Hello, My name is Chris. I am a 43 year old Male (6' 3" 180 pounds) who started having , what I thought was, pain in the backside of Left Hip around 2006. I do construction/excavation work, and have so for 25 years now, so I am familiar with having occasion aches and pains. Pain would come and go and was generally just a moderate aching pain. Over the years my pain would gradually get more persistent and last in longer durations. Let this go on for sometime trying to relieve pain with over the counter NSAIDS.
Being the stubborn guy I am who never goes to a Dr. until I can hardly stand the pain anymore. I finally broke down and saw an Orthopedic Doc last January 2014. Had x-ray of hips which the Dr. said were "very interesting" and informed me I would need an MRI of Lumbar Spine. By this time pain had started to shoot down from Butt/Hip to rear of thigh in left leg.
Got my MRI done February 2014. Broken down my MRI Report says:
Clinical history: Lumbar Spondylosis without Myelopathy.
Findings: mild Lumbar levocurvature. No Spondylolisthesis.
Developmental spinal stenosis resulting in mild central canal stenosis at L2-3 and L3-L4.
Small left paracentral disc protusion at L5-S1 that results in mass effect upon the transversing left S1 nerve root in the subarticular recess.
Small broad-based left foraminal disc protusion at L3-L4 superimposed on a small spodylotic disc buldge. Mild bilateral neural foraminal narrowing at L3-L4.
Doc says disc herniation at L5-S1 is most likely reason for pain. With the S1 nerve root being pinched.
I have since been to 2 different spine specialist and 2 different pain management specialist.
Have done 6 weeks of Physical therapy and was given a home exercise program focused on core strengthening.
Was told I should get ESI at first but was weary of needle in the spine and pain wasn't bad enough at time to go through with it. Have tried many prescriptions of Nsaids, Muscle relaxers can't remember all the names but nothing ever worked for pain.
Pain doc number 1 decided to do Bilateral facet block injections L1 - L5 . 10 injections each session for 4 sessions in four weeks. I questioned why so frequent and he insisted that it was the best way to fight inflammation.
After first two sessions with no relief I questioned why he keeps injecting facet joints but he insisted it could take several tries to lower pain. So I continued with my next two sessions but still no relief.
This all happened over mid summer of 2014 and my pain has now gotten very intense in Buttocks and some numbness/pins and needles and pain in left calf/ankle/ and foot. Mostly when I stand up i would get bad flare ups. Sitting or lying down i just had that constant moderate ache.
Went back to pain doc #1 still in pain and found out he had used up my steroid injections that insurance would cover for the year. So I got a trigger point injection of some sort of anti- inflammatory in left buttock area. Went back the following week for another trigger point injection in a different area of left Buttock.
Since those last two injections my pain has gotten even worse with a lot more pain and numbness in calf/ankle and foot. Knowing I could not get anymore steroid injections until the new year I waited until recently to go back and see Orthopedic Doc. He told me to go for the ESI and referred me to pain doc #2. He told me I am starting to get weak in left leg/foot and it was important I do something to calm down the nerve soon.
Saw Pain doc #2 two weeks ago and he performed transforaminal steroid injections. One injection from below the S1 nerve root and one injection above. Needle going in caused me a jolt of nerve pain in the back on one of the two injections but after that I could feel that warm sensation go down my affected left leg as he injected the steroids. I figured by that he got the right area.
Felt great for a few hours while the numbing meds were still taking effect but after that the soreness and pain got so much worse. Constant foot numbness and ankle pain and all my usual symptoms still there . Can't stay on my feet now for more than 2-3 minutes without intense pain in buttock etc... plus now especially at night I get so tight in low back I can't stand straight or bend over to touch my knees without serious pain . Before this I could touch my toes no problem.
Followed up with pain doc #2 this past week . He said he would not repeat the same injection twice if it did not work and offered me a standard ESi but the thought of another needle scares the heck out of me right now. He was fine with no more injections . He has now given me a script for Neurontin and some sort of pain killer he said is like Percocet/Vicodin but without the side effects. Dropped off my scripts at pharmacy but they did not have either and was told this Wed. they should be in. So I can't remember the name of the pain med and obviously haven't been able to start taking either one yet. He also referred me to Orthopedic spine surgeon for an evaluation. Need to make that appt. tomorrow when they are open.
Wow, this is getting long and I have only touched on the basic facts so far.
Anyhow, I am glad I found this site. I have a new found respect for those who suffer with back/sciatic problems. I wonder why no anti-inflammatory meds ,either, oral or injections don't ever work for me. I feel like my body is anti anti-inflamatories.
I try to keep a positive outlook on things but it has been such a long time for me to find relief for all this pain that seems to just get worse and worse with each passing month.