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Morning pain
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Martie1949 posted:
Last month I picked up a heavy sack of magazine and the next morning when I got out of bed I had pains in my left buttock and down my leg. At first when I sat down it went away. Now when I sit down I get sharp pains that continue for about an hr. and then they go away till the next morning. This morning I thought I would try some stretches before I got out of bed but that didn't help. The minute I sit down I get those pains. About 20 years ago I was diagnosed with degenerative arthritis in my back but that really hasn't been bothering me. I hate to go to the doctor as he will start tests. I really don't want the expense of everything although I do have health insurance. Thanks for your help.
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bj1208 responded:
hi and welcome to the support group -

since you do have degenerative arthritis and now appears that you may have a nerve root problem it would be beneficial for you to see your primary care physician - you may need to go thru current testings to check the status of the arthritis - it could be scar tissue build up pressing on a nerve root or there could be other factors involved - your primary care doctor may order x-rays and/or MRI/CT Scan etc., Depending on the findings will depend on what type of specialist your phsician refers you too -

Questions:

1) Are you still being treated for the degenerative arthritis?

2) If so, what type of doctor are you seeing?

3) Since this was diagnosed 20 years ago, do you still have all your records? If not, can you get your hands on them?

If it's been a while since your diagnoses and any treatments, it may be time to start over and to get a current diagnoses,

let us know how everything goes - take care - Joy
 
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Rafael Levin, MD, MSc responded:
Dear Martie,

The symptoms of morning pain, stiffness, and radiation of pain to your leg are consistent with inflamation of the nerve root (sciatica most likely). Your spine arthritis is not the direct cause for your symptoms but makes you somewhat more prone to these kind of episodes. It is possible that you herniated a disc, but in the absence of real weakness in your legs, an MRI is most likely not necessary at this point.

I can understand your desire to avoid a doctor visit for this problem. In the majority of cases the symptoms you are describing often resolve on their own within 6-8 weeks even without any treatment. Stretching as you have done is very helpful in the long term. I would also recommend taking some over the counter anti-inflamatories such as Aleve, Motrin, Advil etc if you can tolerate them.

If you feel that your symptoms are not improving or are progressively worsening, you may choose to see the doctor after all. Most likely, all that you would need is a good course of physical therapy and some medications in the short term.

I hope you feel better soon


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