was able to walk a little faster and as long as I didn't sit down the pain was relieved most of the day. Sleeping...and getting out of bed in the mornings... now those were entirely different stories.
I hope your pain is more manageable these days!
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I had surgery after suffering from L5 S1 issues.  My doc had me try therapy first and that was excruciating.  They were the smallest exercises yet hurt so much.  After 9 months of dragging my leg around and having to sleep on the couch because i could not get myself out of my bed(would literally have to throw myself off the couch for less pain) I had a disectomy.  I had instant, instant relief!! Was out of work less then a week to.  
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1768045 tn?1331775336
Hi to all of you guys.

I have been reading all of your post on here, and i am amazed to find so many people who are suffering in a similar way to me. I kind of feel so alone until i read all of your stories.

I have been suffering for approx 10 years now. I am a 34 years old man, who has always enjoyed keeping fit and healthy, enjoying visiting the gym and training, however, now i am struggling very bad.

Originally i started with pain in my private region and bladder discomfort and visited 5 different urologists around the country and paying private in desperation for answers. After a number of horrible tests including cameras down my urithra and into my bladder twice and camera in my back passage, nothing serious was found. The Urologists seemed confused and like always diagnosed me with prostatitis.

I have had years of hell and pain, visisting hospitals in the night in severe pain in my pelvic floor, bladder and stomach area. I never got any answers of anybody to explain my problems.

Like many of you guys on here my life has been affected so much i cant explain. It has changed me as a person, i have had some real bad low times and it has affected me in my relationships, with friends, family and with my career. Last year after 10 years as a Production Manager in a very stressful target driven assembly line i lost my job. My pain affected my job performance and concentration so much, Some days i would be in absolute agony nearly passing out with the pain. I was and still am often brought to tears. I would go in the toilets at work and cry, before wiping my tears and going back to work.

I have tried to tell my family and close friends what the pain is like and even though they claim to understand, i know they cannot fully understand, but i know you guys can understand for real. No matter what you tell somebody they can imagine how horrible it is but cannot understand the impact on you. I have got o the stage where i try not to tell people how i feel, because i feel like they are fed up of hearing!! So i keep it to myself a lot.

It was not until last year when i began reading and investigating myself that i infact realised that around the same time my symptoms started 10 years ago, i had a very bad back injury which was very painful and my hips seemed to be out of line and body twisted. I went to my Dr and he reffered me to PT and after time the acute pain went but chronic back pain persisted and something didnt feel right. Approx 2 years later at work i lifted something heavy and immediately felt my back go again, but much worse. i felt like a twang and electric shock feeling in my lower back. Again i was in so so much pain and could hardly stand. Again i went to PT, but no MRI scan was ever given by my Dr. ever since i have had chronic back pain. I never put two and two together until last year and then i realised the pain in my pelvic floor and private area could infact be linked to my back injury. I suggested it to my Dr and urologist and they said it is possible!!! Its bad when you have to make suggestions tou you Dr's.

Finally i had an MRI scan last year, 8 years after my back injury!!! the scan showed i have 4 bulging discs in my lumber spine. I think it was L5 S1 and others. It also showed that the the lower part which connects to the bottom of my spine is out of line. I cant remember the name of it!!!

I visited a Neurologist who claimed that a bone is pushing on i think L5 nerve but she claimed that it didnt show any evidence of anything which could explain my symptoms. In fact she was horrible. She was the understudy of my neurologist and dismissed that the MRI scan could miss something, and doesnt always show everything. She more or less said that, i will have to live with my pain, and to try again Gabapentin and pain killers and get on with my life. i was so so upset, angry and down after this visit. I told her that i dont like taking pain killers constantly for an ongoing chronic pain problem, its against my beliefs. I explained that i have no problem taking pain relief medication if i have pain which i know will go after a shrt time like a sprain or something, but not for an ongoing chronic pain problem. I think it is not good and the medication will cause me further problems later. She was not happy with my comments, but i stick to my arguement. She showed no understanding, when i explained this pain is killing me as a person and destroying my life.

I am shocked to to read all of your stories and realise how many people are suffering with the same problem and not getting any real support or help.

My symptoms now include:

*Pain in my hamstrings- cramping, aching and spasm which goes all the way to my ankle.

*Pain on the inside of my legs and groin area as above.

* Bad pain in my Bum- particularly if i put pressure on the area.

* Bad pain in my hips and above my hips both sides.

* Bad pain in stomach- Stabbing pains, tension and burning.

* Bad pain in the penis shaft- tension, spasm, throbbing and aching.

My most horrible pains are in my stomach and penis. This is horrible and really gets me down. I cant remember anybody mentioning the pain in the penis shaft. Does anybody else experience pain in this area. I know this pain is linked with the other pains, because i can feel it inside. I believe that it has something to do with my Pedundal Nerve, maybe trapped by musce or damaged.

My symtoms are made worse by any physical work, even something as simple as cleaning my car or painting my garage. I know it sounds crazy but i am afraid to do anything with the fear of suffering.

I used to love training and keeping strong and fit and i trained very hard and regular. I went through a stage leading up to the back injury of training my abdominal muscles very hard. I had great stomach, however, i believe this actually contributed to my back injury and pains. I think i overtrained my stomach and undertrained my lower back, causing a weakness in my lower back and an in-balance. I also think i did the wrong abdominal training and didnt concentrate on my core and using old fashioned techniques, which are now considered bad practice!!

Now if i try to train my abs or back i suffer with very bad pain. I am so frustrated and dont know what to do for the best. Some advise to train you stomach, lower back and core to build strength back, but it seems to cause me pain so i dont know if i am doing myself more harm??

I am now looking for work and to be honest dont know what job i can do. If i sit too much it makes my pain much worse, yet anything physical does the same.

i dont think anybody really understads how difficult it is to function in life with this chronic illness. But i know you guys know.

I just take every day as it comes and hope that one day i will find the answer to my pain and somebody will actually take an interest and actually want to help. I think that is the problem with Dr's. Anything outside the norm and they are affraid to accept or investigate.

Anybody who has experienced similar symptoms in the private area, i would be glad to hear from you and your experiences.

I send my understanding and best wishes of hope to all of you and wish all the best.
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All of your writings seem so familiar. It's like reading my own medical records!

In Jan 2000 I began feeling a tingling sensation in my left toes. By the time April rolled around it had gotten to be more of a numbness feeling, and our mens softball season was underway.  For some reason I was running strange, my left leg ran like I had a hammy pull- which I did not.

The numbness then ran up my left leg, but I put it off as my wife dealt with breast cancer.  Finally in October I saw my Dr and he ordered xrays & mri after I failed his physical exam. Saw the neurologist next, and was referred to another Kaiser facility 50 miles away.  My wife was out of town on business now that she was back to work, so my Dad went with me. At the time I had just turned 38, and Dad was 65.  When the Neuro Surgeon entered the room he stopped, looked at me on the exam table, looked at my Dad, looked at the chart & declared, "Wow, you're the patient. Looking at this mri i would have thought your dad was the patient."

He went on to explain that I have 3 issues: 1) spinal stenosis, 2) degenerative disc disease, 3) a bulge at L5-S1.  He want to operate, a laminectomy, the next month. I push it off a few months due to work commitments & have a L4-5 laminectomy in 4/01.  In July I started PT and was assigned to a intern. RED FLAGS should have gone off but it did not. I described my leg weakness, numbness in my foot & leg- and he has me jumping up onto a 12" box.  I quit after 3 sessions because I was in so much pain.  In August I saw the surgeon again, a new mri, and he says I need another laminectomy at L3-4.  I had it performed the week of Thanksgiving 11/02, 19 months after my 1st surgery.

When I awoke from surgery I knew something was not right.  I was in pain 10X greater than my first surgery.  I told every Doc, nurse, PT person, etc who came to see me the next few days something was not right.

Recovery was slow & painful.  After my first surgery I was back to work after 6 weeks.  Post op 4 weeks and I was barely walking to my neighbors driveway & back, a total of maybe 100'.  I finally saw the Surgeon in 2/03 and he was surprised I was having such problems. He referred me to Orthopedic Surgeon for possible fusion. STOP: he had told me about a possible fusion pre-surgery if it didn't go well.  What I SHOULD have done pre-surgery is have a consultation with Ortho Dr. I did not. MISTAKE.  So I finally see Ortho Dr late 5/03 and he flat out tells me he will NOT operate on me, NO fusion.  He then logically explains that I've had two "lamies" at L3-4 & L4-5, AND a bulge at L5-S1.  He asks my wife & I, "Now if I fused you, where would that transfer the load?"  DING DING DING!!!!  Duh, to the bulge, which would then blow it out.  He did try shots, but it did not work at all.

My second time at Physical Therapy I walked up to the Receptionist and explained I've now had 2 lamies, and need to have the BEST person they had in the department.  She then paired me with Karen, my PT Goddess.  Without her I don't know where I'd be today.

As with many of us, I too have had my ups & downs emotionally. I was declared disabled, granted Social Security Disability on my first application (which my employers long term disab insurance co made me file for), struggled with the thought of "how can I provide for my family," and hence my weight yo-yo'd. I now weigh 85# more than when this all first started in early 2000.

I went thru Kaiser's Chronic Pain Mgmt Program, been offered a Medical Marijuana card, and have tried acupuncture  twice (once on my own dime, and once thru kaiser. was told both times since i had surgery my meridians have been compromised). I did massage for the 1st 5yrs, and then for my feet found a woman who does neuro-reflexology (my right foot also became numb about 2002).

It is a long haul. The sooner one realizes that this IS a MAJOR life changing event the better.  Too many of us men do not.  I hope my story can help someone in the future.
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1768045 tn?1331775336
Hi,
I am really really sorry to hear your story and you have my total understanding of how you feel and how you have ups and downs.

To be honest i have absolutely no quality of life at all. I am in agony most of the time and go to sleep (or try to!!) and wake up with horrible pain. When i open my eyes in a morning i just hope for a second my pain will be gone or less.

Chronic pain is absolutely draining and takes everything from you and your personality. I used to be a very active, happy person always joking and laughing and this pain has changed me considerably.

My pain is more focused in my pelvic floor, bum, hips, stomach and genital region. The worst pain for me is in my stomach and more so in my penis itself. Its like having a constant like tooth ache in your private region. It is unbearable and often brings me to tears and i prey every day for my life back and the pain to go. Pain in this area is just unbearable, it is such a sensitive area.

I totaly understand and can totaly relate to your situation, and i genuinely hope you can find an answer and a way to get your life back.

I agree with you that nobody and i mean nobody can understand how such chronic pain can affect you as a person and affect your life. Despite trying and repeatidly explaining to people they just cannot understand. I find people are pretending to listen to you, but in fact they are not really listening as you have been telling them for so long they switch off. What they dont realise is that you can feel this, and although it is not their fault it really hurts and makes you feel so alone.

Well you and me are not completely alone my friend we understand each other and that is why it is nice to talk to each other.

I honesly dont know what my future will hold, i just hope both of us can find some answers and live our life.

Take care.
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I am lying in bed this am feeling much of the same frusteration you are all feeling. It hurts and there is no easy answer. I have been dealing with the pain of DDD for 8 yrs and herniated L5 disc in April '11. I am 37 and have a husband and 6 kids to care for and have felt incredibly overwhelmed. Dealing with pain and Doctors treating me like I am a drug addict is soooo irritating. I don't want to be an addict...I just want relief so I can go out with my husband or play with my kids. Best I can say is keep trying...I have done chiro, acupuncture, PT,yoga,injection and I even quit smoking in May. I am feeling better than I was this spring, but it takes time and effort an it is not easy. Get as much support as you can and stay as positive as you can....it is possible to recover from this. I know it is. (:
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1768045 tn?1331775336
Bless you Grace i understand how you feel. You are so limited to what you can do. It is definately a dissability. You just want to return to normal life so much and do normal thing. Especially when you have a family.
I am glad you are feeling better and hope you do recover and send my best wishes to you.
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Thanks for your post. I'm at the 3-4 month mark. Doc want to do SNRB first before relying on a spinal fusion. Things look hopeless for me, until i read your post.



Thanks
NBadPain
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1866918 tn?1320116277
I am a 43 yearold and I have had pain in my left lower leg in the font for a mounth now and it bunnes bad and when i bend over it feels like something is rping in my leg i go back to the dr. tomorrow and there puting a speasel boot on my leg it will g up to my ne.
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Try using a Jelly type Ice pack applied directly to the skin over the Herniated or Bulging disc. Re adjust the ice pack every 3-4 mins so it doesn’t stick or burn your skin but leave it applied for at least 15mins.
I think this helps shrink the damaged disc and definitely reduces pain dramatically, better than any pain killers. Do this 5-6 times a day dramatically and prior to going asleep. It worked for me.
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Try using a Jelly type Ice pack applied directly to the skin over the Herniated or Bulging disc. Re adjust the ice pack every 3-4 mins so it doesn’t stick or burn your skin but leave it applied for at least 15mins.
I think this helps shrink the damaged disc and definitely reduces pain dramatically, better than any pain killers. Do this 5-6 times a day dramatically and prior to going asleep. It worked for me.
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I am.23 also.i completely understand. I have no idea where to go next. I have been to 1 doc so far he sent me a pt and all.he could do after that was surgery and that's all he can offer. I really want that to be my last option. I.can hardly walk for min at a time. Laying down is about the only relief. I am only on oxycodone. And really that doesn't help it just makes it ok. I need help. Shots. Injection whats let
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So many of us are in tremendous pain with bulging disks, nerve damage ect, we cannot carry on a normal daily existence without pain.
We have loss of work and this effects the quality of our everyday family life in a huge way
How many of you find it amazing that with all these hurtful painful stories, doctors are so ready to prescribe another pain killer or another quick drug fix, another symptom fix or just plain and simple,more dollars for the drug companies
With all the millions of dollars spent on research in this area, isn't it incredible after all these years. there is still no cure for in most cases, a mechanical problem, after all what would all these health professionals do if all of a sudden they started fixing backs?
Profits wouldn't look quite as healthy would they?
If this is true, these people have to live with this, and there pain may end up being greater than ours
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1894392 tn?1321268935
I have constant lower back pain and a "stabbing" nerve-jolt kind of pain in the middle of my back. After a recent MRI I was told I have disc protrusions and "lesions" in the thoracic area. I have gotten used to the back pain, until the spasms hit. That is,,,woah,  the worst thing ever! Its like your lower back just bottoms out and you have to ride it out till it passes. Its unbelievable. What is surprising to me, the Dr. says my nerves look good..My worst pain is in my  buttocks, legs, and feet. I have BURNING and pins and needles to the extreme. Even in my arms and hands. I take 2 Cymbalta, 3600mg. Neurontin, 400mg. Tramadol daily. Seriously, it only helps for a few hours. Laying on my side helps some. I've been referred to a Neurosurgeon, which will take months to get appt. I'm sure. Anyhow I am so sorry for everyones pain. I really do know.
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I know this is an old thread however I wanted to offer some hope for those suffering from back pain. I had severe sciatica to the point where it hurt to walk. I was a fitness nut and I think I over did it a bit, to say the least. I had  2 steroid injections that did not help. I went to a neurosurgeon and he suggested a microdisectomy. Immediately after waking up from surgery the pain was gone. I was back to work in 7 days, I could have gone back sooner but doc would not release me. I was told to rest for 3 months with no work outs. I am glad to tell all that I am doing great, back to working out, although I do less core work now and am careful. There is hope and the surgery worked for me in a big way. I hope this helps.
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I don't trust those quacks to touch my back. Heck, they can't even diagnose me, after all this time!  I'm glad that it worked for you though.
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Having read all the posts I can say I have endured most of these symptoms for over 30 years, cramps in calfs, hams and glutes have appeared after another road accident, physio helps for a few hours or days. I can reccomend chinese pain plasters and I can reccommend cayanne pepper and tumeric a teaspoon of each in hot water, add an oxo or spoonful of boullion powder to make it go down easier, it has helped my cramps, the doctor has put me on quinine to see if it helps, will let you know.
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i am deeply impressed at the courage of all the people who have written these posts. the honesty and integrity shown in the face of such suffering is very humbling.i am 58 and i have suffered with lower back pain for some 30 years, have bulging discs L4 and L5. i am a handyman and surf regularly but not without varying degrees of pain, i do take quite strong pain killers and anti inflammatory medication. after reading these posts i have decided not to go ahead with the surgery i have been offered. i will keep managing my pain daily.over the years i have drawn great comfort from my faith in God and that one day i will be in heaven pain free. in the mean time i will keep going, and thank you to everyone for sharing. God bless you all.    
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Now I've also heard that ICE and bouncing 4-5 min on a big workout ball will help brign back blood flow which in turn can help to heal the tears causing the herniation/buldge. I was just diagnosed today and was thankful to finally have the problem identified after month's of being looked at like I was a hyprocondriac.
Stay strong and try simple methods rather than hugely invasive procedures. Surgury is a last resort and there can be major complications that are irrecoverable and leave you paralized. Scary, even try a naturopath
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I have the same problems that you are dealing with. I am only 23, have been struggling with the pain for over 2 years now.. since i was 30 weeks pregnant. made it through the pregnancy & labor and until now they never figured out what was wrong.. claimed it would go away after the baby weight. but it didn't. the pain has now spread from my lower lumbar (left side) all the way down my leg and to the arch of my left foot. It cripples me and sometimes i have slight paralysis and cannot move for 15-25 mins at a time.  Nothing gets rid of the pain, no pain medicine is strong enough.. they finally found (due to MRI) that i have severe nerve damage, arthritis, scoliosis, 3 disc fractures, protruding disc into s1.  I'm losing control over my left leg & lose feeling more and more each day..(by that i mean) i cannot bend my toes, i have to concentrate hard on just walking in order for my legs to work BUT i feel like my leg is being amputated at all times...my whole life has been turned around.  Dealing with a toddler & all the pain is slowly killing me.  So I started going to a physical therapist/ chiropractor.. they started me on electric shock therapy twice a week & adjustments 1x a month. it never helped, it actually made things a lot worse.. after the mri they decided i needed to see a orthopedic surgeon to get further help.  But it took them 2 months and they never found one.  So i had to take it into my own hands and decided to go with a neurosurgeon instead..LUkcily, i found 6 that accept my insurance & are willing to get the ball rolling quickly..I would suggest you look into neurosurgeons since we're dealing with the spine & all. I wish you the best of luck! Don't give in to the pain & know your not alone.
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I am a 26 year old park ranger. Hiking, biking, canoeing, anything and everything active outside is my life. I think (I never got it checked out at the time) I herniated (or at least bulged) my L5/S1 disc back in '09. I couldn't even bend over enough to pull my pants up and get dressed. Time passed, and the pain went away, but there was a strange tug in my right hamstring. Something was wrong, but since it wasn't painful at the time, I continued to hike an entire summer season on it in CO. Then I spent a winter season in FL., running two half marathons. My back went out after the second one. I went to see a chiropractor who was more fixated on getting "the normal" curve back in my spine than listening to my problem.  I went to a massage therapist- felt good, but again, no improvement on the symptom in my hamstring. Then I went to AK. for a summer, and in may, I think it fully herniated (again, didn't check with an MRI). I took prednisone and the pain went away enough to work a summer avoiding bear encounters, limited hiking etc. Afterwards, however, there was a numbess in my right baby toe area (which corresponds to L5/S1 herniated disc- delf diagnosed) and in Sept. I woke up one morning, and I could barely limp to the bathroom, 50 yards away. I felt burning, searing pain down the right leg- definate sigh of herniated disc. I was in bush Alaska, where  a flight to Anchorage would cost $600. I quit my job early, and got myself back home to get an MRI just to find out what I already knew- an L5/S1 herniated disc, and bulging L4/L5.  The docs said: cortisone shots, PT, and then surgery. I said NO! Instead, I've been seeing a chiro for about 7 weeks with decompression therapy (www.lordex.com), within the first 4 weeks, I felt 80% better. This is a wound that will take a long time to heal, but I believe that the body will heal itself, if given the time and attention. I still have numbness in my toe, and some pain down the sciatic nerve.
Reading all these posts angers me more than anything, as I am very frustrated to see that the medical profession only sees three or four solutions to this prob: Medication, PT, surgery and steroids. I wonder what is the CAUSE of our herniated discs? Muscle Imbalance (http://www.losethebackpain.com)? Why are doctors only interested in masking our pain, rather than look at what caused it, and try to solve the problem? Sure pain meds are helpful sometimes, but I don't want an addiction- I want this problem PERMANANTLY gone! Let's start asking the right questions folks- don't be reactive and passive- get active and involved with your healing. It's your life afterall!
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I have had occasional sciatica for the past 40 years which usually subsides with aspirin. I had a badly herniated L5 disc 10 years ago that paralyzed me with pain and I was incapable of moving or even dragging myself to the bathroom. I got a deep shiatsu massage about 2 days later and was finally able to move a little. With time, the "trigger point" pain in my back subsided and I basically forgot about it. Fast forward 10 years and I now have numbness on the bottom of both feet with some shooting pains in one hee and increased sciatica down the length of the entire sciatic nerve. I went to a podiatrist today and he suggested that I have L5 disc problems. I felt amazed to find out that my foot numbness is NOT diabetes, not peripheral neuropathy, but is probably related to my old disc injury.

I am so grateful to have found this forum and my heart goes out to all of you for being so brave in the face of so much pain.
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I too have an L5-s1 sciatica nerve root protruson and man life has changed in a good and bad way. The good is I was unable to walk, but now I am walking. I cannot get on roller coasters, but I can go to a museum or btanical garden. Best advice support and no stress. Stress can keep hurting you and pls don't twist or bend. Walking helps me, but when I start my back feels like a thousand pounds! Thanks to loving me and realizing what happened I am ready to fight this root battle by strtetching. Don't stop stretching. Pain won't stop
but time doesn't stop too. Pls be strong!!! I am 25  and have gone through one epiduaral, 1 cortisone, physical therapy, meds, and now to just over the counter NSAIDs. Nothing has helped. Everyone is different when it comes to healing. Next is accupunture, but stretch and home bc you are young w fresh muscles wanting to work. Warm lavender sitz baths, heat wraps, and ask your doc all you want. If they are no good break up with them and move on. I went through five doctors before someone beleived this healthy 110 pound 25 year. GO GIRL!! xD  
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I am suffering with leg pain. Seen a doctor who said it does not look like blood clotting or anything so if the pain carrys on after a weeks time go see him again. Throught the dah tbe pain isnt reconisable but at night its waking me up.lasting for up to four hrs a time even longer. I am drained with pain. please what can i do??
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I am suffering with leg pain. Seen a doctor who said it does not look like blood clotting or anything so if the pain carrys on after a weeks time go see him again. Throught the dah tbe pain isnt reconisable but at night its waking me up.lasting for up to four hrs a time even longer. I am drained with pain. please what can i do??
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I am suffering with leg pain. Seen a doctor who said it does not look like blood clotting or anything so if the pain carrys on after a weeks time go see him again. Throught the dah tbe pain isnt reconisable but at night its waking me up.lasting for up to four hrs a time even longer. I am drained with pain. please what can i do??
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1835200 tn?1427463838
I had a ruptured disc L4-L5 that pinched sciatic nerve and caused severe pain down my leg and into my foot. It was very painful to walk. I went to a neurosurgeon and had a MRI which showed a piece of the disc on the nerve. I tried steriod injection and 1 physical therapy visit with no relief.  I had a micro disc surgery, out patient by the way. I felt better immediately waking from the surgery. It has been 1.5 years and I am 100%. I do now watch what I do especially during my workouts. I would advise you to see a neurosurgeon and discuss this option. You may have other things wrong. Waiting to get sciatica fixed can sometimes cause permanent damage and numbness in the leg. The surgery worked for me and very, very glad I did it. Best of luck.
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I wrecked a 4-wheeler in August of last year.  Initially they thought I just fractured my L-3.  A month after the accident I went to a neurosurgeon and he said I also had a ruptured disc at the L-5, S-1.  I have had severe pain down my right leg since the accident.  He said it should go away on it's own and gave me some oral steroids to try.  After they didn't work he recommended an epidural steroid, then another.  After the second one, that I had about 3 weeks ago, I felt a little relief down my leg.  Now the pain is back and about as bad as it was after my accident.  I don't feel like I can't do anything physical, because the pain drags me down so bad.  We ranch in MT and  physical labor is a way of life.  I'm afraid that if I can't get this pain under control, our way of life is going to have to change.  It takes all my strength to go feed the cows.  By the time I'm done at 10am, I need to go take a nap and rest for the remainder of the day.  I'm trying to get an appointment with a different neurosurgeon.  I have to get something figured out.  Is it possible they missed something on the MRI or CAT scan?  They said the disc is bulging to the left side and I have my pain down the right leg.
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You are describing something that sounds very similiar to my experiece although disc L4-L5 for me. I did a very similiar treatment with little relief. I thought I would be living with this for the rest of my life. My neurosurgeon diagnosed the disc on the nerve from my MRI and said surgery has a very high chance of succes but we could try the steriods first. I was approx. 30 days later that we scheduled the micro discectomy. Instant relief and as I posted earlier 100% for me. I know everyone is different although this option worked for me. I would schedule another app. with the doc and ask about the micro discetomy. Also let him/her know that nothing has gone away yet and you are still in pain. Also do some research on the procedure. Best of luck and I believe you will get this fixed.
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would like to know about exercises that i can do. i need to get back into shape for the military but its hard somdays to get out of bed. i tried to sleep on my side but end up on my stomach. i also have early signs of arthritous. any advise would be helpfull.
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You have not given us much information. Have you injured your back? Are you having pain that won't go away? How is your weight? There are many, many options for exercise based on your current fitness level, weight, other health related issues, etc. Not sure if you have any limitations that would prevent you from exercising. If so consult with a doc before starting. Otherwise exercise is a CHOICE one makes to stay fit and healthy. It is fact that a regular exercise program will improve your health make one strong and feel better. My advice for fitness is to start slow and have many choices- walk, bike, hike, weights, row, fitness videos, join a gym, do some classes. What are you waiting for its your choice.
There is a exercise and fitness forum here on MH you make check out. Best of luck.
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I got into a car accident October 2010. I was fully stopped at a red light and a drunk driver rear-ended me going 50 MPH+ and I then slammed into 3 cars in front of me. Talk about extreme whip lash! Right after the accident, I knew something was wrong with my back and neck, it wasn't at all normal. I have been to several doctors and they have diagnosed me with Sciatic Nerve Damage and I have a disc bulge T10 T11 results from an MRI I got in April 2011.  I've tried everything from Chiropractor, to Physical Therapy, to Acupuncture. I take hot baths and use heat pads to calm my nerve damage. Nothing seems to help.I'm now seeing a Pain Management Specialist who said I have another disc bulge L4, L5, SI. He didn't really help but sent me off with prescriptions of course. I feel like I go to doctors and they just want to give me meds and send me off. I have a appointment at the Pain Management Specialist in 2 wks a follow up, and just praying and going to try the Cortisone injections. I am so close to needing surgery and I'm running out of options here, I am trying to avoid getting surgery as much as possible. It hurts to sit or stand for too long and lying down sometimes hurts my nerves. As for driving, it's so hard on my back and neck, even just sitting in the car in the passenger seat. Also, it's hard to do simple chores around the house with this pain, & my child, I wish I could carry him and cant even do that with this pain. Does anyone have any suggestions as what I can do next? And if the Pain Management Specialist is right for me?
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I am not a doctor nor an expert on the specifics of your injury. It sounds like the classic case of dics on your nerve. I don't know what type doctor you have seen but I would suggest seeing a neurosurgeon. These folks specialize in injurys and issues with the spine and back. No one wants to do surgery however many of these procedures have become less invaisive and very effective. I'm not trying to advocate surgery however it is an option for you and one that was 100% effective for me, although everyones case is different. Managing the pain is not going to get a disc off a nerve. I would suggest skipping the Pain Management Specialist and go see a neurosurgeon. It would not hurt you to evaluate other options. Best of luck and I believe you will be carrying around you child again soon.  
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Do not give up at all. I live in England and i had the same kind of lower back (sciatica) problem for about 10 months. Thank God I am feeling better. I don't know how this happened, but I am walking like I never had back problem and my friends are impressed.

To go back to where it started last year, I had a sudden pain in my leg and suddenly, pain in my lower back. Doctors did some tests and put me on pain killers for about 7 months (Ibuprofen and co-codamol that contains codeine).
Whoa! I felt like a junky, had nausea, lost appetite and starting losing weight.
I felt tired all the time, couldn't walk for 10 mins (I looked like a 70 years old guy walking), couldn't sit for 10 mins and going to sleep, oh! it was like I had fire on my bed. All my body ache, the pain is constant and if i get 4 hrs of sleep that was good.

2 months ago I had to stop co-codamol and go to a physio for sessions. because the pain killer was causing more pain that relieving the pain. It contains codeine which is an opiate found in heroine. My withdrawals symptoms were: diarrhea, chills, feeling depressed, etc. most of them are gone.

The first session with the physio were painful. I had some terrible pain for 4 days. I had other sessions and I am feeling better. Most of the pain are gone. Sleep well and even walk my kids to school. I feel like I am in a 33 years body. I don't know what worked: stopping the pain killers or the physio. And to add I did some exercises and some push up to strengthen my back.

So there is a chance for you to get better. Just stay positive. I never thought in my mind I will get better, free of pain. Not that the sciatica is all gone, but I could do what I want now.
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I had a fall in 2004 then tripped on rug in 2008 while at work. In 2009 I was turning when my same injuries leg gave, broke my knee. Yesterday found out I indeed have hermorrage lumbar which is the source not all the other reason they have treated and ridiculed me for what should I do?
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