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Young with pain

Hello, I have been dealing with back and leg pain for about 5-6 months now. I am a 21 year old male generally very active with lifting weights and playing sports. A year ago I injured my toe and couldn't run for a year so that limited my activity to only upper body weight lifting. About six months ago out of the blue I woke up with a bit of pain in my lower right back; I didn't think much of it but it persisted for quite a while and I saw my Dr who said give it time. About a month or two after the initial pain it still wasn't bad and was strictly in my lower back then one day I was pretty sick and coughed really hard and instantly had worse pain and it went down into my butt. Since then I have been going to PT and am taking diclofenac from my Dr.

I thought I may have been getting better and started to become more active and even played a bit of light basketball. Then a week ago the pain started to worsen and it is now in my lower back, butt and thighs, and down in my calf and ankle on right leg. Yesterday I was just shooting around a bit with a basketball and I did a pretty easy jump and instantly I had a surge of pain in my back. I have been in quite a bit of pain since then and have been laying down as that is the only way to make the pain tolerable.

I have set up an appointment with my Dr for next week and will probably ask to see a specialist and maybe get more tests done as I've only had feeling tests and an X-ray which the X-ray results said my spine looked straight. I have heard good things about seeing sports chiropractors so I am seeing one later today. I am just getting so frustrated and have become quite scared and depressed that this may be something severe that I will have for the rest of my life, I love playing sports and being active and at this point I can barely walk. Any suggestions or words of support or stories of similar situations would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for such a long winded post I just want to be as thorough as possible. Again thank you very much.


  • Dude, until you know whats wrong stay away from things that make your back hurt.. You may be making the situation worse. If it hurts, it's a no go. If it makes your back feel better, your good to go. A quote from a doctor friend " X-Rays are so 1985 bro" Get an MRI if you want any idea whats going with the soft tissue, aka discs, nerves.
  • KoolsilverKKoolsilver Posts: 5
    edited 04/11/2013 - 4:16 PM
    Yeah, like I said I thought I was feeling better and could be more active but obviously not. I'm just so frustrated because I don't think my Dr is taking me seriously since I'm young he doesn't want to do more tests but I setup an appointment for next week (earliest one sadly) and I'm definitely going to push for more.
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  • When I was 15 or 16 I had sciatica, I was a wrestler, runner and working out all the time. I didn't have an MRI or an X Ray just lots of physical therapy to straighten things out, at the time it was scoliosis and sciatica. Now I'm 28, since then Ive had only 2 sciatica events, both from sports related injuries. What makes things worse is pushing through the pain. Keys to success: refrain from activities that aggrevate your symptoms, be very descriptive about your pain. Don't be afraid to demand treatment, you are the customer. If you get physical therapy, which you probably will. Don't just do the excursises until the pain stops, sciatica is a life long battle and this will haunt you for the rest of your life. You gotta do the excursuses for the rest of your life, when done correctly and frequently they will significantly decreases you chances of sciatica re occurrence. That doesn't mean you will have the pain forever but... If you neglect your back after you get treated sciatica will more then likely come back. No need to ba scared sciatica has been around for a loonnnggg time. Theore are slot of resources to combat this, look up some sciatica stretches on you tube, or on here and try them out. Good luck!
  • KoolsilverKKoolsilver Posts: 5
    edited 04/11/2013 - 10:10 PM
    Thanks for the words of encouragement. I definitely do plan on maintaining a healthy exercise routine for as long as I can. The main thing that has me worried for now is the uncertainty of whether the cause of the sciatica is just a muscular issue that will be straightened out hopefully soon or if it's something more major like disc. Hopefully I'll get some more tests soon and have a better idea soon.

    I also saw the sports chiropractor. I'm not too sure what to think of it; the guy I saw seemed qualified and everything, it's just that the whole chiropractor profession seems to be shady and filled with guys that just sell you on it and need to see you every week. The guy I went to was certified in ART (active release technique) which I've read some good things about pretty much it seems like a better and more precise way of stretching which also helps break down scared muscle tissue. I felt quite a bit of relief during the treatment but that went away on the 40 minute drive home. But I'm hoping I see more results in the coming days and I think I'm going to give it another try next week before I decide if seeing him is worth the money or not.
  • The biggest thing is when you have a back injury and it is a disc, takes a long time to heal and you can't jump back to sports until it's totally healed up, It's not like ok I feel a litle beter so I am good to go,

    I am sure it's not that your doctor is not taking you seriously due to being young, Most of the time he knows surgery is the last thing he wants to do knowing risk involved and last thing he wants to do is screw up a young person life if surgery can be avoided,

    By back issue goes back to when I was in my 20 s 28 or 29 is when it all started and here I am 52 now and had 1 st surgery in 2004 and I am worse then I ever was, You have to remember surgery is not always the answer so unless you slow down and make adjustments in your early years knowing now you have already prone to spine issues and doing all the right things from this day on makes all the difference ,

    Spine pain hits young and old don't mater, But being young you will heal on your own beter then some of us who are now old as dirt and was born during the burning bush era when god wrote the 10 commandments ,

    1 Man shall not further abuse his back,
    2 I shell not sleep with neighbors sheep,
    3 I shall not be weak and give in to temptation looking up math teachers skirt,
    4 I shall not steal,
    5 I shell not buy a yugo and put over size rims to make it look cooler,
    6 I shell not mistreat animals or any of gods creatures,
    7 I shell not judge others due to there differences ,race,religion ,and sex,
    8 I shell forgive and never hate others due to there stupidity
    9 I shell help others who are less fortunate then me and never be selfish,
    10 I shell respect Alexhurting words of wisdom and hook him up with good looking chicks half his age ,

    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
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  • PUSH FOR EVERYTHING! Don't let doctors turn you away and say it will resolve itself. I don't know where you live but here in London I had to wait for ages to get any sort of treatment. I waited for 9 months to get an MRI scan. And I am glad I did, It showed a disc protrusion. I am a bit older, 28, and I started going to the gym last year. Too much Body Combat and probably bad lifting technique and I ended up with back pain and now sciatica. The pain is managable but no more running for me, I miss going to the gym a lot but I just need to accept the fact I probably won't be able to do it anymore. I hope that's not the case with you and don't give up but don't ignore anything! I wish I had pushed my doctors for more much earlier. If the pain is really bad try osteopathy or acupuncture. Much better than taking painkillers. I hope you recover quickly!
  • Just an update. I've seen the sports chiropractor twice now and I have seen quite a bit of improvement from where I was a week or two ago however not really any better than I was before that last flare up. My pain is not going into my butt, leg, calf as frequently anymore it is now seeming to stay in my lower right back quite a bit to the side not very central. I can spend most of the day without much pain if I take it easy but something as simple as bending over or squating down can trigger pain and then the pain lasts for quite a while until it finally calms down. It seems to be very effected by flexing my lower back muscles or butt muscles as well as tilting my pelvis forward. I have an MRI scheduled for I believe this coming Friday.
  • KoolsilverKKoolsilver Posts: 5
    edited 05/10/2013 - 8:36 PM
    So I got my MRI results, slight protrusion in L5 S1 disk that is touching but not moving the S1 nerve root. I'm feeling just about the same as I was last time I posted which is on and off pain probably 60-70% of the day in pain but not all that severe. Last time I said my pain was mostly in my back but now it is mostly in my lower body and probably mostly in calves; feels like I'm cramping and need to stretch or something.

    Now I've self diagnosed myself with slight hyperlordosis (who knows how accurate this diagnosis is lol). But as of right now that is what I'm thinking and I believe it is caused by tight hip flexors as I've always had tight hamstrings which I now believe are the side effect of the tight hip flexors as the more I stretch my hip flexors the looser my hamstrings get. I also tried to perform the Thomas test with someone telling me where my legs were and it seems my thighs are about 2 inches raising off the table, so I believe my diagnosis is pretty well thought out.

    I hope to see my Dr. soon to get more information on the MRI but I'm wondering does a disc protrusion mean herniated disk or is it possible for the disk to just move a bit or something like that, and will either of the situations heal naturally any time soon?
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