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Severe lower leg pain?

aces67aaces67 Posts: 4
I have leg pain for 6 years now. It's on the outside of my leg and it's the lower leg and foot that is most severe. I have had sevral negative MRI's, a venous doppler and 2 EMG's. All were good but the radioligist and my family doc still believed I had a pinched nerve and it just wasn't showing up on the MRI.

On Friday I had an epidural steroid injection and for now I seem to be pain free.

So does that mean it was definitely from the nerve?

How common is it to have a problem with a nerve and it not show on MRI?

I know this shot won't last forever but for now I'm happy and relieved.


  • Great to hear you have some relief from your injection and hope it lasts a long time. My story, on my first MRI I had a L5-S1 herniated disc and annular tear and the disc material was in contact with the L5 exiting nerve. My second MRI didn't show a herniated disc only mild Degenerative disc disease throughout my lumbar spine and yet I have the same symptoms leg and foot pain so my Pain Management Dr. says there must be still nerve irritation so I got a little relief from the epidurals but only 30% and it doesn't last for me but have done well with Cymbalta and pain meds.

    My second MRI was done different with my legs elevated on a pillow and they didn't do weighted exam in the MRI and think that's why the nerve issues didn't show up for me. Keep us posted on how you're doing. Take care and we'll support you when you need it. 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
  • Well that was great while it lasted but the pain started coming back last night:( It's not severe yet but I'm sure it will get there.

    What next? My family doc would like for me to try Lyrica but I'm scared of the side effects. I tried Neurontin and it made me feel like my mind/brain was in a total fog. I was sleepy, unsteady and couldn't think clearly.

    I'm a stay at home mom to 3 kids ages 10,4 and 8 months so I have to be able to function.

    Any ideas? I've tried physical therapy with no help. Next month I'm thinking about trying a chiropractor.

    I also need to lose 60 pounds but it's hard to exercise when my leg is hurting so badly:(
  • When my leg pain gets out of control, there are a few things I do to help rein it back in. First off I use Neurontin (hopefully the Lyrica will do something for you)and I also use Celebrex to fight inflammation. If for some reason I sleep wrong, I wake up with bad leg pain and have to get up, walk around, drink some water and at time use ice on my lower back. That combination seems to work the best to break the flare and get me back into the daily norm.

    Welcome to Spine Health. This is a great community of folks who are in the same boat and have banded together to find support, understanding and at times just a shoulder to cry on.


  • you know though I really don't have back pain. My pain is really just in my leg. That's odd huh?
  • When my leg pain is at its worst, my back doesn't necessarily hurt at all. I wonder if it would be worth asking for a CT scan; it will show more detail when it comes to the bony structure in your low back. The down side of a CT is that it is high radiation.

    I stretch a couple of times a day, which is really important if there is some kind of impingement. I always get good relief after a cortisone injection, but that's not the best option for treatment and you can only have a limited number of them due to side effects.

    You might want to take a look at a dermatome map; I'll see if I can find one and post the link.


    Here is one: http://www.spine-health.com/forum/pain-management/dermatome-map
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