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Severe Back Pain, normalish MRI

Symptoms: Pressure and nerve pinch feeling/stabbing pain in the lower back, now estimated (by me) to be the L3-L4 area. Pain/numbness/burning radiates into my butt, and both of my whole feet. Several mris do not show much, some disk bulging and minor herniations at L4-l5 and l5-S1. Sometimes my pain flares up and the nerve pain type electrical zapping makes moving around hard and hurts so bad.

So Ive had discetomies in the l4-l5, and the L5-S1 areas with 0 improvement. I was told pain travels up and down the spine and thats why I let them perform surgery even though I felt the pain was coming from higher up.

I had an epidural injection at the L3-L4 and my pain went away for a single day, then had a huge increase in pain afterwards (probably from walking and standing normally for a day). Problem is, there is nothing that the doctors are concerned about at the L3-L4 level (or anywhere else) regarding the MRI. I looked at the MRI (and got a dicom viewer) and its look like the stabbing feeling matches up with the spinous process jutting out opposite of the L3 vertebrae. I have a naturally small spinal canal, probably makes me more prone.

I have some pictures I could upload If someone could tell me how.

Anyway, anyone got any ideas on what I should push for next?

Several doctors mentioned getting a new mri (Ive had 3 over the last 6 years) and Im completely certain nothing new will show up but hoping the docs will change their minds after this new epidural injection.

One doc is trying to call it all discogenic pain and send me back to pain management. And one doctor says maybe, just maybe, there is something very mild at the L3-L4 spinous process but he's really not wanting to do anything right now.

My pain regularly becomes unbearable and antiinflammatories actually make my pain much much worse.

Help!

-Charles


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Comments

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,425
    is documented our FAQ.

    However, please keep in mind, that no member here can comment on your MRI images. There are no medical professionals on this site that are qualified to read diagnostic images/reports and provide any type of advice.
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • sorry to hear you are going through so much pain because of your back. Other member has addressed the MRi but I would say that more information from you (other than the MRI) may help other members including me to better understand what your dealing with. More detail the better. Also, have you sought a second opinion from a neuro surgeon? Have you been through PT? Medications tried/on?
    L5/S1 disk compressed, bulging disk, bilateral facet joint arthropathy, neural foramina narrowing

    Current med: Hydrocodone, 10/325 3x/day, Morphine,15mg 1x/day at bedtime
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  • How is your sacroiliac joints? So many people that suffer from low back pain with multiple problems that don't warrant surgery are actually suffering from SI joint pain. Have you tried SI joint injections?
    It's often difficult to determine where the source of the pain is coming from, there are many test to diagnose SI joint pain but most doctors don't do them. I have been suffering for over 30 years with intermittent back pain and cyclical symptoms, but the last few years have ruined my life living in a world of chronic pain.
    I have seen three neurosurgeons and none of them suggested S I joint problems until my new rheumatologist did.
    I am scheduled for my first SI joint injection in a week and if it is successful in anyway I plan on getting IFuse done.
    I have had dozens of back injections over the years with zero success I can't believe that I've suffered all this time and it was my SI joint all along it's now obvious to me that it's the SI joint.
    It would be worth it to get checked I've read a bunch of articles saying that the S I joint is the most underdiagnosed low back problem.
    It is very very common to have an MRI that doesn't show that much damage to warrant the kind of pain that you may be living in. For me this is the case and my pain is 8 to 10 every single day especially if I do something to aggravate it.
  • Charles555ncCCharles555nc Posts: 4
    edited 09/21/2015 - 10:42 AM
    Sunkissedbeach said:
    How is your sacroiliac joints
    It is very very common to have an MRI that doesn't show that much damage to warrant the kind of pain that you may be living in. For me this is the case and my pain is 8 to 10 every single day especially if I do something to aggravate it.
    I did PT for years and It made my electrical shocks down my back worse, and yes I tried SI joint injections with 0% improvement.
  • Jetta2010 said:
    sorry to hear you are going through so much pain because of your back. Other member has addressed the MRi but I would say that more information from you (other than the MRI) may help other members including me to better understand what your dealing with. More detail the better. Also, have you sought a second opinion from a neuro surgeon? Have you been through PT? Medications tried/on?
    What have other members mentioned about MRI's? I tried PT for years with me usually having to quit because of increased pain. Ive been on hydrocone and oxycodon, very little help. Ive seen many neuro surgeons with them saying "not much there on the MRI". Got a new MRI referral today, and a new referral to another neuro surgeon.
    Really dont have much hope (and not looking for any fake hope). Stabbed in the back and its goes on and on. Seems to effect cauda equina distribution. Sexual dysfunction, feet on fire, severe low back pain, butt pain.
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