NEW MRI-BACK GETTING WORSE!

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wolftrades
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 301
   Posted 6/10/2008 10:36 PM (GMT -7)   
New mri:

L1-2 with mild circumferential disk bulge. Diffuse facet hypertrophy. Ap measures 8mm

L2-3 with central stenosis and bilateral recess stenosis with mild progression since previous study secondary to circumferential disk bulge in combination with facet and ligamentum flavum hypertrophy. Ap measures 8mm

L3-4 with mild central stenosis and bilateral recess stenosis left greater than right secondary to circumferentiall disk bulge in combination with moderate facet and ligamentum flavum hypertrophy. Ap measures 9mm

L4-5 with central stenosis and bilateral recess stenosis secondary to posterior vertebral body osteophte, circumferential disk bulge and facet hypertrophy. Ap measures 9mm

L5-S1 with degenerative facet disease

Impression:
Mild progression of central stenosis and bilateral recess stenosis L2 through L5 secondary to circumferential disk bulges in combination with moderate facet and ligamentum flavum hypertrophy

Diffuse facet hypertrophy

Any comments, suggestions?

Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 6/11/2008 9:17 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi wolf...

Good to hear from you again! Good you got a new MRI. That way it shows the progression of your disorder and can give you and your medical team a head up on how to treat it. How is your pain level doing? and is your doc helping you out with meds? I sure hope so.

Hugs,
Chutzie
Co-Mod Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
~~~
Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, collapsed disk, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteo arthritis in spine and other locations.
***************

The only difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. Albert Einstein: (1879-1955)


wolftrades
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 301
   Posted 6/11/2008 1:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Nope, never had surgery. in fact, 3 surgeons told me that they would not operate because of the multi-levels of problems. Take care!

PAlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 6/11/2008 1:44 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, wolftrades,
I didn't initially respond because I was a little confused about your situation, since I don't know any of your history. I'm not a doc so really can't interpret the MRI, but even I can see lots of things that could be causing pain. And it only take one nerve being compressed in one place to wreak havoc with our lives.

I've just had a recent fusion (L4-S1) that has apparently failed, so I know as you likely do surgery is not always the answer. I do hope you are seeking good pain relief. Since you just had another MRI that seems to say you're in the process of having your pain/spine problems re-evaluated, which is good. I'm not sure what else to say at this point but wish you all the best.


PaLady

Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 6/11/2008 4:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey wolf...can you email me please? Not to worry...it's all good. ;-) <---click on the little envelope or the email is chutz at chutz dot org...lol really!

Chutzie
Co-Mod Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
~~~
Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, collapsed disk, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteo arthritis in spine and other locations.
***************

The only difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. Albert Einstein: (1879-1955)


wolftrades
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 301
   Posted 6/18/2008 11:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Not sure if this changes anything, but the Ap size in L1-L2 was 14 mm, not the smaller number that I had incorrectly typed.

SJH
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 87
   Posted 6/19/2008 9:52 AM (GMT -7)   

Undr...

I had one tell me that crap too! He says mine isn't considered "severe" and that if he had an MRI he was sure he would have an abnormality too, as would most people but i don't hear him complaining. I just stared at him daydreaming about b**** slapping him. I cannot BELIEVE they are specializing in PAIN but they don't GET IT!!!

I love my Rheumatologist <3 <3 <3


***** Fibromyalgia 2007 ***** Degenerative Disk Disease with Herniation T7, T8, T9 May '08***** Rheumatoid Arthritis June '08 ******


TDoern
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 495
   Posted 6/20/2008 10:03 AM (GMT -7)   
Wolf - I have to tell you that it's a blessing and a curse that they are refusing to operate.

The problem with problems at multiple levels is that your spine becomes more and more unstable. If they stabilize the parts that are bad it just causes further destabilization up the spine. At least thats what I've been told.

I wish I had something to tell you as far as good news. But if I were you I would just discuss things with your doctor and see what they think.
"When we come to the edge of the light we know, and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, of one thing we can be sure; either God will provide something solid to stand on... or we will be taught to fly.'"

"Cause when push comes to shove You taste what you're made of, You might bend, till you break Cause its all you can take; On your knees you look up Decide you've had enough, You get mad you get strong Wipe your hands shake it off, Then you Stand" From "Stand" by Rascal Flatts
_____________________________________________________________________________
Dx.: Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, Ulcerlative Colitis, Chronic Inflammation of the Colon, Ruptured & Fused L4-L5-S1 w/pinched nerves, Degenerative Disc Disease, Chronic Costochondritis, Back Muscle Spasms, Asthma, Benign Tremmors (hands)


terinsam
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 10/29/2008 4:23 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm new here.  I'm not sure how this forum thing works and I'm not even sure if I'm posting to the right place.  I Just found this site b/c I was looking into my condition.  I had an MRI done on Monday, got the results on Tuesday and the results were that I have a bulging between my L4 & L5 disc.  I'm not sure what that means for me.  Can it be cured?  Is surgery inevidable.  I've gone threw PT in the past for many years due to a car accident and the pain has never really subsided.  I'm not sure if that caused the "bulge" or if it's heritary(my whole family has back problems).  I don't see my Doctor till next Tuesday to discuss this, but until then I'm gonna go nuts.  First I have a 6 month old daughter, so I have to be active.  Second, I own a business so I've got things that have to be done there, and I'm in such pain that I don't know how I'm gonna get things done.  The doc prescribed vicoprofin which has helped a little but I can't understand why the pain hasn't subsided with the meds.  If anyone can give me any tips, advice or any info, I'd sure appreciate it.  Thanks bunches, looking forward to replies...Sincerely, terinsam

Pamela Neckpain
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1821
   Posted 10/30/2008 1:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Terisam:
You have come to the right place. Welcome.
Unfortunately, I cannot give you any advice. I just don't know.
I had to make many changes in my life that I didn't enjoy.
As time has gone by I've accepted them better but it's
never been easy. I've been to many doctors and most
do not think surgery would be the best for me. I've had
pain for 6 1/2 years and I'm waiting for a medical miracle.
Opiod medicine has saved my life.
Pamela
Tuesday is quite a ways away. Why don't you call your
doctor and tell him how you are feeling. Maybe he'll
make an earlier appointment for you. Much of this
depends on your doctor. Intractible Chronic Pain patients
sometimes have to see many doctors. In the beginning,
it's just so confusing.
MEDICAL CONDITIONS

Osteoarthritis all levels of spine right down to Coccyx,Spondilytis,Myofascial Pain
Fromyalgia,Bulging Discs,Spinal Stenosis,Scoliosis,Osteopenia,Chronic Constipation
Carpel Tunel Syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorder,
Depression & Anxiety

Methadone for Pain, Xanax for Anxiety, and more, of course.


Pamela Neckpain
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1821
   Posted 10/30/2008 1:48 AM (GMT -7)   
Wolftrades,
I kinda glance at my MRI's real quick and then I put them on a high shelf.
I can't understand them. I can just feel the problems.
Maybe the Lumbar area is the best place for doctors to operate?
I dunno. I just wanted to say "Hi" and wish you the best.
Pamela Neckpain
MEDICAL CONDITIONS

Osteoarthritis all levels of spine right down to Coccyx,Spondilytis,Myofascial Pain
Fromyalgia,Bulging Discs,Spinal Stenosis,Scoliosis,Osteopenia,Chronic Constipation
Carpel Tunel Syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorder,
Depression & Anxiety

Methadone for Pain, Xanax for Anxiety, and more, of course.


Baybreeze
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 315
   Posted 10/30/2008 6:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Wolf,
 
Your back sounds a bit similar to the way my lower back was before I had surgery for severe stenosis. Mine started as low back spasms on & off and over a period of about 3 years, it progressed to the point that I could hardly walk anymore. I could not stand upright at all, either. I also had central canal stenosis with ligamentum flavum hypertrophy and buckling into my canal. I also had alot of bone overgrowth, as well as herniations and bulges. Even though my MRI showed alot of problems, I had even more compression in there that was found at surgery...so MRI's dont' necessarily show the whole picture. It also depends on who is performing the MRI and what sort of experience they have with it..and who is reading the MRI. Many times a person reading an MRI is not necessarily an expert in the spine. I also had bilateral foraminal stenosis and lateral recess stenosis. Some of these are very difficult to show up on MRI.
 
Don't let anyone tell you that some imaging shows it can't be "severe enough". That's just bull. I'm sure a doc wouldn't tolerate that if it was them that was in pain. By the way, facet hypertrophy means enlargement of your facet joints, which are the joints on each side of your vertebrae, which connect the vertebrae and allow your spine to move. So in you, these joints are getting larger, which means bone overgrowth, like I had. This in itself can cause alot of pain. The ligamentum flavum is one kind of ligament that runs along the spine, that connects parts of your spine together. When this ligament thickens, it takes up more space inside and can impede on nerves or your cauda equina. (Cauda equina is a big bundle of nerves that resember a horse's tail that run off of your spinal cord. The spinal cord actually ends around L1 or so..and from there, this large bundle of nerves runs down the rest of the spine and into the sacral area.) The combination of facet & ligament hypertrophy, disk bulges and herniations can cause compression of surrounding nerves as well as the cauda equina. When the cauda equina is compressed enough, you can develop neurogenic claudication, such as I did. It becomes extremely painful to stand straight and you would find yourself wanting to walk by leaning on shopping carts. It would also cause even more severe pain if you try to bend backwards. The straighter and more backward bent you are, the more everything inside the spinal area gets pushed together. If claudication occurs, you will get crampy pains down your rear and/or backs of your legs. The only thing that relieves the pain is sitting down or bending forward. If this does happen to someone, it usually occurs very slowly over time and symptoms start in one's 60 or 70's or thereabouts. Mine was very unusual (so my spine surgeon said) because I was only 33/34 when mine started and within 3 years I became almost homebound.
 
Also, the lateral recess is the space in the spinal canal next to where the nerve roots of each lumbar level exit the spine. When this is compressed, it can cause mild to very severe nerve pain on the affected side.
 
Personally, though I'm not a doctor, just someone with stenosis who asked many questions of my spine doc, as well as educated myself......it seems to me like you have many reasons to have back pain. I've also read that canals between 10-12mm can show signs of claudication or other nerve symptoms. Of course, this is not set in stone, as nothing in medicine is always completely set in stone...
 
Do you also have leg pain? Do you find it harder and harder to walk any sort of distance? Try to bend backwards.....and see if it hurts more. These are classic signs of stenosis.
 
What type of doctor did you see? What did they suggest for a possible treatment plan?

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13470
   Posted 10/30/2008 8:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Wolf the reason no reputable dr would operate on you is you have to many levels involved. If they went & fused you, your back would be like a broom stick and I know no decent dr in his right mind that would do that. Talk about asking for trouble, boy howdy, you would be there. You have three levels of stenosis which is narrowing, probably got herniated disc hidden in there too, not uncommon to find once they go in. Alot of times when there is narrowing they will find a herniated disc when doing surgery. Drs do not like to admit to that for some reason. Your facet problems will deal you all kinds of grief and pain. I have facet problems at L5-S1 which is the bottom disc, along with a bulging disc at that level. Drs says since no nerve is involved there my pain is not from the disc., rather the facet joints. I have done trigger points, every kind of injection coming down the pike. I had very good relief withmedial branch nerve blocks and radio frequency. Will be interesting to see what happens next. Susie


terinsam
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 10/31/2008 4:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi pamela, thanks for the reply. I did call my doctor and unfortunately since I don't have insurance(self emplyed) I don't have a very caring doctor, actually he's pretty arrogant. He has this attitude like we should count ourselves lucky that he shows up once a week at the clinic to help the little insignificant people such as myself. I did call and told his nurse that I was in a lot of pain and if they could even give me any suggestions to help ease the pain I would really appreciate it. She said try putting a pillow between my legs. That was all she could say. My doctor is a Joke, and the joke must be on me. So, since I have no insurance I guess all I can do is put up with this treatment, or lack there of. I will see on Tuesday what happens, maybe he'll refer me to a speciallist that has some humanity in him. For now, I'm taking a lot of baths with the jets on and motrin of course. But please feel free to shoot any advice you can my way. I do appreciate any help I can get. Thanks again pamela, sincerely, terinsam
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