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herniated disc side effects
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herniated disc side effects

I have a herniated disc problem that I have suffered with for 5 or 6 years.  I have to be very careful how I sit or bend and in lifting heavy objects,  but this past summer I have had a lot of projects requiring lifting and climbing and standing on a ladder and reaching overhead that only I could do.  Usually when I over exert myself , I more or less recover from the pain in a few days, but for the past couple of weeks the pain is consistant and now I am having lower abdominal pain, like severe stomach cramps from time to time, like I have taken a laxative.  I dont seem to be constipated.  Will a herniated disc cause stomach cramps, and if so, what can I do to relieve the cramps.  Should I be using ice packs on my back?  I am wondering if there are any exercises that will improve the herniated disc problem,  but I am mostly concerned about the cramps, if it is being caused by the herniated disc.  I dont have any other symptoms, like a virus or anything.
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454186_tn?1388978568
Will a herniated disc cause stomach cramps? YES

and if so, what can I do to relieve the cramps.  Heat pad in back L2/L3

Should I be using ice packs on my back?  No

I am wondering if there are any exercises that will improve the herniated disc problem?    Many,but nothing work perfect.
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631581_tn?1224848261
try some stretches first..before you do your physical work.  Yes it's boring but it warms up stiff muscles and make things easier on the back.
Also, a regular routine of yoga also helps with loosening backs.
I have to do this in order to function
january43
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638183_tn?1222933359
I know what you mean, i have already had a few Hernai-disc operations, and sometimes i get a stomatch cramp that is so bad, fells like i am literally being disemboweled alive, that the wife has to rush me to the docs for a few injections. What he injects i dont know, but he says that it is probably because i constantly sit and walk in a bent possition. It feels like i have someone inside my stomach and gut, that are cutting their way out! hard to imagine, but a really horrible thing to get!
I cant give you any advice, as nothing works for me. I do have nerve damage though, and maybe this is why it gets so bad with me?
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Avatar_m_tn
I now seem to be constipated and having cramps, and it seems to get worse when I lay down in bed.  It seems worse when I sleep on by back, and it seems to help if I lay on my sides.  I have taken laxatives, but so far it hasn't helped.  I am not sure if the herniated disc problem caused this or not.  I have gone to a chiropractor before 4 or 5 years ago and he used to put ice packs on my back; and I am wondering if the ice packs I have been using recently would worsen the constipation problem.  I just know I have been in pain all summer,  my nerves are shot,and now stomach cramps.   I had all my teeth pulled this summer and got dentures.  Seems like when I hit 60 I started falling apart (lol).
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Avatar_m_tn
I am just curious,  when I went to the Chiropractor he put ice packs on my back.  I see that you are a back specialist and you recommend using heat pad.   I am going to use the heat pad for a while and see if that does better than an ice pack.  My wife thinks I should go back to the chiropractor,but I am not really sure this would do any good, since a herniated disc probably wont repair itself without surgery, and I certainly dont want surgery unless absolutely necessary.  I have been having stomach cramps for several days now, and now I have become constipated.  Taking over the counter medicine did not help.  I am getting a little worried since I have had stomach pain and soreness in the past and my doctor said it was caused by the herniated disc and it went away in a few
days, but this time it seems to be hanging on and causing more soreness and cramps.  As I mentioned before,  I have been doing a lot of heavy lifting and reaching overhead this summer, building a storage shed, and carrying heavy PA equipment in church, so now I guess I am paying the consequences.  I just hope I havn't gone too far overboard this time.  I am definately going to avoid heavy lifting now.
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Avatar_m_tn
I thought all the work I was doing this summer was giving me plenty of exercise, but I think I may have gone overboard with heavy lifting and reaching overhead, working on an outbuilding.  I have also been carrying heavy music equipment in church, and a definate no-no for me is to sit in the floor, and I know better, but I have been doing it anyway.  I wonder why some people like me like to push the limits and suffer for it, but I am definately not going to be doing any heavy lifting from now on.  I just hope I can pull out of it this time from the pain and stomach problems (cramps).  Hope I have not done any really serious damage that may require surgery.  I can get around okey, walk, stoop, bend, walk at a fast pace, but the discomfort is continual.  Regarding exercise, I dont want to do anything that would worsen the condition, but I am not really sure if exercise would help a herniated disc, other than just walking a lot, etc.   I am not one to just sit down and do nothing;  I have to be moving or I am not happy.  My hobbies are flying radio control model planes and playing guitar in church  ( I also love 60's rock)  I have had some really bad problems with depression in the not-too-far past but that is over now.  Most of it was caused by the job I held for 18 hears, dispatching for the Sheriffs office.  But I still have problems with my nerves and some anxiety (sp).  
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405614_tn?1329147714
I have a herniated disk as well as lots of annular tears in all levels of my lumbar spine.

My Sports and Spine doctor always tells me "Ice is your friend".  Ice reduces inflammation that can increase pressure on irritated nerves.

When you have a herniated disk, it is possible that some of the inner gel-like substance called that nucleous pulposus (sp?) can leak out and irritate nerves; it's a very irritating substance.  I have lots of pain from this, and have wondered for years about the stomach/lower abdominal pain I've had, finally discovering that it is from my lower back issues.  The annular tears mean that I leak the gel-like stuff all through my lower back.

I have been told by my Sports and Spine doctor, my physical therapist, my primary care doctor, and my former chiropractor, that it is not a good idea to see a chiropractor when your back is in bad shape such as mine is.

I would guess that it is time for a new MRI of the lumbar spine, to see what kind of shape its in since you overdid it.  I always think its better to know than wonder!

Most doctors begin with conservative care; I have tried a couple of epidural injections that were minimally helpful.  One might do you a world of good.  Mine didn't work that well because the full extent of the damage to my lumbar spine wasn't known until I had a discography, which is how they found all the tears.

Anyway, I'm hoping that you have a good doctor that can send you for a recent MRI, maybe an X-ray, too, so you can figure out what to do next.

I had job related depression also, and have found my way through that, too.  Anxiety can increase your awareness of pain (I took a pain management class), so make sure you're dealing with that as best you can.  

Good luck, and be well,

Kathy
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks for the reply.  If things dont clear up in the next few days (or less) I will go back to my doctor for his thoughts.  I dont plan on going back to a chiropractor.  I tried a heating pad this morning but that didn't seem to help a whole lot, but now constipation has set in and I had to have a prescription called in, since over the counter meds did not help at all.  I am going to try to be very easy on my back for a few days and hopefully avoid doctor visits, etc.
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Avatar_f_tn
I think that my disc problem was caused by the Chiro so I would be very careful.  I think an osteopath or a good Yoga teacher might be a better option
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