I've been having some mild pain in my lower back (slightly on my right side, about at the top of where my pants sit), so I went to see an orthopedic surgeon today. He took some X-rays, and told me that I was missing a lumbar vertebrae. Apparently it's uncommon, but since he's a spine specialist he sees it about every day.
He said that the pain was just from using my back a lot lately (I have been lifting for my lower body for a few months now), and that the pain indicated how I needed to be careful with my back. He said I shouldn't do squats or deadlift anymore either, and that HIIT sprinting was going to be pretty hard on me, since I have less cushioning than most people. He gave me a card for a physical therapist, but I don't have the money to go see him.
So I guess I am SOL when it comes to lower body? I don't want to spend my leg day in the gym doing leg extensions and leg curls on machines. Are there any leg exercises or leg routines that won't put too much pressure on my back? And is HIIT on a stationary bike nearly as effective as sprinting?
Thread: Missing a vertebrae
05-18-2005, 12:28 PM #1
Missing a vertebrae
05-18-2005, 12:41 PM #2
keep lifting and stretching. If you feel pain change your exercises so that they place less strain on your lumbar spine. Maybe you can focus on building the strength of your erector spinae muscles with good mornings and whatnot and that can allow you to keep training with no or little pain. If you feel considerable lower back strain or pain take a few days off before you lift again.
I think you can keep training lower body but you will have to give it more time for it to recover and be more selective on what exercises you do and how often you do them based on any pain you are feeling.
05-19-2005, 09:23 AM #3
05-19-2005, 09:37 AM #4
I think the ortho oversimplified things. Did he tell you that you were missing a lumbar vertebrae? Most commonly, you are not missing your L5 vertebrae, it just never separated completely from your sacrum AKA tailbone. This condition is called sacralization and is not uncommon at all. I see cases every month in my clinic. You are a little more prone to having low back pain than someone without this sacralization, but not much more.
You don't have to nix the lower body workout. Don't let him place the seed in your mind that your low back is messed up or malformed. If you get that in your head, you'll be worse off. My suggestion is to find a good chiropractor in your area, get your back evaluated, and see what he/she suggests. Probably, a short course of chiropractic treatment will alleviate your pain and allow you to fully train your body.
Let me know if you have any questions for me.
05-19-2005, 09:52 AM #5Originally Posted by bacdoc
I don't know why he would simplify and tell me that, kinda pisses me off. I asked his assistant afterward if it affected my height or anything not having it, and she said it probably did slightly. Guess that was BS also.
You think a chiro would really help, or just allieviate the pain?