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what do i do next?

Jamie23JJamie23 Posts: 5
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:31 AM in Spinal Stenosis
hello im a 23 year old, and i have a 15 month old, who has been diagnosed with moderate to severe spinal stenosis. I dont know what to do I am trying to find articles that have info for someone my age, but all i fnd is info for someone in there 70's. I get that this is very very uncommon for someone my age.

I have tried cutting my hours at work, psycal therapy, I went to an Osteopath, accupuncture, cortisone shots, and now im scheduled to see a surgeon next month. I think im doing the right thing i just dont know where to go from here.

Every doctor I have seen tells me they have never seen this in someone so young who has never been in a bad accident, then they send me to the next person and tell me good luck they cant help me. Im glad i found this site and im not alone! HELP! any advise will help! thanks for reading!


  • You are not alone. I too have stenosis and was diagnosed around age 25. I am 30 now. I've never been in any serious accident either and am not sure how my back problems developed. I also have DDD and ruptured discs at L4-L5-S1.

    I have seen several pain management doctors and received two surgical evaluations. I've been told I am not a candidate for surgery at this time. I've tried PT too and have also had several epidural injections and a nerve block.

    The last pain doctor told me there was no more he could do for me, and since he was just writing me prescriptions he sent me back to my primary doctor. Now she writes my prescriptions.

    I started seeing a chiropractor about 2 years ago and feel this has helped somewhat. I see her once about every 3 weeks.
  • thanks for the reply, i see the surgen on the 9th and if im not a candidate then guess i will try a chiropractor and just wait. in a sad way, it is nice to know im not a lone ranger in this. thanks again
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  • Since your situation is somewhat unique, you might want to go to a Spine Clinic associated with a large teaching hospital/university program. Unlike seeing an individual surgeon, your case is viewed by a team of specialists from the beginning. Also, they are used to seeing a broad variety of unusual cases.

    If you aren't happy with the results of your appointment, please seek out a Spine Clinic. I guess it all depends on what is "wrong" with the individual, but I do not understand being told you are too young. I know someone who had multi-level fusion at age 18 and it held together well into her forties when she needed a revision surgery. During that time, she was pretty much pain-free. And there have been many advances in the technology since that time -- tons, as a matter of fact.

    Personally, I would check out this option before I would start relying on a chiropractor to keep the pain at bay!!

    I just reread your post. My guess would be that you were born with a slightly smaller spinal canal to begin with and then as you age it is normal to develop a bit of stenosis. In your case, it makes it a bigger deal, since the space you had for the nerves to pass was smaller to begin with!! This is my best art major layman's guess!!!

    Don't give up. You are too young to resign yourself to living in pain. Sometimes you have to keep looking for answers until you find a doctor that can help you.

    xx Gwennie
  • I am in a similar situation. I am 27 now and have spinal stenosis and a herniated disc at L4-L5. The doc told me the stenosis is the worse at the exact level of the herniation, so the sciatic pain is intense. I did have a ruptured disc at L3-L4 when I was 17, had open discectomy done on that (could be related).

    The plan for me is to go in for microdiscectomy surgery to removed the bulging part of the disc and while they are in there they are going to clear away the built up part of the canal (due to arthritis I guess) so there is more room in there for the nerve. From what I have been reading and hearing this is a less invasive surgery (outpatient surgery even) and is very successfull 95-98%.

    Just wanted to let you know that there are younger people out there with back issues. Just something we have to deal with. But with the technological advances in the past 20 years, don't think that you have to live in pain. Surgery isn't always a bad thing and my opinion is to see what your surgeon says (I would recommend a neurosurgeon, they usually have done a lot more surgeries than orthopedic surgeons) and research their recommended surgery to decide if that is your best option.

  • Hey guys I'm new to the site and I love the support.I'm considerably young with spinal stenosis 32,started noticing the numbness in my toes when I was 25 and it progressivly gotten worse.The pain I would expierienced was horrific anytime I would walk more then a block or stand longer the 10mins at a time it felt as if some1 was racking knives down the back of BOTH legs and the left side of my groin.So I just learned to live with the pain the best I could and the best way I knew how was not to put myself in ne situation that would bring the pain on such as walking,standing,etc... the quaility of life for my family and I was diminishing untill 7/20/09 that's the day I weant in for micrdiscectomy bilateral decompression surgery of the L4/5 nerve root at last releif for me and my family finally lol the next day I was home and up walking the next day! I walked my first pain free 1/4 mile in 7 years the only pain I'm getting now after 1 week post surgery are the zappers in my left leg from time to time when I attempt to sit or stand and they have progresivly been subsiding as well which was the more compressed nerve and the dr expressed to me it may take up to a year for the nerve to completly heal due to the length of time its been compressed. So after 9 days after surgery I feel it has been a sucess so far and if ne one would like to speak to me more in detail about my situation feel free to ask and keep ur heads up out there
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  • You are not alone, that was my story, more than 25 years ago, except NO ONE bothered to check for this issue. I was told I did not have any problems with my back. The Dr kept shooting Xrays and never found anything. That was all that was avialable back then.

    When I was finally given a CTscan, the reaction of the Dr was, "OH $%^%" uhhhh, you have severe stuff.

    So the fact that they have recognized the seriousness of the problem is good. The thing to work towards is figuring out how to live with it and go from there.

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