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treatment for L5-S1 annular tear

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,731
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:28 AM in Lower Back Pain
Anyone have impute on treatments for an annular tear @ L5-S1?
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Comments

  • I also have the same thing along with herniation. I have tried all of the conservative measures. I would see what can be done as far as that to begin with.
    Heidi
  • I had an annular tare at L3/L4 and had PLDD and endoscopic surgery that removed most of my disc. It did help my sciatica but my facet pain is worse. Good luck.
  • I have the same and after a year I'm no better off. The Drs wonder why I have pain? I wish I can get something done for this besides meds. Good luck. 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
  • i saw that you mentioned the dr's wonder why you have pain. did the doctor really tell you that you shouldnt be in pain.
    just curious. ive got two bad discs with tears and i was referred to a pain md who basically told me that most people with this problem dont have symptoms and told me that i shouldnt be in that much pain but i am in alot of pain all the time. just wondering

    thanks
    kris
  • Strange. I have been told by several docs that annular tears are very painful. Of course, I also know from experience :-(
  • What caused your back conditions? Mine is from my job, as a nursing assistant. I had never thought I had a problem until my back pain never went away. I have been home for a year now.If I would have known, I would have mentioned it to my Doc when I was seen for my neck. Thanks, Dar
  • He never said that I shouldn't be in pain. He just said I don't know why you're having pain. It was the shortest assessment ever. Very unthorough. The only test he did was have me push my feet against his hands. L) I wouldn't want someone like that treating me anyways. I see PM Dr tomorrow maybe he knows someone. Maybe he'll help with the pain. I'm in lots of pain like you Kris. I hope it reverses itself. I bought a posture pump hoping that helps. I'll let you know. Take care everyone here. 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
  • ya that was my impression as well but i dont know. he said that most people dont have symptoms but i dont care about other people i know i have symptoms and just want them addressed without being made to feel like its all im my head.
  • There is not much that can be done for annular tears. A few years ago, IDET was the gold standard. But studies found that the efficacy was less than 50%. A newer treatment similar to IDET is called biacuplasty, but it's still in the clinical phase (not approved by FDA/insurance). But any procedure for annular tears assumes the pain is originating from the disk itself. Supposedly a discogram will confirm that, but the 2 I've had were inconclusive. Pain could also be from the facets & it's hard to tell one pain from the other.
  • I'm not very familiar with them but I have also heard that people can be symptomatic or asymptomatic and doctors can't really explain why that happens. I have read that nerve endings exist there and that is the reason why tears are very painful. Nothing is simple when it comes to back injuries.
  • hello:)
    i am a 24 yr old Canadian male and have been suffering with a thoracic annular tear for 2 years now. i do not have spinal cord impingement, however, there is only bad and worse days. the pain runs along the corresponding ribs, (small disc protrusion and annular at t7-t8) and seems to impinge nerves running along the left of my spine. i cannot lift anything without triggering it for hours. i was an electrician but now can no longer work.
    i am taking 150mg lyrica twice daily, i hate them, and 4mg dilaudids as needed. the doctors here are not much help and i want my life back. can anyone pls tell me if the new minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy will fix my problem?
    thank you for your time
  • I had 3 torn discs. it took the Drs 2 1/2 years to find the problem. They are very painful. I just had a 2 level fusion on Dec 11 and discectomey. Still reocuping. I only had 2 with annular tears, so I still have the possibility of another down the road. he said that every additonal level you have done, the higher the risk of failure. Thus only 2 at this time.
    I also had a nuero tell me that the disc fluid is very irritating, and that it can cause major pain.
  • with a tear in the annulus, the gel like substance inside bulges out through the tear and presses on nerves. That is what causes so much pain.
  • If you already have a herniated disc along with a tear, does it make it worse? Can the tears heal themselves over time?
  • I have heard that some tears can heal on their own. I think that I was told that if they do not heal within a year, they usually will not. I think that annular tears are discussed under the Conditions tab at the top of this page. It will show you a picture of the disc and the annulus. It will show how the gel like substance can protrude out and press on nerves. Check it out.
  • I think mine isn't healing either after 15 months. The 5 epidurals have helped the sciatica as well as injections for the facet joint arthropy(arthritis) helped a lot! I'm awaiting to see a 3rd opinion NeuroSurgeon appt. I guess the OrthoSurgeons I went to see weren't impressed enough to do a microsurgery on me. I'll see what Neuro says. It's tough waiting for it to heal on it's own not being able to work is hard and I will lose my job in 8 months if I'm not better. C'est la vie. 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
  • I had my 2nd MRI without contrast and it showed no herniated disc anymore nor problems with the facet joints and didn't mention anything about the annular tear. I have DDD though in my lumber-1 through S-1 and I'm still having pain. I thought the pain was from the tear and the disc material in contact to the exiting nerve but still have pain I guess from the Degenerative disc disease. Nothing can really be done at this point says the 3rd opinion Neurosurgeon. I'm still riding my recumbent bicycle and just got a manual treadmill. I've still yet to go for the heated pool therapy. I wasn't able to make it last week due to not sleeping well. 21 months off work and I lose my job if not back by Feb. 12, 2010. Maybe I'll be better by then? 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
  • The only way they found my disc causing pain was with a discogram. It will reproduce the pain if it is a disc causing problems. Mris never showed mine. Discogram was the only way they would have, and definenitly which ones. Hope this helps. Love, Robin
  • My experience was the same as Robin. It took a discogram to find them. Good luck.
  • J.J.Grey said:
    I have heard that some tears can heal on their own. I think that I was told that if they do not heal within a year, they usually will not. I think that annular tears are discussed under the Conditions tab at the top of this page. It will show you a picture of the disc and the annulus. It will show how the gel like substance can protrude out and press on nerves. Check it out.

    I've had my tears for years, but really torn badly back last March when it nearly crippled me. I've walked bent over for months and have the most horrible pain sitting down. It's been nearly 13 months of every day pain hell for me. Sometimes I get such a bad sharp stabbing pain down there out of nowhere that I actually YELP like in the store and people LOOKKK at me, and OMG, but it hurts so bad it makes me cry sometimes. L4-S1, 2 torn and leaking discs. OMG. A discogram confirmed, double positive. Nothing helped, not epis or facet joint injections; dr.'s say I need multi level spinal fusion is only thing that can fix it. I'm only 41, legally blind, and scared to death. Sometimes I wish I'd die from soemthing ele before i have to put myself and my husband and elderly mom through this. Mom is the only remaining family member I have, no brothers, no sisters, last uncle died 2 years ago. I can't see to drive and I'm scared to death. I am depressed, but on meds and now they've got me hooked on their pain med, these damn Lortabs. :( Sorry to complain and rant on, sorry. I'm just so despaired and hurting right now.
  • Jon CJJon C Posts: 1
    edited 02/06/2014 - 11:54 AM
    It is my belief that this injury is not very well understood by the medical community. When my doctor told me that i have an annular tear, he said that it could cause pain. The truth is that it causes incredible pain. I have found that "inversion" offers relief, if only temporary. I purchased a "teeter hang-up" and use it daily. I believe that weight of the upper body pressing down on the disk adds to the pain. Traction may also help relieve pain. It has been over two years for me and i still require pain medication. I also plan to take up swimming.

    I hope this helps
    Jon C
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