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Old 08-09-2006, 08:12 PM   #1
Kenneth R Davis
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10 days ago while doing clean and jerks I herniated the C-5 disk on the right side. Got an MRI to confirm it and now seeing if antiinflamatories alone will resolve the symptoms: Pain and marked loss of strength in the shoulder abductors. My question to the group: what exercises can I do not involving lifting or bouncing up and down. The orthopod has even said running is out. I'm doing tabata drills for squats, situps and back extension, but this is getting REALLY tiresome. Any suggestions?
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Old 08-10-2006, 12:03 PM   #2
Jerimiah Childress
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Are you saying what exercises in general, or for your shoulder specifically?
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Old 08-10-2006, 12:09 PM   #3
Kenneth R Davis
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I'm looking for something to use to workout, not to rehab the shoulder
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Old 08-10-2006, 12:26 PM   #4
Elliot Royce
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I have two cervical herniations. The problem is not in the shoulder, but in the nerve leading to the shoulder so shoulder exercises per se are not going to help you. I've managed to avoid surgery over the past 3 years. There's a lot to talk about here so let me just start with some advice. First, you need to find a way to reduce the inflammation as quickly as possible. You're probably on prednisone, right? If not, that is a stronger treatment that your doctor will come to. You can also get an epidural if the other medicines don't work.

Second, I would not be doing tabatas. In the early stages of this, I would take your doctor's advice. Lay off anything that would pressure your shoulder. If within a few weeks, it doesn't clear up, then you need to keep it moving. Read Dr. John Sarno's book on Healing Back Pain. Also, check out www.egoscue.com. The latter is a longer term cure.

I would also worry less about your workouts and more about getting rid of this. A cervical herniation can be a really bad thing. If it worsens and it could if you started doing bench presses or shoulder shrugs, you're going to have persistent pain and believe me, after months of it, you're not going to be very happy.

If it becomes chronic, come back to me and I'll give you other treatments. For now, your doctor is right in saying that you should minimize anything that might irritate it.

You may not know but millions of people have cervical herniations without symptoms. It only becomes a problem when the nerve gets irritated and then it can become chronic.
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Old 08-10-2006, 12:50 PM   #5
Jerimiah Childress
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I think elliots right. Stick with non-ballistic exercise. Basically we offer this advice to our patients if it agrivates your symptoms don't do it. Other than that I would keep your feet on the ground and avoid impact.
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Old 08-11-2006, 09:59 AM   #6
Elliot Royce
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Hey, Jerimiah: I should probably become a therapist. Seems like you and I agree on most orthopedic conditions. The difference is you work with patients with them, and I am the patient with them.:lol:
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Old 08-11-2006, 11:40 AM   #7
Jerimiah Childress
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Well that just means that you are either a good patient or you have good medical practitioners. 90% of my job is simple it's just a matter of know what to look for. I have patients tell me all the time when I show them an exercise program, "That's so simple I should have thought of it". Yeah it is simple if you have been trained in what to look for.

With all injuries you have had you would have lots of practical experience to share with your patients. My fused vertabrae come in real handy for that.

(Message edited by childresspta on August 11, 2006)
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Old 08-14-2006, 07:23 PM   #8
Kenneth R Davis
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Thanks guys.
I have completed a course of Prednisone and it effectively squashed the inflammation. The pain is virtually gone, although if I reach for something, I'll feel it.

I'm working of rehabing the deltoid. Really impressive how much strength I've lost in just one day.

I'm having to really fight not pushing the WODs. I'm not doing any lifting...hardly.

I"ll check out the link you listed.

Thanks again
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Old 08-15-2006, 05:12 AM   #9
Frank M Needham
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The area you have damaged is a complex one. I'm very familiar with it as I've had the misfortune of an injury there also. There is a nerve complex that runs through there called the brachial plexus. Major nerves run through there that deal with sensation throughout your body to the ends of your hands and feet. Be very, very careful what you do. I'm only just now, after 5 years, able to lift and perform strenous exercise without major pain. I had even given up on weight training and sold all my stuff. If you insist on working out make it light stuff like broom work, light med ball, etc. Egoscue also helped me tremendously. Email me if you like and I'll send you an email I got from the board. Looking back, pool work should have been something I ought to have done during the whole time. It is hard to create high impact in water. One thing, I gotta tell you is tough news: getting completely pain free is much, much harder than you might think. I still have some though not like before. It takes LOTS of time to deal. Elliot's advice is absolutely right on the mark. This can be depressing stuff so watch your attitude also as you can begin to think it'll never be better but that is bogus thinking, it can get better but, I repeat, it takes LOTS of time.
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Old 08-15-2006, 03:25 PM   #10
William Hunter
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Hate to step on your toes Frank but the brachial plexus does not supply sensation to the lower body or feet, just the arms. If it's purely a right C5 disk it will be the deltoid that's primarily affected, not even the entire arm. Also, in addition to rehabbing the delt you might want a qualified professional to check your neck for muscular imbalances, joint dysfunction etc. that might have helped contribute to the problem in the first place. Most people love McKenzie for the lumbar spine, but I've had some decent results with the cervical protocol as well. YMMV. I just had a young guy come in the office that injured a disk while bench pressing (go figure) b/c he flexed his neck off the bench while straining to get that last rep, so watch your form carefully on all exercises, no matter what area you're working.

Good luck.
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