Pain Management Community
9.73k Members
Avatar universal

frustration with drs-undiagnosed pain

I have had severe pain in my right leg, back/hip, knee for over a year now.  I am  53 yrs old  and am in pretty good condition.  Twenty years ago I broke my right hip after a fall. My bones tested ok. I now have "severe" arthritis in my hip.  Last year while in an aerobics class I suddenly had severe pain in the front of my right shin, I could barely walk and it felt like I tore something to shreds.  I never saw a doctor and the pain went away after a few days.  Then a few months later I tore the meniscus in my right knee.  The doctor had me wait several months to see if the pain would go away.  The pain was not only in my knee but radiated up and down from the knee into the thigh and shin.  I had surgery, which slightly helped the knee but the pain in the thigh and leg did not go away and has gotten worse.  I can not describe the pain as burning, stabbing, tingling or aching.  It is a combination of pain.  My primary care physician thought the pain was really coming from my arthritic hip, but the hip orthopedist said "no". Not knowing where to turn I went to an osteopath who was very thorough and sent me for a nerve conduction test, mri, ultrasound.  The nerve test came back mildly abnormal in the affected leg and the mri came back mildly abnormal (L5,S1).  He did not think this was the source of the pain.  I had a nerve block, nerve medications - nothing helped.  Then he gave me a cortisone shot in the hip area.  All of the pain went away for 4 months.  I also saw a rheumatologist who just commented after doing some blood work and examining the other test results that the only thing really abnormal was the severe osteoarthritis in the hip.  Now the pain is back again.  The pain moves around on the leg.  Often it is in the shin and the inside of the thigh and back/hip area.  My muscles feel weak. I can not sleep at night.  The pain is so bad. Sitting hurts.  Exercising hurts.  What kind of doctor can I go to who could solve this? I don't even want to live any more because of the pain.
5 Responses
82861 tn?1333457511
The fact that the cortisone shot worked is something of a diagnostic tool for your doctor.  It sounds like it really is coming from the severe osteoarthritis.  Why not go back for another shot, and while it's effective, start doing some weight-bearing exercises.  You'll be surprised how much building up your muscle strength will help with the pain.  It takes a great deal of pressure off the skeletal system.  I'm not talking about some kind of Mr. Universe workout - even following that TV show Sit and Be Fit will help you out.  If you have acess to a pool, that's even better for exercising since it takes the gravity off.  After 2 neck surgeries, I'd do my exercises in the pool, and the pain relief upon getting in the water was unreal.  It all just went away!  Of course, getting OUT was a different story - I got pretty pruny there for a while.  :-)
Avatar universal
If not yet tried ask your doctor for an emg and nerve conduction test this I promise will determine the source of your pain.
Avatar universal
Thanks for the comments. I am very hesitant about getting another cortisone shot.  From what I've been reading it can cause deterioration in the tissue and muscle surrounding the joint.I am going to discuss this with the orthopedist I'll be seeing on the 20th.  But if I get a shot I want to be able to maintain the pain free results of the shot. I have always done some weight training, but I am finding it harder and harder.  I've noticed that my muscles seem to be getting weaker even though I've always trained (it might be partly my age).  I do not have access to a pool.  Unfortunately, I live in the Northeast and would need an indoor pool.  I'll have to look for the show Sit and Be Fit.  It is getting very painful going to the gym.
Avatar universal
I had the emg and nerve conduction test.  It came back mildly abnormal on the leg which has the pain, but for some reason the doctor does not believe that is the source of the pain. I find it hard to believe that the two are not related.
180749 tn?1443598832
You need to help the body relax a little. Do this exercise in the morning and before bedtime or lying in bed and it will help you sleep.Carry on doing and come back to forum after a few days to say how you are feeling  and I suggest some more.
Anulom Vilom - Deep Breath-in through left nostril keeping right nostril closed
then - Breath-out through right nostril keeping left nostril closed
then -Deep Breath-in through right nostril keeping left nostril closed
then - Breath-out through left nostril keeping right nostril closed
and repeat this cycle for upto 30  minutes twice a day(maximum 60 min/day).
Have an Answer?
Top Pain Answerers
Avatar universal
st. louis, MO
317787 tn?1473362051
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Find out how beta-blocker eye drops show promising results for acute migraine relief.
Could it be something you ate? Lack of sleep? Here are 11 migraine triggers to look out for.
Find out if PRP therapy right for you.
Tips for preventing one of the most common types of knee injury.
Here are 10 ways to stop headaches before they start.
Tips and moves to ease backaches