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Oh Poop!

Expat98EExpat98 Posts: 8
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:02 AM in Spinal Stenosis
Hi there,
I have a couple of questions. I have recently seen a surgeon, and he tells me that I have Spondylolisthesis and Spinal Stenosis at the L5-S1 area. This is causing intense pain all the way down my left leg, and intermittant numbness in my thigh, foot, and big toe. My legs feel weak all the time, and I cannot stand for more than a few seconds before the pain starts. Relief is achieved by lying on my right side (that is the basic info).

When I saw both my GP and the Spine Specialist (latter referred me to surgeon), they both asked whether I had any incontinence. This leads me to my first question. I am not "incontinent" per se, but I have recently started experiencing 'urgency' whenever I need to pee or poo. Added to that, whenever I have needed to poo in the past couple of weeks, it is almost as though I have mild diarrhea. I have very loose stools, occasional cramps, and definitley some urgency at times. My GP did not seem to think that this was a big issue, but did say to go to ER if it gets worse. Thing is, how do I know whether this is a medication or stenosis issue?

Second thing is...can stenosis cause ankle swelling? In the past couple days, my left ankle has developed slight swelling, almost as though I have sprained it...like a little "egg" of swollen area near the ankle bone. It's weird, and I'm not sure if it's a problem.

Oh...one more thing. I have milld pain and some pins n needles in my left hand...is that likely to be related to my stenosis?

I am awaiting a date for surgery, and will be (later today) going for an Epidural Steroid Injection in the hope that the pain might be bearable for a little while.

Thanks for reading this post.



  • You asked a couple of questions. As far as your diarrrhea is concerned one way to tell if it was from the medication you are taking is to temp stop taking it and see what happens. You need to clear that with your Dr. before doing anything though. I would think if it was a stenosis issue it would be there/happening all the time. What did the spine Dr. say about it?

    Ankle swelling can be from drugs and/or a lack of leg movement. My ankles will swell some if I don't move around. It sounds like you are not moving around much from what you say. That would be something to ask your GP doctor about.

    I've never heard of the lower spine issues causing you pain in your hands. Most likely you need to have your cervical spine looked at as well as your lumbar. It is common for people to have issues with both areas. You need to ask your surgeon to look at your cervical spine also. My cervical issues caused my legs to feel heavy.

    Hey, good luck with everything.
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