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Old 08-16-2007, 05:06 AM   #1
paul shwed
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So, being post number two, you can see I had a motive to get off my hands and take the 30s to register....

If you look this way:
<--------
You will see my spine, I have been having severe leg/back/butt pain for about 6 months now. Physical therapy for diagnosis "lower back pain" did nothing. Anti-inflammatories, nothing.

After multiple Drs, multiple therapists and multiple chiropractors working at it with little result I turn to the Crossfit community. Has anyone here experienced anything similar with a severe (multiple) herniatioins and if so did you and how long did it take to revover. It is hard for me to sit on my hands but this isnt the type of injury I think that I should keep pushing through the pain.
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Old 08-16-2007, 06:47 AM   #2
Kevin McMillan
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hey paul, 'love' yur xray.... corey duval is a great one to talk to , he is currently a student chiropractor and is really good. from my kin background ill tell you as much as i know, multiple major herniation like this... well fusion of the l5/s1/ l4/l5 nad L3/L4 almost looks needed... ususlaly one of two can be fused without much rom troubles... this looks like a a pretty serious spot tho at the L3L4 and L5S1, take care of this man, go see a competent doc ( do research online and find a specialist) till then PM corey, he knows alot!
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Old 08-16-2007, 08:28 AM   #3
paul shwed
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Thanks for the analysis Kevin. I was blown off for many months, severe pain started in January, with a diagnosis of "lower back pain." Go to therapy...yadayada. I think I got that diagnosis because the doctor always put me through ROM tests and strength tests. I could easily do them all, but with a lot of pain. Finally whined enough for the MRI and x-rays and those got the Dr's attention. We are now working on a solution. I am looking for a sports medicine specialists now who won't look at me and tell me I am crazy when I list all of the activities I do and refuse to give up.
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Old 08-16-2007, 11:59 AM   #4
Jonathan Thomas Powers
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It took me three years and every treatment under the sun before finally surrendering to the fusion surgery.

DO NOT TAKE THIS SURGERY LIGHTLY. Many people experience it differently however I walked with a Walker for a month after my surgery. Then a Cane for another. Even after three months I could only bare to walk/stand for work much less excercise.

Keeping in mind my Surgeon told me I would be back doing Squats in 8 weeks, and when I confronted him with this around 12 weeks out he looked at me like I was crazy and said how he had done a perfect job and ther was no reason why I shoudn't be blasting away in the Gym. Meanwhile I'm sweating, shaking, and writhing from the pain I was enduring just from sitting in his office.

It was the hardest year of my life. It took me 18 months to get back to the intensity that I had worked out with prior.

It will be 2 years very soon and I have been working out fairly regularly for a year and Intensly for six months. I still have back pain but thank Jesus I Now have my life back.

If you have any questions let me know.

(Message edited by doinwurk on August 16, 2007)
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Old 08-16-2007, 09:42 PM   #5
Chris Bardawil
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Before you go any further get this book:

W/F/S link:http://www.amazon.com/Healing-Back-P.../dp/0446392308





(Message edited by Shadowmoses on August 16, 2007)
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Old 08-20-2007, 04:42 AM   #6
paul shwed
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Re: Spinal Stenosis?

Thanks, I'll check it out this week.
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Old 08-21-2007, 08:36 AM   #7
paul shwed
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Re: Spinal Stenosis?

Hey Jonathon,

If you don't mind my asking. What was the condition that led to the fusion surgery. All of the doctors I have been seeing have been vague in a diagnosis and explanation pending the results of yet another set of MRIs. Essentially they have termed my condition spinal stenosis, which to the best of my knowledge is a generic term for narrowing causing an impingment on my nerves. I have not been given any treatments or therapy yet though.
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Old 08-22-2007, 01:04 PM   #8
Brian De Mio
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Re: Spinal Stenosis?

Hi Paul,

Just wanted to throw in my 2 cents as a PA (physician assistant) and some info based on my experience. The specific terminology for spinal stenosis does refer to narrowing of one of a few areas in and around your vertebrae. Picture a small slim flexible tube surrounded by a protective covering. Except the protective covering is a bunch of interlocked pieces so you can bend it with the tube. Well on the inside wall of one of those pieces where the flexible tube sits there is hypertrophy/growth narrowing the canal your spinal cord fits in. Depending on the location you can have different problems. And there are a whole bunch of causes which has probably been ruled out by your Physician.

In my case, as a PA, I usually do a complete exam and get a standard set of xrays. Assuming the xrays are good most docs will put you on NSAID (this is motrin, naprosyn, etc.) therapy and physical therapy for a minimum of 30 days before MRI. This isn't true for everyone but is SOP where I am. If the MRI reveals spinal stenosis I automatically refer to Orthopedics.

Pretty complex issues when it comes to low back pain and radiculopathy. Physical therapy tends to be the mainstay of therapy but interestingly enough there aren't a lot of studies out there that show p.t. works for spinal stenosis. I can say in my experience it has helped only some of my patients.

Surgical repair in most cases is usually a last resort when all other means have been exhausted.

This can be quite frustrating when your in pain and you want to move on with your life. I would strongly encourage you to talk to your Doc and tell him your frustrations. Most Physicians understand this and will take time out to discuss more in depth if they know your upset. Sometimes you get a guy with more ego than empathy and when that happens it's probably time to move on to someone who can meet your needs.

Hope this helps you some. It's a long road to recovery for this kind of stuff so patience is key.

WWW.spinalstenosis.org is a decent website that can give you a bit more information also.

Take care and good luck!
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Old 08-24-2007, 07:30 AM   #9
paul shwed
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Re: Spinal Stenosis?

Had an appointment with the Ortho yesterday and here is my update...

L3-L4: I have a herniation that is impinging on my nerve with pressure biased towards the right side

L4-L5: Same as above, but with an annular(sp) tear that is causing most of my back pain. The tear is not severe enough to warrant aggressive intervention but it came highly recommended from the ortho and neuro pain specialist. This disc also showed significant "dark disk disease." The fluid in the disk has been extruded out to a point it will not return. The disk is therefore shorter, which means the ligaments are too long and there is a loss of stability in the disk. Solution is to strengthen the supporting musculature around my spine. There are surgical solutions but that will only come if I am crawling or crying. Core muslces!

L5-S1: Herniation that is almost entirely pinching off the canal, which is resulting in the numbness in my right leg and the burning sensation in my right butt cheek. This disk also showed "dark disk disease." Resulting in the above structural problems. Because this disk is the most severe, I consulted with the ortho and a neuro pain management Dr. After they understood that surgery was an option only after all else failed, It was determined that a good attempt would be to do epideral injections of a medication that will attempt to reduce the inflamation in the disk and offer pain/neurological problems.

If the treatment works here and pain persists we will slowly work up the latter until all disks have been treated.

The good news is, after the first session of injections I was encouraged by the Drs. to get back to working out, focusing on my core. Said the Dr..."If you can handle the pain, squats and dls won't do any more damage, so have at it." He asked me to restrain myself from the BJJ and Muay Thai though until the spinal column is less restricted. While it is swollen it leaves less room for the nerves to travel and they may get inflamed. Only time will tell now....
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