Annular Tears and other problems

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Denim
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 428
   Posted 5/17/2009 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Everybody,
 
I recently had a lumbar MRI. I rec'd the report and it mentioned I had 2 left sided annular tears of both the L3-4 and L4-5 and a slightly greater disc buldge on the left at L4-5.
 
I spoke to my GP and he said it wasn't anything. I didn't have that before and have had no sucess with doctors here.
 
Does anyone know about these tears?
 
My pain has been since 2005 and I am not getting good answers. I woke up screaming from I am imagining was a spasm. I had valium around that took care of it. I go through cycles of not feeling too bad to feeling very bad. I want to work but I think it's impossible. My husband is a mess at the same time.
 
I am very depressed over it all. My doctor would give me anti depressants in a second, but I think, I have legitimate problems, am I just adding to it? I feel myself getting more withdrawn but it's also b/c I have been in a lot lately. Only a week or 2 ago, I didn't feel real bad and was able to do shopping, which isn't the best thing for my back and had been for awhile, b/c my husband couldn't.
 
I am wondering if it's worth seeing the neurologist about my mri. I need help financially on top of it.
 
I am trying my best to keep my faith. It's so hard watching your loved one suffer and yourself hurting too.
 
The place where the spasm came from I think is the same place that hurts when I walk.
 
I wanted off pain meds but see it's not a reality. I am on ms contin 30mg 2x a day and one 15 instant release once a day. He has me on ultram also, which I stopped because of all the bad things I heard about it and how if I decided to take an anti depressant, it doesn't go together.
 
I know I said a lot and it may sound confusing. I feel afraid and sad right now.
 
Any ideas are welcomed.  
 

straydog
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 13451
   Posted 5/17/2009 1:17 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Denim,

I am glad to see that you have finally got the MRI out of the way. My experience with annular tears is limited somewhat. I do know of several that needed surgery and others that conservative care was offered which consisted of medications including an anti-inflam med. It depends on the condition and the person. Annular tears from what I have read is a degenerative process, fluid can leak from the tears and dry the disc out. Over age and time this process is common in people to lose the fluid from their disc, you will see it in MRI reports usually will state loss of fluid . For some reason in the back of my mind an injury can cause a tear of a disc. I would suggest that you go see a neurosurgeon for a consult and take the actual film and written report with you.

I know you have suffered for quite awhile thats why I would not stop now because the PCP gave no help. See a specialist and find out whats available.
 
We have discussed it here before when people have chronic pain depression seems to be another part of our pain. They more or less go hand in hand. If you are depressed go see your PCP and try to find which one helps you the most. There are so many out there and I have been on several different ones for years. You just have to find what works for you. I will put it this way, my life is much better as long as I take medication for the depression. It helps smooth out my rough edges, I do not feel like flying off the handle at the drop of a hat, I do not cry all the time anymore, they even think its helps with our pain and I am inclined to agree. If I am all stressed out over something that means I will be tensed up and that means so are my muscles and that means pain. So, I do agree to a certain extent it can help with our pain.
 
I do not know if I have helped you any but I wanted to answer your post. Hope you get to feeling better. Hugs, Susie


Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 5/17/2009 8:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Denim!

Glad you made it thru the MRI also. One thing you might consider if you aren't satisfied with the treatment you are getting is to get yourself to a university/teaching hospital...assuming you are in the states. Most of them have clinics and will recommend a doctor you can see for your particular problem. Things like your annular tear are good candidates for this type of facility. They are often on the cutting edge with newer and less invasive procedures. At least you know you've tried everything if you want to give this idea a go.

Personally I need to know I have had the best treatment and tried all reasonable options before I would settle for living with something like this. Also on the depression...you don't have to live with depression. There are so many good antidepressants out there that you are most likely to find one that works well with you and your other medications. It took me quite a while and several tries to find the right one but it has made my life livable again and I know it is a plus for my hubby and family. Before I would be in tears several times a day for no apparent reason. The depression I have is more related to PTSD but I have had clinical depression ever since I lost my oldest son in 2000. That's something you don't "just get over" like my EX girlfriend told me to do. How do you just 'get over' loosing a child? I resisted taking any antidepressants for 2 full years and that was, for me, the wrong choice. I should have realized my doctor was offering them to me because he could see the need. He is a very sweet and compassionate doctor and a friend in our smaller community. Just give it some consideration and do talk to your doc about it some more. I'm not trying to push you into something unless you are ready for it...but for me I suffered for 2 years way more than I needed to.

Feel free to email me any time. Just click on the little envelope under my name over there <---, the one that is lit up. I'll answer you very soon. Try not to be afraid...you'll be OK and you are safe here.

Hugs,
Chutzie
Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
~~~
Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, PTSD, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteoarthritis and a few other side dishes.
***************
Happiness is something to do, someone to love, and something to hope for."
(\__/)
(='.'=)
(")_(")


White Beard
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3610
   Posted 5/17/2009 10:47 PM (GMT -7)   
Denim
I googled annular tears, you might want to try that this seems to be a good site to go to: www dot chirogeek dot com/000_Anular_Tear_1.htm Also I might add I would recommend that you go see a Neurologist, and I think Chutzie had an excellent idea, of going to a university teaching Hospital, any way I would not let this go, especially if it is causing you pain and discomfort and problems!
I do wish you only the best Good Luck to You

White Beard
  I'm Retired USAF, went back to school and became an RN, and now am on full disalbility!--Degenerative Disc (affecting mostly the thorasic disc but all levels involved), C6/7 laminectomy/diskectomy& fusion, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!) Medications: Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV


Denim
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 428
   Posted 5/18/2009 2:31 AM (GMT -7)   

Thanks to all of you. I don't want to let it go, though I don't have great faith in the neurologist it is better than the GP, who seems to take everything lightly.

Losing a child is a very, very heavy experience. I can not imagine how painful that must be. No way can you just get over it. I am so sorry and my words are not enough.

I have been fighting the anti-depressants b/c I've been thru a lot. I lost a husband and it was all right before my eyes. Ii could write a book on some of the terrible experiences I've had, But this CP has got to be the worst.

It is super late and wil re-read all that was written. I know I need an intelligent doctor and notone to brush me off, which is what happens.

This is like torture right now. I think I wrote this already, I go through periods of not feeling too bad to terrible.

Thanks for allowing me to contact you also.

I better go. Bless you all and thank you. I appreciate all who replied. Showing concern means a lot to me and  have always felt this was the most compassionate board. 

 

 

 


anice
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 5/18/2009 8:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Denim, I just read your post. It is okay to be afraid and sad. Saying that even sometimes helps. I want to encourage you to continue posting here. I have found it very helpful to me. Everyone is so caring and supportive. And it is all genuine. I have never found another group of people like the ones here on the forum.

I am sorry you are having a hard time and have been through so much. I also lost a husband 10 yrs ago, to a brain anurysem. That alone is something I think a person never really gets over.I also had a "friend" like Chutzie that suggested that I just "get over it". I lost a husband, not a child, but it was horrible for me.I am remarried and have another child, but there has honestly not been one day where I haven't thought of him. I did have to get on with my life. And it brought alot of quilt with it. I didn't want to get on with my life without him in it. But I had a baby(my son was 9 mos. old) and I knew he needed me as much as I needed him. And I knew that by getting on with my life didn't mean that I was through with the grieving process. I don't know if you really ever stop that. I think you just somehow learn to go through the motions.

It may be an option that would help you by talking with your doctor about getting on a anti-depressant. I have been hesitant about it before. I knew I was having problems and couldn't imagine a pill would help. But I have been on them many times in my life. And it does help. It doesn't make the problems go away by any means. But it does help you to be able to face and deal with them a little better. I don't want to sound "pushy". But it is something to think about. Only you and your doctor can make that decision. You stated that you are withdrawn. That does concern me. And I think that you may need to think about the options available to you-antidepressants and possibly even some counseling. It may help. Dealing with pain all the time is bad enough. And just know that you don't have to suffer emotionally alone. The options I stated are worth considering. And you know that we are always here for you.

Please take care of yourself. And post when you can. I will keep you in my thoughts.
Anice

Post Edited (anice) : 5/18/2009 9:09:08 AM (GMT-6)


LLPLUV
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1158
   Posted 5/18/2009 5:21 PM (GMT -7)   

anice you brought me to tears and that hard to do.  Just the thought of losing my husband just tears me apart.

Chutz losing a child I could never sympathize and hopefully I could never be able to say that I can.  I'm so sorry for your loss......

Denim I would go in for an MRI to make sure that there isn't a tear.  If there is one then you can go from there to find treatments for it to heal.  Most of us on HW all know in our own personal lives that getting of pain medications will never happen.  If we lived in a perfect world we all would be happy and dancing in circles without a pain.  I'm happy if after 5 hours of taking a pill that I feel good enough to wait.  But then its always in the back of my mind what if I don't take my meds will the pain hit me like a baseball bat?

Get yourself checks out your body and soul is our only hope of a long happy life.  Try and keep it running as best as you can....

Laurie

 


39 yr young female with,
Chronic Kidney Stones, PKD (Polycystic Kidney Disease), Chronic Kidney Failure, Severe Hypertension, Urological RSD
Also CHF (Congestive Heart Failure) and Sleep Apnea
Hopefully NO MORE........ I think I have it all


Denim
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 428
   Posted 5/18/2009 5:36 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Laurie, Maybe I didin't express myself right. I just had the MRI that said I had 2 tears.

My trust is in the Lord not man, I have come to see.

Everything possible just about is not right, yet I have an inner peace.

I will do what needs to be done and continue to pray.

I lost a husband also, never a child. That has to be devastating. When my son joined the Navy I felt sick, when I found out that he wasn't coming home on leave I felt sick.  But this loss is something I would believe you would never get over and the person saying that can not be, how should we say? beyond not thinking properly. A mother and son's bond is very strong and my heart and prayers are with you.

Thanks again everyone. It is nice to be able to come hear without a fear of being assaulted--as I was on another board.

I give credit to the moderators who have hearts of gold. Bless u all.


Swallow your pride, you will not die, it's not poison.- Bob Dylan 


LLPLUV
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1158
   Posted 5/18/2009 5:41 PM (GMT -7)   

God I hope no one assults you...lol  I have felt so at home with this site that I find myself checking to see if there are any responses or new posts.

Sorry I must of been skimming I do that at times when I am tired.... Sorry....

I believe in God with all my heart and soul and as long as we do what we can for our bodies he will do what he needs to do.

I hope you find the answers you need.

Laurie


39 yr young female with,
Chronic Kidney Stones, PKD (Polycystic Kidney Disease), Chronic Kidney Failure, Severe Hypertension, Urological RSD
Also CHF (Congestive Heart Failure) and Sleep Apnea
Hopefully NO MORE........ I think I have it all


Denim
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 428
   Posted 5/18/2009 5:56 PM (GMT -7)   

Laurie, no need to apologize. Like I said this is a wonderful site and I give credit to the monitors. Yes, many people are very nice and compassionate and that is why I come back.

Take care and thank you.


Ms Kitty
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 37
   Posted 5/18/2009 7:25 PM (GMT -7)   

Always speak to your doctor begore  discontinuing any medication. Some you have to discontinue gradually.

MsKitty


Severe diabetic neuropathy, 3 stents, arthritis, R/BK amputee
 
Duragesic pain patches, Vicodin ES, Elevil, insulin and lots of other meds


Denim
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 428
   Posted 5/18/2009 8:08 PM (GMT -7)   

Thank you Ms Kitty. I am well aware of that. I can't think of any prescribed med that you can easily quit--though many do. I am aware it's called cold turkey and would you believe I had a doctor that admitted to me that he did that with a highly addictive med. And people may wonder why some of us don't trust doctors.

I do appreciate your concern and I find it hard to believe that many people don't know this but I know I am wrong. And I really do appreciate you taking your time to write. Often our words don't come off as we mean them, that's what has happened to me in the past and I assure you I appreciate anyone who takes the time to read a post and respond, and I hope I came across ok. So thank you for writing me. And I wish you well. In fact I pray for this board--there are so many kind people who are suffering, yet have so much compassion and I ask God to heal them.

Bless you and thanks again.

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