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Help - What next??

bummer007bbummer007 Posts: 1
edited 07/07/2015 - 1:07 PM in Chronic Pain
First off, I wasn't sure exactly where to post this, so apologies if it was better in another forum!

I've come across this forum in google and wanted to see if anybody could help me to see some light at the end of the tunnel...

Since October, I've had a pain throughout my buttocks (both sides) when sitting down. This generally escalates in intensity when sitting on harder surfaces. There was nothing in particular which I can recall which caused these symptoms.

I went to see a local chiropractor who spent months treating what he thought was an SI joint problem. When these treatments didn't work, he finally referred me for an MRI.

The MRI has flagged up some issues, which the GP believes have been causing the pain. The results showed:

There is evidence of disc degeneration at L2-3 and L4-5 with mild posterior central disc bulging. At these levels, there is abutment of the proximal traversing right L3 nerve in the right L2-3 lateral recess, and abutment of the proximal traversing L5 nerve roots bilaterally in the L4-5 lateral recesses bilaterally. No convincing neural impingement is present within the lumbar spine.

At L5-S1, there is hypertrophic facet joint arthrosis on the left with mild left L5 foraminal stenosis but no convincing neural impingement is present at this level.

I was referred to an NHS physio who seemed to agree with this and attempted one session of Laser therapy. After that, I was given a number of core strengthening exercises to do and I've been doing these religiously for the past few months.

I do feel that this has generally helped a little, but I don't think I'm anywhere near back to being pain free.

Has anybody got any advice on next steps? I don't mind paying for any treatment needed as I'm so fed up of this pain! (If so, is it better to see a chiropractor, physio or somebody else??)

Thanks in advance for your help!



  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
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  • Hi. Now that you know you have physical damage to your spine please stay away from the chiropractor. Chiropractic adjustments can be extremely dangerous in your situation. Some chiropractors do not agree with this statement but ALL spine specialists (AND many chiropractors) have taught me this rule.

    The fact that you have some spine damage (most do beyond a certain age) doesn't mean that your SI joint isn't causing your pain. I have a completely messed-up spine AND SI joint. There is a basic diagnostic test. They inject a numbing agent into your SI joint & it should take away the pain from that area. If it does they go on to inject steroids (they've got a needle in there anyway!) & often it reduces the inflammation enough to give you some pain relief.
    Steroids take a while to work so there's often a pain flare between the numbing agent wearing off & the steroids kicking in. About a week or so. This can be greatly reduced by applying ice. I ice on the way home from the procedure. I have a lot of bone spurs. It took them over an hour to gt the needles positioned...I could still drive home. In my experience it's not really a 'big deal'. As with all procedures it does have its own risks but as long as the use X-ray guidance (I've never known it done without in the UK) it's minimal.

    You are already getting the usual treatment for the spine issues in the UK. If your progression stops or symptoms get worse they could try Epidural Steroid Injections to reduce inflammation. Many get great results from the exercises & stretches. Spine problems are more often than not a marathon & not a sprint. I know it's horrible!

    Has your doc prescribed anything for the pain? There are meds to treat nerve, structural & muscle pain that you could try. There are also lots of other things tht can make you more comfortable. Get some Algesal or similar from your GP it helps with muscle pain/spasms when I massage it into my bum. Aromatherapy massage oils are good too. Hot Epsom salt (magnesium) baths & my hot water bottle are among my favorites. There are lots of tips if you look around the forum.

    In my experience, even once the pain goes, it's important to maintain a strong core to avoid further damage. Have you looked into local classes? Therepy in the water can be good. I had success with the free classes intended for seniors & pregnancy (there were young people & men with spine problems in both my classes) Specialist yoga/Pilates...but make sure they're spine classes not the hard 'No pain, no gain type.

    Obviously if symptoms get worse stop & get back to your doc & he can refer you to a specialist or surgeon for further evaluation.
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
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