CrossFit Discussion Board  

Go Back   CrossFit Discussion Board > In Sickness and In Health > Health and Medical Issues
CrossFit Home Forum Site Rules CrossFit FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Health and Medical Issues For other than injuries

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 02-13-2012, 12:37 PM   #1
Meredith Launius
Member Meredith Launius is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Eureka  CA
Posts: 132
degerative disc disorder

I have been crossfitting for several years. I own and operate an affiliate also. Recently I have been "diagnosed" with degenerative disc disorder from a chiro ( I do respect and trust this one, which is why I see him). In my previous life I was a hairdresser for 10 years, was active but didnt eat great and smoked ( yuck) for a long time.
I did have back pain while working in the salon, presumably from bad posture, standing, weak core, etc...that did improve as I got stronger, lost weight etc..but in the last year and a half my deadlift has gone from over 200 # to barely body weight due to pain when setting up in that position and a perceived weakness in my lift. Sometimes I just cant get tight enough to lift. My back squat has come down some and I have been increasingly stiff and sore in my back and hips. It is causing issues in my performance which I dont like at all! But also daily life, tying my shoe laces is sometimes difficult because of bending over uncomfortability.
I have iced, applied heat, mag baths, stretched, massaged, chiro adjusted, cussed, cried and had days where I felt fine. I eat rediculously well, sleep great and while I do have the stress of owning and operating a gym, I am having a hard time resolving that this is it.
I have researched disc disorder and it pretty much sums up my symptoms I am having a hard time finding credible recommendations for how to approach crossfitting with this disorder or if I even need to give in to it.
The research says no deadlifting, c&j, snatching or squating. Um, wtf. Yeah thats not gonna fly.
Does anyone have any advice? Should I do elevated platform deadlifts so I dont have to get as low in my set up? Should I keep my weights under a certain percentage for heavy days? Should I cut out movements? Graston therapy? Is focusing on more of the gymnastics and bw stuff better for me?
I tend to like the heavy lifting....this will be like starting over I think, which I am not opposed to doing, I like a challenge, but, I am in a decent amount of pain. Keeping moving does stave off the stiffness....ugh! I need some perspective from my fellow crossfitters tho...what would you do?
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 04:59 PM   #2
Megan Zetter
Member Megan Zetter is offline
 
Megan Zetter's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Portland  OR
Posts: 204
Re: degerative disc disorder

It sounds like you need to work on spine stability. Even those who can lift heavy are not immune to spinal instability. Has your chiro discussed spinal stability with you? If you were my patient, I'd likely remove a lot of the heavy work for a while in favor of specific stability and movement work.

Many many people have DDD and are completely pain free, so just because you have it, does not necessarily mean that is your source of pain. I assume you had spine x-rays?
__________________
Chiropractic physician
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2012, 05:14 PM   #3
Steven Low
Member Steven Low is offline
 
Steven Low's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: silver spring  maryland
Posts: 12,221
Re: degerative disc disorder

Sounds like you need to see a physical therapist

Quote:
Sometimes I just cant get tight enough to lift.
Seems like poor core activation issue... probably TVA and some of the other relevant core muscles went to the crapper which has led to some instability showing up which can be aggravated by DDD

If you know of any good PTs that treat athletes.. see one
__________________
Posts are NOT medical, training, nutrition info
Bodyweight Article, Overcoming Gravity Book
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2012, 01:11 PM   #4
John Powell
Member John Powell is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Oshawa  ON Canada
Posts: 189
Re: degerative disc disorder

Nothing overly useful to add, but I feel your pain. I'm also an affiliate owner and after being diagnosed with a few different things (torn glute, piriformis syndrome) my lumbar MRI showed mild DDD. I have found that focusing on lumbar extension and not letting my lumbar flex, my symptoms have improved. Like you said, the worst times are bending over to put on socks or change a diaper. Video tape your air squat and see when your butt winks (lumbar flexes), mine is pathetic how early this happens and I am avoiding squats until I can get this corrected by improving mobility.

I have started to work on strengthening my core, specifically low back, stomach and glutes and to improve mobility everywhere.

It is extremely frustrating because you just want a quick fix, but my chiropractor says that it is likely the result of years of whatever causes the degeneration (prolonged sitting withbad posture for example) so it may well take some time to heal.

Best of luck, keep us posted.

Last edited by John Powell; 02-14-2012 at 01:14 PM..
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2012, 10:20 PM   #5
Sara Lynn Miller
Member Sara Lynn Miller is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Chicago  IL
Posts: 35
Re: degerative disc disorder

Nothing new to add either.

But this is a good place in the conversation to ask you guys, if it is still worth it?

To continue down this path. We are talkung about artificial discs, 2 or even 3 level fusions in the future if we don't slow down.

I love crossfit just as much as you guys, and we can talk about using all the modalities on this planet to prevent another back injury from occuring.

But let's be honest here, we can't keep putting the type of loads we do on spine. And iI am not talking about just through CrossFit alone.

So my question is, will you continue to Crossfit?
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 06:21 AM   #6
John Powell
Member John Powell is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Oshawa  ON Canada
Posts: 189
Re: degerative disc disorder

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sara Lynn Miller View Post

So my question is, will you continue to Crossfit?
I think in my situation, it is more the result of years of garbage posture and the toll that it takes on my spine, not weightlifting to blame. I'm a police officer so I sit for HOURS at a time in a car, wearing a belt and vest. I'm going to try to make improvements here (much less sitting, and doing so with good posture)

I'm not sure that I'll be too gung ho to push PRs for a while, but yes I will continue. Like I said, mine seems to be a very mild case, and the medical pros that I have spoken to have said that there isn't a major concern.

For me, the benefits of exercise FAR outweigh the risks, you just need to limit the risks as much as possible
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 08:13 AM   #7
Sara Lynn Miller
Member Sara Lynn Miller is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Chicago  IL
Posts: 35
Re: degerative disc disorder

Most cases are mild but it disc related issues is a ticking time bomb.

I have a meeting with a spine surgeon next week. I will share whatever information from the meeting with you all.
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 08:36 AM   #8
Megan Zetter
Member Megan Zetter is offline
 
Megan Zetter's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Portland  OR
Posts: 204
Re: degerative disc disorder

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sara Lynn Miller View Post
Most cases are mild but it disc related issues is a ticking time bomb.

I have a meeting with a spine surgeon next week. I will share whatever information from the meeting with you all.
What is your specific back issue? Spine surgery rarely (dependent on cause of course), if ever, helps you come back stronger. In fact, most people eventually have worsening of symptoms and or even more problems elsewhere in the spine.
__________________
Chiropractic physician
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 02:49 PM   #9
Sara Lynn Miller
Member Sara Lynn Miller is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Chicago  IL
Posts: 35
Re: degerative disc disorder

Not interested in surgery at all. Going in to get educated and my prognosis. I have a large herniated disc causing S1 nerve root irritation. My issues are all neurogenic and this is going on for 3 months now.

Symptoms are not necessarily getting better nor worse. But I am at a steady state now where it is all residual nerve-related pain.
  Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2012, 02:57 PM   #10
John Powell
Member John Powell is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Oshawa  ON Canada
Posts: 189
Re: degerative disc disorder

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sara Lynn Miller View Post
Symptoms are not necessarily getting better nor worse. But I am at a steady state now where it is all residual nerve-related pain.
I'm going on 5 months now BUT only about 3 weeks with a proper diagnosis. I spent months stretching the wrong way because I thought it was a strained muscle. I have ABSOLUTELY no back pain, but sitting up straight makes the leg pain dissipate, even disappear.

PM me if you want and I can tell you what has/hasn't worked for me, but since you have a clear diagnosis, I suggest listening to some of the experts on here.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Help Explaining Medibolic Disorder Andrew Breyer Nutrition 18 09-08-2009 09:40 AM
Patellar tracking disorder Tim Greenfield Injuries 6 04-03-2009 10:11 PM
Eating Disorder??? Nancy Cohen Nutrition 48 02-15-2009 06:49 PM
Son with metabolic disorder (VLCAD) Dan Stuewe Nutrition 1 12-13-2008 10:17 PM
Patellar Tracking Disorder? Steve Ericson Injuries 13 04-17-2008 02:58 AM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:13 PM.


CrossFit is a registered trademark of CrossFit Inc.