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Lower back pain at 21

I have had lower back pain for 2 years nows. It comes in spurts and usually last for a month or so then goes away. Also in these spurts, I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night with a severe pain that makes it very hard to walk or get comfortable in any position. I have seen a chiropracter twice and he said it is just a mechanical failure, but i am unsure of that. I also saw a Neurologist and he could not find anything wrong with me. I have been through physical therarpy twice now, with little results, had 3 xrays and 1 MRI, each one was "clear" and showed no abnormalities. But, by the time i was able to get the MRI, 90% of my back pain was gone. Also, I had blood work done that was fine, but am unsure of what they tester for exactly. I am a 21 year old male, not over weight, very active and eat a very balanced diet with exercise 3 times a week. I dont know what to do about this anymore. It goes away for approx 6 months then returns lasting about a month each time. What could this be? I feel that i am doing all these test and not getting any answers. I am afraid that something is very wrong and no one is able to find it.
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Avatar universal
Welcome to the Back and Neck Community.  The members of the community are here to assist you in understanding symptoms/medical treatment related to the cervical and/or lumbar spine.  Please feel free to post any additional questions/concerns you might have and the members will provide support and assistance from their own experiences and knowledge that they have acquired.  The community exists of non-professionals who can not provide answers that take the place of medical evaluations and treatment.  If more in-depth information is required, please feel free to post on the Expert Forum and the medical personnel will respond as deemed appropriate.

Based on your post, it appears that your pain is not present on a continuous basis and therefore makes it more difficult to determine an underlying cause.  The x-rays and MRI you have had do not indicate any significant pathology.  Even if your pain was nearly gone at the time of the MRI any bony changes or nerve involvement would have been visualized.  A neurology exam did not point to any diagnostic problems.  That makes assessing the cause of your pain much more difficult.  It may be that the exercise you do might have caused some muscle sprain/strain that produced a limited timeframe discomfort.  Try and determine for yourself if there is any portion of your workout that generates a bit more muscle involvement (weight lifting etc.) and see if it corresponds to the times your discomfort escalates.  The fact that you are 21 would tend to discount significant "wear and tear" to your spinal column or significant arthritic type changes which are the primary causes of cervical and low back pain.
I am sorry that no definitive answers are available for your symptoms.  If they persist as described, perhaps an evaluation by a Sports Medicine specialist would be indicated.
Best wishes -----
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