Back Pain Questions and Answers
Archive 2007 Part 2

This Q&A section is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Any medical condition should be referred to a qualified medical professional. The Q&A is now closed for new submissions.


Q: Hello, i trying to find out if the new machine drx9000 works to correct scoliosis. i've had scoliosis since a whip lash at 2 weeks of age. do you have any information about this? thank you, C

Q: Well hello i am only eighteen years old but i have been dealing with this for over a year and half now let me tell you my story. i have back spasms but they only come in the night when i am sleeping and they always wake me up they are so terribly bad i usually throw up because the pain is over the top. they last about two hours and the only way i can get rid of them is just falling back asleep but that never works because they keep me awake. They come and go

every month every two months maybe even six months but sometimes every two weeks. i don't know what to do the doctors just told me to not worry about it

please help me. When i experience the back spasms they slowly move through my

insides to my stomach then they become stomach and back spasms. They are so terrible please give me your input on this thanks alot. Diann

Q: Hello, I have injured my back muscle by overworkig it I think. I have been in chronic pain with it for several days now. My doctor precribed me co-dydramol and diazepam tablets. Although the pain seems to be easing the muscle from my right hip to just under my arm pit is very sore to touch and I cant lie down. I want to know can I take Ibuprofen as well to reduce inflamation? Thanks. Lesley

Q: I have got spondyliosis in lumber 3,4,5 and 5 and 6 in vertebra that make me like a handicape and unable to write since the last 20 years. They are always paining in lower and upper part of the body through my neck what kind of treatment I will need a and how will be the procedure of treatment and investigation I will need if I come? how much it will cost normally? Sangpari

Q: I have been suffering from my lower back pain for over 3 years now. I got an MRI done & nothing came out. I recently just took x-rays & again nothing came out. My doctor thinks it may be muscular.The pain is so bad, it's hard to believe is muscular.This will be my third week that i'm in pain now. this pain just come & goes. It grabs my lower back & half of my butt. this is the weirdest thing, i was having the pain on my right side for the last two weeks & now it's just my left side. what should i do? no one really knows what's wrong. This is driving me crazy. I'm a very active person, I work full time & I goo to the gym every night after work. Carolina

Q: i have back pain / lower lumber muscle tension since 10 years and i consulted many doctors. my x rays is ok my all reports are ok. doctors says you got depression. i am 43 years old pls help me to get cure from the deases to come on my real life. pls pls help this sos singnal. thanks and rgds imran

Q: I almost fell off my chair when I read about the nocebo story! That story is exactly what happened to me in Feb this year! The ortho doctor told me I had a moderate narrowing of the L5 and said I needed surgery! I later found out from my family doctor that it is normal for a man of my age (48) and he sees it in 30% of his patience my age without even any symptons. I have had to get counseling because I was so scared and it still haunts me now. I get anxiety constantly and my muscles in my very low back get tense all the time! HELP!!!! Thomas

Q: My friend in Cyprus has had a pain in his back for a few years it might have originated from an injury, he as been to more than one back specialist and the consensus of opinion is that the injury has completely healed but he says he still has pain, is it possible that he as learned the pain, if so how does he go about reprogramming his brain, does this problem happen with people that have had a long term pain in their back. Regards David

Q:Hello, Just about 4 years ago (I was 19 years old), I had disc replacement surgery. The doctor's believed my disc was herniated, but when they went in there they found that it was actually crumbled in pieces and I could have gone paralyzed if I did not have the surgery. This surgery entailed taking out my disc and replacing it with a titanium disc. It was supposed to be a lot better than fusing my vertebrae together. However, I have been in excruciating pain since I've been out of surgery. I have also found out that my Sacroiliac joint is very out of place and can also be what is contributing to my pain. I have not had a pain free day in 5 years and I have tried so many things. I've done physical therapy, aquatherapy, lumbar facet injections, pain management, pain medicine, heat and ice, TENS unit, yoga, pilates, etc and I exercise regularly. I am starting to feel very hopeless and am wondering if you had any suggestions on what could help. I cannot sit or stand for more than 10-20 minutes without being extremely uncomfortable. I have to take muscle relaxers before I go to bed so I don't wake up in the middle of the night. Do you have any suggestions?? Jeanne

Q: I have a fractured vertabrae from a fall from a bucking horse. I recieved the injury in Crete and was treated there (3 days hospital) and given a back brace to wear. I've seen a doctor here since my return, but do not have confidence in his response to my questions. My question is this - My pain continuted to lessen and became intermittant. Suddenly it became much worse - not as bad as the week of the injury, but much worse than it had been. I did work a little harder one day -sat at my desk longer, and then cooked a meal for a bunch of people. Should I be concerned? Is it normal for the pain to decrease and then increase during recovery? My dr. says take another x-ray. I don't like the idea of taking multiple x-rays, although I'm happy to do it if there is a risk of this not healing properly. thanks! Judy

Q: Hi, I have suffered with back pain since I was 21 and had a herniated disc. At the time, the MRI taken showed some degeneration on the disc above and below the damaged disc. I believe it was L4/L5 that was herniated. I was in fit condition an am not overweight. I have a congenital length difference in my legs, my left being about 1.5 inches shorter. I am 30 years old now and for the last 5 years or so I have had all my shoes modified to level me out. I still have recurrent episodes with my back 2-3 times per year. Recently, I have had severe sciatic pain that I have not had since the original injury. I am searching for a surgery alternative as my episodes are getting more frequent, lasting longer, and more painful. I have been doing Chiropractic anf massage for years but the results are temporary. I have been to more than 5 Chiros and as many massage therapists. I have read about the DRX9000. I live in the Portland,OR area. Do you have any suggestions, and you work or know anyone in my vicinity? Do you know how I might go about finding someone in my area that has experience using this new technology? I would appreciate any suggestions or recomendations. Sincere thanks, David

Q: I have two cervical herniated discs. The last mri said they have gotten worse than the one before that 3 years earlier. It says they are broad central to left sided. C5/6 and C6/7. I have terrible weakness (I actually have to lay down a lot to take the pressure off my neck) and aching and now shaking of my neck. Could it be the herniations causing this? even though the mri didnt show any nerve or cord compression? I am also getting tingling in my hands mostly the outside fingers (from the middle finger out) and my arms are weak. Thank you for your answer. Gloria

Q: Hello. I am 21 and have the same symptoms you have. ( 2 herniated discs with ddd) I want to know how you got the pain in your back to go away. I have had minimal invasive surgery which cured me of the pain in my leg but I still have low back pain. How did you get rid of your pain? Please do tell me cause this pain is horrible. Andrew

Q: I got in a car wreck 2 years ago this past June. When I was in the hospital the doctors told me it was whip lash. I have been reading on the internet about why I still have so much back pain and what I can do to fix it. I have a constant pain of burning and stabbing in mu upper back and between my shoulder blades. My neck also has constant pain. It is very uncomfortable and my range of movement is no longer what it used to be. Do you know what this could be? Thanks. Cassie

Q: SINCE 5 MONTH AM HAVING LOWER BACK PAIN TOOK MRI SCAN TEST THE REPORT SAYS MILD POSTEROLATERAL DISE BULGE IS NARROWING BOTH NEURAL FORMATION AT L4-L5 LEVEL. Suresh

Q: I had rotator cuff surgery performed in March of 2006, prior to that the doctor took some ex-rays and noticed a "disc" in the area of L-4 that was out of place. He told me that it wasn't new and had probably been that way for some time. That explained some things, like when playing golf--after 10 or 11 holes my back would start to give me some discomfort and hurt. I simply figured it was because I was out of shape, overweight, and I did some streching exercises, seemed to help. I can still bend over and touch all my fingers to the ground without bending knees. In addition to this I had an occassional bout with unbearable pain in the lower back area that would drop me to my knees on occasion. I even went to a chiropractor who I had played golf with, I had to have his help getting to my car after he was done. These episodes would last from a couple hours to 2 days, if I moved the wrong way it seemed that someone had just hit me in the lower back with a sledge hammer. I have two "bone on bone" knees and will have one totally replaced in October, if everything goes alright I'll have the other one done soon after that. I am very overweight at this time and had been going up since 1986, I started going to the gym and went on a supervised diet. It worked, I've lost about 55# but have another 40 or 50 to go. As the knees have gotton worse it seems that the back has also. I don't want to have back surgery but definately want to get back to golf and other walking type activities. My age is 70 and I have a "arithmia", take blood pressure meds and wear a C-pap machine at night. My regular visits to my doctor have showed that my chloestoral is right where it should be, he has told me if I get the weight off, probably the blood pressure stuff will be discontinued. Let me know about any suggestions you can make, thanks, Dennis

Q: Hello. I am a patient from India. I am 36 years old and a lawyer by profession. I am suffering from pain/stiffness/spasm along the entire spine. I am having this problem for the last 19 years (since May 1988). There has been many consultations, tests etc. Clinically everything is normal. Some of the doctors are of the opinion that it is a psychosomatic problem. I have undergone tremendous suffering all these years. It has affected my career also. I am still not married, mainly due to this problem. I have gone through your website in detail. I think I really need your help. Please guide me. Kind Regards, Pranjal

Q: Hi,Nearly 5 months ago, I was doing some travelling in South America. I had been doing a lot of walking around, carrying a backpack and lifting some objects over my head over the course of a couple days. I woke up one morning, after sleeping on a bit of a warped bed in a hostel, and my upper middle back was extremely stiff. Ever since that day, my back has not been the same. The stiffness seems to have resided for the most part, but there are times when it still feels really stiff. Additionally, my back is always cracking, it doesn't feel normal. I play soccer, but haven't really played since this incident happened and I really want to get back on the field. I have seen a couple doctors, a physio-thearapist, and a massage thearapist, but it doesn't seem to have made the difference. I got an x-ray as well, but it doesn't show any major problems. Aside from the physical problem, there is a history of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) in my family and I suffer from the disorder as well. Last year I was on medication for my mental health situation, but I am currently not on any medication. What is your opinion on the problem? Do you think it could be related to my mental health? Please let me know. Thank you, Michael

Q: Hello there, my name is shawn. I am 18 years old, and have had my "Back Pain" for about 6 months now. I have navigated through your site for some time now, but can't quite find information on my specific problem, so, here it is. About 6 months ago my girlfriend was giving me a backrub and came across a "bump" in my lower back. This wasnt a external bump like a pimple, but somthing like a HUGE knot on the inside. A little smaller then a ping pong ball but you couldnt see it just by looking. I felt it with my own hands and it felt like a ball, it almost felt like it was rolling around when i would try to "work it out" with my finger tips, but it was quite stationary. At the time of discovery it didn't hurt at all. But, as time went by, it hurt more and more. I went to the doctor, which referd me to a specialist at the hospital, where he had felt it and said that it might be a "Fatty Sist" and that an MRI would see if it was. I went through the MRI, went home and waited for my results. They called a week later with the wonderful news of "We couldnt find anything wrong at all" So, I sit here everyday with this pain. It feels as though I've slept on cement all night in an awkward position and woken up with a back pain. Thats the feeling. I start work as a correction's officer at a Jail here in Arizona, and im scared i wont perform to my greatest if i have this back pain. I'm really excited to here back from you and cure this thing once and for all. If this gets cured before i start working, I would love to donate money to the site after a few paychecks. Hope to here from you soon! ~Shawn

Q: Hello, My name is Rosella and I have a question for you. About 8yrs ago I was getting up from a chair and bam there goes a muscle spasm so bad it sent me to the hospital and messed up from pain medication they sent me home well its back and I am just trying not to end up screaming in pain like the last time and not having to take two doses of demoral why is this happening? I would appreciate any feedback you could give me from your experiences. Thank You in advance for your time..

Q: Dear Sensei, First of all I just want to say thank you for your wonderful site. I'm SURE you have given countless people much needed multi-faceted assistance with their pain problems... My boyfriend did a 30 mile ruck-sack run where he injured his back somehow. After the run he went thru a couple weeks of severe back spasms that were so terrible it literally frightened me, until finally his doctor gave him some muscle relaxents and another strong medication for the pain so he could at least sleep. Now the muscle spasms have gone (thank goodness) but he is now left with bulging muscles in his back that hurt all the time, much LIKE a cramp, but constant and not ALWAYS overtly painful. Massage doesn't help (only hurts), nor does stretching, and its been a couple months since the run. We don't know what to call it so I'm not even sure what to ask professionals for help with, and his doctor just looks at it and says, "You're still locked up, take the meds I gave you and try to get lots of sleep" but he doesn't want to take the strong medications even tho he is still in pain. I don't know what to do, I just want to help him get better, can you help us? Thank you again for your wonderful site, -Nicole

Q: Hi I am 33 and have been diagnosed with a spondylolisthesis L5-S1 I am having a great deal of pain in my lower back pretty constantly and numbing of legs and pinching in my ankles sometimes. I have seen the x-rays and just seeing what is going on there made it even worse. The L5 and S1 are almost touching and almost a half inch out of allignment.I was told the fusion surgery may be benificial to me but only to save the nerves in my legs, will this relieve any of the pain. My doctor says spinal injections will help with the pain please help me as I dont know how to find similar people in my condition. Jason

Q: We can I find a magnetic braclet for my waist I suffer my musle sapsms in my lower bacl I get them anywhere from 5 to 6 times a day yuour help is greatly apperiated. Monique

Q: Hi, my name is Magriet I am 38 and have a cervical spinal stenosis with since a week back a small piece of broken off disc. I have tremendous muscle spasms and burning pain. Had a MRI and saw the neurosurgeon yesterday who said I should conservatice treatment for 2 more weeks. I am using anti-inflammatory and pain medication and going for intensive physioterapy. Are your products available in South Africa? And if not, what is the possibility to have it sent here? Margriet

Q: 12 years back while doing exercises suddenly pain started left sholder part, that time some swelling was appeared left chest part also. after two months i got some swelling left hand fingers also. year by year this pain was spresded from left sholder to left hip, left leg and left foot also. During this twelve years period i met many doctors like orthopedic and neorologists. last two months onwards iam getting civire pain from left shoulder to left hip and left buttocks and complete left leg and foot and also this part lot of pain, burnig , numbness and tingling is there.very difficult to sit more time in office. i lost the lot of muscle left buttock and thigh part. Compare to right buttock part and thigh lot pf difference is there in left buttock and thigh part. why this muscle was lost. please give some valuable suggestions , which doctor i am gonig to consult. just one week before i met one orthopedic doctor, i have taken MRI . that MRI report showing L4-5 disc mild bulge is there. Doctor told to me nothing i MRI,But iam getting civire pain and lost lot of muscle in left buttoc part. My pant also geeting lot of loose in left buttck part. Doctor not consider my words. please giveadvise why i lost the muscle, when iam sitting lot of burning in left buttock part.please understand my problem , how to cure this problem, which doctor i am going to meet. Actually what is problem in my body. please provide your valuable suggestions.This is very serious issue , i am suffering last 12 years. i am waiting for your replu. If you provide some suggestions,i am greatful to you entire life.i am 28 years old. Thanks&Regards, krishna

Q: I have on and off back problems for years and although I work in an office I have managed to stay well enough to play weekend sports. I have recently however experienced at times debilitating pain where I have been able to do very little and thus has taken a toll on me mentally as my usual excercise routine that have in the past kept my problems in check were not getting the desired results this time around. I recently had a bone scan that has revealed a stress fracture of the L5 vertabra, however my doctor claims it should have healed and should not be the cause of what now ails me. Could this type of injury linger, and how does this type of injury fully heal. The scan revealed no other problems other than this, and as bad as this latest bout has been I have never had any pain down my legs, but have been prone to local lower back spasms. Any additional insight would be most helpful. Ron

Q: I have back pain in the morning. After getting up and moving around it goes away. It does not limit me from doing anything. It is a dull ache. Was wondering if maybe my bed doesn't agree with me anymore or maybe it was possibly something internal like kidneys or something ? Bob

Q: i am 23 wks pregnant and have lower back pian, i find while im in bed the pain gets so bad i am unable to move my hips and legs, this is stoping me from turning over at night and finding it verry hard to gat out of bed and walk. this pain reduces me to tears as it is so bad. Liuanne

Q: Hi there, I am after some advice and would be really greatful for any information you could give us. My partner a 37 year 6.2 16 stone male was instructed by his site manager to lift a large bolder which should have been lifted by a grab machine, the company have admitted full liability to the injury and we are now in the throws of a long insurance claim. However the claim has been based upon the report one orthopedic surgeon who saw my partner for less than 10 minutes and has stated that whilst he agrees the lifting of the bolder has accelerated the pre existing injuries the they would have still occurred anyway with the surgeon stating two years to the day? My partner is currently seeing another orthopedic surgeon who has been treating him and has now seen him four times with another visit scheduled for August 07. His findings after giving my partner an epidural and injecting his spine to see the exact extent of the damages have since revealed that he has one collapsed disc and one that has burst and is leaking. Our argument to date is that we do not feel that these injuries would have been so severe if the bolder would not have been moved and that it is un-fair assement of the other surgeon to be able to surmise that such injuries would have incurred naturally over time. We do not think that the first surgeon knows of the extent of the damages and has not taken anytime at all over the report he has written. I would be extremely grateful if you could please let me have your thoughts on this and whether the discs could have been so severely damaged with just everyday wear and tear? Any other information you may feel will be of use will be very greatly received. I hope therefore to hear from you as soon as possible. With kind regards, Yours sincerely, Maxine

Q: Hi, A year ago I was suffering from sciatic pain. I saw my doctor had an MRI and it showed your basic stenosis and signs of aging. Given that I'm 35, healthy and active I went on with my pain. Through a recommendation of a friend I read and viewed Dr. John Sarno's Mind Body prescription and I do believe his teaching as after 3 weeks my pain was gone and I was back to my routines and exercising. Question: nearly one year later I have SEVERE pain agian. Not only my lower back but my hamstring. I've had another MRI and the diagnosis is a sever annular tear in L-5 with nerve's video and book which has helpd somewhat but my pain is pretty constant. I can't bend over nor raise my right leg. Prior to this I had been doing yoga regularly and the pain has kept me from exercising, sleeping and sitting for long periods of time. The nuerologist is recommending surgery. Prior to doing so is there anything else you can recommend that I try? Tisha

Q: My son a promising elite soccer player had back pain aged 9 it was eventually found to be spondylolysis this cleared up after 7 months at aged 15 he has had a re-occurence of the symptoms which have he has had an mri scan which detected a bilateral spondy which may or not have healed from previous detection and a 4mm thesis slip which we have now had specialist advice which states we should explore getting a steroid jag into the fracture sites to determine why he is getting referred pain to the outer thighs. I have had other opinions which state that he probably always had the slip and that at aged between 7-9 and 14-16 these are optimum ages for symptoms to show during the growth spurts and then you have no problems. He has had conservative physio treatment throughout and now after 7 months has started training again with no pain.Is this common and should we look at all preventitive measures to ensure this does not re-occur. John

COMMENT: I think that chiropractors can help. I also have had some help by doing a martial arts movement call the 'cobra'. In this movement, you lay flat on your belly and chest. You do a pushup keeping your waist on the floor. Look up as far back as you can and lower your push up slowly to the floor while keeping you eyes pointing at the ceiling as far as you can even when your chest touches the floor. This must be done very slowly and then rest for a short while without moving. Slowly raise up from floor and arch back like a cat. This helps many times for me and has helped others a little. I had a pain hit me today out of the blue and got on my knees next to the bed and rested my arms and head on top of bed and this provided some relief along with back heating rub. I do this because of lack of time for chiropractor visit. Danny

COMMENT: I have had 6 months of severe back pain. Two steroid injections helped immensely early on but the pain has not subsided in the past three months. I am at my wits end. I can not bear it much longer. Stan

Q: thank you so very much for your site! do you know of any doctors that specailize in tension mitosis in the chicago land area? this would be greatly appreciated!!! thanks! gina

Q: Hello Sir, I am suffering from back pain from the last 2 years and also I have a muscles problems. My all body muscles filled like air inside and they become big like air balloon, so I am so much wondering. Please advise me which doctor I have to seek and this problem is dangerous or usually normal. Thanks. Jameel

Q: Hi,I suffer from a severe case of IBS for many years. I have had dozens of tests taken (all came out with nothing wrong) and have tried many alternative treatments besides the few conventional options that are available. I am totally convinced that this is caused by the same factors that cause backaches. Can you help me with this the same way you can help backache sufferers? Please let me know. Thank you very much! Zipora

COMMENT: Hi Sensei, I wanted to thank you for sending me your book. It really is helping me to feel better for the first time in many, many years. I really like your no-nonsense approach and the way you break down the things I need to do to recover. It is easy to follow and I know I will improve more and more using it. Also, Thanks for taking your time to correspond these lat few months. Your advice has been a great source of comfort and support for me. Just want you to know that I hope to repay you someday, if at all possible. Antonella

Q: I had a discectomy and a laminectomy on L4-L5 in March of 06,I have fallen into the failed back surgery category.I have some questions for you today. Would an undetected spinal fluid leak cause a large buldge under the skin weeks after the surgery and could it cause a failed back if it was not treated properly?I have a very good picture of it if you would like to use it in one of your articles, The picture was taken immediately after my surgeon said this was pretty much normal. I would gladly send it to you just for taking the time to answer my questions.I am trying to find out some things myself since, I am not having much luck with a diagnosis. Thanks, Dave

Q: I live in Pompano Beach, fl I would like to find a Dr. in my area within 25mi to see if this drx 9000 can help me. please get back to me when you can, thank you. Mary

Q: Apparently I have SI joint pain. I have good days and really bad days. If by having physiotherapy alleviates the problem what are the chances of this recurring? I have been studying for twelve months to work in Aged Care, the thought of manual lifting sends thoughts of horror through my mind. HELP!!!! Heather

Comment: I have osteoathritis in my L2, 3, 4 discs, right side only. I've suffered overall body pain, particularly back pain, for years. I went to a Pain Management Workshop at my local hospital, through teleconferencing, led by Dr. Jacki Gardner-Nix, a pain consultant. She recommended Dr. Sarno's book, The Mind/Body Connection. Because I hadn't had prior psychiatric counselling, I was affecting the rest of the class with my negativity, so basically, I wasn't invited back. I was very angry, pessimistic and... in much emotional, physical and psychological pain at home, dealing with an in-law (dead now) to the point where I gave up the one book for the workshop by Jon Kabat-Zinn. My emotional/mental and psychological pain began almost two years after my mother's death in 1979, so much of my present-day is emotional and psychological followed by actual physical pain but often....the two combine. Another book Dr. Gardner-Nix recommended is by Eckhart Toll. I wanted nothing to do with these books...they reminded me of the workshop and my failure to get through it successfully and my frustration in not being able to get a psychiatrist (I live in an under-serviced area of Ontario - Canada, in cottage country). Sometimes you get a wake-up call, and I decided to type in piriformis muscle syndrome symptoms which led me to this link. Now, I realize that I must! exercise so that oxygen can get to my muscles to help relieve my ongoing, often, over-the-top, psychological pain, where I want to go to sleep and not wake up. Thanks for the information here. Carol

Q: please sir, i just want thank you for what you have doing, by curing many desperate back pains patient. may God reward you. i have been having back pain for the past 5 years now, anytime i go to hospital, they will diagnise me, after everything, the test will come out normal, i kept on wondering what this could be. and the last one i went, the prescribe for me olfen and norgesie tablets, after taking them. the pain was relieved but come back after. now, my question is what can i do, drugs to be taking food to be eating and what type of excersice will i be doing to stop all these pain. please, i need online free assistance, please i dont have money for order and for shipment, i am a student. thank you. Chika

Q: Hi, Last December I damage my back at work lifting very heavy equipment (2 people to move 200kilos) On the day it happened I basically collapsed and could not stand upright for ages. Since then I have been on pain meds and have finally had an mri and xray (May-June 07) I have been diagnosed with DDD in L1/L2 disk. I am a 23 year old male and am very worried by the future of my health at the moment I haven't really been told a huge amount by the doctors and consultants that I have seen. From reading your site, it seems DDD is almost a generic term for most back pain. Here in the UK we do not have artificial disk replacements so I either get a poke with a needle or surgery, which from friends stories and this site, doesnt appear to be a good idea. I am stuck with what to do as I have no money coming in, no sick pay from my boss as he conned me out of it. Its getting to a stage where I am giving up the will to live. Whats my best course of action? Gareth

Q: Hello, my name is Eric, I am 27, and I am a back pain sufferer. I have been suffering from lower back pain on and off for about 4 years. After gaining information from your website, I believe that my pain may be emotionally related. I have health insurance and have gone to the doctor several times. I can get pain killers and muscle relaxors, but they don't treat the problem, only disguise it for a couple hours. I think that I may need mental health care, but I don't know which kind of professional to seek. I don't think I can do the mind/body stuff on my own. Any thougths or comments would be great. Thanks for your time!

Q: hello ! thank u for this site ! ok , here is my story: i had L4 disk hernation removal aug 07 then got real bad headaches sooo, 9 days later back to surgery for dural tear (spinal fluid leak in 3 spots due to 2 bone chips and a point on the disk) all is fine from those 2 operations. now: my back swelled up on wednesday. thursday it was more swollen so i called the surgeons office and they gave me an appointment for friday. friday, when i woke up, this had burst. so now, approved by the surgeon, i have sprung a leak ! 1 big drip every 10 seconds. this is still going on days later and i want to know: why, what is the cause, what happened that im the "one in 2 a year" that this happens too. what is this ?? a still leaking fluid concerned back surgery survivor. Elan

Comment: I am experiencing something akin to sciatica/fibrositis. The month of August has been spent with an orthopedist, fortunately a very conservative,rational man, doing a DEXA scan, an MRI, and a bone scan. No significant results, for which I am grateful...who wants to find out they have bone cancer or some terrible disease? However, I exited his office still in pain with no advice about what to do. YOur site has been extremely helpful, especially since I have long been a believer in the mind-body connection and have felt that the pain was possibly indicative of something else going on in my psyche. I feel so much better reading your detailed and sensible advice. Thanks for the site. Maria

Q Hi, I had severe lower back pain & I was unable to stand from 3rd August 2007. My MRI report says Findings: The lumber spine shows straightening of lordotic curve. The vertebrae are normal in height and interrelationship. The intervertebral discs at L4-5 and L5-S1 levels show hypointensity on T2w1, indicating degenerative disc disease. Marrow signal intensity is normal. The conus medullaris terminates normally at L1 level and shows no abnormal signal intensity. the imaged prevertebral and paravetebral soft tissues appear normal. At L4-5 level: Disc height is slightly reduced. Mild central disc herniation, postero-lateral osteophytes and facet hypertrophy are causing mild thecal sac indentation, lateral recess and bilateral neural forminal narrowing. At L5-S1 level: Mild central and right paracentral disc herniation, postero-lateral osteophytes and facet hypertrophy are causing anterior epidural fat indentation and bilateral neural foraminal narrowing. Impression: . Mild Degenerative Disc Disease at L4-5 and L5-S1 Levels. . Mild Thecal Sac/Anterior Epidural Fat Indentations, Lateral Recess and Neural Foraminal Narrowing due to Mild Disc Herniations at l4-5 and L5-S1 levels with Posterolateral Osteophytes and facet Hypertrophy as stated above. I am going through 21 days bed rest. . My pain is gone after 6-7 days but while I stand or sit for more than 15 min a slight lower back pain arise. Please give me a guide line for future safety. regards, Kalam

Q: I have been having a burning sensation in my back for about a year or so. I have been checked for bladder/kidney infections and they were negative. It is a constant burning and sometimes pain sensation and rarely goes away also with this I have a pressure as if I have to go P all of the time. Please help me resolve this problem. Beatrice

Q: Do you know any good books on swimming programs to help rehab a sore back? My daughter was a high school butterfly swimmer, hurt her lower lumbar area, never recovered and greatly missed swimming now that is in high school, did not make the D-1 team at her college. Are there any actual swimming rehab programs anywhere in the midwest? I also LOVE to swim and have a bad back but am middle aged, not overweight? Any ideas for me? Am jealous that you are near the ocean. Lisa

Q: Hi, Back on 4/20/07 I was rear ended at a stop light in a hit and run accident. There was no damage done to my truck being that I have an 8" tow hitch on a large Ford F-250 but I still had a nice jolt forward. I immediatly felt pain in my neck but decided to continue on with my work for the day as it happened at work and I just notified my boss to make a report out. The rest of the day went on and I felt OK but that being a Friday I woke up Saturday morning barely able to move, and continued like this for about a week. During that week I sought out a Chiropracter that my dad had used for years and swore by who did help ease my pain a little bit and had taken me out of work for 2 month. He also ordered an MRI on 5/7/07 which showed a slightly (as he put it) protruding disk. But after 2 months work comp stopped paying him and I was still in pain. So I sough out a Neurologist who was very empathetic and had prescribed me lortab 7.5, mobic 7.5 and and soma 375, which helped ease the pain a great deal but he also said based on the same MRI and the nerve tests etc that he ran that I should continue chiropractic and concider PT. Well workmans comp was unsatisfied with this answer as he planned to keep me out for another 2 months so we sought out a Neurosurgeon who was very arrogant and had only seen me for all of 5 minutes one time and sent his assistant in the next two sessions, he switched my soma to Flexryl 5mg, and my lortab to ultram e.r. 100. The ultram I was allergic to and spent a day in the E.R. sick as a dog and the flexyrl made my heart race and I didn't like it at all so I stopped taking meds altogether but he said I would become addicted to the lortab and soma. But he too said a couple months of P.T. and I would feel as good as I was going to get. Granted the P.T. has helped my range of motion ten fold but the pain is still there. So my lawyer sent me to his neurosurgeon who is known for being the best in the area (who put me back on the lortab and soma) and after hours of tests he decided that I needed immediate surgery (however based on the same MRI's that everyone else had seen) even going as far as to say even a violent sneeze could paralyze me for life which needless to say has put me in a state of anxiety I've never felt before. Even more sleepless nights than I felt with just the nagging pain and when I do go to sleep I wake up violently, sweating and yelling which scares me fiance. Now to the questions I have.

1. Should I seek yet another opinion as 3-4 Dr.'s said Chiropractic and P.T. would be sufficent for my minor condition and this one highly respected Doctor says I need immediate surg. and wants me in for Pre-op in less than 5 days of seeing me (8/24 was when I saw him) Because I'm an EMT and my fiance a nurse so we've seen our fair share of X-Rays and my disk is still on the mri just barely buldging and isnt exactly "sitting" on my spinal cord like this Doc says it is. And also he's basing it on MRI's taken 4 months ago so is there a possibility after the P.T. and Chiro. work that my disk has made an improvement? (I know theres more than one question in #1 but those concerns all tie in together for me)

2. This Doctor has done 500+ of my exact operations and of 500+ and had only 5 complications which he went back and fixed during or after surgeory depending on the case and the majority of which were due to elderly women w/ osteo that refused to wear a collar after surgeory. So I'm confident if I do go under the knife with this doc but what is the actual success rate of this surgeory in general? I can't seem to find any exact numbers but even if this Dr. is 500 for 500 perfect if in general this procedure has a 20% mortality rate I don't know if I'd like to chance that.

3. and finally he states a 'sneeze' can put me in a wheelchair for life is this just him being extreme and should I really wear the hard collar he gave me all the time as he stated? I've gone 4 months with no other Dr. thinking I needed one but then again none of them felt surgeory to be an option so after a couple weeks with a soft collar I was told I would be go to roam freely without one. John

Q: I am undergoing spinal decompression treatments. What is required after these treatments are over. They are really relieving the pain I have had and am no longer taking pain medication at all. I guess I am asking "What do I do to keep my spine healthy aftr this spinal decompression therapy?" Elizabeth

Q: I am a 54 year old female who has worked hard my whole life. Things like remolding homes yard work and the like. This year my daughter and I were doing the inside of her home, tearing out old plaster and laft.well I bent down to pet a dog and blew out my L5S1 on both sides, it was so bad I was only able to dribble after 5 months of jumping through the hoops of physical therapy and the pain clinic which neither worked and they finally sent me to the surgern. He put me into the hospital and did a double laminectomy, discectomy on May 8,2007, It is now Aug.31,2007 I am still unable to stand for no longer than 20 minutes without hurting, sit for 25 minutes without hurting, I am unable to walk to the end of my driveway which is about 100feet and back without pain. I cannot bend over to take things out of my dryer. I have pain most of the time and the Dr says there is nothing he can do sor me surgically. He said I don't need any physical therapy as it hurts me to do it. I take pain pills and ice my back nightly and sleep with a pillow under my knees. Do you have any ideas for me? Should I be wearing a back brace? Please help!!! I want a second oponion and also is it common to take the full facet out with out a fussion to steady the spine? Thank You. Char

Q: I worked as a waitress from age 16-20, then a Cocktail Waitress in Casinos in Las Vegas for 29 years. I had a Laminectomy in "92" on my lower back at U.C.L.A. I suffered an injury at work that has ended my career as a Cocktail Waitress due to Degenerative Sacroiliac Joint on the right side. The trays I carried weighed 30 pounds. I have lifting & bending restictions. Now I have pain daily and am allergic to aspirin and codeine. Plus the weight gain from the restrictions, I would appreciate exercises that I can do in my condition. Please help if you can. Frances

COMMENT: Hi, I am thankful I found you before it was too late for me. I have long term back pain in my low back area for many years. I am in India. I drive a truck and work hard. I went to many doctors and none help me completely. Finally, I need surgery, but I was not convinced. I read your book and read your site everyday. I feel so much better. I am strong now again and working. My family is happy and I am happy. I just want to thank you and recommend you to everyone. You are a special man with a great talent for understanding pain and people. You will always have my thanks. Raji

Q: i have had a history of back problems however up till 21 weeks ago i had been relatively pain free.for the last 21 weeks i have woken every night usually after 5=6 hrs with chronic bachache.i have visited numerous types of practioners,physios etc,tried different beds all to no avail.the ache is mid back.als 2 weeks ago my hip joint played up anow i have a wry neck also,so am in aneck brace.after being up for approx 40 mins the backache all but disappears.i notice when lying in bed and i try to arch my back the pain wants to radiate out.scans have shown all clear.PLEASE PLEASE can you help me.? David

Q: hello,at the end of july 07 i was doing a simple thing and foud myself in a lot of pain,eg not being able to put my foot to the floor,and had a job moving around,went to work for three days but in agony with sciatic pains,which ive had before whilst pregnant.approx two weeks later i was going into a cupboard,bent over i heard a popping sound and i couldnt move,i have been diagnosed as having prolapsed L4 and L5,im on diazapam and 50mg diclofenac,but i am still in agony and have developed a strange feeling in the underside of my left sole of my foot and also weird pins and needles in my big toes, what is this? Jayne

Q: I have mainly stomach pain, that I've had to deal with for 20+ years. I'm 30 years old. I've had tubes in both ends 3x in my life and everything always shows up fine. I've a lot of tests testing my digestive system. Blood tests, blood pressure tests. Everything always shows normal. I never really paid attention to the fact I have lower back pain (not as bad as the constant, annoying pain in my stomach) or the pain in the back of my neck. The surface of my entire stomach is very sensitive, cant have any pressure, not even the slightest pressure on it or it hurts. Does any of this sound like something you had or have come across? Chad

Q: I am 28 years old and was diagnosed with DDD in 2005. L4, L5, and S1 were said to be the problem. I have had back pain for years and recently started having what the doctors call "muscle spasms, or irritated Sciatica". The pain would be more than I could bare and would last over a week before any relief would come even with ALL the different medications I was on. (Vicodin, Motrin, ect) I recently found out that I am pregnant. Right now I am 8 weeks. My body is changing and I'm having ALOT of back pain. More than ever before. I have been in and out of the ER and my OBGYN but no one can seem to help me. I am afraid of what will happen if this baby is carried full term. Will the pain be so back I want to die? Will it make my condition worse? How will I function when the weight gain starts adding up. I'm already 50 lbs over weight. So many questions that NO ONE can answer. I just keep getting referred to other doctors that say they don't treat pregnant woman. I even had one doctor ask me how important this pregnancy is to me. (implying I terminate) I don't know what to do anymore. Can you please help? Tera

Q: Hi I had a no fauly car accident in 2006 L4/5 mild central stenosis, posterior disc bulge L5/S1 mild degenerative spondylosis I had a second car accident again in 2007 L5/S1facet joint arthritis pain is in lumbar also middle and upper back feels like hot poker stick in my upper back numbness of buttocks pain wakes me I am in tears when pain is oyut of control I am a sales rep and sitting for long periods is hard for me, also the weather effects my pain and i have also learnt that stress contributes also. my employer has given me such a hard time i now have anxiety depressive illness medications dizepam, efexor x, panadol forte, normison, mobic and digesics. some times the pain is unbearable i am sea of emotions i am 48 years old work cover doctors almost call you a liar i do not wish to be in pain i am scheduled for an mri on the lumbar spine but what about the pain in middle and upper back sometimes my neck also. numbness in buttocks sounds strange i know but it gets so numb it hurts. please advise i have lost faith in the medical profression i am in pain and it feels like no one cares thank you michelle

Q: Yo Sensei, TMS is almost not known in Holland. In the USA it is bigger. Isn't there any official reintergrationoffice who helps people with a PIPS/TMS aproach? People who are at home and need to go back to work. In holland there are a lot off these bureau's which help people to get back to work (not with a tms approach). The results are average and not well researched. If there is not this is strange. I don't even think Schechter, Brady or Sopher have founded such an rehabilitation TMS group. Maybe you know or you start one yourself. Greetings from holland Patrick

Q: I pull my lower back out about once a year and lay in bed for a week keeping heat on it and streching a little is heat good I also bought a small elctro pulse machine and apply the pads to my back I'm not suure how long I should keep the pads on my back and what do those pulses of energy do anyways my chriopracer always used it on me.also would a hot bath help the pain in my lower right side is very painful Ron

Q: I have sent you a previous email about my recent back pain. I have experienced back pain for over 20 years my recently aggrivated my back pain by bending and reaching and have had severe pain for the last three weeks.I have seen my family doctor again and am taking stronger anti-inflamatory drugs and muscle relaxants they are not helping yet as well as seeing my chiropractor, it is effecting my work and daily life alot of pain at work sitting in mid back using lumbar support. pain and pinching on mid back as well as stiffness and popping noise almost constant. can you advice and help. I and considering surgery I have also heard epidural is for low back and cordisone can damage muscle. numbness in fourth finger tip on both hands. robert

Q: I had leg perthis as a child and at the age of 47 I had to get a total hip replacment. It all went well they also had to add an inch it my leg cause it was shorter then the other. It has been 10 weeks now and im using a cane to walk around. Im getting lower back pain in the worst way and it starts in the small of my back and works its way up the hole back to the point that l have to sit down till it calms down. Witch will take up to 15 mins and then when l start to walk again it starts all over. Today l was in the shower and the pain was so strong that my wife had to help me out. Please help me if you can. Thanks Dave

Q: I've "lived" with neck/headaches for 30 years. I also have lower back problems...MRI's reveal degenerative athritis...along with bulging disks & osteoporosis. I have not found any symtoms like mine on the internet. I have what I call a "neck headache". I recently went to a neurologist who says she thinks the muscles are tightening up around the nerve in my neck & had me on medication for that, but I was so sleepy the day after taking it, I had to stop. I went for another MRI, which shows multiple bulging disks and I am going to Pain Management, next. Has anybody written to you with systems like mine..."neck/headache" on the side the pinched nerve is on? I am taking maxalt & have been for several years. Pat

Q: about 2 years ago i was involved in a vehicle accident where the vehicle rolled several times and i was not wearing my seatbelt. ever since i have been experiencing moderate to severe back pain in my upper back on the left side right next to my spine. It is a strong burning pain that eventually feels like needles in my back. I work in a kitchen where i constantly have my neck bent downward preparing foods etc. this seems to make it 10 times worse. but it doesnt hurt immediately but after 5 min. or so it starts and gets worse and worse. i cannot quit my job because i have a family to support. what should i do? Justin

Q: I have terrible pain about 1 inch to the left of my thoracic spine area. It has been there about 1 year. A few months ago I started having GI problems and thought maybe it was related but after having surgery to correct my GI problem the pain has remained (and the gastroenterologist didn't think it was related anyway). I've just been learning to live with it until two weeks ago when I started feeling worn down and having pain and numbness in my left arm, left leg and right leg. My doctor is working me up for auto-immune diseases and TIA's and such but I was wondering if maybe you had any ideas of what it may be? I'm having an MRI on Saturday of my C-spine and T-spine but they told me it is of the spine only so I'm afraid it will miss this area that hurts!! I'm just so frustrated and in so much pain I don't know what to do. Please help. Thanks!! Jamie

Q: hi,about 12 months ago i was on holiday,i went on a water slide and somebody came down and hit my back,i have had severe pain in my lower back on the left side in my buttock and straight down my left leg,i have had physio for this but the exercise they gave me to do made things worse i couldnt walk or sit down for long,i am now under a back specialist and he gave me the same exercise to do,i tried and the same happened,i have a follow up appointment soon and i am wondering what the next step will be,do you have any idea. Gaynor

Q: Hi, I'm flat on my back in bed can't move once again. My back pain started at the age of 15. I was lifting something very heavy and pushed my disc out...from there it was all down hill my lower back goes out at least 4 times a year, I'm a builder and haven't been able to work on the tools for 4 years because of my back. In the past 2 years it has been at its worse. I've been going though a divoice. at the end of the court day in my divoice as I was walking away from the court my back started to feel better...and I mean really good I could sit walk even went back to the gym....I even thought about running again, I stopped going to my chiropractor which I have been going to for 7 years.(i thought it was all my stress and now I'm going to get better) 3 months later...got in my car , 5 min later I went to get out and my back went I have the same problem as u l5/s1 right handside pushing on sp/chord. this was yeserday. last night I had to be on my hands and knees..I can't walk feeling (sorry) I thought of someone cuttting me open....don't want...Does this happen as you get better...its comes back even harder? People tell me I'm a hard bugger...but this is getting to me how as I am 42....I u any advice to help me?? Andrew

Q: I had spinal fusion surgery L5 -S1 Jan 07. I have DDD, Fibromyalgia, Osteorthritis. I've not recovered well. It's been over eight months now. The past two months I've been in severe pain again with my surgeon decreasing my pain meds. I have no life at all. I cannot even go grocery shopping. I finally had my doctor set me up for an MRI. He called last week telling me the next disc up from the surgery are has ruptured! I have had three prior surgeries. I don't want anymore. I think I may have a spine that is falling down and I don't know who to turn to. My doctor is sending me off to another doc because I'm sure he does not know what to do. I know they just want to do more surgery. Do I have choices here. And why are they so afraid of the DEA, he told me himself that's why he cannot offer me better pain management than he already is giving me. He's the one who cut me open, you would think he would at least be able to make me comfortable while this is figured out. I cannot even sleep more than one or two hours at a time! So if there is anyone who could help me please email me. Jane

Q: About 2004 I was experiencing hip pain (and have had chiro adjustments many times in the past with good results,) but had experienced more pain after the adjustments. I lived with the pain for about a year until it started radiating into my tailbone and laying and sitting became unbareable.I went to a chiro/p.t who started excercises for the hips and the pain got worse. He then referred me to a pain specialist (mri showed nothing). He did epidural injections(2 on each side s1 and s5?)I had wonderful results for about 3 weeks.went back for another procedure, very little relief, went back a 3rd time with no relief.I had no more treatment for about 7 months and couldn't take the pain anymore so I went to the dr. again. another mri and referral to a pain specialist again. still no diaginosis and had 2 nerve blocker procedures, with not very good results, but he recommended the radiofrequency procedure, with absolutly no results.He basically give up and said my pain is not spine related and referred me back to the same P.T. and a rhumatologist(have suffered with joint pain and swelling for about as many years). Now I am doing P.T. and the pain is so great I am about to give up on finding a solution, because I can't find anyone who seems the least bit interested in helping me.Any advise? Brenda

Q: Hi, I found your information very uesfull. My chiropractor started having me do a spinal decompression after adjustments and I am experiencing sharp pricking pain in my lower lumbar area and he saids that it is from every thing getting straighten out and was just wondering if that is part of the process. He has me doing the spinal decompression every other day for about 10 minutes and I read that it should be every day. Just wondering if I'm doing the right thing. Doug

Q: my question is.i've had my back pain for couple of years now.i first suffered my low back pain when i was deployed in iraq but now it seems like its getting worst and im only 28 yrs old.i feel sharp pain when im sitting down.i feel pain when im laying down.and i feel alot of pain when lifting and this low back pain has limited my physical activities.i got my self checked out by the Physical Therapist at the VA and all they can tell me is i might have a herniated disc.and i think its more than herniated disk because this pain is so acute and sharp.so please tell me and give me your opinion about my back. thank you! Chris