First, let me apologize for the length of this, and I'll try to be succinct as possible.
Background: I'm a male in my mid 20's. In 2013, I was in a car crash with six fractures, including five normal and one burst at T5. After wearing a brace, and without spinal cord or nerve damage, I was eventually released without surgery because the fractures had healed and the burst fracture was naturally braced by my rib cage. I haven't experienced anything except scapular pain for the past two years, without nerve symptoms, until recently.
Present concern: I want to know if anyone has had a similar experience to mine (as detailed below), and if you would seek a second opinion before something bad happens.
About two weeks ago, I began having pelvic pain and penile pains. I went to my GP and was tested for a UTI and bloodwork was done to check for STD's and my platelets and white blood cell count. All the tests came back negative and normal. The symptoms continued, until a week ago I experienced an electrical discharge sensation down my leg and numbness in my groin. This was what the neurosurgeons had warned me about two years ago, so I went to the ER.
Due to my history with fractures and symptoms of something potentially serious like cauda equina, the ER doctor ordered MRI's of my thoracic, lumbar and sacral spine. My family doctor read the results to me a few days later, and said my thoracic spine showed nothing new since the fractures had healed (the burst fracture is permanently shaped like a door stop). He also said that my lumbar spine showed minor degenerative disc disease, but nothing that would cause nerve impingement. Looking for alternative causes to the symptoms, he checked my prostate, did another UTI check and tested for hernias and found nothing. Admitting that my symptoms were nerve-related, though, he recommended me to physical therapy.
That very night, the numbing sensation in my groin was back, but this time it was accompanied by the sensation of deep, stabbing pain in my testicles and a burning sensation in my left arm and chest. I rushed back to the ER. This time, I underwent a battery of new tests. A CT of my pelvis region, an ultrasound of my testicles, a chest xray to check for fluid on the lungs (rib pain). I expressed my concern to the doctor that perhaps the radiologist had missed something in the MRI's, so he went back over them. When the results came back, he said the MRI's were fine and the other tests had showed nothing except for a rare condition called Epiploic appendagitis that can mimic the symptoms of things like diverticulitis and kidney stones. He said that was the cause of my abdominal and testicle pain, but he still thought I was having back pains and should visit the physical therapist.
I decided to, tonight, keep a pain journal. Why? The symptoms are back and they're worse than ever. I don't feel like the doctors are listening to me, and I'm still concerned they might be missing something. I can't keep requesting all these tests and then getting no results ... am I overreacting?
Tonight, I wrote: prior to laying down at 12:10 AM): mid-back pain (both sides), a knot-like sensation in the center of the back (over the spine) and stabbing rib pain, with the left rib hurting more than the right.
Upon laying down, over a twenty minute period (12:11-12:32), I experienced:
- Tight lower back, with the sensation of electrical discharges centered around the coccyx.
- An itching/tingling sensation around the anus that later grew to burning
- Intense and sudden cramps of my left leg, extending through the left gluteal area down to just above the knee on the back side.
- A feeling of tightness around my left kneecap, with burning sensations to the upper right, extending up my inner thigh toward the groin.
- Cramps and pins and needles in my left calf.
- A tingling sensation along the left side of my stomach, about two inches to the left of the belly button.