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Degenerative arthritis @ 23yrs

ms1417mms1417 Posts: 2
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:42 AM in Arthritis, Osteoarthritis
Hey everyone, I just learned today that I have some degenerative arthritis around L5 to S1. 6 years ago I experienced sciatica, 5 years ago I was in an accident that resulted in a 5mm herniation of the disk between L3 and L4. For a year I was doing back exercises visiting the chiropractor. Once the pain subsided I went on with my life.

Recently I've been in pain for the last 3 months although still maintaining a relatively active lifestyle because I've learned to live with the pain.

I had an MRI done and now that I know I have arthritis, I am a bit worried. I am 6'2" and weigh 175 lbs. I am in decent shape, I run around a 7 minute mile, and have slightly above average muscle tone, so losing weight is not a concern. Being that I am all those things and 23 years old, how do you suggest I tackle this issue?

Yoga, Physical Therapy, Swimming, Massage Therapy, Acupuncture, Medication?

If I gain 15 pounds of muscle would it bring me back to living life without pain?


  • I would get a referral to a Orthosurgeon or Neurosurgeon or Neurologist to get further tests or referral to a Pain Management Dr. by your Primary Dr. I went to a Chiropractor when I had my herniated disc and he wouldn't even touch me with herniation so best to not go again until you see a Spine Specialist. I had arthritis in my spine and had injections to relieve the pain and has helped so far. Acupuncture helped me as well as massage. Best to see a Specialist to see what his opinion is. Hope you feel better soon. 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
  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 805
    hi ms1417,
    I had symptoms of OA (osteoarthritis) at 21 but was not correctly diagnosed
    till my early 30's and then referred to my now present Rheumatologist. Please have your Dr refer you or seek out a good rheumatologist that will help you find the answers and receive the proper care you need. With any
    type of arthritis your weight needs to be carefully kept in check to avoid any extra stress on weight bearing joints.
    If you have any questions I may be able to help you with feel free to PM me.
    Take care,
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,848

    For a Spine-Health Site introduction, Click on :

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    Please feel free to contact me at rdilauro@gmail.com or send me a message
    Degenerative arthritis is just another name for
    Osteoarthritis. There are generally two kinds of Arthritis:

    Osetoarthritis Caused by inflammation, breakdown and eventual loss of cartilage in the joints.

    Rheumatoid ArthritisIt is an autoimmune disease that can lead to joint pain, joint deformity and disability. In American, this type of arthritis effects three times as many women as men.

    Spine-Health has some very informative information regarding Arthritis:
    Understanding Arthritis
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Hello, charry ranger and dilauro thank you for your feedback.

    I just got back from my personal physician's office. I requested the MRI results and we went over them together. Good news is arthritis was not present on the report. I don't know who or why this lady gave me the initial prognosis of degenerative arthritis.

    The MRI report states: There is decreased disc height and signal and extruded disc material into the central spinal canal at L4-L5. Decreased disc height and signal and a shallow broad-based disc extending into the central spinal canal contouring the thecal sac at L5-S1. The remainder of the inter-vertebral disc spaces appears well-maintained.

    L4-L5: There is a broad based disk which effaces the ventral epidural space contacts and deforms the thecal sac resulting in moderate degree central spinal canal narrowing. There is contact and deflection of the existing L5 nerve roots bilaterally.

    L5-S1: There is disc material contacting and deforming the ventral epidural space and the thecal sac anteriorly resulting in moderate degree central spinal canal narrowing. No definite or obvious contact or deformity of the proximal S1 nerve root bilaterally.

    Impression: Lumbar spondylosis worst at L4-L5 and L5-S1 levels.

    So it seems I have to herniated discs, why did they tell me degenerative arthritis, could I still have arthritis?

    I begin PT April 7th, and until then, I will remain active at the gym with stretching, bicycling/swimming, and light weight exorcises.
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