Skip to content


    Exciting News for WebMD Members!

    We've been busy behind the scenes building new message boards for you. You'll have new and easier ways to find messages, connect with others, and share your stories.

    And, this will all be available on your smartphone or other mobile device!

    What Do You Need to Do?

    The message board you're used to will be closing in the coming weeks. While many of your boards will be making the move to our new home, your posts will not. Want to keep a discussion going? Save posts you want to continue (this includes your member profile story), so that you can re-post them in the new message boards.

    Keep an eye here and on your email inbox, we'll be back in touch soon to give you all the information you need!

    Yours in health,
    WebMD Message Boards Management

    Includes Expert Content
    Please help Dr.Lava
    caregiver41 posted:
    I was diagnosed in 2005 with MS my neurologist did an MRI, and spinal tap and he says I have MS. No other test were done, I have been a weight lifter for many years, had a lifting injury and lower back as caused me pain ever since my MRI shows spinel stenosis in lower back, and middle back. Been on betaseron, Tysabri and was told they are working. I'm so confused on is it MS or like other neurologist have said it's degenerative disc disease? Need your help. Greg
    Rory26312 responded:
    Hi Greg

    I was diagnosed in 2003 after MRI's and neurological exams, negative on the spinaI.

    I have worked constuction all my life and at various times have been diagnosed with stenosis , scolliosis , bulged discs and other back promblems. My sister was diagnosed with MS by an ortho who she was seeing about degenerative disc disease which she definately has.

    The reason I tell you all this is that you proably have both but the trick is to figure out which promblem is causing which symptom.

    You will have to make sure your records are co-ordinated between both your neuor's and the have a plan to watch (treat) both your conditions.


    P.S. a pshyio or one of those specialist's who help patients adapt to limited mobility (sorry cann't think of the word) might be able to help with adjusting to the back pain. Ergonomics is the basic word for what the do, tried it myself and it helped.
    hackwriter responded:
    Dear Greg,

    I was diagnosed with MS in 2005 after having been diagnosed with a cervical disc herniation, stenosis, and two demyelinating cervical lesions six years earlier. That disc problem was discovered when I was given my first set of MRIs in 1999 during what turned out to be my first MS attack.

    Having disc disease can delay an MS dx. Degenerative disc problems can cause many of the same symptoms as MS, including enhancing white matter cervical lesions. This fact confounded my neuro from 1999 until I had a second MS flare in 2004. A new lesion in the brain and a positive LP finally made him dx me with MS in 2005.

    Your neuro should be giving you advice on how to treat the symptoms of each condition, it can be tricky. Often it is trial and error since you'll find it hard to tell whether your pain is neuropathic or musculoskeletal. But I did get the hang of that after a while.

    Hope this helps.

    caregiver41 replied to hackwriter's response:

    Thanks for the info. Asked my neurologist if the problem with walking was from the spinal stenosis at L5,L4,L3 &S1S2, or was it from the MS. He said he didn't know and no neurologist could say what is causing it. Talked to the doctor about CCSVI not to have the procedure but being tested just to see if there was blockage as I have shown some signs. While getting my Tasabri they checked my blood pressure I asked to have it checked in both arms your allowed 10 points between arms mine was 20 points. Again nothing was done I guess I just have to wait.
    Neil S Lava, MD replied to caregiver41's response:
    Since patients with MS can have other problems it can sometimes be difficult to tell what is causing the symptoms. Of course, you could have surgery and see what happens, but a surgeon would want to know that you would have improvement of your symptoms before you were subjected to a major surgery.
    It may be a good idea to get another opinion to see if someone can help with your decision.
    As far as the 20 point difference between pressure in both arms, you should discuss this with your primary physician. There are a number of things that can cause this pressure difference.
    caregiver41 replied to Neil S Lava, MD's response:
    Thanks for the reply Dr. Lava I know longer have a primary care physician. I have done a lot of research and everything I've found shows it could be cerebrovascular disease, it also shows that the lesion that show MS could also be caused by this. I have contacted my MS doctor to be tested for this and he refused to look at as anything but MS. It's nice to know that another doctor is more opened mined to other thoughts.

    Featuring Experts

    Stephanie knows multiple sclerosis as a patient and as a nurse. Stephanie was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2013. Shortly after being diagnosed...More

    Helpful Tips

    the walking drug, ampyra
    was diagnosedwith MS in 2000. my walking has been getting harder to do but i was still able to work. i recently had an exacerbation of my ... More
    Was this Helpful?
    52 of 63 found this helpful

    Related Drug Reviews

    • Drug Name User Reviews

    Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

    FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.