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Low Back/Butt/Hip/Groin Pain
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stefanie1881 posted:
Hi,


I basically have it all going on. I'm not sure exactly when it started or how, but this has been going on at least 2 years. A little background: I'm a 30 year old woman who has been active all of my life. I am/was an avid soccer player and also went to the gym until about the last year.


I originally started having back spasms 2 years ago and went to physical therapy for that. I don't remember any hip or groin pain, but I do remember a lot of pain in the butt when the therapist would do trigger point work. I am very hyper-mobile, which I have been told makes things worse for me. The most frustrating thing about the back pain is how it will be on the left side for 6-7 days straight, then, for no known reason, move to the right side. The pain is all on the belt/pant line and lower and on either side. It's rarely centered on the back.


The hip and groin pain became most prominent last spring trying to run. It is generally on my left side, and I get a "pinching" feeling when raising my leg to my chest. When running, I feel it on the back end of a stride (leg fully extended behind me). The pelvic/groin pay usually begins during/after activities and lasts days.
The other symptom that I have is an aching in the outside of my left calf into my ankle. I have never had the shooting pain associated with some back issues - it's just a constant ache.
I have seen numerous doctors and no one can seem to define whether my hip is causing my back issues, or the back is causing the hip issues. The X-Rays show no breaks. An MRI on my hip shows a slight bulge at the femoral neck, but because the doctor didn't request an MRI with contrast, they can't rule anything in or out. The lumbar MRI showed slight bulges in L3-L4 and L4-L5 but nothing major.


I have gone to therapy 3 times in 2 years (the first two with some success while there, but I fall back into the same cycle shortly after) and this last time I was never able to achieve a consistent result. On Monday, I had a diagnostic hip injection and was told I would immediately either get relief, or not. I got nothing. 3 days later, I'm right back where I was.


I know this is a lengthly post, but I'm hoping someone can suggest what I should do next? I haven't been able to play soccer in almost a year, can't run, can't get on the eliptical, etc. I'm thinking about going to a chiropractor, but am not totally comfortable with that either. I know one other option is to get an SI injection, but just having been through the hip injection with no success, I'm not sure how much I want to go through that again.
Thanks for taking the time to read this. I would truly appreciate any advise you could give me!


-Stefanie


PS - I live in Troy, MI, so please suggest doctors who have helped you if you're local.
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An_189491 responded:
Stefanie,
We are not allowed to post names of doctors, hospitals, etc.

The only thing I can tell you is that I have had several slip and falls and trip and falls, which has caused me over 5 years to treat to find the reason for the intense pain; so that something other than medication can be given. I have tried P.T. injections in painful areas, aquatic therapy, and all tests such as MRI's, sonograms etc. My pelvis was twisted in one or more of the falls and the pain now is my constant companion.

The tests have only reveiled injury at the location as you, as well as the L-5 S-1. I also have a great deal of arthritis. Now my ankles have bugun to hurt where I was told yesterday was nerve pain. I have no numbness in my legs or feel. I am not able to sit but minutes at the time.

Yesterday I was examined by a thereapist to begin a regiment of aquatic therapy which was the only thing that I have tried so far that gave me any relief.

You might try taking aleve, advil or some type of across the counter anti-inflamatory. My best to you as you struggle to find an end to your pain.
 
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BrenBren30813 replied to An_189491's response:
hey stefanie, what is hyper-mobile? your post caught my eye because you played one of my favorite sports, soccer. i loved it. coached it, played it, and want so bad to teach my son. if you had muscle spasms in your back, then where exactly? i had them in my back, then found they would get worse while sitting, then figured out my butt/groin were more involved - piriformis syndrome and SI joint dysfunction were my earlier symptoms of what i'm suffering now. if your PT found "trigger points" in your buttock that replicated your pain or made it worse, then you may have to address those muscles again. i'm sorry to hear that you were so active and now have to be so diligent in your workouts because of all this...i'm on that road myself. if the pain is on both sides then you "may" have a disc issue. where is the pinching feeling you get? myself, i've had 11 injections that were x-ray guided and have found no relief. trigger point injections help me the most (w/out xray and just with numbing agents). be careful with the injections until a doc can pinpoint the origin of pain...steroids should be used conservatively. i know how it feels to be out there playing one day, then the next, suffering like hell. i feel for you, B
 
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christinam4 replied to BrenBren30813's response:
That means "double jointed" I have that, and have always had it since I was a kid! I use to be made fun of, because of it. It causes the pain to increase! Sorry, for jumping in.
 
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Geradine4733 responded:
You say, "On Monday, I had a diagnostic hip injection and was told I would immediately either get relief, or not. I got nothing. 3 days later, I'm right back where I was."

I did the same thing. Then they did an MRI, and it was pinched nerves from my back traveling down my body.

You say, "The lumbar MRI showed slight bulges in L3-L4 and L4-L5 but nothing major." This shows that you have degenerative disc disease, and I would guess you have a pinched nerve or nerves.

It is not good to run with degenerative disc disease. You have to be an advocate for your spine. Walking fast is OK>
 
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stefanie1881 replied to Geradine4733's response:
Hi all,

Anon - I take Aleve regularly, but it doesn't help much. I have stronger options (pain killer/anti-inflam combo), but won't take them unless the pain is really bad.

Bren Bren - The Piriformis and SI issues have been brought up several times during my last go around with PT. The trigger point was done mainly on the low butt area, but only in limited amounts because this is the most painful for me.

After my first attempt with an injection, I'm not too eager to go back. I understand the doctor is trying to diagnose the issue, and by doing so they need to rule out what isn't the issue, but going to get several "diagnostic" injections in my hip, then SI, etc, just seems likely its a painful process, and in turn, an expensive one.
 
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OJOJ64 responded:
Stefanie, all that you posted is me! I could have written that! After 18 months of their not being sure if it was my hip or my back ( I have had prior back surgery ) it was finally determined that it is my left hip. The joint per se is gone.. it is bone on bone. I too took Aleve.. it actually helped me a great deal.. but then they found out I have an ulcer.. and that ended all products with aspirin in them. I have tried Tylenol.. that does dot help at all. I hope that one of your doctors comes up with a diagnosis and a solution for you. Have you tried the epidural shots? They actually work for some people. I had them.. it took my pain form a steady 10 down to about a 7. You are way too young to be having to deal with all this.. I wish you only the best. Jo-Anna
 
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stefanie1881 replied to OJOJ64's response:
Hi Jo-Anna,

Haven't tried an epidural yet. It hasn't even been suggested. For my low back pain I've used Bio Freeze quite a bit. It's like IcyHot but much more potent. I buy it online and get the spray version (so my hands don't smell). Because the hip pain is so deep, there isn't much I can use aside from Aleve, but 2 pills will cut the pain to a much more manageable state.

I just started with a chiropractor today. My pelvis is higher on one side than the other, so that's the angle we're going to work for now.

Hopefully I can get some relief!
 
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charl1942 replied to stefanie1881's response:
Hi everyone:
I too, have one pelvis higher than the other. Mine has come with repeated falls I think. I am so bad now, my right hip is much larger than the right because of the way I walk when I am trying to compensate for the left side pain. My pains are in the groin, left and right hip, left abdomen and the outside of my thigh. Recently I have begun to have nerve pain down my left leg ending inside my left ankle. I have no numbness yet at all. I only sit for minutes at a time causing a very limited social life. I lie down to watch TV. I have treated with an ortho spine specialist, a nerologist who now watches and perscribes my pain meds. I saw a neuro-surgeon for a second opinion. He said there was nothing I could do, except see a pain mgmt doc for a trial of a spinal cord stimulator. I did see him. I am not a candidate, since the pains are not mostly leg pain, so there is nothing they all can suggest now is continue with pain meds. I am currently going to water therapy. I trust this will help.

If there is anything at all any of you can suggest, I solicit you suggestions and help.
 
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BrenBren30813 replied to charl1942's response:
Hey Charl1042, you have complex pelvic issues, like me, and unfortubately, all of those specialists will not know what to do with you.

I'm glad that you're not a candidate for the SCS implant, because that is way too drastic at this point, and you most likely would end up with a whole other host of pain issues.

I've been dealing with similar pain for 4 years and have even seen a pelvic pain specialist...he has offered the implant too.

You need to see a "Women's Health Expert" to evaluate you and give you the right course for relieving your pain. The one I work with is soo good and she has been able to help reduce my pain up to 60% some days. The meds are not going to do you any good in the long run, but since you have a physician willing to prescribe you them now, it won't hurt to see this type of therapist. I don't like to call her a PT because her methods are beyond what almost any doctor who considers PT to be...that being said, I could go into more details of treatments, but if you are interested, ask me....take good care, pelvic pain is awful, B
 
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charl1942 replied to BrenBren30813's response:
Thanks Bren for responding. I know I do have painful pelvic problems, for three years now getting progressively worse. If you do not mind you may contact me asap by email at chabob2@windstream.net and I will give you my number and we can discuss this in more detail. I will only be available to talk tomorrow morning for a while. My girls are coming home Tuesday and I have many things going on for the next week. I am on EST.
I know Joy and I think you do too. She is a sweety.
I would like to know more about the women health expert. Thanks for all the help you can give me.
 
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BrenBren30813 responded:
sent you an email, Charl1942, I hope you get it. Take care, B
 
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gspluver responded:
Hi Stefanie..i see that you posted this 5 months ago, so i hope things have imporved for you...what you have is a labrel tear in the hip joint.....u need to insist on an mri with contrast...that is the only way u will see a tear!!! with low back, butt, groin pain, thigh pain, and inner knee pain it may look and sound like a lumber issue, but it is not...it took "doctors" 3 years, over 100 injections everywhere, therapy, vicadon and a lot of tears to figure that out and the only relief is to have it repaired...anthing else is a bandaid...dont listen to it and be persisten...be your on advocate...do you have kids? Fight for yourself like you would for them.....you know your body...i hope things r better by now...pls let me know how things are working out.
 
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midlifedancer responded:
Hi Stefanie,

I can relate to so many of your work and sports activities.

I'm dealing with the same symptoms as you have metioned plus loss of leg mobility on and off .This has affected my life now to the point of not being able to work. I'm an elementary school nurse.

OK enough about the personal stuff.

I have a pain management doctor that I see every 3 months unless there is an emergency. I had seen him for a regular visit a few days before the upcoming difficulties.

A couple of days before Christmas vacation I stepped out of bed and fell on my face. No leg mobility again... and at x-mas break! I called my pain management doctor and he said get to the hospital. Well I had been there done that in 2006. A whole other story. I wouldn't make that choice again on a Friday night.

Saturday a.m. my PM doctor called in a script for the additional pain. I did all the basic procedures for myself...alternate heat and cold, finding positions (whatever they may be) to relief the pain.

I stayed in bed through all Dec.holidays, New Years. The only time out of bed was to go for a doctor visits, MRI, CT, neurosurgeon and PM MD, etc. I had help to the toilet too, I thought I really shouldn't have to mention this, but then I remembered there maybe other readers that would question this???

Tomorrow a visit to the neurosurgeon for options after his read on my MRI, CT, lab work etc.

Friday entails an epidural performed by my PM doctor at a surgical center. I have had about 7 epidurals over the past 4 years. This procedure is done while under general anest.
The procedure only takes about 15 mins., but there is before and after work before you go home. My instruction, in a nut shell, from the surgical center doctors is, at least 24 hours bedrest when you get home. Ice pack on injection site area 15 mins. every hour or so while you are awake. Medication as directed by your PM. I will be in bed Friday and most of Saturday. I will feel great by Sunday.

The following weeks procedures are still unknown. I will be making some major decisions. One choice I believe will be presented tomorrow is a surgical forminotomy. There are many different ways to do this. I will be very interested to hear what the neurosurgeon sugests. I will let you know how it goes.

I hope this helps in your painful adventure.

Remeber... this to shall pass.

Madaline


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