I have been undergoing almost constant back pain for close to three years now. I have been to three different doctors and had every kind of diagnostic they could think of. MRIs, CT, Mylograms, More MRIs, Diagnostic Injections, Nerve conduction, etc. The nerve conduction says my S1 is not happy with about 15-20% increase in response time, but they cannot find the source of irritation.
The symptoms are numbness in the left two little toes/bottom of foot (S1 hint) and significant lower back pain. It comes on extremely harsh if I sit for more than 15 minutes and I am stuck to a recliner. I can walk, stand, lay down or recline. No sitting or I will pay with 3-4 days of intense pain. I drive like a low-rider leaning way back and can only do this for 15-30 minute stretches.
While a few discs L4-5, L5-S1 are slightly dessicated, there is no significant bulging or injury to the discs.
One thing that the doctors have seen, but they seem to believe its not related... on the left side the transverse process that sticks out on the L5 is about three times bigger than the one on the right side. It actually makes contact with the sacrum, although it appears not to be fused.
Now, when I have a really sharp lower back pain, it feels like a screwdriver is being pushed into my back just on the left side of center about 2-3" below my belt line.
I lay over a big exercise ball, relax and sometimes lever my arms and legs to force a stretch on my back. If I do this, often a "POP" occurs. When the pop occurs, the pain goes from a 6-7 down to a dull 1-2 instantly. The pop is on the left side, not in the middle of my back.
I asked the doctors, they say "Oh yea, partial sacralization is not uncommon, and many people that have it do not experience pain." OK, I can buy that. But is it possible that the L5 is getting kinked sideways or otherwise pressuring the nerves when the sacrum and that bone are making contact? Can partial sacralization cause pain?
I am wondering, is it possible to remove the bone orthoscopically (or at least reduce the size to where it no longer contacts the sacrum)?
Anyone here familiar with this?
The only thing that has relieved the pain so far has been cortisone injection at the L5-S1 joints, but it only lasted a few months. I cannot drive, go to a restaurant and enjoy a meal, movies, sitting in business meetings, etc. I actually have a recliner in my office due to back pain.