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Newbie in need of help/advice

Hi , I am a newbie on here and hope i am conforming to forum protocols by posting my issues on here.I will keep thins as short as possible.

First of all some basic background , i am a male 56 yrs old, non smoker , a little over weight but reasonably fit and active with no history of any back/spinal/muscular issues.July 7th this year i was at work doing some mundane relatively lightweight activities and towards the end of the working day i had a slight twinge in my lower back which over a couple of hours progressed to a debilitating pain so severe i could not sit down, i was not aware of a single incident during the day that could have caused this pain it just sort of crept up on me.

I dont attend the doctors very often but this pain was so severe i attended immediately after work, my gp examined me and diagnosed a trapped nerve which he said could be painful for several days and i was to take anti inflamatories and pain relief until it cleared.

Unfortunately over the next week or so far from easing, the pain increased and spread all around my body, i.e. from my neck down to my waist area.I had pains in my lower back both sides upper hip area , severe pains in the area i can best describe as behind my lungs , especially when i bend forward and funnily enough when i breathe in , the pain on breathing in is also present in my ribs at the front, i am now also experiencing pain in my neck muscles.

I have since July7th had a spinal MRI which showed good spinal condition and no major issues , a chest x ray that was all clear and full blood tests showing no abnormalities.I have attended a physiotherapist who has advised a routine of exercises including front and side planks and side stretching but this has had no effect.

I am now at a loss as to what is happening to me and where to turn for help and was hoping by posting i may just be lucky and find somebody who either has suffered the same or similar or at least can point me in the right direction.



  • Was it a cervical , thoracic or lumbar MRI? A pinched nerve can be anywhere in the spine and it may be somewhat positional. Or it could be that you pulled a muscle and it is taking some time to heal.
    If this continues, a revisit to your primary doctor, and perhaps some follow up testing might be in order.
  • Sandi, thanks for your reply , please ignore my ignorance re. the MRI i am not experienced in these issues, i will explain it best i can .

    The MRI was conducted on the request of an orthopedic surgeon and was of the whole spine bottom to top, included in this was a scan of the brain . The surgeon checked the images in my presence and said my spine condition ,shape etc was pretty good for my age and showed no signs of nerve damage/issues , it was his opinion my back pain was clinical and therfore passed me back to my GP hence the blood tests and chest x ray .

    You suggest the possibility of a pinched nerve or pulled muscle , which my GP has intimated may be the problem. Can a pulled muscle/pinched nerve give so much wide spread pain and linger around for 5 plus weeks regardless of how much physio and medication i undertake ?. I really hope your correct and it is a matter of time till it corrects / heals as a lifetime of this pain and discomfort and inactivity really scares me.

    I am considering topping up my physio with a visit to a Osteopath tot ry to get to the bottom of my problem , not sure if there would be any value in this ?
  • A pulled muscle can take weeks to heal, and if you continue to stress it, it can cause wider spread of pain, due to the inflammation of nearby muscle groups.
    Try some heating pads, simple stretches, warming up the muscles prior to use, topical creams and muscle ointments available in most pharmacies, and there is a new otc TENS unit product available that might be helpful.
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