Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test


healthierjhhealthierj Posts: 4
edited 03/10/2014 - 3:35 PM in Chronic Pain

Hello Spine-Health Community!

Five days ago, I underwent a simple procedure that ended my year-long struggle with back pain. I am now symptom free! My sympathies go out to everyone on this site struggling with pain. If my story helps even one of you, I will be so grateful. Please let me know if it does or if I can help in any way!

After months of treatment with no improvement, I worked my way to three of the top doctors in the U.S. in their respective fields. Two were Harvard University-educated, top of their class - a neurosurgeon (specializing in the spine) and an orthopedic surgeon (specializing in the spine). Both of these doctors work at Brigham and Women's, a fantastic Hospital in Boston (also a Harvard University Teaching Hospital). I also worked with a physiologist in Denver, CO who heads many cutting-edge FDA trails relating to chronic pain.

Ultimately, the solution to my pain was simple, sacroilliac (SI) injections. The problem was, the sub-par doctors I first worked with weren't current on their research and didn't know that 25%-30% of back pain cases are caused by SI joint pain. The majority of these cases go mis-diagnosed or undiagnosed!!! Ultimately, the bi-lateral cortizone injections in my sacro-iliac (SI) joints eliminated my pain and gave me my life back. According to this article by CNN this is the solution to back pain that most doctors won't find.

The first doctors I worked with never suggested SI joint injections. They kept giving my cortizone injections around my lumbar/sacral spine. But they never worked for me! It took me getting to top doctors in the field to find out that 25%-30% of back pain is caused by SI joint pain and many of these cases go undiagnosed!!! Please cross this off your list if you are in pain! It may be the solution.

Below you will find an overview of my symptoms, the procedures I tried, and finally, the solution.


Excruciating low-back pain. Back pain spread over upper glutes and downward towards upper butt-crack (sorry I don't know how else to say this!). Worse with = sitting, walking, running, carrying back on one arm (i.e. grocery shopping), stretching, squats, weight lifting. I had two minor herniated disks in my lumbar spine which WERE NOT THE PROBLEM, although doctors kept treating them. Three compressed disks in lower spine due to years of cross-country running.


Had to go to part-time at work and finally had to quit my job. Spent at least 6 hours lying down. Lost friends because of horrible mood pain and medicine put me in. Went from exercising 4-6 days a week to barely being able to walk 15 minutes and gaining 20 lbs.


20 mg Tramadol 4X a day plus KRATOM. KRATOM is a leaf/herb that is legal in the U.S. and has opioid like effects. I stumbled upon it in Boulder, CO, a liberal, herbalist/acupuncturist/health nutty town. Although, you DON'T need a prescription for Kratom, it is a strong pain killer. It played a huge role in my pain management. I was skeptical of taking it at first because some people use it recreationally for its calming, pain-killing, anxiety-reducing effects. But after hating the effects of oral steroids and Hydrocodone, Vicodin, etc. I gave it a shot. I actually chose to take it rather than prescription pain killers because it is much less addictive than prescription pain killers and it's cheaper. Interestingly, many people use it to get off serious drugs like heroine. I highly recommend trying it if you have been struggling with the highs and lows of other meds. Be honest with yourself and only take what you need for pain. Don't abuse it. TENS machine. The tens machine helped a lot. Some think it doesn't work but it provided a lot of relief for me.

4 cortisone injections at L3/L4, L4/L5, L4/L5, L5/S1. BILATERAL NERVE BLOCK L4-S1 (this may have worked for 2-3 days. I should have backed off my meds for several days before the procedure. I wasn't in enough pain to know if it worked.).

Chiropractic, acupuncture, massage, PT, pilates. (i did all of these for 6 months but relief was short lived and they cost a lot and took up a large amount of time)

I hope you all find solutions to your pain!

Best wishes,




  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,841
    Welcome to Spine-Health and how to get started here

    The links above will help you on how Spine-Health is organized and how to navigate. The Forum Rules and FAQ are very important pieces to read. Those links and more can become your reference point for future use.

    As you become more familiar with Spine-Health, you will see that the SI joint pain is quite common. We have a section specifically for that are.

    SI Joint problems
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • MSGMSG Posts: 296
    edited 03/11/2014 - 7:43 AM
    Is this supposed to be permanent? I hope so, for your sake, but from what I know about any type of injections, they are not permanent, but can be long term relief
    We can't always control the cards we are dealt in life, but we can control how we play the hand
  • I, too, had severe pain near my lower back after fusion surgery. Surgeon and first pain doc gave me all the usual injections but to no avail. Then I got a new (younger) Dr. and he knew right away what it was. He injected it and, bingo! Pain was gone and has been for several months. I have my life back!
  • KRATOM. Please fully investigate this before you consider using it. As I said on the Kratom post, "Natural does not equal safe" some plants kill you if ingested. It is not been made illegal in some places but please remember there was a time when heroin & cocaine were legal. There are some very concerning studies & tragic stories out there. After some deaths & addiction in the UK there is currently a push to make it illegal there. Please consider ALL of the evidence before using Kratom.
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • I use kratom everyday I have used this leaf for 3 years if it were not available the pian meds would be gone in 2 weeks I thank God for this plant. The media is talking about it like it is evil to me it is a life saver
  • kimjkimj Posts: 4
    edited 06/02/2014 - 4:24 AM
    EnglishGirl said:
    KRATOM. Please fully investigate this before you consider using it. As I said on the Kratom post, "Natural does not equal safe" some plants kill you if ingested. It is not been made illegal in some places but please remember there was a time when heroin & cocaine were legal. There are some very concerning studies & tragic stories out there. After some deaths & addiction in the UK there is currently a push to make it illegal there. Please consider ALL of the evidence before using Kratom.

    6.01 Once a member post has been identified as SPAM or pure solicitation, the post will be deleted and the member will be deleted without any warning. Spine-health will not tolerate any form of spamming.

    Spamming our forums is not permitted. You posted almost the same thing verbatim in another forum .

  • I hope that your asymptomatic for life !!.take care
    1997 laminectomy
    2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
    2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
    2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
    2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014
  • EnglishGirlEEnglishGirl Posts: 1,825
    edited 06/01/2014 - 12:10 PM
    I agree "Education (can be) a beautiful thing". I know that the advocates of Kratom argue that the people who have died have also been using other drugs (commonly steroids in the case of the mothers organization pushing for the ban in UK) I feel I should inform people of the information I have read. A very large percentage of the prescription drug overdoses have involved a combination of drugs but that doesn't stop us recognizing the dangers & warnings.

    Please don't say Kratom is a "Safe gentle plant" that is wrong. Addiction & side effects are well documented. I know that prescription medications also carry risks. The sellers of Kratom use very misleading marketing.

    I'm very pleased that you have found a way to manage your pain & I have no problem with you sharing your story but both sides of the story should be given in my opinion. I simply stated that people should FULLY investigate this option & be aware of the possible negative repercussions of using Kratom. It is not controlled in some places so it doesn't come with the warnings that prescription medications do & I strongly believe Kratom should come with warnings.

    As I said, 'Natural & Legal does NOT equal safe. Anyone considering using Kratom please do your homework. Read why it is banned in many countries. Read scientific studies conducted by reputable sources. Make an informed decision & if you choose to try it please use it as safely as possible just like any other drug/medication.

    I investigated this option with an open mind & decided it wasn't for me.
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • jgunnerjjgunner Posts: 2
    edited 09/23/2015 - 9:24 PM
    I just started using Kratom a few months ago. Still experimenting with the dosage and strains. I smoked weed for migraines and pain, and Kratom has been better since it is legal and I can pass a drug test for work so I will stick with it. [edit]
  • PlumbTuckeredOutPlumbTuckeredOut Philadelphia, PAPosts: 325
    I started studying Pharmacology but dropped out because I could not deal with the experimentation of animals- even mice! Yes, too much of an animal lover caused me to lose a cushy scholarship to an Ivy League University but, I had been given the tool and I still know how to use those tools to research and consider medications for the treatment of different diseases. (*Please note, Pharmacology, the research and development of medications is NOT the same as Pharmacy which is the legal distribution and counseling of patients taking medication.)

    One of the first things we learn is all medication initially comes from nature. In Pharmacology we come to test and assess the use of natural substances for the safe use by people. We can remove certain chemicals making the plant lethal, toxic, or dangerous. We can determine which side effects exist and why- usually because the chemical causing the desired effect on one body system also has a negative effect on one of the other body systems. Some people find this tolerable- others, not so much.

    And finally we look at "natural" and legal and available. Tobacco- natural, legal, available. Arsenic- natural, legal, available. Digitalis- natural, legal, available. Cyanide- natural, legal, available. Willow bark (salicylic acid= aspirin) natural, legal, available.

    I take at least 7 different prescription medications a day that I get from a pharmacy. I even read the paperwork that comes with the medications. I used to smoke tobacco, cannabis. I've tried a few different "supplements" but I know my body uses my liver and my kidneys to remove toxins from the body. I know which medication is using which physiological filtration system because if I'm playing with chemicals my doctor and pharmacist are not aware of, I'm at a higher risk of having very negative effects with my other medications. It's like playing Russian Roulette but removing only one bullet from the revolver instead of removing all but one.


    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by...... (Robert Frost)
    I still don't know if I should have taken the one that said, "Caution! Dead End" (Me)
Sign In or Register to comment.