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Thoracic spine pain and x-ray results

I am having terrible cervical and thoracic back pain. I went to my doctor, who is wonderful and normally very thorough, he did not check my back but said that I was having muscle spasms. He prescribed pain killers and muscle relaxers. In his defense, he is much more concerned about an extremely large hiatal hernia and GERD that can no longer be controlled with medication ( he is sending me to a specialist ). I forgot I have always had problems with my back and have gone to physical therapy before. I started having horrible back pain on and off all summer so I started doing my neck and back exercises again. Normally this relieves the pain but this time it just made things worse. The hydrocodone wasn't touching the pain so I called the doctor's office and he told me to start taking 1-1/2 pills every 6 hours. I finally went to see a chiropractor who did a full set of x-rays. He read them and then sent them out to be professionally read. Basically, they showed that the entire back, cervical through lumbar is a mess. Cervical vertebrae are clear off to the right and in no way in line with the rest of my spine ( also some bone spurs ). My thoracic spine had scoliosis to the right with bone mild to moderate bone spurs on almost every every thoracic vertebrae. Lumbar spine with mild to moderate lumbardosis. I read on the internet that bone spurs on the thoracic spine are rare because the thoracic vertebrae have so much support from the ribs?

The chiropractor is just working on my neck and hip. He uses hardly any pressure at all. My neck is a little less painful but I have no idea if that is coincidence or if he is actually doing some good? I still have the same sharp stabbing pain in the mid thoracic spine. I had faxed a copy of the x-ray report to my doctor and it said muscle spasm and/or joint dysfunction is advised. I ran out of muscle relaxers and pain pills so I called his office and he prescribed more. I do not know if I am doing the right thing by seeing a chiropractor? I have had four oappointments and only mild relief. I do not want to exist on pain pills and muscle relaxers. I just don't know what my next step should be. I would appreciate any input/advice.


  • Most people including myself do not want to live on pain pills and muscle relaxers, but the alternative can be worse. I would say that you need to see a Neurosurgeon, but finding one that cares more about your well being than the revenue they anticipate making off you is the challenge. Keep seeing different docs until you get at least 3 that say the same thing. I'm 0 for 3 so far. Good luck and please PM me if you find someone remarkable.
  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
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    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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