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Young athlete with spinal arthritis

I'm a 23 year old endurance athlete. I was diagnosed with tendonitis on my knees several years ago and my doctor advised me to stop training. Me being young, I completely ignored his advice. Soon after, I started suffering from chronic back pains. Just a few days ago, I started experiencing severe lower back pains. So, I went to the doctor for an xray and found out that there is a defect on my lumbar area of my spine. They don't have a definite diagnosis, but they listed several, like spinal arthritis. I have an appointment with a rheumatologist this weekend for an exact diagnosis.

I've been an active person all my life and I can't bare the fact that I might have to stop running. If anyone has any experience or knows anyone that has dealth/cope with this change, please share.
Marc Calilan


  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 805
    hey mcalilan,
    My symptoms of spinal osteoarthritis began when I was 21 but wasn't correctly diagnosed until 15 years later. Now 36 years later after quite a few surgeries I'm still active as I can be. I was told to quit running which I only did recreationally, gave up motocross bikes, snowmobiling, and any other impact sports. I concentrated only on my career and was a working fool not watching my health but I did stay trim just staying busy all the time. Almost 3 years ago I joined a fitness center and started working out, not going huge in weights but doing lots of reps including high intensity interval training, (HIIT). I do cardio a few times a week sometimes doing short sprints on the treadmill much to my rheumy's chagrin I'm sure but I have to break some rules sometimes right?
    Anyway don't rule out anything, stay busy and active and just adjust to a new you. If I can do that, anyone can.
    Despite my limitations, my life is good. PM me anytime for support.
  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    I am sure that you will find your time on Spine-Health very rewarding. This site is a powerful and integrated system that is dynamic and continues to grow.
    Here are just some of the highlights:

    - Detailed medical libraries of Articles and Videos that address almost every Spinal Conditions and Treatment

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    - Under the Resource tab, there is a section Doctor Advice Health Center which can be invaluable.

    - As a bonus, Spine-Health provides these patient forums. Here is where you can meet thousands of other people who understand and can relate to your situation. You will soon become part of the Spiney family who provide comfort and the advantages of a Support System. You are now part of this family that is approximately 20,600 International members and growing daily.

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    All of this will help make your threads better and improve the times and quality of responses you will receive.

    If you have any questions or need assistance, you can use the Private Message facility to contact any one of the Moderators on my team:






    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
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