Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

failed discogram

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:28 AM in Lower Back Pain
I am coming out of the lurkers' closet.

I have had lower back/sciatic pain for 2 years, 8 mo. I have seen 4 doctors with no real diagnosis. I am unable to stand for more than 5 minutes. After that and I've got level 9 pain in left buttock, calf (skips thigh) and my foot goes numb. I have had MRI's, EMG, 2 epidural injections, lots of medications. I just got the results of discogram and still no definite answers. The pain that was induced during discogram was level 9-10 but NOT down left. Pain actually went towards right hip.

I would like to share CT results (abbreviated). L2-3 mild circumferential disc bulge; L3-4 small right foraminal/far lateral disc osteophyte; L4-5 circumferential disc bulge with suprimposed small central protrusion. Mild facet arthropathy bilateral (rght greater than left) The right inferior L4 facet appears partially fragmented, which may represent neg. after effect of prior trauma; however fact fragments appear well corticated, suggesting that this is chronic in nature; L5-S1 normal.

Dr. (pain management) wants to repeat discogram but have it a functioning one instead. I asked if I could see a surgeon first and then if necessary, do it. I will be seeing him on the 17th.

I am so disappointed that that this test was inconclusive. I have hit so many walls. I was all prepared for a course of action. Does anyone know if you can have severe sciatica without damage to L5-S1. Can L4-5 cause this kind of pain? Any help would be most appreciated.



  • Hi Heidi,

    I had L4/L5 probs years ago, and i had sciatica, lower back pain and could hardly walk. My MRI at the time was normal, but my discogram was positive for L4/L5 which paved the way for my fusion.

    Hope that helps
    L4-L5 fusion 1998; ACDF C4-6 2008; DDD
  • What did your prior MRI say? Did you have the CT after or before? I had the same type of pain and the MRI picked up the herniations on L4-5 and L5-S1. I was having symptoms of severe back pain and sciatica. I would get burning,numbness, crushing, stabbing, and electric sensations in my leg, along with painful muscle spasms. How long have you gone without a conclusive diagnosis? Sometimes it take trips to different doctors and numerous tests to pinpoint the cause of pain. I hope you get answers when you see the surgeon soon.
  • My MRI was done a year before CT (which I had last week). The MRI showed L4-5 bulge, but very slight. It showed a lot of facet arthritis which I am wondering now was the fragmented L4. I suppose I should have had a contrast MRI but it wasn't ordered. Did not show problems in L2-3. I was really surprised by that one.

    I have not had a clear diagnosis for 2 years, 8 months. This is my 3rd Dr. I have seen an ortho At Univeristy N.C; Orthoneurologist at Duke University, 2 Chiropractors, and now a Pain Managment(Physiologist). I am seening a Surgeon Tuesday, who did residencies in both ortho and neuro so hopefully he will figure this out.

    I have been unable to take any pain medications because they all make me very nauseous. Strangly enough I function better in pain than being nauseated. So I do without. But without pain medications I know I am very short tempered, and cranky and I feel sorry for my family. They are very patient with me but I feel very guilty. I really need a game plan to bring a little hope of a better life.
  • a PT or oesteopath? The reason I ask is that they see you more then the five minutes in the doctors office. They (good ones) are skilled at testing different aspects of your bac, inducing pain, tension tests, SLR, reflexes etc...all which may help a doctor reach a diagnosis.

    You may be like me, I have numerous problems, spoilt for choice! lol!

    It was a slow time getting taken seriously and then a decent diagnosis. I just think that health professionals don't always listen or hear you correctly. Too busy popping you in a box....

    Good Luck.
This discussion has been closed.
Sign In or Register to comment.