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Its hurting way to much, yet tests show very little

matthewjmmatthewj Posts: 2
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Chronic Pain
For the past 4 years I have been dealing with pain, since the first time it started to hurt to now it has gotten extremly worse. I'm at the point now where it takes me an hour to two hours just to get out of bed cause the pain is so severe. I take 36mg per day of Hydromorph Contin, as well as 1000mg per day of Naproxen for any inflamation. I have had X-rays, CT scans and MRI's done and they arn't really showing a whole lot. I have also had every type of blood test done, the only abnormality is I have elevated levels of the HLA-B27 blood gene. I have also had the test done that electroshocked my nerves in my legs to rule out nerological pain. I have mutlipe discs in my spine that are extremly tender to touch and often the skin area around my spine bruises. I am lost as to what to do and it seems like I'm not getting anywhere with my doctors and it almost seems as if they don't think I'm in as much pain as I really am.
This is all the information that I have on my spine, if anyone has any suggestions please help me, I don't want pain to continue to control my life
Here is what I know

X-Rays, minor arthricic in the lower spine, and everything else seems good

CT Scan, Minor disc Buldging

MRI, Abnormal Bone Growth

Blood Tests, Elevated levels of HLA-B27

Family History, My grandfather died from hemochromatosis, and two of my aunts were treated for it. My mother is has Cushings syndrom. My aunt had a tumor removed from her upper spine, and two of my uncles have had major back surgery but i'm not sure what it was for.

Please help me, I have a baby due in Aug and I want to be able to be a Dad first and not a Dad that is limited because of Pain.


  • I feel your frustration....and wishing to have a definite term for the problem - so that you can be fixed. I have arthritis in my cervial, with bone spurs and a minor bulge. But i suffer horrible pain in my neck as well as my thoracic. The injuries to my cervical are minor compared to alot of people you will find on this site. And all appears normal in my T spine - so I do really understand your frustration. And i have been down the path of blood tests

    I am receiving botox injections into my T and C muscles, to stop the spasms....my neck is straight as a result of the spasms (mri report from 1 year ago). They are hoping that this will ease my pain - i will definitely let you know if this helps me.

    Charry's suggestion of facet injections should definitely be a consideration. I did have them performed in C and T - they did help my neck gain range and a little less pain.

    I hope you have a chance to discuss some of this with your doctors - and i hope that you find some answers

    CONGRATS on becoming a dad - it is a wonderful journey!

  • Hi Matthew, :H
    It is terrible to suffer in constant pain. I have endured it for the past 5 or so years. In you test results you mentioned "abnormal bone growth". Could this be bone spurs in your spine? I would discuss this possibility with my doctors. Having a child is the most wonderful, exciting events in a persons life. I do hope they can find and treat the cause of your pain soon so you can get back to focusing on being the best Dad ever! =D>
  • congratulations on the impending birth.i know how you feel regarding pain.all i can say to you is change you doctor to get another opinion .pain is horrendous i know i am having an appalling time with it at the moment.keep on at the medical world until you get satisfaction ..it took me 2 years to get a diagnosis for my thoracic outlet syndrome one emergency doctor told me that i had a muscle strain and despite me telling him that i was taking oxycodone for severe back pain gave me 2 paracetamol!! {pillock}!!.finally after pushing a and pushing i found a thoracic consultant that gave me the correct test and the correct diagnosis.thankfully my TOS is in remission at the moment unlike my back pain which is out of control ..so i do know how you feel
  • Sometimes even with the best and the brightest of the doctors intentions an exact cause of the pain isn't found. I bet there are quite a few "pain enigma's" here. Many of us understand how pain compromises quality of life, so you welcome to commissurate! Sounds like you need better pain management, and maybe some new thoughts. A teaching hospital might not be a bad idea, or step outside one realm of medicine into another. What types of specialist have you seen so far? I assume you saw a rheumatologist, maybe see another? Hang in there, but you have a whole lot of reasons not to settle for where you are at.
  • First off thank you too all of you that responded, I don't think I've ever been treated so kindly by people that I don't even know, especially for all the congrats about me becoming a Dad.

    Second. I took everyone advice and went straight to my doctors office, they took me in right away and without an appointment. Maybe they could see the intensity in my eyes. I now have an appointment with a new Rheumatologist, a new date for another MRI and an appoitment with a guess an autoimmune doctor to look further into the HLA-B27 blood test that I had come back positive.

    Looks like I'm finally getting somewhere, thank you to everyone for your suggestions

  • I had facet joint injections for arthritis in my lower spine and it helped me with moving better.I'm not sure if that would help you though. I would look for a Dr. who specializes in autoimmune disorders though.
    Congratulations you're going to be a Father. I hope you can find some answers for your pain. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • That is terrific, and i bet you felt inpowered! I wish you the best of luck with all the new doctor appt. - perhaps now you can get to the bottom of what is going on with you and your pain.

    Feel proud of yourself for your victory - i understand how much courage it took for you to get the doctor to hear you.

  • Hopefully the Dr/RA explained the blood workup. You can read more about it here, but it basically tests for Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) and/or Reiter's syndrome:


    I've been seeing a RA specialist for years - because my HLA-B27 antigen is also elevated. But according to my RA, even though I have the gene, I don't have the disease. Even if I did, there's not much to do for AS - other than NSAIDS,TNF inhibitors, etc.

  • First off, Congratulations to Matthew on the expansion of his family that will be here before he knows it!

    I wanted to post to let you all know how honored I feel to be in the presence of such wonderful people.

    Matthew came here and all he has was this elevated enzyme with some letters and numbers that, to me, looked like a license plate here in Louisiana.

    Yet, somewhere in our volumous member base, SOMEONE knew exactly what he was talking about and came to the rescue. Every day when I log on and read through the threads, I feel more and more honored to a part of this wonderful site.

    You all deserve a pat on your backs. Jumping to the plate and coming forward even when you have nothing to offer but support and a hearty congratulations. Actually, honored doesn't quite do it... Words actually fail me at this moment.

    You truly are a great group of people!



  • I accidentally hit the submit button twice...

    (brain fart)

  • I am so sorry to hear of your suffering. Has anyone suggested a discogram yet? That is how my annular tare was found. I also have arthritis in my facet joints and it is very painful. I too have a very difficult time getting out of bed and straightening up. I wish you much luck and please keep us posted.
  • hi mathew, just read your post and identified with it right away. I have also had scans and xrays and they can't seem to find much. my last scan was about 10 or 11 years ago and it showed a tear on one of the lower discs.(can't remember which on) Now i have arthrits in all my joints. Anyway, enough about me. I really hope you get a definite diagnosis/prognosis and at the very least some good pain management instruction. you have helped me come to a decision regarding my own problem and think i should show interest in another scan.Wish you all the best. enjoy your baby!
  • I had chronic pain for 2 1/2 years and had every test and injection imagineable. I went to many neuros and orthos before I finally went to one at a spine clinic that offered a discogram based on the fact that tears dont always show up on MRI,CT, myleograms. Bingo, 3 discs with tears. He suggested a 3 level fusion. I went for 2nd opinion and I had that Dr do a 2 level fusion and discectomey in Dec. I had soreness like you described. I hope you find this helpfull. I was not ready at 48 to throw in the towel and give up. I knew there was something they were not finding, and by chance I found the most amazing Dr that has tried to do the right things for me. I am not yet out of pain. But at 8 weeks I am sure it is to soon to expect it. Good Luck and keep your chin up. You too, will find the answers that you seek. Just keep trying as I did.
  • Hi there just thought that I would let you know my situation. I currently have a formal complaint lodged with one health care trust and trying to get treatment from another. I have had spinal pain and spasms from the age of about 10, I am now 32 with spinal and limb pain and neuralgia . My father had spinal problems affecting his lumbar spine and was told it was psychosamatic, his brother had neck pain and eventually was diagnosed with DDD. My sister also had spine problems in the lumbar spine and was diagnosed with AS after 8 years of useless tests. Well I had to push to have hla-b27 test & it is +ve. I had to push for MRI of neck and told disc protrusion. I had to push even harder for lumbar MRI and told disc prolapse. GP confirmed I have DDD but still rheumatology are twatting around - my advice get a good neurologist and percivere! My situation made me suicidal in the past and I hope that the pain & discomfort you have doesn't get you too down. It is wonderful that you are to be a dad - congratulations. Look after yourself, I doubt the doctors will.
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