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  1. #1
    Registered User Ethriller's Avatar
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    Please Help... LOWER BACK PAIN #@Q$!

    Hello everyone,
    I am new here and looking for a guidance. This has been an extremely frustrating experience. Please help if at all possible. Heres my story...

    I am 23 years old, 6'4'', 195 athletic build. Play D2 basketball. Over the years, Ive had minor lower back problems that lasted no longer than a week max. This last summer, I went back packing all over Europe and gradually noticed significant back pain. I have been to trainers, chiropractors, taken MRI.

    Diagnosis: Herniated disk in my lower lumbar spine. Degenerate disk. Hips are off.

    Symptoms:
    When i try to explode from a squat position, i experience sharp pain in my lower back. Sitting it chairs or a seated position for an extended period of time kills because my back "locks" up. Hurts to do most lower ab exercises. Due to the pain, i have lost a great deal of flexibility in my hamstrings. I also experience Tingling in my quad, but not hamstring which eliminates the possibility of some sort of sciatic problem.

    Can anyone offer ANY suggestions about ways to possibly heal these symptoms. My doctors basically say that it just takes time to heal but it has been over 8 months now of pain. My symptoms are not getting worse, but not getting better either.
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  2. #2
    Registered User HALON's Avatar
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    If you have a herniated disk in your lower back, and you feel tingling in your legs that means that your hernia is puting pressure on your spinal cord which is a very serious problem.you need treatment.I would not be doing squats, you could just make the problem worse, the reason your back hurts during siting is cause siting puts more pressure on your spine, sitting is a very bad possition if you have an back injury. I heard that massage therapy can help heal minor herniated disks.
    I know one person who had a herniated discs that did not heal with normal therapy they went to surgery in which the verterbral herniated disc was removed, and two verterbra were fussed together. This is the only thing that can actually heal a herniated disc 100%.
    I know that ronnie coleman had a herniated disc at some point, he is fully healed now.
    "In AUSTRALIA
    Each year there are 470 000 adverse events, 18 000 deaths, and 50 000 permanent disabilities arising from medical error and negligence each year. This is four times higher compared to the USA." (Second oppinion, GERMOV quote, page 293)

    353 fatal car crashes were recorded on Australian roads in 2008 (RTA, 2008). You are 50 TIMES more likely to die from medical negligence from a DOCTOR compared to being fatally injured in a car crash and they say driving is dangerous.
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  3. #3
    Registered User pulary's Avatar
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    Let me first of start by saying that I feel your pain. I actually had 2 herinated discs that were degenerative at the L4-L5-S1. I had surgery in August of 2005, and it was the best thing I ever did. I lost all my flexibility in my hamstrings and was unable to walk/stand for longer then 2 or 3 minutes. I have sense begun working out again, walking and sometimes jogging. Still have poor flexibility in my hamstrings, but I am seeing a therpasit about that.

    If you are thinking of having surgery I would look into having the Dynesys. What this does is allow for your spine to still have ROM by utilizing screws, rope and plastic tubing. Having a spinal fusion is absolutely the worse thing you can do unless you HAVE too. They take a bone graft out of your hip, which hurts worse then the actual surgery itself, and you lose all of your ROM in the affected area.

    There has been a lot of new technology that has come out, and I woul be very careful about which doctor to choose. I would look at an orthopedic surgeon that specilizes in spine care. If you want more information do a google search for Back surgery options.

    Best of luck
    Last edited by pulary; 04-16-2007 at 03:00 PM. Reason: addition of some info
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  4. #4
    Registered User someguy20's Avatar
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    Just because it doesnt go into your thigh doesnt mean its no sciatic, however im not sure about what I just said I remember one nerve supples calf other is your thigh ill ask my chiro and report back to you.

    And why are you still doing squats if you have this pain?
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  5. #5
    Registered User lm1171's Avatar
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    Don't put off getting treatment. I have had major back problems most of my life, my weight did not help. When I started having pains in my legs I disregarded it. I soon noticed that I had to keep my buttocks clenched to stand up straight and began dropping steps in my left leg. I sought treatment too late. My surgery alleviated the nerve blockage. I could have been paralyzed left untreated. However, because I waited I now have numbness in my legs and feet. I have learned that pain is your body's message that something is wrong. It is no time to be macho. I know several people who have had herniated disk surgeries and almost all had no problems. They did not fool around waiting for the pain to go away. Most times doc goes in and snips off the peice of disc that is protruding. Fusion is usually not done for herniated discs. I believe that is more for severely degenerated vertebraes or those that have almost no disc between vertebraes.
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  6. #6
    Registered User visualenkryption's Avatar
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    I'm 17 and I herniated a disc in my back the day i turned 16. When I first noticed the pain it was very uncomfortable but I was still able to move around. After about 2 months it got significantly better, and i resumed normal activities. The wear and tear added up and I messed myself up again. When i started feeling pain again, I got an MRI because it didn't get better. My disc at L5-S1 was herniated and degenerated.

    It's been about a year since the worst part of this happened. I was in physical therapy and thought it was a waste of time; it would help temporarily but minutes after it would get painful again. Sitting down was brutal, and walking hurt because I was always so cramped up.

    I continued therapy and about 7 months into it my core was becoming so unbelievably strong. I still perform my therapy on a regular basis and have very minimal pain in my back. I would highly recommend seeing a doctor for some anti-inflammatory medication like 800mg Ibuprofen or Celebrex to ease inflammation. If it's literally unbearable, like mine was for a very long time, you should get something opioid-based; however these types of medications lower your test levels and certainly do not put you in a progressive mood.

    I was under the impression that I was going to need surgery at 17. My doctor was exceptionally helpful and did not recommend surgery. For someone who makes money by performing surgery, he told me that most of people who have surgery have even more back problems. If the fusion is initially successful, the discs surrounding the one that was removed to allow the fusion are loaded with additional pressure and after months or years of pressure, they end up having surgery to fuse other vertebrae together.

    There are other surgeries where they will remove part of the disc that is herniated. They now even offer synthetic disc replacements. Seeing that you don't complain about any type of sciatica, i would think this would be the best surgery for you. These surgeries are extremely dangerous however, and there have been numerous fatalities just removing the disc.

    You need to stop doing squats right away. Squats put the weight right on your spine and compress your discs even further. You can do more damage if you don't stop. Other off limit exercises are power cleans, snatches, and dead-lifts. They will certainly worsen your condition if you don't straighten this out first.

    Although pain-killers certainly help ease the pain, they shouldn't be used as a solution to your problem. All they do is mask pain, and you have a further potential to hurt yourself if that's all you're doing for yourself. I used a 100mcg Fentanyl Patch for 2 months. When I was wearing this I had no trace of pain, but as soon as the patch wore off I was near tears again. I caught on manipulated pain killers by allowing them to help me get through the painful exercises to improve myself.

    Many will say therapy is useless, but if you're serious about helping yourself, you will include therapy to any rehab program. If you have your hips aligned, your muscles will just throw it out of whack again. You need to strengthen your core muscles and teach them how to work correctly.

    A good way to relieve back pain while sitting is to roll your hips underneath the rest of your body. You'll feel shorter if you do it too much, and you should also feel your abdominals contract.

    You could ask your doctor for an epidural spine injection, i tried 1 before I started getting serious about therapy, but it didn't help any. Other options include taking a yoga class, spinal decompression, accupuncture, or seeing a well respected chiropractor.

    I wish you the best of luck, low back pain is one of the worst pains around. You need to take care of yourself for now and allow yourself time to heal.
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  7. #7
    Registered User oziem's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by HALON View Post
    If you have a herniated disk in your lower back, and you feel tingling in your legs that means that your hernia is puting pressure on your spinal cord which is a very serious problem.you need treatment.I would not be doing squats, you could just make the problem worse, the reason your back hurts during siting is cause siting puts more pressure on your spine, sitting is a very bad possition if you have an back injury. I heard that massage therapy can help heal minor herniated disks.
    I know one person who had a herniated discs that did not heal with normal therapy they went to surgery in which the verterbral herniated disc was removed, and two verterbra were fussed together. This is the only thing that can actually heal a herniated disc 100%.
    I know that ronnie coleman had a herniated disc at some point, he is fully healed now.
    spinal cord doesn't go that low, it's caudal fibers...
    Psa 89:13 Thou hast a strong arm; Thy hand is mighty, Thy right hand is exalted.

    Advice given by the person known as Oziem is not a substitute for direct clinical care. Oziem and bodybuilding.com (bb.com) are not responsible for any inquirer's decisions for health care.

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    www.gonsteadmethodology.com
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  8. #8
    Registered User oziem's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Ethriller View Post
    Hello everyone,
    I am new here and looking for a guidance. This has been an extremely frustrating experience. Please help if at all possible. Heres my story...

    I am 23 years old, 6'4'', 195 athletic build. Play D2 basketball. Over the years, Ive had minor lower back problems that lasted no longer than a week max. This last summer, I went back packing all over Europe and gradually noticed significant back pain. I have been to trainers, chiropractors, taken MRI.

    Diagnosis: Herniated disk in my lower lumbar spine. Degenerate disk. Hips are off.

    Symptoms:
    When i try to explode from a squat position, i experience sharp pain in my lower back. Sitting it chairs or a seated position for an extended period of time kills because my back "locks" up. Hurts to do most lower ab exercises. Due to the pain, i have lost a great deal of flexibility in my hamstrings. I also experience Tingling in my quad, but not hamstring which eliminates the possibility of some sort of sciatic problem.

    Can anyone offer ANY suggestions about ways to possibly heal these symptoms. My doctors basically say that it just takes time to heal but it has been over 8 months now of pain. My symptoms are not getting worse, but not getting better either.
    Sir
    you have a classic low lumbar disk problem. Either the L5 vertebra (most likely) or possibly sacral base needs to adjust to restore the function. If you like I can help you find a good chiro to help you.
    Psa 89:13 Thou hast a strong arm; Thy hand is mighty, Thy right hand is exalted.

    Advice given by the person known as Oziem is not a substitute for direct clinical care. Oziem and bodybuilding.com (bb.com) are not responsible for any inquirer's decisions for health care.

    chiropractic referrals:
    www.gonsteadseminar.com
    www.gonstead.com
    www.gonsteadmethodology.com
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  9. #9
    Registered User oziem's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by visualenkryption View Post
    I'm 17 and I herniated a disc in my back the day i turned 16. When I first noticed the pain it was very uncomfortable but I was still able to move around. After about 2 months it got significantly better, and i resumed normal activities. The wear and tear added up and I messed myself up again. When i started feeling pain again, I got an MRI because it didn't get better. My disc at L5-S1 was herniated and degenerated.

    It's been about a year since the worst part of this happened. I was in physical therapy and thought it was a waste of time; it would help temporarily but minutes after it would get painful again. Sitting down was brutal, and walking hurt because I was always so cramped up.

    I continued therapy and about 7 months into it my core was becoming so unbelievably strong. I still perform my therapy on a regular basis and have very minimal pain in my back. I would highly recommend seeing a doctor for some anti-inflammatory medication like 800mg Ibuprofen or Celebrex to ease inflammation. If it's literally unbearable, like mine was for a very long time, you should get something opioid-based; however these types of medications lower your test levels and certainly do not put you in a progressive mood.

    I was under the impression that I was going to need surgery at 17. My doctor was exceptionally helpful and did not recommend surgery. For someone who makes money by performing surgery, he told me that most of people who have surgery have even more back problems. If the fusion is initially successful, the discs surrounding the one that was removed to allow the fusion are loaded with additional pressure and after months or years of pressure, they end up having surgery to fuse other vertebrae together.

    There are other surgeries where they will remove part of the disc that is herniated. They now even offer synthetic disc replacements. Seeing that you don't complain about any type of sciatica, i would think this would be the best surgery for you. These surgeries are extremely dangerous however, and there have been numerous fatalities just removing the disc.

    You need to stop doing squats right away. Squats put the weight right on your spine and compress your discs even further. You can do more damage if you don't stop. Other off limit exercises are power cleans, snatches, and dead-lifts. They will certainly worsen your condition if you don't straighten this out first.

    Although pain-killers certainly help ease the pain, they shouldn't be used as a solution to your problem. All they do is mask pain, and you have a further potential to hurt yourself if that's all you're doing for yourself. I used a 100mcg Fentanyl Patch for 2 months. When I was wearing this I had no trace of pain, but as soon as the patch wore off I was near tears again. I caught on manipulated pain killers by allowing them to help me get through the painful exercises to improve myself.

    Many will say therapy is useless, but if you're serious about helping yourself, you will include therapy to any rehab program. If you have your hips aligned, your muscles will just throw it out of whack again. You need to strengthen your core muscles and teach them how to work correctly.

    A good way to relieve back pain while sitting is to roll your hips underneath the rest of your body. You'll feel shorter if you do it too much, and you should also feel your abdominals contract.

    You could ask your doctor for an epidural spine injection, i tried 1 before I started getting serious about therapy, but it didn't help any. Other options include taking a yoga class, spinal decompression, accupuncture, or seeing a well respected chiropractor.

    I wish you the best of luck, low back pain is one of the worst pains around. You need to take care of yourself for now and allow yourself time to heal.
    epidurals can cause serious side effects
    I am glad you emphasized a 'well respected' chiro
    Psa 89:13 Thou hast a strong arm; Thy hand is mighty, Thy right hand is exalted.

    Advice given by the person known as Oziem is not a substitute for direct clinical care. Oziem and bodybuilding.com (bb.com) are not responsible for any inquirer's decisions for health care.

    chiropractic referrals:
    www.gonsteadseminar.com
    www.gonstead.com
    www.gonsteadmethodology.com
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  10. #10
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    Man your story totally hits home. I just turned 23 myself and have always been extremely athletic. Last September, I was going down for a ATG squat (not even with super heavy weight) and I felt an agonizing "explosion" in my back. Apparently, I had severe disc degeneration in my lower spine which caused two discs to herniate; one centrally and one to the right. I've competed in various martial arts and been in some pretty rough accidents in my day and I have to say that disc herniation was near the top of my scale in terms of unpleasantness and lasting pain.

    If you have a nerve impingement as it sounds you do, the pain is even worse. I highly doubt it's actually your spinal cord that's being impinged and more likely one of the many nerves that branch off of it and travel down your legs.

    I started physical therapy about a week after my injury and just stopped it about a month ago (in the process of moving to a different health insurance provider). During this time I also tried chiropractic, spinal decompression therapy, and some mild massage (just 5-10 minutes each time I visited the PT).

    Of all these treatments, the PT was the only one that has yielded any significant results. Massage feels great and helps relax muscles in the injured area but it really can't do much for a nerve impingement or compressed disc. Chiropractic is pretty useless in my opinion... Some people claim to have seen great results from it but I have always been skeptical. I can manipulate my back and neck in the exact same way chiropractors do and it just provides a temporary relief of pressure. I spoke to one of the most respected spine surgeons in New York City and he actually said that Chiropractic could increase aggrivation in the area rather than help it. Spinal decompression also seemed to be relatively useless although I was doing it while I was doing PT so I did get better during that time (but I attribute that 95% to the PT).

    My pain now comes and goes and my flexibility is still crap compared to where it was before. I wish I had better advice to offer but I'm grappling with the same problems you are. I've spent thousands of dollars and dedicated myself to 2-3 hour treatment sessions 3 days/week for over six months and I still feel like half a cripple. PT certainly helped and did wonders for strengthening my core... I walked into my therapist's office barely able to stand up straight and I am now back to light squats & deadlifts and intense bagwork (although I am contemplating cutting the squats/deadlifts out of my routine again as recently my lower back pain has become more severe). PT is absolutely a "must-do" if for no other reason than to greatly improve your core strength which will help you in any athletic activity in the future. In fact, I plan to continue some sort of core strength regimine even after concluding PT and will incorporate Pilates and Yoga exercises into my routine. They may not look as glamorous as a massive bench press but I can guarantee that you will be far more powerful as an athlete than someone who has focused solely on typical weightlifting splits with minimal ab/lower back work. I thought I could take it easy on the core training and bodyweight exercises since I've always been very strong for my size with big numbers on bench, squat, deadlift, and the ability to do lots of situps/pullups. I was totally wrong, even big compound powerlifting-style movements will not truly strengthen many internal stabilizer muscles which are critically important for stability and functional strength.

    The worst part about our injury is that sitting is so terrible for it. I'm not sure what you do for a living but I consult with various technology firms and my job requires me to sit for sometimes 10+ hours/day. This is probably the worst possible thing for a herniated disc and I'm looking into some alterantive ways of still using my PC (such as a kneeling chair or lying down and using a wireless keyboard).

    I've spoken with quite a few specialists and all of them have discouraged surgery in my case although some have suggested epidural injections (which i will probably try as soon as my insurance is sorted out). I would agree with those who say surgery is a last resort. Spinal fusion will drastically impact your athletic ability and can indeed cause future problems as it will put unnatural pressure/torque on other veritbrae. There are some new and pretty innovative procedures being developed for disc issues (since so many suffer severly from them), including some "non-invasive" procedures that look promising. I am still optimistic that I can heal this without surgery but I'm not sure how much longer I will feel that way.

    The best advice I can offer you is to continue to be athletic and just listen to your body. This is basically what the top orthopedic specialist at NYU said to me. Does this mean you should go back to squatting 300+ lbs? Absolutely not... you have a severe injury which will take time to heal. As much as it sucks to come to that conclusion, you must do so if you want to heal. I'd suggest altering your workout routine to include lots of core strength, isolated leg work to keep yourself from atrophying too much (try to use machines that don't compress your spine and provide good back support). Find a great physical therapist and be disciplined about stretching and adhering to the core strengthening program your PT puts you on. Get yourself some orthodic shoe inserts if you plan to do any running/jumping to lessen the impact on your spine (they are damn comfortable too, I don't know why everyone doesn't use them all the time) and just continue to train and listen to your body.

    Finally, and most importantly, never stop pursuing knowledge. If you have health insurance, try to see as many well-reputed doctors and specialists as possible. If you're up for it and optimistic about them, you should try some alternative treatments such as acupuncture, specialist massage, and even chiropractic. While none of these did much for me, everyone is different and some have seen results from them. Epidural injections also look like something worth trying... none of the doctor's I've spoken with have been too concerned with any potential side effects and all of them have said that it should at least provide long-lasting pain relief (which should also help restore flexibility). Also, you may want to try some good joint support supplements such as Omega Flex, Super Cissus RX, or other such supplements that have positive feedback. They didn't do that much for me but I did at least see a small improvement in my flexibility and a lessening in soreness.

    That's all that comes to mind for now. I'm truely sorry that you are also suffering from such a terrible injury and wish you all the best on your path to recovery. Stay mentally strong and focused on beating this affliction, learning a lesson from the hassle you've been through (my lesson was not to neglect my core and bodyweight excersies), and keep on trying new treatments. Sooner or later, I'm confident that you will slowly heal yourself and ultimately end up better off than you were before your injury.

    My apologies if this post is a bit rambling or has typos... I'm rushing out the door and typed it at the speed of thought. Hopefully it was helpful. If nothing else, know that at least you aren't alone in suffering from this injury at a young age.

    Originally Posted by Ethriller View Post
    Hello everyone,
    I am new here and looking for a guidance. This has been an extremely frustrating experience. Please help if at all possible. Heres my story...

    I am 23 years old, 6'4'', 195 athletic build. Play D2 basketball. Over the years, Ive had minor lower back problems that lasted no longer than a week max. This last summer, I went back packing all over Europe and gradually noticed significant back pain. I have been to trainers, chiropractors, taken MRI.

    Diagnosis: Herniated disk in my lower lumbar spine. Degenerate disk. Hips are off.

    Symptoms:
    When i try to explode from a squat position, i experience sharp pain in my lower back. Sitting it chairs or a seated position for an extended period of time kills because my back "locks" up. Hurts to do most lower ab exercises. Due to the pain, i have lost a great deal of flexibility in my hamstrings. I also experience Tingling in my quad, but not hamstring which eliminates the possibility of some sort of sciatic problem.

    Can anyone offer ANY suggestions about ways to possibly heal these symptoms. My doctors basically say that it just takes time to heal but it has been over 8 months now of pain. My symptoms are not getting worse, but not getting better either.
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  11. #11
    Registered User lm1171's Avatar
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    Is the OP still following this thread? Any updates? How are you doing?
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  12. #12
    Registered User HandOfFate's Avatar
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    How bad do you think my back is?

    I tried to suplex a guy, and felt a sharp pain then tight muscles in the lower back. The next day I had some minor shooting pain in my right thigh.

    It's been 8 days, and the back feels mostly better, there's been no sharp pain since I injured it, but the muscles have been a little tight. Every once in a while I have some leg pain, but it's not that bad.

    How do my symptoms compare to some of you guys who had to have surgery?

    I'm a bit freaked out thinking that this might wreck my MMA career.
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  13. #13
    K. I. S. S. jdmalm123's Avatar
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    i also herniated l5-s1 and needed surgery. back to full strength now.
    look into "mocrodiscectomy" over "fusion" and "laminectomy/laminotomy" if possible. epidural steroid injections may help the pain in the meantime.
    look up "dermatomes" to see which disc is causing the problem. each nerve controls a different area of the body (dermatome).
    "Suffer the pain of discipline or suffer the pain of regret."

    Training regularly but no progress?
    You need one or more of these: more food, more weight, more reps or more rest.

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  14. #14
    Registered User Azaloth's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by jdmalm123 View Post
    i also herniated l5-s1 and needed surgery. back to full strength now.
    look into "mocrodiscectomy" over "fusion" and "laminectomy/laminotomy" if possible. epidural steroid injections may help the pain in the meantime.
    look up "dermatomes" to see which disc is causing the problem. each nerve controls a different area of the body (dermatome).
    Thanks for sharing this. After surgery, do you have ANY permanent side effects? Is your flexibility completely restored? Is your strength truly what it was before the incident occured?

    I ask because almost every medical person I speak to says that once one goes the surgical route, it's virtually impossible to ever use one's back they way one did before the herniation. That said, they may all still be thinking about fusion rather than microdisectomory.

    If you could share some additional details about yoiur case it would be much appreciated.

    Thanks.

    Also, I just realized you're in New York... I'm in Manhattan myself. Do you know any good docs in the area who specialize in this sort of injury? Who performed your operation?
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    I used to have hair BradleyS's Avatar
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    what does it mean your hips are off? who diagnosed you with this?

    I'm just wondering...sorry I don't have anything wonderful to help with your back pain! I have heard good things about injections, however it is not a cure for the pain...just pushes the pain away for a while
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  16. #16
    K. I. S. S. jdmalm123's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Azaloth View Post
    After surgery, do you have ANY permanent side effects? Is your flexibility completely restored? Is your strength truly what it was before the incident occured?

    I ask because almost every medical person I speak to says that once one goes the surgical route, it's virtually impossible to ever use one's back they way one did before the herniation. That said, they may all still be thinking about fusion rather than microdisectomory.

    If you could share some additional details about yoiur case it would be much appreciated.

    Do you know any good docs in the area who specialize in this sort of injury? Who performed your operation?
    You're welcome.
    Permanent side effects depend on whether or not there is permanent nerve damage. In my case, if there was anything, I had diminsihed ability to dorsiflex my foot, but even that resolved a year or two after surgery.
    The only real "permanent" limitiation I have is regarding volume. Where I sued to be able to stand, lift, etc. all day and back to back days, now I have to limit myself. Not that I am really affected, I just don't have "unlimited" capacity, but that could just be aging in general!
    My actual strength is higher than before, but it took me a year to restore to pre-injury level and several more years to exceed.

    The "average" patient is not motivated or active before surgery so it's usually a set back for them. If you are willing to work hard to regain your capacity and you're motivated, you will be fine. This is assuming you go the microdiscetomy route. The fusion is less likely to be sucessful or restore you to pre-injury condition.

    I did have 3 epidurals before surgery and they helped a lot (reduced pain).
    In retrospect,, my biggest error was not having the MICRODISCECTOMY sooner since I lost mass and flexibility while making up my mind.

    Some of the best spine doctors in the world are in NYC.
    I used Dr Dowling at Long Island Spine Specialists in Commack.
    Operation in Huntington Hospital.

    I work in medical claims and supervise rehab nurses. I can get you some dr names. PM me with the area of manhattan where you are or let me know if it doesn't matter.
    "Suffer the pain of discipline or suffer the pain of regret."

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  17. #17
    Registered User lm1171's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by HandOfFate View Post
    How bad do you think my back is?

    I tried to suplex a guy, and felt a sharp pain then tight muscles in the lower back. The next day I had some minor shooting pain in my right thigh.

    It's been 8 days, and the back feels mostly better, there's been no sharp pain since I injured it, but the muscles have been a little tight. Every once in a while I have some leg pain, but it's not that bad.

    How do my symptoms compare to some of you guys who had to have surgery?

    I'm a bit freaked out thinking that this might wreck my MMA career.
    If you take care of it soon there probably is no reason it should linger. I had the laminectomy and also a hole drilled to relieve a blockage (not sure of the name of that surgery). I waited too long and and suffered nerve damage that left numbness in my calves and feet. I was told by a top-notch neurologist that if the numbness is still there after two years post-surgery (it has) then I will have it for life.
    The epidureals felt great for about 2 weeks. The pain came back and surgery was unavoidable.
    Your symptoms don't sound as severe as some I have heard.Your fitness will also play a role. I was in terrible shape and way too heavy. I have seen people in better shape come through the laminectomy with zero problems and return to normal activity.
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  18. #18
    avi @145 hockey1234's Avatar
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    For the lower back pain: I was diagnosed with a degenerative disk in the L-3 or something area (lower back), and they couldn't figure out what else was wrong... anyways, I was told to strengthen my core, and knees.

    For the core: "anything that does not cause pain" is what I was told. The idea is to work your way up to being able to do almost anything. Also, wearing orthodics (helps put your hips and knees in the right place), and seeing a physiotherapist (which I found useless, but anyways).

    I ended up going to see a personal trainer that my hockey team had seen before and I think that made the biggest difference. This trainer actually gave me at least 6 new excercises every time I saw him instead of just watching me train like most do. (The doctors will tell you to try physio first. They don't mention a personal trainer, but I asked the doctor and he said that would help if physio wasn't working.)

    Knees: pretty much everything I said above. I would suggest getting a BOSU ball from Fitness Depot. For around $100, there are endless excercises for both legs and the core. If you PM me, or request them, I can send them to you. Also, an elliptical helped me with my back and knees well.

    Doctors said that getting back surgery is a risky thing so if it cant be avoided, then avoid it definitly.

    Hope this helps!
    I always rep back
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  19. #19
    digger mc-'s Avatar
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    Arrow low back pain: more/other than the vertebrae

    site of pain mayn't be source of pain it really pains me to hear all these stories about back pain:
    me, like most folks with low back stuff - compressed l4/l5, long history of chronic back stuff.
    chiro, pt, accupunture. shots and surgery offered - na thanks.

    like a few here, a lot of money for treatments that would hold for only a short time getting off the table.

    Yoga therapy worked a bit better than anything else; kettlebell swinging really helped but still chronic flare ups.

    As a last ditch effort a colleague hooked me up with a mobility/movement specialist. This person also looked at vision and balance stuff, not just muscle work. The experience was huge and transformative.

    Like many people who experience the benefits of an approach, i started to learn more, and get certified in the approach: how to understand movement and our neurology. since then i and colleagues have worked with TONS of athletes with the same low back issues you've described here.

    getting to the nervous systemThe approach always seems to have immediate benefit.

    A couple of reasons:
    o it works with the nervous system - the body's governing system (what runs joints and muscles)
    more on that here: http://www.begin2dig.com/2009/10/mov...l-path-to.html

    o it is active rather than passive: you are moving yourself rather than being manipulated, which fires of thousands more signals in the body to learn new patterns than manipulations so benefits stick.
    related: http://www.begin2dig.com/2009/09/b2d...hat-is-it.html

    o it works in large part on threat reduction: the latest work on pain says pain is an action signal. it means change something. finding the right thing to change is part of the assessment process. i've yet to work with anyone who hasn't had immediate and significant pain reduction (or elimination) and that only improves as they continue to do the work FOR THEMSELVES.
    related: http://www.begin2dig.com/2009/11/why...ough-pain.html

    low back: location of pain receptors for ANY pain event? Here's something else about low back stuff. Lots of folks have compressed disks or degenerated discs, or scoliosis and have NO pain - so is the site of pain the source of the pain? maybe not.

    Here's why: here's what we know about the back: it has the highest ratio, in the low back, of nociceptors (the nerves that detect noxious stiumlus) than any other area of the bod, and the lowest number of mechano receptors. In other words, the back is a huge pain cry waiting to happen. Our other joints have more mechanoreceptors than nociceptors around them, so good movement can often come through louder than pain. In the lower back, the least pain is gonna be more amped up.

    The back is also the big X of the body - things cross from the right side on the lower body up to the left side of the upper body. So the low back again is a HUGE junction for LOTS of information.

    rewiring the back over time to be THE pain receiver Finally, and this is amazing, we learn pain; our brains can re-wire where pain happens. big technical term: we can sometimes with chronic pain get what's called neural chunking or central wind up. In other words, ANY pain/stress signals from anywhere start to manifest in the low back - that's become our response zone. That doesn't mean it's not happening; just that the brain/nervous system is now routing pain signaling through that super sensitive place. and it has been super sensitized.

    It's because of all this neuro-chemical soup (to use david butler's analogy) happening that sometimes looking for issues in a back joint is not going to "unwind" the pain issue.

    So to all you folks who have tried everything and are frustrated and in low back hell?

    alternative ACTIVE approaches may i recommend considering an active/neurologically sensitive approach?

    Best approach: see a movement specialist
    If you pm me and let me know where you live, if i know someone close by, i'll be happy to recommend them. Likewise, if not, i do video consults, too.

    secondary approach: get a joint mobility program into your life. Moving each joint through a range of motion is an amazingly good way to talk to the nervous system.
    here's more on why
    http://www.begin2dig.com/2009/09/b2d...hat-is-it.html

    and if you scroll down to "dig in" there's some recommended places of guided packages for that, eg the "level 1" kit.

    The best part is, really, when you have an understanding of how pain works, and how the nervous system works in terms of proprioception, vision and the vestibular sysetms, there's a path to start unwinding that. AND YOU DO IT FOR YOURSELF so it sticks.

    The big take away is that especially chronic low back pain is more than 9 times out of 10 not about the joints - pain is way more interesting and intriguing it seems than that, but it does make sense that the low back is where so much chronic pain gets filtered, eh?

    hope that helps.

    mc
    Last edited by mc-; 11-27-2009 at 09:49 AM.
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