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is it my l4,l5 or my SI joint?

I'm a 28 year old female. Ten years ago I took a huge fall landing on my left hip which caused my l4 l5 to rupture. It healed for the most part within a year's time and other than minor occasional discomfort I led a normal life until 3 years ago. I stupidly tried to clear a hurdle at the dog park and landed again on my hip and a week later my lower back "went out" incapacitating me for a week. I went and had an mri and was told nothing was wrong and I hadn't re injured the discs. I felt better after a week or so but thats when the chronic pain and sciatica started. My back went out 3 more times within a year and a half after that so I was prescribed physical therapy which I did religiously and took seriously but after NINE MONTHS I hadn't made ANY progress so I had another mri. Still "nothing wrong" except unremarkable retrolysthesis of the l5 vertebrae, unremarkable slight buldges of the l4 l5 l5 s1 and slight degeneration of l4-s1. I was told that none of which should be causing this much pain. I was referred to a pain management doctor and given relafen and flexeril plus Cymbalta (none of them offer relief) and I mentioned that when I stood up from sitting I always have to lean back and get a loud painful clunk in my si joint or sacrum area so the pain doc wants to inject my si joints with a steroid to see if the pain is actually being caused by the sacroiliac joint. The problem is last time I had a steroid injection (epidural into l4 l5)it made me WORSE. PLUS its 1000.00 which I don't have. I am already in debt still from the MRIs and I feel uneasy about spending 1000 on an injection that might not even be in the right place or work. My question is if anyone has had si joint dysfunction did they have pain in the l4 l5 area as well? I do have groin pain and pain where the si joints are but I also have pain on the right side next to l4 l5. I would like to hear stories of anyone who does have si joint dysfunction. Also I forgot to mention my grandpa has si joint dysfunction and has had a fusion for it.


  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    edited 06/04/2015 - 4:38 PM

    Welcome to Spine-Health

    It would be very helpful if you could provide us with more details. So many times we read about members who have different tests and they all come back negative. The more clues and information you provide, the better chances in finding out what is wrong,

    Here are some questions that you should answer:

    - When did this first start?
    - Was it the result of an accident or trauma?
    - What doctors have you seen? (Orthopedic, Neurosurgeon, Spine Specialist, etc)
    - What Conservative treatments have you had? Which ones?
    - What diagnostic tests have you had? And their results (MRI, CTScan, XRay, EMG, etc)
    - What medications are you currently using? (details, dosage, frequency, etc)
    - Has surgery been discussed as an option? (If so, what kind)
    - Is there any nerve pain/damage associated?
    - What is your doctor’s action plan for treating you?

    Providing answers to questions like this will give the member community here a better understanding
    of your situation and make it easier to respond.

    Please take a look at our forum rules: Forum Rules

    Please remember that no one at Spine-Health is a formally trained medical professional.
    Everything that is posted here is based on personal experiences and perhaps additional research.
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    - Analysis or interpretation of any diagnostic test (ie MRI, CTscan, Xray, etc)
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    What could be good for someone could spell disaster for another.
    You should also consult your doctor to better understand your condition and the do’s and don’t’s.
    It is very important that new members (or even seasoned members) provide others with details about their condition(s). It is virtually impossible to help another member when all the details we have are
    I’ve had this for years, it hurts, I cant move my shoulder – what could this be, what treatment should I get?

    Diagnosing spinal problems can be very difficult. In many ways its like a game of clue. Especially, when the diagnostic tests come back negative – no trouble found! Then its up to the patient and the doctor to start digging deeper. The doctor is like a detective. They need clues to help them move along. So, you as the patient need to provide the doctor with all sorts of clues. That is like it is here. Without having information about a condition, its impossible for anyone here to try to help.

    Specific comments :

    Personal Opinion, not medical advice :

    --- Ron DiLauro, Spine-Health System Moderator :
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • I have lower back pain on the right side,groin pain when going from a sitting position to a standing position which varies in intensity from mild to severe and subsides in a couple of steps. My legs do no not feel as stabile as they used to be. When laying down to go to sleep every time i move I have pain in my groin and inner thighs. I had a microdiscectomy 7 months ago and was fine for 4 months til the groin pain started, I just had another MRI and showed no herniations, only some scar tissue. My primary doctor believes the scat tissue is causing the problem and to continue with physical therapy exercises. I am seeing mt therapist tomorrow and am going to mention my SI joint as my symptoms are all related to SI joint dysfunction. Either way I am going start doing some exercises I have found for Si joint dysfuntion along with my regular exercises
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