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lumbar stenosis, degenerative disc disease and bulging disc..Any HELP out there??

cat123ccat123 Posts: 1
edited 04/18/2015 - 8:48 PM in Lower Back Pain
I'm only 32 and have been told I have stenosis, ddd and a bulged disc..
I found out I had all this through an MRI after I threw out my back picking up my son..That was 6 months ago and I still have pain..I do Chiro, Massage and Physio but still have pain...I went to see a Neurologist and she did an EMG on my legs for any damage but thankfully there was none..She basically told me I just need to do Physio and should never lift my KIDS (sure) and never horse back ride again (which I have been doing for 20 plus years)..
I need HELP, who else can I talk to and see for treatment?? This can't just be how it is forever now is it??? :(
I want to be able to be active for and with my kids...I'm at a loss..
PLS Help,,,Thx


  • 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
  • Hi Cat. Now there are people who don't have back pain or spine issues and there are people who do.
    For those who don't they probably have better genetics then we do.
    For us though who have this issues especially when ddd and bulging discs are involved we should take extra care unless we want to end up suffering for the most part of our life.
    The point is if your doctor told you not to lift you child of the ground like a healthy person would do you should listen to him.

    The sad thing is that until someone actually ends up in extreme pain will most likely not listen and ignore medical advice thinking yeah right I'll be fine.
    I am positive all members on this website will agree with your doctor and myself when saying that putting any extra strain on your back would be very unwise.
  • I'm sorry, and totally get where you're coming from. I slipped my discs when I was just 23. 17 years later, I finally ended up having to have surgery on my back...I started randomly falling and the pain was intense.

    I had developed a bone spur on the vertebrae where the one disc herniated versus the other two slipped. It was severing my sciatic nerve.

    90% of the time I had the injury, I simply went to a chiropractor whenever it hurt beyond my pain tolerance. I had never sought out traditional doctors for the injury, minus the first day when I actually hurt myself (I simply jumped into a swimming pool, broke the water, *POP*...freak accident from a weak back I didn't know I had).

    Anyway, I didn't do anything conservative at all throughout the course of my time with the injury. I participated in martial arts, bowling, etc., until the last 5 years, when things started getting worse. My belief was that if I just quit doing everything, I would lose what little health I had. I was even lifting 50 pound bags of dog food.

    But, my pain tolerance was what tricked me into a lot of that...because by the time I had surgery, this was all that was wrong with my back:

    1. L5/S1 herniation
    2. Foraminal Stenosis
    3. Bone spur severing sciatic nerve
    4. Spondolysthesis (sp?), but mine went the opposite way, the vertebrae went in front of and lower than the other, resulting in 1" height loss.
    5. Degenerative disc disease
    6. Degeneration is showing in my hips now from walking changes from back all these years.
    7. Semi-permanent nerve damage in right leg.
    8. Bi-lateral sciatica (due to the severing, the sciatica went down both legs)
    9. Spina bifida (genetic, contributed to the original injury)

    All 17 years, up until 2 or 3 months prior to my surgery, I did not take any pain medication for it. My chiropractor says, and my surgeon, too, that my pain tolerance is the highest they've ever seen...akin to someone who has that disorder that has no pain...it has to be EXTREME pain for me to register it.

    Sorry for the ramble...I guess long story short...ultimately, it will lead to surgery if you don't take care of it now. If you register pain like a normal person does, listen to your body. My brain was "deaf" to my bodies' needs.

    Best of luck to you.

    17 years avoiding surgery, now it's unavoidable. Scared beyond belief.
  • EnglishGirlEEnglishGirl Posts: 1,825
    edited 04/20/2015 - 1:45 PM
    Firstly let me get my usual warning out the way...if you have structural damage in your spine you should NEVER allow chiropractic adjustments. I'm very surprised you weren't told that. It's far more dangerous that sitting on a horse or picking up a child. Every specialist I have seen in the last 9 years has given me that warning.

    I'm a mother of 2 young children & I know how incredibly difficult it can be. I wish doctors would be a little more understanding. Rather than just saying don't lift your kids, don't bend to help them dress etc. they could tell parents how to do it safely. A good physical therapist can help you there. When I told my doc I was pregnant with my daughter his advise was a termination!! I found a different specialist.
    Please try to get into the habit of walking your kids to the closest seat & lifting them to your lap when they need to be picked up. Soon after my daughter was born I had an MRI. One year later I had another & the increased damage was astounding!! I don't know how old your kids are? If they're little there are all sorts of carriers, chairs etc on the market that make life on your spine much easier. Your pain could be a lot, lot worse. I would now find it incredibly hard to walk across a field to pet a horse!

    Do you have a pain management doctor? Have you seen a board certified spine surgeon? I'm not saying you need surgery but you do need a specialist to advise you on all the appropriate concervative measures that can be taken to reduce your pain & avoid further damage.
    This isn't necessarily how it's always going to be. There's no magic potion that's going to give you a perfect spine but if you work with the appropriate specialists there's a LOT that can be done to improve things. ;-)
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
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