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Lower Back Issues...HELP!
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klav99 posted:
Hi all,
I am a 35 y.o. female & after dealing with lower back & hip pain for about 3 years I may finally have a real diagnosis! In the past, I have been told it was both Spondy and/or Arthritis by different doctors. I have had xrays of my hip and an MRI of my back but never an xray of my spine. It has been very difficult to find a doctor that deals with chroninc back issues! This week I was referred to an ortho who did an xray of my spine and found that my last vertabrae was never formed correctly. He is referring me to a spine surgeon who will most likely set me up with a pain management specialist. He also said he is 95% sure that I won't need surgery. Does anyone know the medical term for this condition? I feel relieved that they found this but still frustrated because I am in so much pain! Sitting at my desk at work for 8 hours a day, (sitting anywhere for an extended period of time), laying down also hurts. I have been experiencing spasms when trying to get up after laying down also. I have been prescribed 2 different anti immflamatories (Naproxen & Meloxicam) but neither has done anything. I have also been through a few months of PT which has also not helped. My Doc gave me Tylenol with codeine which helps a little at night but can't take that during the day. She said they don't like to precscribe narcotics. This is the problem I run in to! Sorry for rambling but I am so frustrated! Any input at all would be appreciated!

Kristen
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cweinbl responded:
It could be a sacralized L5 vertebra, which is part of my diagnosis. Some of us have malformed or partially-formed vertebra. These can collapse over time with the level below. I'm hoping that this is really not your diagnosis, because there are no magic bullet cures. Your symptoms sound like mine. I ended up with four failed spine surgeries, including multilevel fusion.

X-ray of your spine, which only shows hard material (bone) is not very useful. That's because soft tissue like extruded disc material and tumors do not visualize on X-ray. Nor do ligaments or other connective tissue. You really need a myelogram, MRI and/or Cat-scan.

OK, so you "don't need surgery and you don't need narcotics.." Well, then, what DO you need? And if they won't provide opioids (no physician today uses the term :narcotics" any more), then how are you supposed to function?

I usge you to find a spine surgeron. That's an orthopedic surgeon or a neurosurgeon who has completed a fellowship in spine surgery. After all of the mistakes I've made, I would never again allow anyone without a fellowship in spine surgery to treat or touch me.

Please do not accept what you've been told until you hear it from at least two spine surgeons.
 
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klav99 replied to cweinbl's response:
Thanks! I saw a spine surgeon today. He is sending me for a flex xray & a new MRI (mine is 2 yrs old). He said with both of these tests they will be able to determine if surgery is needed. He also said he thinks my nerves are ok. He told me to take over the counter pain relievers. Still frustrated but at least I'm getting closer!

Kristen


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