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    Exercises for low back pain?
    ButeoFerrous posted:
    Do any of you have any suggestions for stretches/exercises to relieve low back pain? I have a degenerating L5-S1. It is inflamed most of the time and the pain can get pretty severe. I am going to look for a orthopedic or spine doctor, but in the mean time, any suggestions on relieving the pain? I take Oxycodone as needed and Gabapentin 1800 mg/day, but the pain is still affecting my ability to do anything.
    georgia888 responded:
    Hello Buteo,
    Before engaging in any exercise, please check with your doctor to be sure it is safe for you.

    I have found swimming, water walking & general aerobics performed in a warm pool to be very therapeutic for my lower back issues. I have moderate-to-severe osteoarthritis along with spinal stenosis & although I remain in pain most of the time, the pool exercises help with mobility & flexibility.

    Every doctor & physical therapist I have seen over the years has highly recommended this form of therapy. It helps me function better.

    Please let us know how you make out with the doctor.

    Best wishes for greater comfort with less pain,
    davedsel57 responded:
    Hello again, Buteo.

    I agree with Georgia completely. It is always best to consult with your doctor before starting any type of treatment including exercises. As you have been advised, make sure you see a spinal orthopedic surgeon or spinal neurosurgeon for an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment plan.

    For now, you can try ice and/or heat applied 20 minutes on/20 minutes off - whichever works best for your pain and inflammation. Can you take anything OTC such as aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen for the inflamnation? That may again be best discussed with your doctor. A hot shower with the spray directed at the affected area may help as well. As Georgia says, hydrotherapy is excellent for those of us with chronic spinal problems.

    I pray you find ways to relief your pain soon.
    Click on my user name or avatar picture to read my story.


    ButeoFerrous replied to davedsel57's response:
    Unfortunately, I am no longer able to take any over the counter NSAIDS, or tylenol. I'm allergic to ibuprofen, and after years of heavily using them, asprin and naproxen give me gastritis. Tylenol give me instant migraines. I wish I could take some anti-inflammatories. Yesterday my lower-back was so inflammed that it was noticiably swollen to the touch, and very painful. Putting ice on it helps, but the burning sensation is still there.

    I'm going to call my PCP and ask for a referall to an orthopedic or neurosurgeon.

    I have had physical therapy last year, with some relief. Anyway, I wil ask my doctor if I should do exercises or not.
    ButeoFerrous replied to ButeoFerrous's response:
    Well, I've got an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon, but it's not until march 18th. I am on the cancellation list, so if there's a cancellation, I'll have a chance to get in sooner.

    I see my pain management doctor thursday, but I don't really like her. She's rude and makes a lot of mistakes on her perscriptions. But I see her for a follow-up after my latest round of cortizone shots.

    I'll keep you up-dated and let you know what happens.
    bj1208 replied to ButeoFerrous's response:
    Hi ButeoFerrous -

    I just wanted to see if there is anyway you can call around to other Orthopedic Spine and/or Neurosurgeon Spine Specialists to get in sooner??

    You should always get a couple of opinions (one from both spine specialists) so that you know what your options are as they can vary depending on the type of spine specialist you see.

    I know you don't care for your pain doc which you can change this too. I see a PHYSIATRIST Pain Specialist -

    They go deeper into pain management control based on patients' needs and for the most part, normally will not do treatments if they do not benefit the patient.

    Hope this helps - keep us posted~~
    ~~ Click on my name or picture and read my story ~~

    Take care ~~ God Bless ~~

    ~~ Joy ~~
    ButeoFerrous replied to bj1208's response:
    Since I'm on medicaid, there's a limited number of doctors I can go to. They have to be a provider for medicaid, and most aren't. I called several doctors offices before finding the one I'm going to. All the other ones I called either weren't taking new paients, or they didn't take my insurance.

    I will look up more doctors today, to see if I can get in at a different place, but the place I've got scheduled at is a renowned learning hospital in my area, and they might be more willing to do therapies that will help.
    jselleck replied to ButeoFerrous's response:
    Hi Buteo, I also have lower back pain which has been a chronic problem since I was young. I finally got a referral to an orthopedic spine specialist last year after an mri showed several degenerative discs. He's recommended therapy twice, the most recent time this past august. Due to time constrates I was unable to finished the full round of therapy so my therapists gave me some exercises to do at home. The round of exercises are as follows: leg cross at the knee for 2 minutes each leg, bridges ( raise back off the ground with knees bent and hold for 10-20 seconds as you're able) 20x's, balance on one leg with opposite knee bent and held against back of leg if necessary for balance for 1 minute each leg, chair sit, where you sit in a chair with both knees bent and good posture, then rise from chair again with good posture 20x's twice with break in between, slouches where you sit in a chair with good posture then slouch forward and repeat for 1 minute. Do you have access to resistance bands?? If you do there are two more exercises you can do. Using a 5 lb resistance band hook it to the back of a door and do the following exercises. Sitting in a chair again with good posture, using one arm at a time, pull the band towards you, keeping your arm straight and your elbow locked. Repeat 20xs then switch arms. For the second exercise, stand up straight and pull the band towards you, again keeping your arm straight and elbow locked. I do these exercises 3xs a week and it's helped me a ton. But like everyone else, I suggest asking your doctor first before starting any exercise regimen. Hope this helps and you feel better soon. Pain of any kind is never fun.
    gbeltz responded:
    I do agree that you need to consult your doctor before you set up an exercise regime. I have surgery on L5-S1 and it is bulging again. The physical therapists says that stationary bike, eliptical are ok to work on. The best therapy is swimming. I am on tramadol, gabapentin and tylenol arthritis and a steroid injection every three months. It has come to the point that it is getting difficult to sleep in a bed for very long, about 3-4 hours before I have to get up and stretch. I do calf stretches and lifts, the physical therapist explained that some of the back muscles do to down the legs and it can relieve a little pain.
    gbeltz replied to ButeoFerrous's response:
    You might see if they can prescribe diclofenec. I am allergic to ibuprofen due to high dosage over a ten year period(3500 mg/day). I am off Diclofenec because after 9 years of taking that it was causing a low hemoglobin count. So it is ice packs and icy hot rub.

    The surgeon that did my last surgery said the next surgery is fusing and he does not want to do that at my age. And then there is Sciatica in my right side and a right knee that will get no better than 75%. I really should have taken care of myself when I was younger because I am a total wreck now.
    catalpa responded:

    Go to this website and watch how to use this lobaktrax. You can do the same thing with piece of pvc pipe. Just hold it low and press toward your legs to stretch your spine. I have degeneration at the L5-Sl also and I know exactly what you are talking about with the inflamation and pain. Make sure you do not do sit ups only do isometrics (tightening) when laying down flat or standing against a wall. Good luck.
    catalpa replied to gbeltz's response:
    Be careful with too many steroid injections I heard they can weaken the bones and long term can cause more problems.
    Anon_13707 replied to bj1208's response:
    To bj1208, I too have spinal problems for 15 years. Cervical & lumber, though cervical bad (4-level, disc degen.,spinal stenosis, osteophyes,osteoarthritis). I have been to a pain mgrtmt.Dr. for about 7yrs. & went through 'usual' round of drugs,trigger shots, cervical facet & epidural injections. None helped very much & pills cause many problems after using too long. I too am gong to see a PHYSIATRIST In March (nothing earlier). My ortho.surgeon reccommended Radio Frequency Ablation for my cervial pain & migraines. I didn't know this was another alternative. My pain Dr. says don't do it & it's not safe? He is a neurologist. Will ask ?'s in March & decide if to try. What does your Physiatrist do for you? Thanks, JOHN
    bj1208 replied to Anon_13707's response:
    Hi John -

    After years of seeing the regular pain docs and starting from grown zero with steroid injections and going up to the RFA my PHYSIATRIST is basically treating my pains with heavy narcotics. He realizes that all the past treatments did not work and this is the best that he can do for me. I do have annual X-rays, MRI's, EMG and Nerve Conduction Tests done. Right now I can either go on the fentynal patch or possibly the Pain Pump implant. So i'm still deciding on that.

    I did have the RFA done twice - the first one to see how close they were to the pain areas and the 2nd one to see if they could get right on or closer - didn't work. what they try to do is burn the nerve endings to stop the pain signals. Sometimes this works great for people while it does nothing for others. The nerve endings can grow back and sometimes can cause more pains.

    One thing I have learned and that is the more times your spine is penetrated with a needle the more you can get infections in the spine.

    I think I would hold off on this and discuss with your pain doc and see why he says it's not safe. then you can make your call on if you want this or not. could be that the majority of patients he's seen have this have not had a good turn out.

    Hope this helps -
    ~~ Click on my name or picture and read my story ~~

    Take care ~~ God Bless ~~

    ~~ Joy ~~

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