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Not my lower back now...

RICKRRICK Posts: 136
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:45 AM in Lower Back Pain
I was at my PM doctor yesterday dealing my sleep or lack of sleep after two neck surgeries a year apart when I happen to tell him my left thigh has been numb for a few months and the past few weeks I wake up with my two smaller toes feeling like they are asleep. He did an exam and found my outer left calf and all of my left foot is also numb. So Friday will do a MRI, he thinks it may be L5. I can't believe this is happening to me all in a two year period.
I injured my mid and lower back 40 years ago and did lots of stupid things young that took out my neck, but I am really sick of all of this happening at 58 and now at 60 it keeps getting worse.


  • Rick I can feel your pain literally. I am convinced that the domino effect is not limited to the adjacent vertebra.

    My issues are all neck and upper thoracic but I have been having mid-low back pain since the surgery in January. At first I blamed it on protecting my incision by shifting my weight and back. Now I'm pretty certain that there is something more going on. I remember my MRI from a year ago showed some minor issues that they attributed to aging.

    At 45 I'm really not ready for all this.
  • As you can see from my sig line, I also had neck and then back fusions done. Mine were within one year. I was 50 when this all started.

    I wish you the best. Hang in there and keep us posted as to your diagnosis.

  • *HUG* I am sorry this is happening now. I am getting cascades from crashing a helicopter 26 years ago, so yeah, past 'bads' can cause present ridiculous when it comes to our spines!!! I had 5 nerve surgeries in less and a year and a half. Stuff happens. I find that even with all that, if we try to keep a positive attitude, that alone can help bunches!!!

    We are here for you man!! Please find out what is going on before your brain sends you into scary mode. Please keep us posted. We are here for ya!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • It pours. So sorry to hear that you live by Murphy's Law much the same as I do.

    Good luck to you.
  • Awe, man, I can so relate! Almost the same thing happened to me 2 weeks ago when I had my 3 month follow up visit with my surgeon.

    I hadn't put the pieces together, but was asking about some pain that I thought was coming from the facets and about new numbness when I have never had numbness.

    I was sent for an immediate MRI and I have herniated L3-4 already. I know exactly when it happened, I documented it all in my pain log, but never put it all together.:(

    Denial I guess!

    Hang in there! This sucks and I wish there was something that could be done to change it all. But we have this site, where we can find support and guidance.

    I, too am young for this to happen (mid 40's)

    Wishing you the best!
  • I also noticed some numbness. In my case it didn't cause any weakness or problems with movement (such as walking), so my doctor said it wasn't a big concern. I hope this is the case with you also. It's great that you know when and how it happened. It may help the doctor diagnose it more accurately. I hope all works out. Good Luck,
  • Well, you're obviously not alone, and I'm also in your same boat, although I haven't had two cervical surgeries...yet.

    Four months after my cervical surgery, I started having sciatica and lower back pain. We did the conservative treatments, shots, yada, yada, yada, and now I'm 6 months out from a L4/5 TLIF. I'm also having another cervical MRI within the next month to check on the adjacent levels in my cervical spine.

    I'm with Kris-NY - it seems that for some (if not most) of us, once you have one spine problem, it seems to continue and it seems we'll never get off the rollercoaster of spine problems. Maybe it's because those of us who have spine problems have severe DDD and arthritis and it just seems to effect one area after another.

    I'm sorry you're having to go through this, but I believe it's not uncommon.

    Take care of yourself and do what you have to do to get yourself back to a manageable level. My heart goes out to you - I know how you feel.

  • so sorry you are a member, but we are a bunch of nice people who can give you support, a shoulder to cry on, etc.

    Unfortunately, like the others that replied to you, I started with back problems. Had a 2 level fusion.
    Later by back below the fusion blew lout. While seeing my surgeon about this and discussing surgery again, I mentioned this hideous stiff neck I had for a few days. Low and behold, MRI showed multiple herniations, DDD and kyphosis.

    So then it was "which to fix first?" Had another 2 level lumbar fusion and will be looking at the neck next. Some of us just get lucky and hit that spine lottery. Like a few others I am only 44, too young for this crap! I only tell you my history so you can see that there are lots of "us" out there.

    A sense of humor (and a good cry now and then) goes a long way in helping to deal with all of this.
  • hi ya'll.
    when i was 37 y/o i had a cervical fusion.
    at 40 y/o i had a second cervical fusion.
    at 54 y/o i had a 2 level lumbar fusion.

    does that qualify me do join your club. :?
  • We who have suffered and years of pain, injuries, new problems due to yesterday surgeries are all in a club that A: no one wants to join and B: The on going price to be part of, there is no amount of money we can pay to get out of because we don't have that option.
    My PM gave me Temazepam and it has helped with my sleep problem, I am finally getting some sleep, between the pain and anxiety it's been hell.

    Thanks for all of your support and comments.
  • My PM called today and said the MRI shows two bulge at L5 &S1 with arthritis and facets (misspelled) problems in my lower back, what ever that means? He is referring me for a epidural. I had a epidural before my two neck surgeries, but it didn't help, I sure hope this epidural will ease the bulge and help my left leg problems.
  • Not to sound like a broken record, but your experience sounds similar to mine. Injured lumbar spine 37 years ago, herniated cervical disc 1.5 years ago and had foraminotomy for that, now at age 62 have L5 nerve root compression and am scheduled for L4-S1 PLIF in September. Have DDD, arthritis, bad facet joints, etc. It sounds like many of us go down this same road. I have pretty much figured out that if you have degenerative changes in one part of your spine, you probably have or will develop them in other parts of your spine. I hope the ESI relieves your symptoms but if it doesn't you'll have plenty of empathy from folks here on this board!

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • To give you a little hope, I also have/had a bulge, although at L4/5, and my symptom was sciatica down both legs. The ESI helped me tremendously and the sciatica never returned.

    My major, unsolvable-by-injection problem was with stenosis and facet swelling/loss of lubrication. The FJI didn't help so I ended up having surgery, but I just wanted you to know that many times an ESI can help with the disc bulge and the symptoms that come along with it.

    Good luck and keep us posted.
  • I'm 39 yrs. old had my 1st fusion 3 yrs. ago on c5-6.
    I then had revision surgery of the c5-6 in October of last year due to 3 screws that backed out and a fusion that didn't take. All along my lower back was getting worse !! I flew to Texas this week to consult with a doctor who specializes in Artificial Disk Replacement. I'm now pending a Hybrid Surgery (artificial disk replacement at L4-5 and fusion L5s-1)I know how frustrating and upsetting it is ! It feels like there's no light at the end of the tunnel.Hang in there your not alone and with time things will get better. I know this is an old saying but take things one day at a time.I wish you the vey best. Take good care. >:D<
  • Well did the epidural this morning and felt no improvement so far but it may take 3 days. The doctor did say my problems may be my neck again causing all these systems I am having, this is the last thing I want to hear. So here comes more x-rays, mri's, I am sick of all this crap, I have come to believe that if I could just stay as I am and never get worse I could learn to live with these current problems, but the thought of someone telling over and over again tell me "Guess what you have a new problem" SUCKS.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    I feel your pain. You and I are very similar in our medical history. I fear every time they want to do a MRI because with my history they are sure to find something. On a good note the ESI did help my lower back and leg pain. I sure hope it works for you
  • Hey Rick, sorry to hear about your problems. I am currently waiting to recieve the spinal injections. I hope you get the help you need. I feel for you, i am 33 and cant imagine what lays in store for me when I am in my 50's or 60's. If you or anyone ever needs someone to vent to shoot me a message. I have found that even venting on here helps me feel a little better. The people I have met on here are great and its nice sometimes just to know you are not alone. take care and I truly wish you the best.
  • I am female, age 59 going on 60 next month. I injured a vertebrae in my thoracic region 11/20/09. Had it fixed in January, 2010, and then still had pain in lower & mid back. Had Discogram and found I needed a double fusion, so had that 5 weeks ago. I'm still only able to be on my feet for a brief period. Too early to know if this helped or not, and may be months before I know. I hope the epidurals work for you. It's no fun being in pain all the time.
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