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What treatment for annular tears in lumbar spine
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Questions in the Chiropractic Care Forum are being answered by Dr. Adam Tanase, a board-certified Doctor of Chiropractic. Topics covered include Muscle Pain, Nerve Pain, Movement Disorders, Subluxation, Upper Cervical Care, Pain Management, Health Care Alternatives, and Wellness Care.

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What treatment for annular tears in lumbar spine

I am hoping you can help me understand the CT results after my discogram in terms of how they relate to possible surgical intervention.  My pain has been interfering with daily life for years, and doesn't respond to epidural injections or other non-surgical intervention. Perhaps with this added information, is there any other alternative treatments?

FINDINGS:

The L2-3 level demonstrates extravasation of the contrast material from the disk along the length of the anterior aspect of the disk suggestive of a large annular tear.  No significant disk bulge, canal stenosis, or neural foraminal narrowing is identified at this level.

The L3-4 level also demonstrates diffuse extravasation of the contrast material from the anterior and right lateral aspects of the disk suggestive of tear.  Again, no significan edisk bulge, canal stenosis, or neural foraminal narrowing is identified at this level.

The L4-5 level demonstrates extravasation of the contrast material at the left lateral and posterior aspects of the disk.  This level demonstrates mild degenerative changes with minimal central canal narrowing.  No significant stenosis or neural foraminal narrowing is identified.

The L5-S1 level shows minimal extravasation of the contrast material at the right lateral aspects, which suggests a small tear.  No canal stenosis or neural foraminal narrowing is identified.


I'm really tired of the pain and the way it greatly reduces my quality of life.

Thanks for your help,

Kathy
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Drink plenty of good clean water to rehydrate your discs. Consult with a chiropractor to help mobilize and balance the spine. Consider enrolling in a Yoga class as well to help with stretching and core strengthening.

Warm wishes,
AT
3 Comments
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I drink 2 - 3 liters of good clean water daily.  You don't have the full story of the extent of the damage to my spine, like the old compression fracture at T-7

Can I seriously expect to heal the many annular tears by drinking water and having a chiropractor use an activator or whatever that little thingy is called?  The CT didn't show the diffuse disk bulges that MRIs have shown pretty much throughout my lumbar and thoracic spine.

I was limited as to how much information I could give you, so you weren't given a fair chance to give a helpful answer.  I spent months going to a chiropractor at least once, often twice a week.  It was quite helpful until one day she was in a hurry, didn't look at my chart, and did a quick "back-cracking" on me that sent me into spasms and pretty much undid any good that she had done.  She saw me the next day to treat some of the damage, then proceeded to bill me three times for each visit (insurance didn't pay enough the way she coded it at first) so that I ended up paying a fortune.

I still believe in chiropractic treatment, but am leery as to how to choose a good chiropractor that keeps in mind my multiple issues so that I don't leave their office in worse shape than I came in.

I don't understand how I can take Yoga when walking is difficult from radiculopathy.  I have been to many physical therapists.  The last one was using strain/counterstrain techniques, until they discovered that the twisted positions they were putting me in were aggravating other symptoms.

Sorry, I'm a complex case.  I've had both ACLs reconstructed, one of them twice.  I've had acromioplasties done on both shoulders, the right one including a distal clavical excision and removal of a large bone spur.  My knees have very little cartilage left.  I have a meniscus tear in each knee, but the damage inside contraindicates more surgery until knee replacements.

I have a hip labral tear, but arthritis prevents repair.  I have arthritis in both SI Joints, as well as instability in the right, which adds to pelvic instability; my pelvis rotates so that one leg is a little shorter and everything hurts worse.  I would love to do Yoga again, but I don't think it will work.  Maybe meditation, maybe Pilates (very gentle).  I've found that my water aerobics classes are now too painful, even when I take it easy.  

I appreciate your prompt response; I just wish I had been able to give you more information.

Sincerely
Kathy
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514494_tn?1376514748
Nothing but time will heal the annular tear.

There are many different forms of chiropractic care. Despite the "activator thingy" services you received in the past, all chiropractic offices are not going to perform the same procedures.

Take a look at the physician lists on www.UpCspine.com to see there's a specialist in your area. This type of doctor may provide you with more desirable results.

Warm wishes,
AT
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