Back Pain Questions and Answers
Archive 2008 Part 3

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: i have had lower back pain for years but i have had to go to an orthopedic clinic on may 2. after assessment, i was told i had a damaged nerve in lower spine requiring physio. if that did not work, an operation was recomended. i have not yet started physio. still waiting for appoitment. the pain now is also severe at back of knees and painful at the calf muscles. have you any suggestions as to ease this pain? yours, steve.

Q: Hi! I am a 29 year old female with chronic lower back pain that sometimes spreads to my upper back, it seems to move around. I was in a car accident in May of 2007 while I was 4 months pregnant with twins. They were unable to do much for me at the time. Well, I delivered the twins 8 months ago and I still have the pain. Most of the time when I go to the Doctor, they attribute it to the pregnancy. I had to have an emergency csection after laboring and pushing for an hour. I had an epidural. Someimes the pain feels like it is coming from where the epidural was administered, other times it feels like it is in other areas. I just recently had an MRI and I am waiting for the results. One Doctor told me my back hurt because of carrying car seats with babies in them. Anyways, the starngest thing is this, I have gas now almost constantly, which is embarrasing, but at the same time, it makes my back feel better. I also urinate very frequently and have always wondered if this is all connected. Have you ever heard of anything like thsi before? I hate it! This pain is making me so moody! Charlotte

Q: How come my insurance Aetna doesnt pay for spinal decompression, even though it seems to be a popular choice for back pain relief? I would think normal surgery would cost so much more versus the decompression surgery. GD

Q: Hi! At first,I must praise your wonderful site and hope you'll continue with this great work...I'm 35.My problems started 7 years ago,experiencing sudden sciatica pain one morning when I woke up not having a single clue what would cause this.Avoiding any pain-killers,I was in strong pain 6 months,then all went away slowly,following a 3 year pain-free break if I avoided any physical activity.I was diagnosed by MRI with a L3/L4 Schmorl's node,a condition even doctors regard as harmless and generally asymptomatic let alone a cause for sciatica...After 3 years,after being physically active once,pain returned,reminding me of 6 awful months I'd like to forget forever and haven't gone away 'till this day...Second MRI showed same results as the first one...I tried physiotherapy, chiropractics,Bowen's therapy,pilates,weight-lifting to strengthen my body with pain constantly following me,especially unbearable 1 or 2 days after exercising...Nothing worked,perhaps just some placebo took place occasionally...I dropped weight lifting and started exercising with body weight and noticed that pain gets worse when I strongly tense my trunk muscles even if I do standing exercises without any pressure to the spine...It seems so illogical but pain sometimes drives me mad and influences all areas of my life,constantly pushing it away from my mind.It sucks an awful lot of energy from my body.It moves around my leg,never knowing where it'll go next day and that's frightening,not knowing what to expect...I'm really tired of all this and sincerely ask for your advice...Adriano.

Q: Hello! My name is Amnah and I am a student at Bedford South school. This month we have been asked to do a project about chronic illness. I choose arthritis. I was hoping you give me information about arthritis and its symptoms, risk factors, management and coping strategies, treatment (conventional) and treatment (alternative). I would love to hear from you soon! I really appreciated it.Thank you,Amnah

Q: Is the decompression therapy recommended for individuals who have had back surgery? Debra

Q: I was reading the section on your blog about muscle tightness being related to physiological problems. I have had sever tightness in my upper back muscles for years, it keeps on getting worse. I never experience any sort of real pain, just very stiff and tight muscles. I find mild relief for a short period of time when I crack my back and release these knots. I have seen a spine specialist and was told I had a herniated disc. I really don't believe this is the cause of my problem. I never have any of the symptoms of disc herniations and really don't have any pain, just extreme tightness. I'm a very nervous worry wort type of person and am beginning to think that maybe this is caused by me worrying and stressing all the time. I really don't have anywhere to look for help and not sure what I can do, but I'm only 24 and feel like I have the back of an 80 year old. I'm open to any thoughts, ideas or suggestions.Thanks, Logan

Q: Well im in the marine corps and my back has been hurting for over 3 years, I had a MRI down it said I had 2 minor bulging disc and degenerative changes on multiple levels, and I have a torn muscle on my lower left back, So they said do deadlifts and back extensions, so I have been since January 8th and it feels better but if i go a couple days without doing either exercise my back starts hurting a lot if I bending the wrong way and what not, they told me the back muscle was more than half gone and mostly scar tissue is it gonna take long to fix or is it something else as well. Ian

Q: I fell playing soccer and have agonizing pain in my tail bone. Any suggestions? Dan

Q: I am experiencing discomfort and pain which sometimes run to my thigh, and ankle and feet and discomfort in my right hip joint. I am a regular badminton player should i stop playing because this pain makes me feel weak and sometimes numbness occurs which go away after rest. sanny

Q: Dear Sir,I suffered neck muscle pain for 3 years & i observed that it also affect my upper back muscle. I always want to move my neck left & right to relieve the pain and i hear some sound like stretching of my muscle of my neck. Even at the middle of my back muscle...i feel the same pain. I was really tired of this feeling & condition. I am sportsman & like to play tennis. After playing tennis, then i feel much more pain. Can you pls advice me how to cure this muscle pain? If i continue playing...did this things make more worst to my neck & back muscle pain? Wait for your kind reply. Thanks & More Power! Elmer

Q: Hello, I've been suffering from low back/right buttock pain for several months. I was previously a runner/cyclist and cannot do much now, which is sort of a living hell. I read Mind over Back Pain. The pain seemed to improve after reading it, but it has returned. I just ordered Dr. Sarno's 2nd book. I've tried chiropractics, acupuncture, PT, and massage and am not improving. Are there any doctors or physical therapists that have studied with Dr. Sarno and can use his treatment techniques in Portland, OR? I have a friend here who was treated by him in New York and cannot say enough good things about her treatment. Thanks so much, Christine

Q: I have meralgia paresthetica in my right thigh. Can spinal decompression provide me relief? I have had both knees replaced in the last year and a half. The meralgia paresthetica did not start until after the first replacement, and seems to have exacerbated after the second replacement which was 6 weeks ago. Thank you for your attention. Paul

Q: Hi. For about 3 months now, I have been experiencing discomfort everyday!! It started in my right upper back, the muscle between my spine and shoulder, it went into my neck and even my right part of my head, my shoulder, my upper arm and the right side of my chest. The pain is no unbearable, it actually feels like a spasm in my upper right side, I also sometimes have pins and needles in my right part of my head. I went to doctors, they treated me from bladder infection to constipation, nothing worked and I am feeling helpless!!! I went for a massage, when they pressed that muscle on mu upper back on the right hand side, my whole right arm went numb. I don't want to go to doctors anymore, as they can't seem to give the correct diagnosis, PLEASE help!!!! Ansia

Q: Hi I'm hoping you can advise me. Here's my story. I'm a 35 year old female. Last May--kind of all of a sudden for no apparent reason, I started to get severe pain in the back of my head (lower) and in the neck. After a while it would lead to horrible headaches. I went to the doctor who prescribed anti-noninflammatories, none worked. He then prescribed Vicodin and muscle relaxers which definitely helped with the pain temporarily but not the problem. It's been a year now, and I've been suffering with this excruciating pain that now has extended all the way down my back at night. Basically around 6pm when I start to relax I feel the tightness begin and if I don't take a vicodin or muscle relaxer the tightness gets worse and worse and I can't sleep. Sometimes if i force myself in the early morning to sit up and stretch it can bring a minute amount of relief, but the pain does not subside until I stand upright. Basically the doctor just says I'm stressed out and doesn't have an answer. Would you have any advice for me? the lack of sleep is playing a huge role in affecting my waking life. thank you. Sherrie

Q: Hello, You mention "knowledge therapy" throughout your website, instructing some individuals to learn as much as they can about their particular condition. However, i could not find the definition of how to use "knowledge therapy" as a protocol to decrease/eliminate pain. How would one use this modality specifically to treat their condition? Tymothy

Q: I've been in pain for the last six months. It started on Dec. 15 2007, two days earlier I was at the gym that I usually hit 3-6 times a week but this day I believe I over lifted and might have injured it there. However the pain kicked in two days later. It's been killing me for the last 5 months, I'm 18 years old and in chronic pain. I've notice certain things make it worst like sitting down puts me in intense pain, in my lower back. When I lift things I get tight under neath my shoulder blades. MY SPINAL BONE IS SORE TO TOUCH IN SOME AREAS DOWN MY BACK. I HAVE GOTTEN TWO CAT SCANS AN MRI NO ONE CAN SEEM TO KNOW WHY OR WHAT IS CAUSE THE PAIN I HAVE DONE A LOT OF THE TREATMENT YOU HAVE DONE BUT NO RESULTS. THE THING IS BEFORE THIS INCIDENT IN DECEMBER, I HAVE NEVER HAD ANY BACK PAIN....WHAT IS CAUSE THIS? AND HOW AND WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO GET BETTER? Chris

Q: Hi My name is Laurie. I am 31 yrs old. I have 2 questions for you. I have DDD as well as 4 protruding discs. What do think would be the best treatment for my pain that I have. My pain shoots down into my leg. My doctor wants to do para vertebral joint injections, but my insurance company says that I don't meet the requirements for this procedure. Do you have any advice? Sincerely, Laurie

Q: i hurt my back at walmart 6 months ago i stay in terrible pain i can not even sweep floors without sitting down i have no insurance and i do not know what to do Tammy

Q: Please help.....I don't know what to do! I'm a 40 year old, professional woman who is generally pretty active and independent. Not anymore though! Almost 4 years ago, one day I was simply unable to move due to severe lower back pain. Initially, I sought help from a chiropractor, which cost me a pretty penny (no insurance) and ended up causing more pain than relieving it. From there I went to an orthopedic specialist, who I've been seeing now for over 3 years. Originally I was diagnosed with a bulging disk and arthritis in my lower back. I was given Hydrocodone for the pain and was told that it would heal by itself. My doctor convinced me to try a cortisone shot. I was very reluctant due to all the controversy but my doctor's statement was "Try it. One won't hurt you.". Boy, was he wrong! I had serious adverse reactions to the cortisone which after 3 years, I'm still battling. That one cortisone treatment caused severe swelling throughout my entire body (I looked like an elephant), heart palpitations, dizziness, menstrual abnormalities etc. To date, I still struggle with swelling in my legs and feet.....all from a cortisone shot which I was told that "one won't hurt you". So any kind of steroid treatment is out of the question. After a year of dealing with that, my doctor finally diagnosed me with fibromyalgia. Initially, I thought this was simply a "catch all" diagnosis but after suffering with this and reading up on it, I can say he was "right on". i believe I've been suffering with fibromyalgia since I was a teenager but that it was never diagnosed. For the past 2 years, I've been on pain medication......hydrocodone then oxycodone and now opana. I've found that the pain medication does help me get through my day to day pain but recently, the past month, I've found myself in SEVERE AGONY!!! I can barely walk or move....and I definitely can't work! I ended up in the emergency room, thinking something else was terribly wrong. That trip turned out to be futile. A shot of demerol and a prescription for flexeril was their solution, although the flexeril helped the muscle spasms I was having. Two days ago I was back at my doctor's office, begging for help. Now I'm told that I'm having an SIJ (sacroiliac) flare up and that it's common in fibromyalgia patients. I mentioned seeing a chiropractor again, so my doctor gave me a prescription for some manipulation. I will be seeking an evaluation this week. Now that you have a brief history, I'm looking for some advice. I still can barely move or walk, I'm screaming in agony and none of these pills are helping. After doing some reading, I know there's some exercises that can help the sacroiliac flare up I'm currently having. But I'm not finding the specifics......what particular exercises and how to do them. Can you lead me in the right direction? I'm to the point where I'm crying all the time because I'm unable to complete a simple task. I desperately need some help getting out of this pain so I can at least function somewhat. Kelly

Q: I REALLY DON'T WHERE TO BEGIN WITH THIS HELLISH STORY, EXCEPT TO JUST JUMP RIGHT IN. I BEGAN EXPERIENCING BURNING SENSATIONS IN MY LOWER SPINE THAT EVENTUALLY ENVELOPED THE ENTIRE SPINE. THE SENSATION WAS LIKE HOT LAVA JUST COURSING THROUGH MY SPINE. EVENTUALLY IT LOCALIZED IN THE THORACIC AREA RIGHT BEHIND MY HEART AT T-6 AND 7. THE PAIN INTENSIFIED AND BEGAN BORING THROUGH MY CHEST CAVITY UNTIL I COULD HARDLY BREATH. I WAS LITERALLY SCREAMING IN PAIN. I ENDED UP IN ER HOOKED UP TO MORPHINE, MY FIRST EXPERIENCE WITH A CONTROLLED DRUG. THE NIGHTMARE CONTINUED WITH COUNTLESS DOCTORS, TESTS AND PAIN PILLS. I SPENT SIX MONTHS LYING IN MY DEN FLOOR UNABLE TO DO ANYTHING. I EVENTUALLY ENDED UP IN WINSTON SALEM, NC WHERE I WAS DIAGNOSED WITH A THORACIC HERNIATION, WHICH I WAS TOLD ONLY HAPPENS TO ABOUT ONE IN A MILLION PEOPLE. I SUFFERED A BLUNT FORCE TRAUMA TO MY BACK WHEN I WAS A ABOUT 10 RIGHT AT T-6 AND 7 AND WE THINK THAT WAS THE BEGINNING OF THE INJURY. AS TIMES GOES ALONG, THE BODY GETS OLDER, AND CONSIDERING THE FACT THAT I REMODEL REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALLY, FLIPPING, AS THE TV SHOWS CALL IT, I WAS DOING SOME HEAVY LIFTING, AND EVENTUALLY THE CRACKED DISC JUST EXPLODED, ANTERIOR INTO MY SPINAL CORD. AFTER THE SPINAL CORD DECOMPRESSION AND DISC REPAIR I WAS GETTING BETTER, BUT SCAR TISSUE GRABBED A NERVE AND I FELT LIKE I WAS BEING ELECTROCUTED 24-7. I EVENTUALLY ENDED HAVING A RHIZOTOMY, WHERE THEY WENT BACK IN AND CLIPPED THE NERVE. I ENDED UP WITH RIDICULOPATHY OR NEURITIS OF THE DEED NERVE ROOTS OF THE SPINAL CORD. IT FELTS LIKE THE ENTIRE TRUNK OF MY BODY HAD BEEN DOUSED WITH GASOLINE AND THEN SET ON FIRE. I ACTUALLY PRAYED TO DIE. I WAS NOT LIVING, JUST EXISTING IN A NEVER ENDING NIGHTMARE OF HELLISH PAIN. I WANTED TO GO TO HEAVEN, BE WITH MY DADDY, AND GET OUT OF THIS MISERABLE EXISTENCE. IT HAS NOW BEEN 3 1/2 YEARS AND AFTER A YEAR SPENT WITH AN ACCOMPLISHED OSTEOPATH AND ACUPUNCTURE, AND MANY HOURS SPEND IN PRAYER, I AM BEGINNING TO SEE SOME RELIEF. I HAVE BEEN ABLE TO LOWER MY NARCOTICS SOME, AND WITH THAT COMES THE DEPRESSION, WHICH I AM SUFFERING FROM NOW. I HAVE BEEN HOMEBOUND THE ENTIRE TIME, WHICH SOME EXCEPTIONS, AND THAT SECLUSION COMPOUNDED WITH THE PAIN AN HELPLESSNESS AND AND THE TOLL THAT IT WAS TAKING ON MY MARRIAGE I SUNK INTO A DEEP PIT OF DESPAIR. I CANT TELL THAT MY EMOTIONS PLAY A PART IN MY PAIN. WHEN I REALLY GET UPSET THE FIRE IS STOKED AND I PAY FOR IT FOR DAYS. THIS HAD LEAD TO TRANQUILIZERS WHICH I HATE, BUT KEEP MY EMOTIONS FROM OVERTAKING ME. I WANT DESPERATELY TO GET MY LIFE BACK, TO TAKE THIS EXPERIENCE AND HELP SOMEONE ELSE. I CAN HONESTLY SAY THAT DESPITE THIS NIGHTMARE I HAVE GROWN AS A PERSON, I HAVE LOST A VERY PRIDEFUL SPIRIT AND HUMBLED MYSELF BEFORE ALMIGHTY GOD. I HAVE SURRENDERED MYSELF TO HIS WILL AND WHATEVER TIME THIS FIREY FURNACE LASTS, I WILL STRIVE TO BE PATIENT AND STILL THANKFUL FOR MY BLESSINGS. I DO BELIEVE GOD USED OTHERS TO HELP. IF YOU HAVE ANY SUGGESTIONS, PLEASE LET ME KNOW. I AM ACTUALLY CONSIDERING ECT FOR MY DEPRESSION, SINCE THE ANTI-DEPRESSANTS HAVE NOT WORKED. IN FACT, SOME MAKE MY PAIN WORSE. I LOOK FORWARD TO HEARING FROM YOU. GOD BLESS YOU FOR YOUR WORK.JANET

Q: Please share with me your final experiences. I have been diagnosed with both herniated disc and pinched nerve and no one seems to be able to help. Thanks in advance for any assistance, Pat

Q: I have done my mri and the impression notes: L4/L5 posterocentral broad based disc protrusion with posterior annular tear of the L4/5disc. No significant compression of the thecal sac or nerve root compression What should I do? Can I do swimming or yoga or both? Thank you, Jenny

Q: will this process work for me? I have had two epidural s for my t9 t8 t7 I do not have back pain. I have a burning in my chest and the shots did not work .I am also taking lyrica that does give me some relief.if this system works I will start asap Ira

Q: i am a woman of 47 and have curvature of the spine i have pain in my left leg but have been told that if this was not fixed by the age of 16 there is nothing that can be done i do not think that in this day and age that that is now true it really would be a dream come true to me please if you can help e mail back thank you so much regards sandy

Q: Sensei Adam, I stumbled upon your page by what I don't believe was an accident... And It really opened my eyes...I'm in the military and have been under a huge amount of stress for the past year. Well in January I was in what I would call the best shape of my life. Running 5 miles every other day, working out, eating right. I was bottling all the stuff I had going on inside, and dismissing it like I have always done. My motto was If im not thinking about it, It aint hurting..Then I find out im going to Afghanistan in a Month and a Half. Well there I was on the treadmill running, I remember it clear as day... In my fourth mile, my normal good pace, and oh my The muscles in my Right Butt cheek feel weird... so I slow down... the next day it just feels like a strain... then it just stayed with me... I felt as though I couldn't tell anyone cause I would look like I was trying to get out of Afghanistan, and I didn't want to let my Squad down. Then I found your book. I was desperate, I paid the $9.99 or whatever. And as I read the words hit me like a Mack Truck. All that stress was kicking my butt, and I did nothing spectacular that could have hurt me... But it was enough to trick me into believing I was hurt... I only bought it three days ago, But I have noticed things about my situation, and the times I had been physically hurting before, I realized that I do indeed suffer from P.I.P.S. Its been a hard 3 days, prying myself off the Icy-Hot, The Ice packs, The Naproxyn... I just felt obligated to write, and thank you, and really speak to you. Make sure you're real cause I doubt everything, but what was surprising was how much it made sense. I had a few questions to, Did you feel like while you were telling yourself that nothing was wrong, You were lying to yourself? And that you would never get better? Thanks again, Woody

Q: Buenas Noches:Me LLamo Jesus Marquez. Doy gracias a dios de haber encontrado esta pagina. Te imploro me ayudes a superar este problema tan dificil que esta acabando con mi vida.Llevo 8 meses sufriendo de un dolor en la zona dorsal de mi espalda, que no ha cesado ni un minuto durante este tiempo. Me he practicado resonancia magnetica, he ido a un numero incuantificable casi de doctores(traumatologos,fisioterapeutas,quiropracticos,acupunturistas,etc) y no he logrado disminuir este dolor tan intenso.Este dolor me ha quitado toda posibilidad de tener una novia, de conservar mis amistades e inclusive no he podido desarrollar mi carrera de ingeniero. Por favor amigo ayudame....

Q: HI MY NAME IS MANDY I HAD A LUMBER DISCS REMOVED BOTTOM OF MY BACK ,3 WEEKS AGO I AM IN TERRIBLE PAIN IN MY LEFT LEG ON MY BUTTOCKS AND ALL DOWN MY LEG IT IS WORSE THAN IS WAS BEFORE I HAD MY OPERATION I CANT PUT MY FOOT ON THE FLOOR AT TIMES ,I WOULD LIKE O NOW WHY THIS IS I AM GOING FOR A MRI SCAN ON SATURDAY WHY DO I HAVE TO HAVE ANOTHER SO SOON I CANT EVEN GO TO WORK AS I CANT STAND .I THOUGHT I BE BETTER AFTER MY OP BUT IT DOESN'T SEEM THAT WAY .I HAVE 3 CHILDREN AND I CANT GO ANYWHERE WITH THEM AND I FEEL SO GUILTY .COULD YOU GIVE ME ANY GOOD NEWS PLEASE MANDY

Q: I was injured in 2005 and the cervical and lumbar regions are involved. I had a neck shot a week and a half ago and at the time had no knee or ankle reflexes. I have been diabetic for 1 year. I suspect inactivity and weight gain since the accident for this. The doctor thought that the diabetes was the cause of the reflex problem. Six hours after the shot the reflexes had returned. The shot was at C7 and T1. My knees also had also felt unstable. This was also much improved after the shot. What might cause this? There are other problems as well and I hope this might be a partial answer. Theresa

Q: I had an accident 3 years ago, ever since the accident I am prone to a lot a neck pains and strains, I also very easily get muscle strains in my upper back and around the shoulder blades, could this be because of the neck injury? The MRI showed cervical injury, I think C3,C4,C5.. the nerves between the vertebrae are jammed. I want to exercise but every I try to I have to stop due to injuries.I also feel that my muscles are very easily prone to injuries or could it be the same muscles get injured because I never gave them time to rest and heal properly. Rajiv

Comment: I just wanted to let you know that my story is the same as yours...back pain for 20 years...lots & lots of doctor & chiropractor visits. Then I read an article by Dr. John Sarno & bought his book; within 3 weeks the pain was gone. I used to be in pain 95% of the time & now I have occasional bouts maybe 5% of the time. I know exactly why you have set-up this website as it's almost like a miracle. It gave me my life back. I am totally into "mind/body" stuff now; I think your website is wonderful for getting the message out there...thanks! Connie

Q: FOR A FEW YRS NOW, I'VE HAD SERIOUS LOWER BACK PAIN. IT CAN BE VERY UNCOMFORTABLE! THERE HAVE BEEN TIMES THAT IM NOT EVEN ABLE TO WALK FROM THE PAIN. THE PAIN SOMETIMES IS SO TERRIBLE THAT IT MAKES ME CRY! I CAN'T EVEN GET OUT OF BED @ TIMES. SOMETIMES LIKE THE PAIN IS REALLY BAD, I WISH THAT I CAN JUST OPEN MY BACK AND PUT WHAT EVER IS OUT OF PLACE BACK WHERE IT BELONGS. DO YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN? IT REALLY SUCKS WHEN I GET THE PAIN TO MY LOWER BACK!!! IF YOU HAVE THE SOLUTION, PLS HELP ME WITH THIS PROBLEM TO MY LOWER BACK THAT I'M ALREADY TIRED OF FEELING FOR YRS.SUSAN

Q: I have been suffering with back pain on and off for many years, but it has now gotten to the stage where I am getting so bad that I must do something. Firstly my left leg feels weaker than my right and although I can walk a long way, I do get a band of pain around the groin and top of leg area. I have pain coming down my leg from the side and then around to the front of my leg and down as far as just below the calf, (but at the front) this pain is increased with sitting and throbs a lot when lying down. I have been told many things after having x rays over the past 15 years, mostly that it was just degeneration of the L4/L5/S1. Also told that is is from the bursor in my hip etc etc I have just been to see a specialist who want again to take some MRI xrays he feels sure it is the sacroiliac joint inflamed. But on reading your site I am not sure whether he rally know, how do I get to the root cause of the problem and is there some self help I can use? thanks, Sandra

Q: i am suffering from extruded disc at C5-C6 level from july 2006, I have tolerable Pain since from the incidence.I want to know whether this injury affect my health further. S

Q: Hi, 12yrs ago now I was in a mva which left me with T5 and T6 vertebrae more than 60% crushed. As the years have progressed the vertebrae above and under are deforming and I have been told I have degenerative osteoarthritis in my spine. I suffer alot nerve pain from this but in particular the constant ache can throw me into the depth of depression. I am only 32yr old and have been on many hard core narcotic pain meds on and off for years. Recently I have taken myself of durogesic patches and am just using tramal for relief however I am desprate for some other form of treatment. I have had physio for years to no avail. I have been linked with the pain clinic at RBH in Brisbane who offered me not much hope. My GP is about to start acupuncture 2 or 3 times a week to see if i get some relief, but if there is any other advice you could share i would be very grateful. I have been told in the past spinal fusion is not an option for thoracic area. Thanks for listening. Deanne

Q: i had an accident 7 years ago, i had an xray that didnt show anything. i have always had problems with pain in the bottom of my lumbar spine, which radiates down my leg. last week i went and had a ct scan which showed i had 4 bulging discs. my question is would the bulging discs have been there all this time since i have always had the pain ever since the accident. any information would be much appreciated, thanks leanne

Q: Hi, I'm 31 years old and from last year and the previous I've been moving appliances, heavy furniture and been occasionally painting and cleaning apartments. During last summer I have gained a lower back pain and heel problems. I saw a Doctor at a sports medical ctr around that time and he sent me to get x-rays. A month later he said that I had a heel spur and that i would have to buy hand made orthotics for $395 which i bought and they have worked well for me. He also told me that the results showed that I had a back sprain in my lower back and then examined my posture and checked to see if I had any neurological problems. He found nothing to be wrong with me at that moment even though I told him I can't walk, stand or bend. He prescribed extra strength ibuprofen and muscle relaxers and referred me to see a physiotherapist. The pills, nor the physiotherapy did nothing for me so I went back to him and requested he write me a referral to get another x-ray, plus a lumbar ct scan else where. Now this year I feel even worse. Terrible sleep, neck and back pains. I can't travel, driving hurts. I'm unable to do anything around my house much less step outside. I've been trying to rest while my 10 year old son and 3 year old twins(boy and girl)try to have fun with less of their dad. A new doctor viewed my 2nd x-rays plus ct scan and said I have a herniated disc, L5s, arthritis of facet joints. Since then I've taking anti-inflammatory drugs, been wearing a back brace. I've recently had an M.R.I. of the lumbosacral spine done. The M.R.I indicated that the conus is at T12-L1, the bone marrow is unremarkable. Bilateral spondylolysis of L5 with anterolisthesis L5 on S1 and a small hernia at L5-S1. I have an appointment in june to discuss surgery options but I'd rather try some other treatment. Do you think I would be better off finding a non-surgical treatment like seeing an acupuncturist or a chiropractor before I decide to do surgery? Thanks Terrence

Q: Where could I buy a chair for someone who has back pain who works in the office.Many thanks, Milly

Comment: I just wanted to say thanks. You have a great site and it helped me alot. I am sending it to all my friends from the physical therapy center. Alan

Q: Hi, I have a friend who has severe chronic back pain. She has suffered for over 20 years. She has had multiple back surgeries and is to the point where she just wants to die. She has had metal screws and plates put in her back. They have taken them out. I'm not sure what started her back from having to have all of these surgeries. It is in her lumbar region. We are worried she will kill herself and the doctors don't want to treat her anymore. What can we do to help. Is there any other options now for her? Nancy

Q: Can your system be used by someone who has had a spinal fusion? I have about 9 vertebrae fused with bone graft, also have had a lumbar disc removed and have some degeneration and stenosis. And loads of pain ..........Be interested to hear if you think it would be ok for me with those problems. Thanks very much. Louise

Q: i would like to show me how i get up from bed in the morning when i have a back pain,please and thank you. Rafic

Q: I don't know what to do but i have been reading your site and think that i have a major problem but dont know how to get medical staff to look at me. I have a compression of the t11 t12 vertebra which the disc is in contact with the cord slightly compressing it how ever i also had a hip damaged in the same accident that medically they have only found that it has torn cartilage in the hip how ever i have alway had numbness and tingling in the legs as well as trouble with bowel and bladder functions also leg weakness medically they have acknowledged ,and was reading about equina syndrome as well as suffering sciatic pain in lower back and legs like i said i have trouble with medical staff both mri have been done recently how ever things are still deteriorating don't know who to go to to get them to listen.what do i do? Rachael

Q: I am in my mid 40's and have recently started cleaning houses for a living, in the few short months I have done this I have had severe pain in my neck shoulders and upper back. Let me explain further, in my early 30's, I had my only child, I had 2 epidurals, which didn't work anyway, but after having my daughter, the epidurals left my upper back with numbness and in pain. I am sure it was due to the 2 Epidural's I had, so I followed up with a Chiropractor which gave me great relief, until one day he popped my neck, and popped a vertebra out, which later in the day I noticed I had a very sore neck, not really thinking much about it, I did not call him for 3 days until I had severe pain, he told me to come in right away knowing he had made a mistake and started stretching and manuerving my neck to undo the damage he had caused. I went to him for approximately 2-3 months, with not alot of relief, he said I would have degenerative disc disease due to the injury he caused!! I should of sued him but I did not, I thought my neck would eventually get better, I was very nieve at that time, so about 3 years later, I was cleaning out a refrigerator and had the freezer door open, had just bent down to get my cleaning stuff, forgot the freezer door was open on the frig. and hit my upper back on the freezer door that had partially swung half way shut, well immediately, I had SEVERE PAIN, and almost passed out, I called my doctor and told him what happened and he just called me in some muscle relaxers and pain medicine, I had NO MRI's or X-rays. I lived in pain for a few weeks, but the pain did eventually get better and my back was just always stiff, between my neck and the middle of my back, I am not sure what disc it was. Now I have been to my family physician and told him about my pain in my back neck and shoulders, he said it is just muscle strain, and told me to do exercises, and gave me some muscle relaxers, but that pain in my back the one area, never goes away, my spine actually hurts in the one area, it cannot be touched, I have had a friend of mine give me a massage, but if he touches that spot, I go through the roof!! He said there is a not there on my spine also he can feel. I use ice and then heat, rotating back and forth, I take muscle relaxers, pain medicine, and exercise daily. Does this sound like a herniated disc or ruptured disc to you? and how to I get my doctor to send me for an X-ray or a MRI, he doesn't really care, but I have to work, and I need relief and to know what is wrong? Please shed some light on my situtation if you can. Thank you, Sore back and neck, Paula

Q: Hi, I am a big fan of Dr. Sarno. 10 years ago I read his bookon healing back pain and it changed my life. I have a related question. my brother was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor last year. lately he has been having mild mini "seizures", only lasting for about 30 seconds, and located on the left side of his head. He is on anti - seizure meddication and there has been no change in the tumor (he has MRI's evrey 6 months) His neurologist feels they are psychologic in nature. Would seeing Dr. Sarno be of any benefit? Ray

Q: The suspected cause of my pain are the facet joints at L-4/L-5, which were injured during a car accident. Will a medial branch block at L-3/L4 provide relief from the pain? Randi

Q: If a person has had RA for twenty years and recently an achogram showed a mid-thoracic deformity. What is this and what is the prognosis? Barb

Q: I am 16 and have been diagnosed with spina bifida, spondylolisthesis grade 4, a thoracic spine, curvature of the spine and lumbar stenosis and i have unbelievable back pain especially when i bend over or even lifting something then i struggle to stand upright. My GP has referred me to 4 different hospitals and we keep getting told i need invasive back surgery not a back brace as it wont correct it due to the number of things wrong. I did go to physiotherapy though it seemed to hurt me more, since i was discharged i have stopped doing the exercises that was recommended. I have researched the surgery and though i've been told i'll only have 50/50 chance of walking again i really want it to relieve me of some pain. I've read your page on failed spinal surgery and it scares me, should i go through with the operation? Samantha.

Q: Hi, I've had a minor accident while playing with mu kids. I fell heavily on my back but just felt normal momentarily pain which was gone within few minutes. A couple of weeks later while carrying a few crates at my bar my back totally jammed. The pain was unbearable coming from the lower part. I just could not move. I was taken to hospital and after xrays was kept there. They stuffed me with Naprosyn,Ditalgesic, Valiums, Anticoags injections.... but the pain would not go. After a week they took an MRI and noticed a bulge on L5/S1 discs. Im now home, bedridden, still taking naprosyn and was recommended a spray called biofreeze which does help for a while. Distalgesic was stopped coz my liver tests rose alarmingly. Im still in pain and would like to have your opinion on how to ease and cure the pain and what medication you would recommend. Acupuncture has been recommended too but I really don't know. Right now all I'm taking is 1 naprosyn am and 1 pm. Thanks. Steve

Q: I am 34 and I have at least two bulging disk at L4 and L5 I am in a great deal of pain . Sitting and walking hurt the worst I have not seen my dr since my Mri so I do not know what the next step for me is. I am I being a wimp or is my pain real ? I take a pain medication and valium and it doesn't help much . I get sever pain down my right leg when I sit to long or walk to long and sometimes even if I lay on my back to long this has been going on for 2 months I have been seeing a chiro he is really good but I only get pain relief for about 2 days and my ins doesn't pay so I have to spend out of packet which is getting very expensive. I am assuming my Dr. is going to want me to stat physical therapy soon ? I just feel lost and confused. Can any one help me understand better what is going on and why I hurt so bad it is interrupting my daily life style please help me. Michelle

Q: I have severe lower back pain that appears to be getting worse by the day. I had noticed the pain when sleeping and try to get up from bed. It is as if my lower back stiffens right up and causes tremendous amounts of pain, which makes it extremely difficult to get out of bed. What do you think is the cause of this pain and how should I be treating it. Again it stiffens up and feels like an intense burning feeling. I thank you so much for your assistance!!! Tammy

Q: After an auto accident, got following report from the Thoracic Spine CT the doctor ordered because first x-rays at hospital were described as "rib contusions": "Multiple contiguous axial images were obtained through the thoracic spine. Coronal and sagittal reconstructions were performed. There is mild anterior wedging of T7. The approximately a 40% compression deformity. This may be related to the trauma in March. This may also be related to underlying osteoporosis. There is a mild central compression deformity of T6, this is approx 20%. There is generalizes osteopenia. No other fracture or compression is seen. Question traumatic versus related to osteoporosis. My question: exactly what does all of this mean in every day language? Thank you for your reply. Riki

Q: I had back surgery 2/26/08 (lamenectomy) on levels L3,4,5. I feel the surgery was a success but I'm having terrible spasms that start in my legs and work there way up into my chest. They paralyze me when they are going on and they last approximately one minute and they leave me weak and and exhausted. They even happen at night and scare me. Have you ever heard of anything like this and how long will they last. Any help you can give will be very much appreciated. Gary

Q: I have mild scoliosis and lordosis. Now that my thoracic back pain and muscle tension and a "need" to back crack have increased over the past few years (I am 27, female), I am wondering if there is a connection between my diagnosis and my pain. I wonder what physical therapy exists for EITHER OF THESE CONDITIONS. I also am very curious if there are any conditions involving the juncture points between individual ribs, and the spinal vertebrae. Most of my issues seem to involve just that.THANK YOU. Lynn

Q: Dear Sir, for years i have been dealing with bilateral lower limb neuropathy caused by sciatic nerve root impingements at L3-L4 L4-L5 L5 S1 caused by a combination of herniated disks and neuroformainal narrowing. recently I feel down the steps almost like a cartoon my body flew up in the air with my arm extended below myself elbow locked cane in hand it caught a step and dislocated my shoulder. while a few days later my neck started to throb and ache my hand has since gone numb in in the pinky and ring fingers with tingling from the wrist up to the inside of my arm mid line to the interior of my bicep tricep both my hands have started to alternate between flushed white to purple with speckles i haven't gotten the reports yet but from the xray i saw the vertebrae just below where the shoulders connected to the spine was rotated about 20 to 30 degrees to the left could that have happened in the fall and what if anything would it effect I've been getting headaches and muscles spasms in my chest that make it hard to breathe sometimes i find out what the results of the xray are two days from now when i call my primary care doctor. Tom

Q: What is the name for the back ache affecting the lumber region? Podinilame

Q: Hello Sensei- I am 50 yrs of age-I have had on/off shoulder/neck pain for 4 mo's after chiro neck manipulation. I had an MRI and says I have thinning disc's in three of my cervical disc with slight bone spurs. To me they look to be 50-40% the height of the adjacent disc's(maybe 50-30%?). The doc said I need injections and have had one-it helped. But says I need another for disc nerve treatment. Sensei, I am completely petrified that I will not lead a normal life into old age 75-80 yrs without a fusion in neck. The doc says I should lead a normal active life. I am not convinced. Do you have any positive info you could share with me regarding "thinning disc's" per my MRI? I wish I could send you the DVD of my MRI-and I could get your opinion- any "good" news at this point would be VERY helpful. I read about DDD and get depressed.I am also going to see a dietitian per the doc.Sensei-if I exercise everyday and get the proper diet for spinal nutrition- will disc's this thickness have a good chance of lasting 25-30yrs?-is this a slow process that can be slowed more with nutrition/exercise? Thank you for your time and help with this Sensei-I REALLY appreciate it. DDD is such a "gray area" name! ps-It's nice you make this effort for others. mike

Q: solicitamos a ustedes una cotizacion sobre DRX9000 catalogos y precios.Quedando agradecidos por la atencion que se le de a la presente.Atentamente, Felipe

Q: Hi there, please could you tell me if back ploblems cause drop foot? i have L5 bulge, DDD, scoliosis,pain in shin muscles,bilateral spastic foot drop( very painful)and wasted calf muscles.also forearm, hand pain with numbness that comes and goes. parts of face across nose and cheek numb. many thanks, sorry the list is so long :)Caroline

Q:Hello,I am 35 years old computer professional. I was suffering from kind of pain and stiffness around my neck and got my MRI done. The results are in C3-4 i have a diffuse bulge that is touching the nerves, that causes the pain. Report from MRI.There is straightening of the cervical spine - suggestive of paravertebral muscle spasm. alingnment is normal. diffuse bulge with left paracentral focal disc extrusion of C3-4 causing thecal sac indentation, left neural formaninal stenosis, impingement of left exiting C4 nerve root and mild cord indentation at that level. However no abnormal signals are seen in the cervical cord at that level.mild diffuse bulge of C4-5, C5-6, and C6-7 discs noted causing thecal sac indentation. However no neural foraminal stenosis/nerve root compression is seen. the vertebral bodies show normal outline, and marrow signals. Appendages appear normal. Facet joints and flaval ligaments are normal. cranio-vertebral junction is normal. Cervico-medullary junction is normal. no evidence of body canal stenosis is seen. pre and paravertebral soft tissues are normal. Rest of the intervertebral discs appear normal. could you kindly explain the severity of my problems, and the curing procedures. Currently i am given some pain killers, and am still wondering are there any medicines to correct this bulge. Kindly help. Best Regards, Raj

Q: HI SENSEI, IM 24 AND HAVE HAD SEVERE BACK PAIN FOR OVER A YEAR. I'VE HAD 3 E.S.I.'S, P.T., PAIN MEDS, AND SAW A CHIRO. I HAVE BULGED DISC AT L4 AND L5 AND A POST ANNULAR TEAR AT S-1. ANY WAY IM NOW SEEING A PAIN MANAGEMENT DOC AND HE SUGGESTED THAT I GO TO HIS OTHER CLINIC IN ATLANTA (400 MILES AWAY) TO HAVE NUCLEOPLASTY. I AM WANTING YOUR OPINION ON THIS PROCEEDURE. ALL THE INFO I'VE FOUND ON THE WEB IS FROM ARTHOCARE THE COMPANY THAT SELLS THE SPINEWAND INSTRUMENT FOR THIS PROCEEDURE. I CAN NOT FIND ANY FEEDBACK FROM PEOPLE WHO HAVE HAD THIS DONE, OR ANY UNBIAS OPINIONS ON THIS. WHAT DO YOU THINK? IS IT SAFE ? DOES IT WORK ? MY INSURENCE CALLS IT AN "EXPERIMENTAL PROCEEDURE" AND WILL NOT COVER IT. IT IS VERY EXPENSIVE. IS THE DOC JUST TRYING TO SELL ME THIS FOR HIS OWN FINANCIAL GAIN OR IS IT AS EFFECTIVE AS HE CLAIMS? ANY INSIGHT WILL BE GREATLY APPRECIATED. THANKS, J.T.

Q: Two weeks after my back surgery(hardware and fusion and unpinch nerve)and in severe pain a MRI showed a large hematoma pressing on spinal cord and again had surgery to remove clot.My question"Is this rare and what causes this. Barbara

Q: My doctor told me that I have Air in my back in the area that has not healed. Is this normal? What is the next step? Its about a 2" gap. I am using a bone stimulator up to 4 hours daily, however its not healing. I want to know what happens next, and what I should or shouldn't do. I had Spinal Stenosis, and a stint was placed in my L-3, L-4, L-5. I would like any information. Thanks, Pat

Q: I can't lie down and sleep because of pain. I went to my doc, he said, herniated disk which I have had before. I have been to 3 doctors, been treated with spinal decompression which solved the herniated disk pain, but I still can't lie down to sleep and the doctors are no help. Someone else must have had this problem and know what it is and what to do. It seems to involve my hip, do you have any info that will help me figure out where to go for help? Thank you. Pam

Q: I have had 8 spine surgeries and I'm fused at L5S1, C5-7 and T1 through T9 with rods. I still have alot of thoracic pain and have recently developed severe rib pain. I have tried pain meds, physical therapy, light therapy, acupuncture, chiropractors,supplements, exercise and have had over 150 pain injections. I can't figure out why after a surgeon operates on you and you still hurt he tells you to find another doctor and that attitude snowballs. It's like they all know each other theyfigure well if that doctor couldn't help you I can't either. I'm only 38 and I suffer horrible pain everyday and can't find anyone to help even when I refuse to take narcotic pain medications so that they understand I'm not a drug seeker they still do nothing. I just don't get it we live in the greatest country in the world yet we let people suffer in horrible pain. Can you recommend someone that might be able to help? Gene

Q: please share with me how you were able to get rid of your neck pain for good. I have been on all the meds, treatments, traction, etc. I have foraminal stenosis,facet disease, all on my left side C4-C7. I too have been told that I have over compensated for my right sided injury almost 10 years ago. I have been searching for any help that could give me some relief. I have yet to have any surgery, but I plan to if I cannot find some relief. I was also wondering if decompression therapy would work for the cervical and T1. Thanks for your helpful site and I hope to hear from you soon. Suzanne

Q: I've had lower left back, left hip and left pelvic pain for 10 months. MRI's show previous trauma to pelvic area, fluid in the hip joint and fluid in facet joint. I've been doing core strengthening exercises and was initially on anti-inflammatories. For several years I walked about 10 miles a day of hills. This might have contributed but not sure. I can now only walk about 4 miles a few days a week. What can I do to improve? Thanks!!! carla

Q: I was diagnosed with a 12mm snyovial cyst between my L4 and L5 disc. It's been impinging on my sciatic nerve causing me severe pain down my left leg now into my inner ankle. I underwent epidural injections for a year and half and they gave me relief but they were stopped because I reached my max. I have presently been prescribed topomax and arthitex however it really doesn't help with the radiating pain when I walk. I have no pain when I sit only when I walk. As soon as I begin to walk the nerve seems to lock up my hamstring. Is there any way to keep that sciatic nerve from locking up that hamstring. I do stretching exercises however they are short lived. Do you know any medication that might work for that. I do not take pain medication. Thank you. Patti

Q: I am 40 years old male. I had met with an accident exactly 4 months back. I had received right head injury and cervical cord problems with pain in neck radiating to left shoulders right up to left hand and fingers.I was advised to use Philadelphia cervical collar for three months during day and soft collar during night. Initially I was also treated with traction. I am still not satisfied with my recovery. The back side of neck is still very stiff. The neck movement is restricted to 20 degree either sides. I find difficulty in balancing while moving outdoor. The recent MRI report is given below.I am worried and depressed. Please tell me what is the present condition as per MRI, and what is the chances of full recovery. Thanks and Best Regards. Kundan Examination : MRI - Cervical Spine Imaging Sequences : SE T1W axials and sagittal. FSE T2W sagittal and gradient axials. Findings : There is mild reversal of cervical lordosis centered at C5-C6 level. All cervical intervertebral discs exhibit signal changes - S/O desiccation. Dorsal hard disc bulge at C5 - 6 level is noted, effacing the ventral subarachnoid space and indenting the cord. There is early bilateral foraminal narrowing at this level. Small peridiscal osteophyte is also present. Minimum diffuse bulges of C4-5 and 6-7 discs are observed, effacing the anterior subarachnoid space and abutting the cord. The neural foraminae appear normal at these levels. Osteophytic ridging of the discs is present. No significant PLL thickening. Rest of the cervical intervertebral discs are normal in height, morphology and signal characteristics. Cranio-vertebral junction appears normal. Prevertebral soft tissues also appears normal. No abnormal signal focus noted in the spinal cord. Conclusion : Mild reversal of cervical lordosis centered at C5 - 6 level. Desiccation with dorsal hard disc bulge at C5 - 6 Level, effacing the ventral subarachnoid space and indenting the cord. Early bilateral foraminal narrowing at this level. Minimum diffuse bulges of C4-5, and C6-7 discs, effacing the anterior subarachnoid space and abutting the cord. The neural foraminae appear normal at these levels. No abnormal signal focus seen within the cord. Kundan

Q: My boyfriend had a lumbar fusion of L5 & L6 in Nov. 2007, he is still in intense pain, and all previous symtoms remain. After an MRI it was discovered he had inflammation around his spine. He went through a 6 week course of oral levoquin, then another 6 week course of IV vancomycin and levoquin. Had another MRI this week, no change & the infection doctor said he has no answer other than sometimes people react to the cement used during surgery. Surgeon is away, conveniently. Is there any way to resolve this? Sue

Q: I have a 6mm herniated disc in the c6 area of the vertebrae. It is pushing on and flattening the spinal cord. I also have a spondylolisthesis in the L4 and 7mm bulge at L5 which is creating a drop foot. Surgery has been recommended for my neck. Would I be a candidate for spinal decompression? Would this work for my neck? Barrie

Q: Hello, Greetings! Can you please let me know the contents of your e-book SENSEI's referring to 1) Does the e-book prescribes any specific exercises for specific problems. 2) What other contents does it have other than mention on your web site. Regards, Sapan

Q: Hi, I have a C3/4 possible disc prolapse, & T6 Compression fracture, I have had this for almost two years now. The doctors however think it is in my head & have never made further investigation. I am on Work care & of course they just think I am a liar I am not looking or expecting a pay out from anyone a) I am not black & b) I am not dead from the car accident. Through frustration & the run around from doctors I am now being treated for anxiety depression. I get a hot burning pain in the middle of my back right where my bra does up, the pain is so intense it takes my breathe, I just cant stand it. Hav been to physo, am on Norspan patches 10mg & 5mg,dizepam, digesics, Efexor 4 depression & now Lyrica which is making me tired, dizzy and sick i have been on it for 3 weeks & I cant eat. Nausea all the time. I also have a disc bulge at L4/5 it still gives me pain but i have learned to manage it. In regards to T6 compression fracture they tested me for osteoporosis which i don't have of course that would be easy for them that & degenerative bones. I know my body & I know something is not right. I was hit by a car going over 120klm I was doing 100klm the car hit me on the drivers side front fender, i was pushed around as i said i can now manage Lumbar pain but i need to know what is going on with T6 C3/4 Can you advise? Dianne

Q: Hello, I am a 33 year old female in my 34th week of pregnancy, 5'3" and normal pre-pregnancy weight of around 115. About a month ago I was started waking up nightly after being asleep for around 4-5 hours with really, really bad rib pain. It felt as though my rib was popped out of place and hurt when I coughed. My OBGYN prescribed indomethacin to help with the pain but of course after some research online I was not comfortable with taking this. I decided to pay a visit to my local chiropractor that I had been to years before and he confirmed (without x-rays) that I did have a rib head out of place. Two adjustments later and I don't have so much of the rib pain anymore but instead a more excruciating, throbbing back pain located in my middle back around the bra line. Same thing though, it doesn't start bothering me until I've been asleep a few hours and then I can barely move 1/2 an inch without feeling as though I need to scream out in pain. When I wake up in pain I can't find a comfortable position at all unless I move to a recliner sleeping upright. The pain seems to go away after the first 30-1 hour after I 'm up and moving around. When I'm in pain though, my back throbs the same as if I had just hit my finger with a hammer - only worse. On a pain scale of 1-10 with 10 being kidney stone pain (which I 've had before) this rates a good 8. Any ideas what this could be? This is my 3rd pregnancy and I've never had this kind of pain before and with 2 children already good sleep is of course very important. Becky

Q: was injured at work in aug 2007 I was bent over picking up a plastic strap and the fork lift driver hit me with his load of boxes weight was 1,000 pounds in my lower back right but cheek and leg .I went to there doctor and was given a x-ray of my spine and was told it was normal had mild scoliosis with convextion to the right . The pain was and still is extremely bad .My lower back, right buttocks and leg all the way to my knee still hurt so bad thatI am in bed at least 4xs a week. At first they said it was lumbar sacral associated with sciatica put me in pt 3xs a week and still no relief . Approximately one month later I was taking a shower and I bent my head back to wash my hair and I had such severe pain that I couldn't lift my right leg out of the shower. I went and seen a orthopedic specialist and he ordered a MRI of the l-spine without contrast it came back normal . The DR then said that I had right sacroiliac and ordered si joint injection along with joint manipulation and a trial of acupuncture . workcomp allowed the injection which only helped about 1 day and denied the rest , they said there wasn't enough evidence to prove that was what was wrong with me . I continued to see the orth doctor and was just getting pain meds each month and he had me off work. IN December my employer had a IME done on me and that doctor said that I had a lumbar strain and that I could go back to work full duties . I tried to go to work and couldn't do it I work in a factory and I am a line leader which means I work in all department and have to be able to lift up to 75 lbs the doctor I was seeing at the time said that I could return back to work with restrictions and they refused to let me work . I then went to my private doctor and gave him my report from the IME doctor which was a mistake They did there residency at the same hospital. I requested a referral to a orthopedic doctor in our network and he did give me a 1 time visit . I went to see the new doctor and he checked me out and said that he thought it was right sacroiliac and said that he would request a bone scan to evaluate from my pcp, and also request another visit . I then went back to my pcp and asked if he had got the request from the Orthopedic Doctor and he said that he did and put me in the hospital for 24 hr evaluation and requested a bone scan for pain in my coccyx which that is not were my pain is .I then went back the next week and he said that bone scan was normal that this is chronic pain syndrome and gave me a med called nurontin ans said to take 900 mg per day would it be possible that the bone scan can be wrong? I was in so much pain that I couldn't stay still .I wake up every night in pain even with the meds and cant bend, or walk very long I have a hard time siting for longer than 10 minutes do you have any advice for me please help . thank you Patricia

Q: The doctor came to my house and said that all of my disc's were out of place. He diagnosed me wit Sciatica, and drained the dead blood out of my back through a couple holes he made with a needle...after the massage, he told me to wrap my back with aluminum foil... Do you recommend this? Araz

Q: You say here on your site not to become addicted to pain med's. I have been dealing with chronic back pain for almost 6 years now, I have been to several doctors,surgeons,web sites books and still can't the straight answer. I have been told that there are too many problems in my lower back to operate. The percentage of a successful operation is only 10 %. I hate my life right now I am a slave to the medication, everything I do is based on the level of relief I have at that time. When I was first diagnosed with DDD I swore I wouldn't have a back operation at any cost, now I would beg for a chance to correct my situation with surgery or any other type of non medicine type of treatment. Besides the actual physical effects of the drugs you have to deal with all the B. S. from people around you. I am sick of being treated like a drug addict and people looking down at me when they find out that I have to take over 200 mg of morphine every day to relive the pain in my back. I have tried many different types of therapy and nothing worked the pain is only getting worse. I have to wonder how bad it is going to get and will I end up crippled because of this. I have enrolled in college to get a degree in computer science so I can go to work in the hospital industry to do research and find the cure myself if I have too. Mostly I want to do research on the topic and contribute any way I can. I don't want to live the rest of my life like this, but I feel like I have run out of options. The only thing I can do is hope someone comes up with the answer. I am 48 now if I live a normal life I have another 30 plus years to live with this problem, that in it's self is depressing. I am dedicating the rest of my life to help in the fight for proper treatment of people in my condition or worse, It's almost like this is my purpose in life. some day some how I will make a difference I can feel it. Until then I am open to suggestions on any other option that may be available to me.Hope to hear from you soon. Ken

Q: hello. My back started hurting a month ago. and my left leg hurts also. I can barely walk. Im only 19 years old, do you know what this is from? its the lower back. Araz

Q: I got the results of the MRI....."protruding disc in the L3, L4, L5 and S1. with no fractures." I go to see the PA on the 23rd of April. I would like to have someone else tell me what that means. They gave me 2 injections that didn't work and was horrid the next day. (I have a high pain tolerance, but this is starting to interfere with everyday life.) Then they gave me a 3rd injection, this time in the L3 nerve root. This gave wonderful relief (after the day after, the butt muscle hurt terrible the next day, but after that, my back, butt, hips, legs and knees felt great) They gave me the shot on the 20th of March, but the pain started coming back on April 1. I use Litacane all over and take Vicoden, but that doesn't seems to help much, so mostly just the cream. I'm in PT now, but I don't know if it is making it worse or just more of the shot wearing off. Too many variables. The other day after working I had to lay down in the car (I get a ride) because it felt like someone was putting an electrial prod through my tailbone. When I tried and go to bed at night, it is the same way, also feels like rods going through my hips too and my knees and legs feel terribly achey. Can you give me some understanding. I can't stand in one spot too long or sit very long without stabbing burning pain. I'm better if I'm moving. Please help if you can, I appreciate it. Brenda

Q:Hi Sensei Adam, I have been diagnosed with moderate to severe bilateral C5,6 &7 exit foraminal stenosis, apparently secondary to uncoverebral joint hypertrophy. This diagnosis came from a cervical spine xray and CT scan. It doesn't mean much to be, but my doctor said I have cervical spondylosis/arthritis. I am constantly bothered by various forms of neck and muscle pain and, at worst, along with bouts of cervical vertigo. I have tried various form of relief including chiropractor, physiotherapist, pain relief drugs, neck exercise, heat and aromatherapy treatment. When pain is at worst, some give mild relief. I am concerned that I more recently have moderate signs of affected upper limbs, aching, kind of dull numbness, sometimes tingling in the hands (particularly at night, or upon waking). Usually this sensation goes away quite quickly once I start moving around, but recently my right arm and shoulder have been plaguing me somewhat, as has the right side of my neck and shoulder. I also seem to have acquired problems with my spine about chest height, causing me some pain and discomfort. There appears to be a bulge there ... and this is where the chiropractor often did adjustments. I am currently experimenting with pillows. For a couple of years I have been using a mild inflated pillow, but I find I wake often during the night. I have recently acquired a memory pillow, which allows me a better nights sleep, but my condition appears to have worsened quite dramatically (which could be co-incidence). Is there any type of pillow you can recommend for neck pain? It should be stated that I am quite interested in your theory of knowledge therapy. I am under considerable day to day stress with no short term resolution. I have little doubt that this contributes to my pain, even if it is not the cause. I think the most confusing part of my condition is the basic lack of support I have received from the medical fraternity. I have been warned off chiropractors (who did little to ease pain anyway). Apart from just putting up with my condition, and continuing to exercise neck, apply heat/aromatherapy treatments, is there anything else I can do? Thank you very much for your time and attention. Kindest, Jac

Q: Hi, I have e-mailed you prior to this. I just had a CT scan and it showed a herniation that is pressing on the nerve on my right side which is causing pain on right side and loss of feeling in right foot.This is Canada and to see a Neurologist I would have to travel 9 hrs by car although he does come up to here once in awhile.Are any cheap treatments available to ease the discomfort or exercises I could do.I have poor medical coverage and I know that Decompression therapy costs $250 a session. Thanks a lot,Bruce

Q: I would like to know if there is a treatment center that uses the dxr9000 machine in Montreal Quebec area only found one in Toronto ? Danny

Q: Hi. I was hoping someone could help me cause the doctors just seem to give me prescriptions and send me on my way. In a nut shell was in a head-on car accident about 15yrs ago. Since then I have had difficulties with my back. My most recent attack happened about 8 days ago went to Emerg. They gave me shot after shot nothing has been helping my pain feels like someone is drilling in my shoulder spitting out my back and running down my legs. I have been icing it, taking every kind of anti-inflammatory. I think there is a percocet and t3 nothing helping please help. Les

Q: My wife recently underwent a breast reduction surgery in December from Double f's to D's to reduce chronic back pain. Ever since the surgery her back pain has been greatly reduced. But she still suffers from residual back pains. But know she suffers from upper back pain whereas before the surgery it was her lower back.Is this due to the years of supporting the extra weight. Has it permanently set a curvature in her spine that is causing her the pain, if so can it be treated with physical therapy. Ryan

COMMENT: I am a 54y/o who had a spine fusion w/instrumentation in Feb 08. Was having a lot of muscle spasms and stabbing pains. Kept on taking pain killers. Just started physical therapy and it seems to have a great impact on the pain. It has subsided quite considerably. I have not been taking the pain killers much any more. Just hope this keeps on working for me. Shirley

COMMENT: I suffer from chronic pack pain and have done for many years. I also suffer from acute back pain, however I don't know if one brings on the other. I have seen many specialists and experts but still the pain continues and i have no sight of a remedy for this pain. I have been told I have a Protruded disc at the base of my spine. To anyone who has never experienced this, I can only say be thankful. It makes everyday harder, it takes away your concentration, it can easily move you toward depression. Many times I have wondered how to get thorough each day. I think that is the worst part, knowing that there is no easy answer and you just have to get up and get on with things. Difficult? yes very. Thomas

Q: How does one go about looking for a support group? I can't even find a therapist who has heard of Dr. Sarno. I have followed Dr. Sarno's treatment (books, tapes and daily work)and have had months of relief...the problem of course is the relapse of pain..Each time I know what to do, but it would sure help if I had some support or someone to talk to that understands TMS and the treatment. Joanne

Q: Leg pain and lack of function necessitated L3, L4, L5 fusion in 2001. By 2006 problems developed again. New fusion done on L1, L2, L3. 2001 hardware was removed because of bone growth. Currently have long lasting pain on lower right side of back. Steroid injections did not help. First Radiofrequency Lesioning provided some relief. Going back this week for a "heavier burn". My surgeon believes that permanent relief will only come from fusing S1 to the rest. What do you think? How much more mobility will I lose? Can I still play Golf? Frank

Q: While working on a farm a few months back, I did very heavy lifting that my body was unused to -- heavy firewood lifting (8-12 hours a day for 2 weeks). I soon started to feel lower back pain, esp acute upon getting up each morning. By the end of the first week I was having trouble walking, esp up and down stairs. By the end of the second it became severe and shortly thereafter I spent a grueling bed bound weekend - unable to turn around or get out of bed, sweating and nearly passing out from the pain. I started taking anti-inflamatories which helped enable me to be mobile, though still in a fair amount of pain and movement restriction. It got to the point where I was taking them every day, multiple times a day to be able to function so, 3 months after the initial "injury episode" I went to a chiropractor/shiatsu practitioner and had 2 treatments - He said I had a herniated disc and it felt literally like he pushed a button down and popped things back into place - the feeling of relief and energy was wonderful. With time never less and carrying heavy items like groceries and suit cases I noticed things felt "popped out" or pinched again and severe sharp pains returned, very weak in legs, difficulty going up/down stairs esp and hiking! I'm seeing an acupuncturist now and have had about 5 treatments. The pain has peaked (always linked with carrying something heavy or turning/moving in a way that seems to pull things out of place)and now has gotten a little better, but not disappeared entirely like I had hoped. Did my first big Appalachian trail hike of the season yesterday (11 miles) and was thrilled to see my "turbo boost" uphill was still intact, though I took anti-inflamatories as a precaution because I've been pretty sore and find I unconsciously grunt when lifting things. Anyway, I'm a a tad sore in the lower back today but not in need of meds, which I don't like to take and want to wean myself entirely from. I'd really like to cure this lower back pain, not just treat symptoms when they become unbearable or limit my mobility. I never had lower back pain before the firewood incident (that happened 5 months ago). I'm working out at a gym to build up my stomach muscles and back and also doing meditation and positive affirmations and mind-body work. Do you have any particular recommendations or natural remedies for healing this completely? I am so grateful for your assistance in this and thank you for the wonderful information you have provided. Chris

Q: Hi there, i don't understand why its important to ensure exercises are specific to your particular back pain problem, when you have stated most are psychosomatic. surely it doesn't matter what you do if the pain is psychosomatic, certain exercise would only aggravate the condition if it was physical. Janette

Q: Hello, I just saw your website and I'm glad I could find someone to talk to. Basically, my dad who's now 42, he's had lower back pain for over 25 years now. It hurts me badly to see him suffer as much as he does, he cannot walk properly, stand up, do exercise, etc. and yet he still has to work 6 days a week, make food, go to offices etc. That's not the problem though. He doesn't know I'm looking to find a solution for him, but I would love to as the only person he has is me. Mum left us when I was born and he has had to raise me up by himself with no one there by his side. He tells me that no one is willing to help him as he has had over 300 appointments to the doctor and he wont take it seriously. We have seen over 100 different doctors and we even looked for acupuncture but it was VERY expensive and he can't afford it. I would like to know how to cure it for free as he can't afford any treatments or others. His bugdet is very tight and he is trying his life to keep us alive. I want to help him because it hurts me so much to see him suffer. Please can you help us, your website is very interesting but I couldn't seem to find a solution to release lower back pain. He is healthy and hasn't got illnesses, well, we hope not. The back pain just keeps getting worse and worse and he can't stand it anymore as he has even given up on life this week because it was horribly painful. I thank you so much as I feel right now you are the only one who can help.Kindest Regards, Angela

Comment: Your website is great. its refreshing to read about the misconceptions of back pain, and that doctors are the worst culprits of all. The psychiatric refuge, whereby a doctor tells you it is all in the mind and the pain pathways are blocked, has gone on for too long. I have suffered, on and off, for 25 years and have worked out my own way of dealing with the problem. I have problems bending and complain of stiffness, but are told the pathways are blocked! why oh why then would i have limitation in bending and stiffness? of course, doctors and other medical professions just put the 'blame' back on the patient. not only are you in severe pain, but your told you are causing it yourself! Its about time the medical profession owned up to their lack of knowledge and tried to help people in a constructive way. sorry for ranting on, but after 25 years, i have little patience for them anymore! regards Lesley

Q: I would like ot know what can cure herniation and how you got rid of it without physio and chiro???? Cornelia

Comment: Hello, My name is Milena, I work in a big IT company, so as you can imagine I spend all day long in front of the computer. It is the same at home, of course. So, everything started in October, 2007, when I started to feel sick, I lost appetite, felt dizzy and sometimes I couldn't even drink water. It happened to me several times to lose consciousness. I was overall stiff and couldn't concentrate on almost anything. My doctor sent me to neurologist and I was told that almost 40 cm of my backbone were blocked. Then I had to take tetrazepam-based pills and some painkillers. Later, when only part of my neck backbone was still blocked, I started electrotherapy, massage and exercises in the hospital.I don't know, I think that helped me for a while.Now I am doing some exercises at home and still take medicines (no painkillers any more), but the pain appeared again and it doesn't fade. I really need help, but the doctors obviously can't do much. I am sick and tired of all these pills.

Q: My question is:Reading through the Q & A, I get different feelings about what you think might cause back pain. You frequently tell people to get MRI's- Do you think these really help most people-since the "scapegoats" are there in probably 80% of all of us? Don't they mostly cause added fear and rumination? Also, you recommend spinal decompression, what if the problem it's meant to help isn't really the one causing the problem? Then, the person is under a false assumption. Do you think that there are any causes for "physical" back pain/etc.? What percentage do you think by all of your experience with these matters? Just wondering about these things. Thanks. Nan

Q: Hello,I read lots of the questions here and have sent questions before and you speak a lot about ischemic muscle spasm.My question is what types of treatments are available to treat this condition and are there any at home remedies?Thanks, Bruce

Q: I am curious about back and stomach pain. I read your article and that sounds like EXACTLY what I have, but worry it could be something more serious. I always though about physchological induced pain. Can this really make your back and stomach hurt. How do i get over this? Thanks, Sean

Q: I need help finding an attorney to help with back pain surgery lawsuit. Its a very long story, so I would like to contact someone that can help me out. Grecia

Q: I have decided to have surgery on my back to alleviate sciatica, bulging and herniation of discs in my lower back. I would like info about what I should expect. Mike

Q: Hello,how do I cure my lower back pain? kind regards. Jim.

Q: I sustained a thoracic injury-14 years ago-while in a golf competition. I have been told that my body is unstable-so that after I receive care--it slips back into its old state. I am currently receiving prolotherapy. No RX-yet. And XRAY's never show a thing. Will your book help? The pain is 24/7.Thank you. Mark

Q: I would like to Thank YOU. Your web site and E-Book woke me up, and back to the Real world. I feel last week, right on my Sacrum, pain shot through my whole spine; knocked the wind out of me. I felt I need X-rays just to make sure I was not fractured in any way. The pain was pretty BAD, sometimes it hard to tell if its Bone or Soft Tissue Pain. There is a Chiropractor that offers a $25 consultation with full spine X-rays. Yes, I fell in the trap. He wants just a hair under $1,500 to ease my pain and cure my back. A Little background, I have many, many hours of Massage Therapy training, also many hours of fitness and water aerobics training over the last 30+ years. The Dr. did help with the ultra sound, and an adjustment. He also said I would be in acute pain for many, many weeks. The pain is there, lessoning by the day with my own stretching and understanding of how muscles work, as well as nerves. Today I have an Appt. Which I will go to, the ultrasound helps the muscle spasms. Dr. will be informed, this is it. Yes, he said I have the degeneration and disk problems. I looked at some old X-rays from 5 years ago, found my spine looked the same as it did in the recent X-rays; which proves to me, I have soft tissue stress and pulls, no major spine injury or more dislocation. His first words in the Consultation were about subluxation. I am off to do my stretching, and then a nice walk, even thou the Dr. said I would not be able to walk more than maybe 10 mins without a brace. I walked for 45 mins yesterday, with little pain, as long as I kept my posture and stride correct. Again, I do Thank You; the $9 was well worth the Wake up. Cindi

Q: I have read Dr. Sarno's book and feel it was written about me. However, I suffer from tight muscles/trigger points in my neck and shoulders. I feel dizzy and get blurred vision when it's really bad. I have been to many doctors and PT, chiropractors. I can be fine for weeks doing everything as before and then have a relapse and want to give up. I just wish I could find more answers for this type of problem to help me through it. Pam

Q: I had severe lower back injury since last 3.5 months and initially, was treated in hospital for a week through Ultrasonic & TENS therapy. I was suggested to follow stretching exercises. The pain was "ON", although i am following stretching exercises. Yesterday, I got admitted to local nursing home due to severe pain and later diagnosed as having Disk Herniation between L5 & S1 & its on S1 nerve root (paracentreal growth). Doctor is suggesting me the surgery and I want to avoid. Please advise me some solution without going for surgery. Vishwanatha

Q: I have a grade 1 Spondylolisthesis as that is stable and now due to an injury at work I have a new on set of herniation at L5-S1 (same sight as Spondylolisthesis). Is spinal decompression contraindicated for my situation? Samantha

Q: Dear Mr. Rostocki, I am 49 and have been suffering mild to moderate pain in my coccyx for the last 4 months (cause unknown). In the last 3 weeks I've also noticed numbness and pain in my toes and bottoms of my feet that worsens at night when lying down. I also suffer from numbness in my arms and hands, mostly on my right side. The numbness in my upper body has been bothering me for a longer period of time, about a year. My arms and hands will go numb just from reading or holding a certain position for too long. I constantly wake up at night having to reposition myself to get the blood flow going again. Needless to say, I'm not getting much sleep! I've been seeing a chiropractor which seems to be helping with my coccyx pain but is doing nothing for the numbness anywhere in my body. I sometimes suffer from knee and joint pain, but otherwise have had no injuries or known health problems. I've decided to see my doctor to rule out any diseases. What's your opinion? Thank you for your time. Lynda

Q: My wife recently underwent a Microdisectomy for her L5 disc prolapse. Let me know how to get her back to normal life? Controlled exercise tips with timeline? Does it bring life to normal and she can sit down and do all that a normal person can do? She still gets cramps on the left leg sometimes. Is it the compressed nerve that is released causing the issue..and will it take time to heal..? Please let me know so that we come to a conclusion… Thanks, Avijit

Q: HI, I GOT IN TO AN CAR ACCIDENT ABOUT 8 MONTHS AGO. SINCE THAT TIME I HAVE REALLY BAD BACK PAIN. RECENTLY I TOOK AN XRAY AND IT'S SHOW THAT I HAVE SOME STRAIGHTENING OF THE NORMAL LUMBAR LORDOSIS CONSISTENT WITH MUSCLE SPASM. NO FRACTURE IS DEMONSTRATED. THERE ARE MINIMAL SCATTERED DEGENERATIVE CHANGES WITH TINY OSTEOPHYTES BUT INTACT DISC SPACES. ????? NOT SURE IT'S CAUSE OF THE CAR ACCDENT. DINESH

Q: I suffer from lower back pain on one side of my spine between my butt and shoulder. I love to swim. How can I get rid of it? I have 3 bulged cervical disks, slight scoliosis and a herniated lower disk. I am not a candidate for surgery and exercise 1 and 1/2 hours a day (stretch, band ball). Thanks for your time, Chris

Q: My back pain began during prone position radiation treatment for newly diagnosed stage 1 breast cancer. The night before I did yoga twisting and quad strengthening with weights---next day pain so severe could not move at all for 5 days. MRI showed herniated disc L1/2; disc bulges L2/3 and L3/4; grade 1 spondylolisthesis L4/5; also X-ray showed 20 degree scoliosis with apex at L2/3. I just had 8 weeks physical therapy; some relief but ongoing stiffness and soreness bordering on pain. A chiropractor suggested Spinal Decompression---WILL THIS HELP? Suzanne