Hi, I'm new, and obviously I have Degenerative Disc Disease and chronic back pain. Last May I had a c5-c6 cervical fusion and I have not had any huge problems since in the neck. My lower back has started hurting since December of last year 2010, I had an MRI done Mid March and it says:
"There is a moderate sized central and right subarticular zone disc extrusion. This could impinge upon the Right L5 nerve root. There is fact hypertrophy. These findings combine to cause mild central canal stenosis. The nueroforamina are patent."
First off, what does that mean in real people terms, and second, I was referred to a Pain Center, the doc pretty much gave me a dismissive tone, when I said I had Physical therapy lined up for this past week, he says, "Oh yea, that might help...." then goes on to whatever he went on to. He is into "Mindfulness" to manage Chronic Pain. Given that most of my discs are on their way to being problems, I've got to do something and surgeries are not what I'm looking for. As much as I'd love to be pain free again, one day it may or may not happen. I realize there will be some pain I'll just have to swallow and ride it out. That said, I have an epidural cortisone shot as well as a nerve block lined up for 4/14. I know these will only temporarily help, and I hope to accomplish a lot in p.t. while the nerve is not so inflamed. I will ask the doc but also wanted to hear from anyone else in a similar situation what are my other options past temporarily making the pain ease, and with the findings above, what is the worst that will happen if i don't have surgery? If the nucleus ruptures and oozes out (like my neck vertebrae did) ... I mean will I be paralyzed? The doc keeps telling me that it's not like I have cancer where the nerves are being eaten away and causing pain, you have to continue to be active even tho it hurts. "If your pain is unavoidable, your suffering and misery are optional". I'm not sure what to think about this approach.
Sorry this is so long winded.