My MRIs recently came back showing disc desiccation of L4-L5/L5-S1. I'm currently awaiting a neurological consult but am hoping for artificial disc replacement. I don't really know what my "official" diagnosis is (no one has said anything about degenerative disc disease).
I'm 21 years old and in more or less constant pain. I've had some degree of back pain since I was around 14 or 15, but it has gotten worse as time goes on (back going out more frequently) until this past year or so, when it has been pretty much constant in some form. Within the last few months it has snowballed, and I am in moderate pain the majority of the time (usually living off 1000 mg of Ibuprofen a day, occasionally double that).
Lying down is the only thing that alleviates pain - sitting is complete agony and standing for long periods of time is beginning to cause more and more pain (especially within the last few weeks). It is actually frightening how I am noticeably able to do less each day.
Anyway, I was wondering if anyone had any success with something like forearm crutches for pain relief in the same areas I'm having trouble with. I know crutches aren't typically associated with lower back pain relief but there are times where I *have* to be standing for periods of over an hour, and I can't think of anything else to take the stress off my back (besides sitting, which hurts worse).
Does anybody have any experiences with this or can recommend any alternatives? I'm quickly running out of things I'm able to do and at 21, I'm depressed about having "standing" being added to the list.