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Having horrible pain in left side after i had surg on right side L5 S1

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  • Update.......... I had back surg last year may 15th. I had a microdisetomy and laminotmy at L5 S1. I got the surg because the horrible nerve paim down right leg and nothing else we tried worked. So 2 months after surg i began to have bad pain on left side of spine. Lower area. So i had mri and see dr who did the surg. He told me looks good . I explained what i was deal with and asked for a mri with contrast. He said no point ur mri was clear. And sorry i cant hell you no more. So month and month later still in pain meds and muscle relaxers. Been through pt  100 times and got a 2nd and 3rd opinion. Everything got worse from when i seen my original back dr.  Nlw im dealing with horrible pressure pain that goes across the who lower part of back. And nlw i also have normal pain and nerve pain in left groin. Pain and nerve pain in left leg. Left butt. From knee to hip. So they thought i might have a tear in hip. We they did a mr arthrogram with contrast on left hip it came back perfectly normal. So then i just got another mri with and with out contrast. And these are the results..        IMPRESSION:

    Postsurgical changes are seen at L5-S1 with some residual disc material enhancement within the right aspect of spinal canal which likely represents a combination of granulation tissue or recurrent disc. This results in mild right more than left 
    subarticular effacement with possible mass effect on traversing right more than left S1 nerve roots. Recommend clinical correlation for bilateral S1 radiculopathy.. .im pretty sure some of this means its causing some of my pain. But dr said he sees nothing on that mri that shows my pain. So now i have to get a emg and bone scan..... any ideas

  • nutcase007nnutcase007 United StatesPosts: 919
    shane8302 - When you said in your last update that you are scheduled for a bone scan, is that procedure also known as a SPECT Bone Scan?  If so, the SPECT (single-photon emission computerized tomography) Bone Scan is a three step process.  First your are injected with a radioactive tracer into your blood stream.  They wait about three hours and then you are scanned with the single-photon emission computerized tomography scanner.  Lastly, they perform a CT Scan and the SPECT Scan and CT Scan are merged to create a 3-D set of images.  For two of my three ACDFs, only the SPECT Bone Scan found my issues that required surgery after at least ten MRIs with and without contract that came back as "normal". 
     
    As my neurosurgeon says, he diagnoses less than half of his surgical patients with MRIs.  SPECT Bone Scans are great for finding inflammation that x-rays, stand alone CT Scans and MRIs do not find.  Yes, one of the primary early uses of the SPECT Bone Scan was used in looking for cancer.  Now, they are used a lot to look for unexplained inflammatory conditions, which from your symptoms, sounds like you might have.      

    My neurosurgeon says that very few spine surgeons will even consider using the SPECT Bone Scan.  I'd recommend staying with this surgeon until at least s/he gets the results of the Bone Scan.  Most good spine surgeons will also read the imaging they ordered.  As my neurosurgeon says, he reads the images himself and then takes a look to see what the radiologist had to say.  He has found issues for me that the radiologist missed. 

    I hope you can find a solution.  Remember, when a doctor says, "nothing found", that is all it means.  Most times when our body is screaming with pain, there is a reason, it just has not yet been found!

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  • Thank you for the information. I will have to look at paper when i get home. But i know its a while body scan

  • Update. Bonescan done. Like you said. All it showed was degenerative disc disease also had a emg . Normal. But the horrible nerve pain on left side. Into groin and left leg. I also had nerve blocks on both side nothing.... im getting very irritated. The dr who did emg told me about a few more test he was gonna suggest for my drs. So still lower back pain and nerve pain....

  • nutcase007nnutcase007 United StatesPosts: 919

    Sorry to hear that you still don't have a diagnosis.  I know of multiple people on this site who know the frustration of going undiagnosed for extended periods of time. 

    I picked up a quote a couple of years ago: "Do your due diligence, trust you know your body and question everything if it does not fit.  Advocate for yourself and you will be surprised what will be revealed trusting your body and instinct”.   

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  • Thank you. No normal person is going to go through all these tests and injections for the fun of it and im willing to have w.e back surg would help lol. I guess on to the next tests

  • nutcase007nnutcase007 United StatesPosts: 919
    shane8302 - You sound like you are determined beyond a "normal person".  It is not fun, I know to well.  Please keep advocating for yourself.  I think I feel some of your frustration.  I'm currently in the middle of another diagnostic round and to date I've been told "nothing found" that explains my extreme pain and depressed neurological function. 
  • So the dr recomended a CT myelogram. Obviously the impression of my recent mri i posted is not great. I dont understand if its tissue causing my nerve pain to go in and scrape it out. And when i was going to pt . He would have me lay on my stomach and he would put all his pressure on lower back near tail bone. When he put that pressure on it all my normal back pain was 100% gone. I cant lay on stomach and raise legs up. To much pressure pain almost like im paralysed. But as soon at pt did that BOOM. Pain gone and i could raise legs. I told every dr that. It gets ignored. Im assuming if i get a fusion  it would probably help. I cant remember if i mentioned but my spine is startinv to curve left. I see fam dr thurs. Im not leaving without letting her everything. Im also gonna ask for another nerve block on left side. Mri shows all pain should be on right but nope all on left. Ill update thurs evening

  • nutcase007nnutcase007 United StatesPosts: 919

    shane8302 - Hopefully the CT Myelogram will aid in the diagnosis of your condition. 

    I'd suggest that you keep reminding doctors when the physical therapist puts pressure on your lower back near your tailbone, your pain temporarily goes away.  From my own experience, symptoms or the removal of symptoms that can be reproduced upon demand usually have significance.

    MRIs are very often important in diagnosis, but remember they are only a tool.  The justification for surgery of two of my three ACDFs, the MRIs found nothing, but I was diagnosed with other imaging.  

  • Well fam dr said she cant help me any further. She wouldnt write the referral for the myelogram because she wasnt sure what was all needed. So i have to wait to go see my pain dr in june. But i am thinking of taking my newer mri and going to see my surgeon that did the surgery. He seen the inside of my back. Whatever is pushing on my nerves needs to ve corrected and the other back issue needs resolved aswel.

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