Back Pain Questions and Answers
Archive 2008 Part 8

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: Aloha, just wanted to comment, as a MT, with lower and middle back muscle pain that ended in the worlds biggest Spasm...your advise to swim has brought the healing I needed within a week! I am 54, mother of 3, grandmother of 6...massage therapist, motorcycle rider etc...very busy...and am so grateful to have stumbled on your site. Mahalo, Linda

Q: Hi, My name is Tommy and my question involves a medical diagnosis of the lumbosacral spine of a unilateral fusion of the facets L-4 & L-5. goes back to when I was discharged from Navy bootcamp. They told me that this was probably a birth defect,and fusion could not be caused by physical drill. Later I found out that I do not have any fusion of the spine,but I have two crushed degenerated discs. My first question is can you mistake one condition for the other? Question two, because the found out I played Judo between the ages of 12-14, the claimed this was the cause of the first injury. Is that possible for a judoka of that age, with only two or so years to injury his back that bad without ever knowing it. Thank you for your help! Thomas

Q: Dear Adam, I give you my apologies for such a long letter, but I'm hoping the details are helpful. I am a 38-year-old female teacher. In May of 2008, I used a Stepper very intensely (and without warmup) for two-minute bursts 2-5 times per evening over a period of a week. I would do this after getting up from my easy chair as I graded final exams, just to get the blood flowing and to have a little exercise. I had the stepper (from the info-mercial) for several months but had not used it as planned. With summer coming, I wanted to start doing the DVD workouts once the school year ended. However, I noticed a strange muscular-type pain between my legs. I figured that I must have pulled something and gave it time but went to doctors after it still felt strange. I did not use the stepper again.

My OB GYN and a rectal area doctor seemed to agree that the stepper was the cause--a sprain of sorts of the tissue. Both said that it could take a very long time to heal since it is hard to rest that area, as opposed to and ankle. I searched the net for people who had similar stepper problems but found none. I am still seeing a chiro, though, who feels that my lower back is out, sees that one of my legs draws up, and that the muscles/ligaments are pulling or twisting at the bottom of my "pelvic bowl" and causing the pain down there. He too, showed me how the stepping could throw off my alignment. My lower back does hurt and catch, and I do not like to stand for a long time, but I would like to know what role the back has in my problem.

The chiro does the leg-over-to-each-side-and-twist to adjust my lower back after using the table that drops my legs while I'm on my stomach. I do not feel much difference with adjustments. He did have me sit on something just slightly elevating my left buttock and had me wear a heal insert in my left shoe for a while. This was supposed to help naturally train my body to tweek me back correctly. I don't know.

It feels sore as if I have constantly been sitting on an uncomfortable bicycle seat or astride a fence--right alongside my private area and sometimes even including the sides of that. I can feel it almost as a tightening just sitting there. It also literally feels sore if I press the area. I have noticed that, although it is always there, I may feel it intensify after going up steep stairs, climbing a ladder, or stepping onto a chair.

I'm not wanting to work out intensely but just going about my job, sitting, standing, walking, etc. are not what they used to be. I still do my same basic activities. However, I can either do nothing and still feel it, or I can be on my feet all day and still feel it--sometimes a little more than others. I'm getting quite depressed that any normal activity has lost its joy or even its routine since this is always an issue on my mind.

Do you think that the chiro treatment is on track? Should I be doing any strengthening stretches? What about massage? Could this be at least partially psychosomatic? It is true that I can't believe that this is still going on after something so simple! I took living basically pain free for granted. It's hard to describe this to others since I seem normal otherwise, but it is driving me crazy. Thanks, Dory

Q: Hello, I am Rajaram from India. I came across your website after searching on google after i entered "l5s1 disc bulge surgery and tingling sensation now" and i saw this website. Let me quickly tell you my past history: I am 29 yrs old, had sudden back pain during August and consulted a doctor who asked me to take an MRI and here is what the MRI report says Sacralisation of the L5 vertebra with rudimentary L5-S1 disc noted, suggestive of transitional L5 vertebra. Rest of the vertebral bodies and their posterios neural arches otherwise appear normal. Lumbar lordosis is obliterated due to paraspinal muscular spasm. Dehydration with reduction in L4-5 disc height noted suggestive of degenerative changes Massive posterocentral and bilateral paracentral protrusion to extrusion of L4-5 disc noted pointing cranially, compromising the spinal canal, lateral recess, neural foramina and significantly compressiong the lower cauda equina/bilateral exiting nerve roots at L4-5 disc level (right side more than the left). *Mild posterocentral annular bulge of L3-4 disc noted indenting the Thecal sac anteriorly. However no evidence of narrowing of neural foramina/compression of the exiting nerve roots seen bilaterally at L3-4 disc level.Visualized lower dorsal spinal cord, conus Medullaris and cauda equina nerve roots appear normal. *Mild degenerative facetal arthrosis of L4-5 Facet joints noted bilaterally.* The paraspinal soft tissues appear normal T2 weighted sagittal screening of te Whole spine reveals mild degenerative cervical spondylosis with paraspinal muscular spasm. Mild posterocentral bulge of C3-4, C4-5 C5-6 and C6-7 discs noted indenting the dura anteriorly. The cervical and dorsal spinal cord appear normal in size and signal intensity.* MILD DEGENERATIVE LUMBAR SPONDYLOSIS WITH PARASPINAL MUSCULAR SPASM. * TRANSITIONAL L5 VERTEBRA (SACRALISATION). * MASSIVE POSTEROCENTRAL AND BILATERAL PARACENTRAL PROTRUSION TO EXTRUSION OF L4-5 DISC POINTING CRANIALLY, COMPROMISING THE SPINAL CANAL, LATERAL RECESS, NEURAL FORAMINA AND SIGNIFICANTLY COMPRESSING THE LOWER CAUDA EQUINA / BILATERAL EXITING NERVE ROOTS AT L4-5 DISC LEVEL (RIGHT SIDE MORE THAN THE LEFT)*I was shocked seeing this report and doctor advised me to undergo surgery and i had to do it on September second week. I was under rest for 10 weeks and back to work since December first week. Let me type what i see here on the report i have after surgery:Under Ga patient is knee chest, by a 4cm post midline incision, DLF was incised paraspinal cobbed, L4-5 right flavectomy done, few mm of inferior border of L4 lamina was nibbled. There was a huge disc pushing the L5 root which was removed in toto discectomy completed, wound washed and closed with 80mg depometrol soaked in gelform placed in the L4-5 right inter laminar region, wound closed.I got the tingling sensation all over my body since 2 days and i was kinda scared. Iam very much depressed doctor, i cried and then woke up from bed now and started searching if there is anything that i can do to proceed my life.Can you please advise me how to proceed? Thanks for your time. Ram

Q: Hi, I am a 33yr. old female EMT. In Sept.06 I hurt my lower back lifting a pt. I was sent to pain mang. then added physical therapy. It was Aug.08 before I was sent to a spine specialist. The specialist decided it was L4 that needed disc replacement after having a discogram. I had this surgery done Oct.21,2008. Since having this surgery I still am having lower back pain,left hip pain,left buttock down to my toes. Before surgery it was lower back pain, left hip, left buttock to knee pain. My doctor continues to say this is normal it means it is healing. I am having serious doubts about this. Is this normal, how long till I see improvement? I am no longer allowed to take prescription medication...AND I AM STILL IN PAIN, MORE THAN WHEN WE STARTED! Any suggestions???? Jessika

Q: Hello, I have had terrible foot and leg pain for almost a year now, being told by many Dr's that it is being caused by plantar fasciitis. I've had Mri's of my back, legs, and feet. The Mri's showed no evidence of any problems. I just keep going from Dr to Dr and the pain goes on, it's making my life unbearable. Can TMS possibly be causing my pain? I have had an extreme amount of stress in the past few year also. Thank You, Nancy

Q: I have Asthma, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy - mainly hands, Fibromyalgia/ME/CFS, Stroke in 2007 plus an old one which showed up on the scans. Now I am getting a pain that literally grabs me, makes me shriek with it's severity and is an absolute misery when I make certain moves such as when getting in a car or if I have been on my feet for about 30 minutes and I try to sit down - normally am in such low back pain I absolutely MUST sit or fall down. I use crutches to get about and also a wheelchair for any distance as I am as slow as a tortoise these days. I am 52 and have had the Fibro since 1997 and the ME since '99. I saw an Ortho surgeon and he has recommended epidural injections as I have a bulging L4/5. Can you suggest any exercises I could do that might help me lower these excruciating spasmodic pains I am getting? Liz

Q: I found your site very, very informative. In my case, following an MRI, it has been determined that I have "a bulging (L5-S1) slightly effacing on the neural foramen" as the report says.. as a result of improperly lifting an object 12 weeks ago. My actual back pain has gone but what remains are symptoms what you have described as compressed nerve(s)with cramping and contractions in the calves, upper arm, hand and numbness of the feet. Sitting makes these far worse so obviously I avoid sitting. Traditional treatments such as physio, etc. no longer seem to be helping. I am a 45 year old male in other-wise very good physical condition and health. To your knowledge, do these symptoms disappear over time with proper care and good common sense and if so, how long does it normally take? Thank you very much in advance for considering my question. Donald

Q: Hi my name is Danielle and i want to know whether i should see a doctor because for the last 4yrs i have had severe back pain and it has got worse, i can't sit or stand for 4-5 minutes without me crying in back pain, i already have scoliosis and i just wanted to know what should i do plz help me. Danielle

Q: my wife was recently diagnosed with degenerative neck disease - she seems to be now suffering from the nocebo effect. Her symptoms are far worse and she is not sleeping.She won't do any strenuous physical activity for fear of self-harm. I know if I raise this prospect of a mental component to her pain directly with her that she will be angry and accuse me of being unsympathetic. how do I go about resolving this? paul

Q: I VALUE YOUR OPINION!!! I WROTE YOU BEFORE AND YOU SUGGESTED TMS I FOUND VERY FEW PEOPLE SKILLED IN THIS AREA...HERE IS MY DEAL..MY LIFE IN THE LAST 6 MONTHS HAS BEEN IN ORDER, POLICE TOTAL VIOLATION OF MYSELF AND MY GIRLFRIEND WITH A BIG DOLLAR COST TO UNDO A STUPID AND POINTLESS TRAFFIC STOP..TWO DAY IN JAIL..THEN ATTYS..COURT..THEN..FULL TIME COLLEGE CLASSES...THEN FEAR OF THE POLICE SUCH THAT I CHANGE WHERE I DO OR DO NOT DRIVE TO AVOID THE PARANOIA AND FEAR OF JAIL, POLICE AND THE 4800% HIGHER BLACK LAW INJUSTICE RATES THEN FOR NO BLACK..DURING COLLEGE CLASSES IN GYM CLASS I PULLED MY C6 C7 VERTEBRAE DOING PULL DOWNS..WENT TO MY CHIRO HIS ADJUSTMENT WAS VERY LOUD..SINCE THEN MY NECK CAN NOT LAY FACE DOWN..EITHER SIDE DOWN..FRONT AND REAR ANY WAY MY HEAD LAYS IS GRADUAL CONTINUAL PAIN..SOMA NO GOOD. ATIVAN OK BUT NOT FOR LONG..I HAVE HAD BP OF 150/120 AND BEATING ARTERY IN MY RIGHT EAR..IT IS REAL SCARY..ATIVAN CALMS IT..MY CARDIOLOGIST SAY NO PROBLEM BUT SOME OF MY BLOOD WORK IS OFF..WHY HE DID NOT RUN A CORTISOL AND FULL KIDNEY TEST????MY NEUROSURGEON SAY 2MM BULGES ON MY CERVICALS..NOT SURGERY CANDIDATE HIS IDEA GET PHYSICAL THERAPY..MY PRIMARY SAY GO TO A NEUROLOGIST..I SAID THAT THE FIRST DAY I MET HER..THE NEUROSURGEON DID NOT GO OVER MY MRI WITH ME WITH THE BIG LIGHTED BOX THAT DOCTORS USE TO REVIEW MRI DATA..DOCTOR G SAYS THE MUSCLE HYPERTONICITY..NOT THE VERTEBRAE ARE THE PROBLEM..BUT MUST PEOPLE ARE NOT MYOLOGIST THUS THEY KNOW MORE ABOUT CLAM AND SHRIMP THEN HUMAN MUSCLE....IN YOUR OPINION IF YOU WERE ME WHAT WOULD YOU THINK COULD CAUSE THE NECK TO BE TITE FOR WEEKS OF END??? TMS...PTSD...TMJ...ALCOHOL NEUROPATHY SINCE I DO DRING..CO2 OR CO LEVELS SINCE I DO SMOKE...DISC BULGE...FIBROMYALGIA...OR AS THE NEUROSURGEON SAYS CERVICAL NEURALGIA VAGUE YET IT DOES HAVE A DEFINITION...I FEEL LIKE DOCTOR HOUSE ON TV..EVERYTHING I THINK IT IS NEVER REALLY FITS AS THE CORRECT DIAGNOSIS...ARTHRITIS...INTENSE STRESS...PAST LIFE..LSD FLASH BACK SOMATIC???? EVERY ANSWER SHOW TEN MORE QUESTIONS.. I KNOW YOU ARE SMARTER!!! I VALUE YOU DIAGNOSTIC ASSESSMENT OF MY MYSTERY...THE ONE THING THAT IS MOST TANGIBLE IS MY C7 IS STRANGE IN SHAPE SOME HOW BIGGER ODD COMPARED TO OTHER VERTEBRAE....INTO YOUR HAND I COMMENT MY DIAGNOSIS... DAVID

COMMENT: crushed vertabrae two thirds at l5 and the doctor said he would use a z plate. be fore surgery i asked if plate would move and he said no, almost a year later before releasing me he blurted out in anger that i had moved and was silent after that.then no doctor would touch me or admit to any wrong doing. now i live with the pain with many intervals of bed rest. Jeff

Q: Hello, In November, I had a problem with three bulging discs. I spent a day in the hospital and was given strong pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs. I went to a chiropractor the next day and he has made me straight again,(I go three times a week and am down to two now.) but, one day a few weeks later I was trying to roll over in bed and experienced great pain in the middle of my butt cheek. This pain has stayed with me for about 5 weeks now and hurts EVERY time I roll over in bed and goes down my leg to the back of my knee. It used to only hurt at night in bed, but now reminds me that it is there all day long. My chiropractor stretches the muscle and I do stretches at home too, but it is still hanging on.My back feels 10,000 times better, but this pain is driving me nuts. I have also tried a medrol dose pak and was pain free for 1 day. I am going to have a deep tissue massage tomorrow. Is there anything else I can do? The stretches I do don't make a difference at all. Help!!! Debbie

Q: gday.my name is mark. i've always been extremely athletic and strong my whole life playing everything from footy to bball, tennis, surfing, athletics,lifesaving etc etc. Unfortunately i've had strong to extreme pain for nearly 5 years now in my lower back (i am now 19 yrs old). i started getting it after overly hyper extending playing bball when i was 15, since then i've had huge downs with amazing pain, developed massive muscle imbalances (extreme lordosis: weak bum and abs)which has literally changed my body, i appear fit and athletic yet i constantly battle to even walk properly without getting pain:it seems impossible. I cant run, i cant stand, sit, lie down, i cant bloody exist without the pain. I've seen everyone from chiropractors to physio's to massage therapists, even psychological treatment, sometimes they help yet it takes only a short while of standing or sitting before the pain intensifies once more. i do so many exercises to increase only core and leg strength, i'm ten times more flexible now than i was before the pain began, yet the pain remains. i know my glutes are still to weak and my lumbar region is still jarring. Yet it just doesn't seem to get better, EVER. I wake up and crack my back(deep thudding cracks), i stand up and crack more, i concentrate on standing properly constantly, i cant sitdown, i must lie down after standing for a short while. i can't work with it, play, no more sports, i have to stay at home and stretch instead of hanging with mates etc im sure you know. I need help. I'm living the best years of my life in pain, it literally ruins everything. Any advice is very much appreciated, thank you sincerely for your time mark

Q: Sensei, I have a question, What kind of information on mental healing is in your book? I'm interested in the physical healing but I also need the mental healing as well. Any information would be great. Cory

Q: Hi Adam, It has been a full year that I am pain free after first discovering your site and reading your book. It is the best holiday gift I have ever received. Continuing thanks forever and Happy Holidays to you, Samuel

Q: Dear Sensei, i'm 37 years old, healthy, not overweight, and pretty active. Until recently I used to run, ride horses and scuba dive a lot. Over the years ive had a mild backache, usually after prolonged periods of sitting. Pretty common, as i work on a desk and am a workaholic. I should have just let it be. I went to my family doctor and she had an x-ray made. The x-ray showed nothing, and she advised me to walk more. So I did, but it made my problems actually worse. I was to PT, but again without any improvement, and i felt it made it worse as well. So about 2 months ago I had an MRI made. The MRI again showed nothing serious, but it did show 'moderate osteoarthritis' whatever moderate means. It also showed a cyst, but it was all normal i was told. I had no possibility to talk to the person interpreting the MRI, and I cant interpret it myself of course. So the conclusion was that my pain was caused by osteoarthritis.

Now i'm probably a poster child for psychological pain, as within 2 weeks from that diagnosis, I started to develop more serious pains after I tried more walking again. The pain moved outwards from my lower spine to the top of my hips, a few inches to the side of my spine, and went from dull pain to sharp pain. I now have a hard time standing for more than 15 minutes, and walking is also quite painful. I have good days and bad days, which seem to go in a perfect sinus wave. I've noticed that my body is extremely tense and stressed. My glute muscles are constantly tense. I can let them go if I focus, but if I do i feel less secure standing. Within moments of not focusing they're tense again, fully tightened. Not only my glute muscles, but many others are tense as well. My whole back feels stiff, and my arms are always tight as well. I was told to try NSAIDs, so ive tried a few, but they seem to have literally no effect.

My mind is telling me that i'm causing most of the problems myself. But it's very hard to accept and I don't know where to go from here. I have made an appointment with an osteopath, to see if that brings relieve, but my biggest fear is that I will go from one treatment to the next, endlessly, for the next 30 years. Any advice is welcome. Cor

Q: I had a 3 level Dynesys operation in September 2007, I am currently awaiting approval from the insurance company to have it removed. They did L3-S1 levels. I fell down stairs and herniated those 3 disks. I have not had a whole lot of help with the pain in my back, in fact my legs feel rather weak a lot of the time, which the surgeon says could be from the Dynesys system or could be the L5-S1 disk as it shows a herniation on it still. The L3-4 and L4-5 show signs of healing so I guess that is good. I would just like to be out of pain without meds... But I am starting to wonder if that is even possible. Anyhow thanks for the site, its been useful for me :) Namaste, Melanie

Q: how did you cure your back and neck pains etc, i have the same symptoms that you described but i do not know how to overcome this problem. Many thanks Chloe

Q: good day my name is chantelle and i had a Discectomy 6 yrs ago, i have since then never gone without pain, i went to the doctor today and had a MRI scan done and this was part of the result:

"there is a prominent signal loss in the L5 disc with high signal intensity noted in the peripheral annulus at L4/5 level" "There is a broad based L4/5 disc prolapse with central canal narrowing as well as narrowing of the lateral recesses bilaterally" "There is also facet arthrosis present which also contributes to the L4/5 Stenosis" what does all of this mean? Chantelle

Q: whenever i am active or lift something, i experience chest and back pains from the center my back around my right side to the center of my chest. why>????????? Kristina

Q: Hello there, I have stumbled across this site looking for answers about my back. I have heard about the mind creating pain and it is a very real possibility for me. I will tell a short version of everything and would appreciate any advise. I injured my back about 21/2 years ago lifting a big piece of wood improperly and could not get to a chiropractor for about 3 weeks. i just took alot of ibuprofen and kept working. After that and 8 different chiropractors my back would not stay in place longer than 2 days...usually would be out again the next morning. Rolfing treatment was next, gave up after 10. I did get an xray taken but nothing else.I then found an excellent osteopathy doctor that managed to get my back in line and stay there. That was over a year ago. The problem is that my back still spasms alot. I have been weight training for about 7 years. Before my injury i could deadlift 325lbs so i did have some muscle. I have continued weight training because it provides relief and if i don't go to the gym, i hurt. Just recently I have started deadlifts again, of course with lighter weight and will try to build muscle again in my lower back. I eat well and am in great shape. i'm a 43 year old woman. 8 years ago I left an extremely abusive relationship of 8 years. He had drugged me and things happened that i don't remember. My question is, what can I do to stop my back from giving me grief? I even tried healing touch as well as a couple other strange things. What about hypnosis? I'm open to suggestions. Rose

Q: 16 years ago I came off a waterslide wrong that inverted my back in the thoracic area (T5-7). I've had two kids since then and as I've gotten older that injury has gotten slowly to the point now that I have trouble in my lower lumbar area & sciatic, down to my legs & feet - numbness & tingling, not being able to keep my balance very well. The past 2-3 yrs the pain has begun to severely affect my upper to the shoulders. I 've always had large breasts, but even they feel painful as tho I have a case of mastitis. The pain wraps around my my chest/abdomen, feeling squeezed & bruised badly, especially when I remove the bra. I had pneumonia earlier this year after an aneurysm surgery in March, had that pneumonia from March till July, was on bed rest for near two weeks. Has left my chest feeling tight & with a sort of tickling feeling down along the left side of my trachea. Anyhow, the pain has gotten so bad that having to wear a bra causes pain, the weight ya know. my ribs feel ever so bruised uo & add insult to injury I'm now getting bladder/kidney infections with yeast infections at same time - means more useless pain meds & antibiotics and get told again that I'm a Hypochondriac like they did before they finally found the aneurysm growing behind the left eye. Was told 5 yrs ago by a supposed specialist in Grand Forks that all I was nothing more than fibromyalgia - I don't care what it is but how do we fix if it. I do not want to have to stop teaching my students. Within this week I have begun to lose some bladder control regardless if I've had something to drink or not. Stomach feels rotten, hard enough to crap.It's when I get so short of breathe because the imagine band around my middle is hugging me too tight. Was told the neurosurgeon may ask me to have a breast reduction. Please share any thoughts at even if you know a super dr in MN, ND, SD, or IA, NE.. We are down near to desperate. the pills are useless. The injections worked for 3-4 months but insurance won't pay for the injections anymore. Chiro & massage therapy hurt so damn bad I lay there & cry while they do their work. It plays havoc with my depression & the stress on my family. Please do you think you may have some ideas or help, even the name of a doctor can be helpful. Thank you so much.......... blessings, Shelly

Q: i have achondroplasia and symptomatic spinal stenosis. why is it that i have my mobility but am always in pain, tingleness, etc. I have my strength but have severe spinal stenosis of cervical thoracic and lumbar. With such medical evidence, how is it that I still have my mobility and can move around as I do? Maria

Q: My husband was diagnosed with a ruptured disc in L5 at least 5 yrs ago. Cause unknown. Its actually pressing on the spinal cord. When his leg started to go numb he quit his factory job. The doctor told him he needed surgery or he will damage his spine and when he cant go to the toilet anymore he will need emergency surgery. However, I have always begged him not to have the surgery, as I have read that most result in needing the same surgery again within 2yrs. I also don't trust doctors taking risks around the spinal cord. Its now better than it was but he still has almost constant pain and numbness. His leg pain is gone at least. But now he has swelling and soreness below his stomach (around the bladder). Maybe related? He still wants surgery just to get it over with. I understand his pain and his worry but I don't want it to go wrong. Does his back pain sound serious enough to require surgery? Is there other options? Sonya

Q: Hey, I was just wondering if you could tell me what could be wrong? For about a week or two I have been feeling alot of pressure in my back mostly in the middle to higher but always right by my spine. there is a long muscle or something that is as far as i can feel. it kind of feels like a long cylinder shaped muscle on both sides right along the vertebra. it is a continuous pressure type pain have but it gets a little worst every day and today it hurts so bad it gives me the chills. but do i need to go to a doctor or a chiropractor or what? I thought most people who have back problems was a little older that me I am only 20 yrs. Then i thought it was because my 17 month old little girl was sleeping in the bed with me but she has been sleeping in her bed and it is still getting worse. Kristen

Q: what is a disc protrusion at c-4 c-5 causing mild cord compression? Scott

Q: Dear Sensei, I'm a 18 year old guy who was diagnosed with lumbar disc degeneration about 10 months ago in one of my lower back discs (sorry would be able to find out exactly which one but am not sure off the top of my head). I played several sports but now really struggle due to the pain and the fear of making it worse. I really want to keep going to the gym, running and just doing what i used to but the doctor i am currently seeing has told me i am not to do anything in the way of exercise beside walking in water (about the most boring thing i have ever done!) Not only that, but i have plans to travel to Australia which he says would be a bad idea! I understand your back pain got better but only at the age of 37. After reading your story i think i have a similar condition to yours. I would really appreciate it if you could give me some advice on a way forward and would do pretty much anything to get back on the sports field!! thanks alot, Guy

Q: I could tell you volumes about my spine - mainly lower back and neck. Bulging discs, facet syndrome, stenosis, arthritis, spondylolisthesis, reverse curvature and more. It's been going on and off, mostly on, since I first hurt my back in a dance concert 43 years ago. At the beginning I had a back brace, injections and physical therapy. Nothing helped. AFter that I started chiropractic which helped maintain things, but I have never been able to hold the adjustments more than a few hours. 10 years ago I was hit in the back by a heavy service door and my SI joint started hurting a lot. I refused injections, took Aleve, did my own therapeutic Yoga practice and continued with chiropractic at least 3x a week. Then the chiropractor changed to an "open office" style. Instead of 1 patient at a time, there were several adjusting tables and traction units in the same room. People came and went, including family members. Two years ago my daughter playfully jumped on my legs while I was on a chiropractor's table. Since then my SI joint has not stopped hurting - not for a moment for one single day. Although some indications of the previously mentioned conditions above show on (many) x-rays and mri's, the reports don't explain the extent to which I experience pain. Only one person has read the reports in such a way that explains pain and their advice was not to do much of anything physical, except walking, A little walking is OK. More and it's very painful. Sleeping is torture. Some chiropractors have actually made things worse when do muscle testing. One chiropractor tried several techniques which actually hurt me more, including injuring neck ligaments whereby I could not hold my head erect for 6 weeks and now every time the car hits a pothole my neck goes out. I keep myself very busy so as not to think dwell on the pain. Easy going exercise and my own approach to adapting Yoga helps ( and has helped many others as well). Yet any kind of more strenuous exercise, the kind that helps maintain weight and strength hurts, usually immediately, if not soon after. I've seen so many kinds healers and have felt some relief here and there for a few hours, but one bump, a heavy door, lifting (even correctly) - and it's back again. I've taken herbs and other supplements to support ligaments and diet and having a "pitta" predominant dosha, do not tolerate them well. I am not depressed, I am not manipulating pain for attention (wouldn't work if I did) and I am very frustrated and coping with constant pain is tiring. I'm not a candidate for the decompression table, it's not in my head, and I am open physically, mentally and spiritually. Anything you can suggest would be greatly appreciated. Nina

Q: Hi, I am 26 years. About 3 months ago, I threw a party at my place, and the next day I started feeling discomfort in my back which was growing day by day. I checked with a GP who gave a muscle relaxant injection and few medication. But it wasn't of much use. By searching the net, I found your site which helped me describe my pain as coccydynia. The knowledge therapy helped a lot, but the pain was still there, and I visited a Ortho, had a x-ray taken. The doc said it was coccyx pain, and gave , me medication(pain killer, muscle relaxant.) and asked me to take hot water massages and sit on the plastic cushion. I did and i was feeling better. But once I stop the medication, I feel the pain again, though not so severe. I am unable to sit for long, and if I do work, the pain comes back. I am afraid to go back to the doc, as he had suggested steroid injection in the bone, or manipulation. I don't wanna become an addict to medication either. I am at my wit's end given that I have 2 young kids to look after too. Do u think, waiting for few more days and continuing with hot water will help, and heal by itself. Please do reply. Thank you. Farah

Q: Hi Adam, I have terrible SI joint pain on the right side and hip pain, a little pain on the left and both legs and feet have pain, tingling numbness in legs and feet etc pins and needles under both feet. I have had mri scan which said facet disease, seen physios, osteopath, chiropractor, about 20 times. He said SI joint dysfunction. He also said it doesn't really go away. Ive Also seen a surgeon, He said i have a few bulging discs but they are not the problem, that facet disease is. Ive been told i can have injections. This has been since the beginning of the year. Now my mid back feels very stiff. The pain moves into left SI joint but it never leaves my right side no matter what i do,whether resting or walking. even sleeping its there all the time. I downloaded your book, and that was what made me think perhaps i've got this. I have read Dr Sarno's books, healing back pain, mind and body prescription. Ive watched his dvd as well. I live in the UK. My question Adam is because my pain is there in SI joint and hip all the time, is it still PIPS as when reading the books i understood that the pain changes and goes somewhere different, so that made me a little unsure. I would appreciate your thoughts. Thanks Rose

Q: Dear Sir, I want to be brief but this is my story. I have had intermittent back pain for 3 years. I was diagnosed with a herniated disc. It has since subsided but it comes back in various forms. It is strange how it moves around. Moreover, I have developed fasiculations in my lower legs. A neurologists has dismissed them as they are now ongoing for 2 years. I have recently, for the past 2 months, been suffering now with pain in both my trapezoids. At first I thought maybe it was from the lipitor I was recently prescribed but now I am thinking there is something else going on. I am certainly anxious and the truth is I know now more than ever that my problems must be from oxygen deprivation. But here is my question: Is is possible that oxygen deprivation can be the cause of the fasiculations in my legs? Thank you, Ed

Q: I'm wondering if u can give me any information a friend, Jason, referred me to you, My symptoms are neck pain c-6/7 slight disc bulge t-4/5 disc herniation L-4 mild scoliosis. I was told before it is the result of psychosomatic, however i was hit on the top of the head with a hatch on a tank. I have exhausted all non-surgical options possible. I was told that i can have complications if i have surgery....I was wondering if you can give me any insight on the idea the doctors said I have a 60% chance that the symptoms could go away. Just basically is there any means to work this out and do you think i should get the Surgery. Andrew

Q: Hi Adam, I recovered from my sciatica by putting myself into traction as i have done on other occasions & along with 3 months gym/pool therapy have been working on building up my core muscles. So far so good. Both my Specialist & my Osteopath were supportive of my use of 'Home Traction'. It really is an undervalued help for pinched nerves.If you wish to know more on how i do my own traction just ask. I'd be happy to share it with you. cheers, Rod

Q: Hey I appreciate all you are doing and your site is great, and I know you said knowledge therapy would be best but I have another question I hope im not bothering you. My physical therapist everytime I go all the muscles in my back and right buttock are tight and might be causing problems in the back she was telling me and the hip and back pain are not changing...I was wondering what you think about an exploratory surgery of the hip and lower back if i should request it. Jason

Q: Hi, I really like your site and find it very good for information. In India, healthcare is not easy to find and some information is old and not useful. Thank you, Gorbal

Q: hello my name is Anthony. i have severe lower back pain that highest pain meds wont work other than make you a drug addict which i hate!!!!!!!!!!!!! please advise whether we are on same page. thanks

Q: My mum slipped on the ice the and fell flat on her back, she could not move and she had to be taken to hospital by ambulance she was discharged but every time she moves her middle back or lat muscles go into spasm and she is in a great deal of pain can any one suggest anything that may help Alex

Comment: Hi Sensei, Just wanted to wish you a happy holiday season. I am still pain free and recommend your site and book to all I meet. Thanks for everything! Teddy

Q: I have a chronic, dull irritating ache just under my front right rib cage (abdomen) with the ache radiating to the back for approximately a year with the ache getting m ore severe after drinking excessive red wine. When I lay off the red wine the ache seems to subside somewhat. Often when the ache is more severe it is exacerbated by movement, it feels like an internal organ is rubbing the inside of my rib cage? I have made an appoint with a General GI at Hopkins and that isn't until February? My primary care has completed a sonogram which produced negative results. Your thoughts? Daniel

Q: Hello. I just submitted my story. I'm a 22 year old who was injured playing D1 lacrosse in undergrad. I have been diagnosed with bilateral facet joint syndrome from L2-L3 to L5-SI (confirmed by steroid and novocain injections). I have consistent stabbing pain in my lower back and cannot sit for more than 45 minutes, walk for more than 30 minutes, or stand still for more than 15 minutes without feeling severe pain and needed to lay down. I consider myself to have a pretty high tolerance for pain and was always very active. I have had radio frequency ablation on both sides (at separate times). This procedure worked on the left side (first side done) almost completely (slight tenderness at one of the lower joints), but not on the right at all. The doctors seemed stumped as this has "never happened to them before." I was wondering if you have ever heard of this happening to anyone? Laura

Q: I have had back pain lower and upper for about a year now. I have had steroid shots in both shoulders for years and have been told that I need surgery on both shoulders. The pain in my back has gotten worse and my ribs feel like it hurts to breath at times. Just recently my tail bone has been hurting and is tender to the touch. I hate going to the doctor because I feel like because of all of the addiction to pain medication that they don't take me seriously. I think I can handle the pain but I'm concerned that it may be a more serious condition. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Paige

Comment: I am a former college soccer player and still an athlete. I do many different types of athletic activities and because of that my back always has general soreness. My doctor told me ice and heat would be the best way to deal with it. I bought a heating pad and also a big ice pack. It was such a pain to take care of the injury because I had to take an hour out of my day to lay down and do twenty on twenty off. My friend referred me to a product. It is a product that Michael Jordan used when he played for the bulls. It is a hot and cold therapy product that you can wear over your cloths and be mobile with. The product has really changed my life and I just wanted to share that with you guys. I was wondering if you guys have used it and if you did what do you think. It has really made my life easier so I wanted to share my story with everyone. Josh

Q: i am at the end of my tether. 3 years ago i suffered my first bout of muscle spasm/contraction in my middle/lower back near spine. i coped with that,then i fell and pulled my right shoulder and had trapped nerve which also gave me a headache from neck over head into left eye. osteopathy helped but i have been experiencing agony in middle/lower muscle near spine and grizzle like lumps by left shoulder blade 4 times and am becoming scared of the pain, i cannot take oral painkillers as they effect my stomach but this time was given amitryptilline 25mg which i stupidly took 4 and lost a day just to get rid of the pain i tried ice packs,tens machines just about everything.the osteopath has told me he can no longer treat me as it needs further investigation and i now have an appointment to see my gp on monday so he can assess me and refer to a specialist. i have always had a high threshold for pain but i have nothing left i cannot stand this pain that comes every few months now. any advice would be gratefully received. thank you. C

Comment: 4 weeks ago had a pain about 4" down from my right shoulder. I have been to 3 neurologist. The last one now has given me 3 injections of steroids every two weeks. The fist two lasted about 5 or 6 days. The third one has done better but the pain still comes an goes. The Orthopedic doctor said it was a pinched nerve. My right arm is kinda sore and my right hand is not numb but has very little strength. The reason I am on Disability from work because I can't sit an work computer for 8 hours. The pain moves from the hand up my arm to the spot below my shoulder blade. Don't want surgery cause I heard they cut your throat below your jaw bone to work on your vertebrae in your back??? I was thinking about maybe laser would be a solution. Just kinda at a dead in now. Tommy Dallas Texas thanks

Q: I've been having muscular back pain for years. It used to come and go and now it doesn't go. I get it from sitting at my desk and from cooking which tells me it's the bending that causes it. I have to take pills everyday and I'm tired of it. Would a cortisone shot help me? Juell

Q: This is Dhaval from Vadodara,Gujarat. my age is just 24. I just passed my M.Sc. Applied Physics course and I' m working as field engineer in one company. One day after coming from site I just started after some what 6 month with push ups and my back started paining from very next day. And I showed this problem to one orthopaedic surgeon, he suggested me for X-ray, From X-ray he detected that I'm suffering from LUMBER SPONDYOSIS. So I'm also taking some pressure therapy. Please suggest me some better treatment, actually I want to do many things in my life and I don't want to live paralyzed life. Dhaval

Q: I am in my fifties and I do have Lupus, I had a backache but just thought it was one of those things. Went visiting when I was there it got a lot worse then we had to drive back for 1 and half hours. I could hardly get out of the car and was in intense pain. Called out a doctor who said the it was a muscle spasm he prescribed pain killers and I was off work for 2 weeks although it didn't really go away when I went back to work were I work in an office. I did go to see a physio a couple of weeks ago, were he could feel the muscle hadn't gone back completely so he showed me some exercises. After this it got a lot worse over a couple of days and then very painful I had to have more time off work. Now I am not sure what to do for the best should I go back for more physio. Would welcome any advice. Thanks, Pam

Q: My 14 yr. old son was diagnosed with NF1 last year and we through MRI's we found he has two tumors, one of which is located near the lower spine which is causing him pain. His Dr. just recently prescribed Gabapentin, which is causing some dizziness and drowsiness. Do you have any suggestions on how to relieve his pain without the use of drugs?? Joanne

Q: Hello, I started having pain in my neck (after surgery to remove a benign tumor from my chest). About 6 mos later I rode the city bus for several mo. and started getting migraines, and sever pain where your skull meets your spine. I have motion sickness, dizziness, and the symptoms of migraine without the head ache as well. (light and sound sensitivities, vision disturbances). It all started in 1996. Then in 1999 I was doing a lot of walking and started having pain in my tail bone area, and a burning sensation in the flesh around it. Some time ago (15 yrs?) I remember having the feeling that I could barely lift my legs when trying to run, and have had that happen 1-2 times since. Then started having the sharp poke feeling in the rump, and occasionally a streak down the back of my right leg, and pain in my feet that doesn't last long, thank goodness. Now I also have lower back pain (ache). I am also having the numbing sensation in my hands,and the end of my nose, the tingling sensation above my left ear down into the ear drum, and it feels like there is a hair tickling my lip, cheek area (all of which come and go). I also am plagued with a hoarseness in my voice, and an occasional slow tongue feeling, tingling in both cheeks when I talk, and even have trouble swallowing at times. I have been on disability since 1996, and therefore have Medicare, and Medicaid. I've had MANY tests, beginning with Myastina Gravis as the tumor was in my thymus gland, but was not positive. I have budging discs in my neck, a slight Arnold Charai malformation in my skull, degeneration in my back, blood work suspicious for Lupus, they have diagnosed me with fibromyalgia (tho I don't have all the trigger points) and have taken and endless variety of meds. I don't have depression, and don't take anything that messes with my thinking. (I want to know when I'm not happy.) Do you have any input that can help me? It seems like I don't have any answers, and am given meds, and therapy as the answer. Therapy doesn't seem to help, tho it feels good to get the exercise. Too much seems to hurt though. sigh, Becky

Q: Hi, I like your web site and I would like to share my story with the public at large and also hopefully get some feedback that will be better than what "professionals" have provided. What's is most frustrating is that with my condition, I can't define exactly what happened. But as it is, I cannot sit or stand for more than 2 or 3 minutes before my lumbar starts numbing and tensing up with pain making it impossible to stay in any kind of prolonged position. The disturbing part of the whole fiasco is that I never, ever had any back problems until I went to a chiropractor who used some kind of hand-held thumping device/mechanism to realign/adjust the spine. Now looking back it seems partially my fault for taking such an indirect approach for a muscle that was not healing in my back that was way far away from my spine. At any rate, I stopped going to this guy and subsequently the onset of this condition I have now began to take its hideous hold. I am sure that bowling three times a week, basketball twice a week and squats did not help the matter either. Since then I have been to a regular chiropractor who takes the traditional alignment approach which was fairly therapeutic but did not help me at all in the long run. I just finished with a physical therapy program that had me stretching and doing ab which hasn't really helped. I was going to school and was in class 9 hours a day so it has been hellish to say the least. At an impasse right now with frustration level unmeasurable. I went to a "spinal institute" and waited two hours for some guy to tell me the same thing everyone else did and that he thought it best if he shoot me in the ass with a shot of depo medrol. I was going to have this done but looked into it and found that this could have led to some new exciting nightmarish complications. At this point I am scheduled to go to a PT who has some spinal wisdom. Very disillusioned and suicidal at this point. Please feedback if you have any ideas! Thanks for your time, Sean

Q: I feel down on my back on an escalator {1 1/2 year ago)and a couple of months later my neck would hurt when I turned it to the left. For 10 months I have had pain in my neck, radiating into the back of my head and at times, it goes around under my jaw. My neck feels like the glands under my jaw are swollen. It is much worse when I put my head on my pillow or any pressure on my neck or my head. It gets still feeling at night and I have trouble sleeping. I have had MRI's X2 on my head and they do not show anything in my head. The doctors do not seem to know and I do not know where to go from here. I have only seen a Neurologist, who I felt did not take it too serious and thought it was stress, and I discussed it with my Internist who could offer no further suggestions. Any help will be appreciated. Lillian

Q: Hello I have been looking for a back pain site like this for a while, so thanks for having it. I was injured in Afghanistan in September 07 from a collision of a HmmV I slammed Forward hit the steering wheel, and the seatbelt caught and slung me back into the Seat I immediately felt pain down my R lower back and into my piriformis region. I have been dealing with my pain for over a year now and I'm currently walking with a cane- Problems as follows... Groin pain when i move my right leg any to the inside or even standing where my hip & leg is where my toes are pointed forward Chronic low back pain problems sleeping standing walking even sitting I've had this problem for a while and doctors are trying to diagnose it as piriformis syndrome, but I've had the injections, physical therapy, even nerve block and put on many medications and to no prevail, and the MRI's and X'rays are negative so if u could point me the right way id be much appreciative. Jason

Q: HI MY PROBLEM IS CERVICAL MY RIGHT REAR SKULL BELOW MY EAR THROBS MY PALMS ARE ON AND OFF NUMB SOMETIMES MY FEET ALSO BOTH NUMB MY HIPS PSOAS AND QUADRATUS LUMBORAM FELL APART ABOUT 4 WKS AGO BUT I READ HOW TO RELEASE MY PSOAS AND IT SUBSIDED I AM WAITING FOR MRI RESULTS AND DO NOT WANT TO HAVE SURGERY ON MY NECK...YES I AM SCARED....REAL SCARED MY GUESS IF I PINCHED A NECK NERVE WHEN I WORKED OUT IN THE PAST I TAKE SOMA OR ATIVAN OR VICODIN DEPENDING...4 DAYS AGO MY HEART RATE WAS STRANGE I FELT DIZZY AND MY RIGHT EAR WAS MAKING A BEATING SOUND WENT TO ER DR SAID GET MRI AND GAVE ME ATIVAN...SLEEPING IS A BATTLE AND STUDYING FOR SCHOOL IS WORSE...IT FEELS LIKE CONSTANT TENSION IN THE NECK...AFRAID TO WORKOUT OR PHYSICAL THERAPY...BUT NOT WORKING MY NECK IS ALSO MAKING MY NECK WEAKER..I HAD A LUMBAR SURGERY WHEN I WAS 16 NOW I AM 44 AND THE THOUGHT OF ANOTHER SURGERY IS SCARY....WHAT DO YOU THINK? I FEEL HELPLESS AND I UNSURE ABOUT MY CHIROPRACTOR MAY HURT MY NECK MORE...I DID HEAR THAT AN UPPER CERVICAL ADJUSTMENT COULD WORK BUT STILL NOT SURE...ANY ADVICE WOULD BE TRULY APPRECIATED...DAVID

Q: I am interested in buying your book. Do you treat back-pain is as a TMS problem, and if so is the treatment different than Dr. Sarno teaches? Thank you, James

Q: I don't know if you remember me, but we had talked through e-mail months ago before my first back surgery. I had a broad based herniation at L4-L5 with a pinched nerve and a year of severe Sciatica. P.T. didn't work, Chiropractor didn't work, Cortisone injection didn't work, nothing worked because so much of the disk was slipped and pressing on my nerve. So I had a Microdiscectomy on May 1 of this year, and things got better for a little while, but then they slowly got worse again a month or so later. My 2 week post op check up my surgeon told me I had DDD, not just a herniation. She said the disc was all dried out and there was no cushioning left, and it was losing disc height between the vertebrae. A month or so after surgery was when all the pain came back. We scheduled my anterior/posterior fusion for October 16. But in September I reherniated my disc bending over, and pinched the nerve so bad my I had near foot drop in my right leg. I couldn't lift my toes off the ground, I couldn't stand on that heel, couldn't bend my foot back very far at all. I couldn't drive without lifting my thigh off the seat to get my foot to let up on the gas, so that week I saw my surgeon and she said that the next day we either had to do another MicroD, and then reschedule my Fusion for 6 weeks later, or try to move my Fusion up. She called the Vascular surgeon right there and asked him what dates he had free and at what hospital and they switched their schedules around so they could take me the next morning. So 14 hours later I was being taken into the O.R. Right when I woke up in recovery, they tested my strength in my right foot, and it was a huge improvement. I could actually hold it up somewhat while they pressed down on it. The day before when she did that I couldn't hold my toe up for anything. They didn't want to leave the pressure on the nerve for another 3 weeks until my scheduled fusion because of the risk of permanent nerve damage and possibly paralysis of the muscles in that leg/foot. Being only 22, they didn't want to take that risk and have me end up with a bum right leg for the rest of my life. At this point, 2 months post op, my right leg is just as strong as my left again. I have no more shooting pain down my back... I have mild Sciatica, but it came back a month after surgery... They said it was common and not to worry about it, and I haven't, hasn't gotten worse or anything. I get to start physical therapy and I'm really excited. I did Aquatic physical therapy after my MicroD but it didn't help. This time I'm doing real P.T. I have Cervical issues, Stenosis, bone spurs, and an irregular curve, and sometimes it acts up and I get shooting pain down my arms and what not, so they're gonna have me work on my neck in P.T. too. Traction exercises. I have a herniated T11-T12 disc, as well, which I didn't know about until recently, even though it's been there all along. I still get pain in that area, stretching across to the right side in a horizontal line, when I do things with my arms out in front of me, like fold laundry. But these things are minimally compared to my L4-L5 issue, and I am SO glad I went through with the surgeries. Waking up was the most pain I ever felt in my life, having been cut through the front and my organs all moved to the side, the cages screwed in, with a radical discectomy (they took every speck of disc material out, since I herniated in that area twice... And she also had to remove the disc fragment that was stuck in my ligament, they incised the ligament and took it out, then removed scar tissue from my L5 nerve root... And then flipped me over and put the rods and screws in. I only had to stay in the hospital 4 days, on Dilaudid and Valium, because the Morphine PCA pumps NEVER work for me. They upped it 5 times.. To the maximum dose and it wouldn't work. Dilaudid is the only thing that does. So I was on that for the first two weeks home, 4mg every 4 hours, and Valium 3x a day. Now I'm back to my regular 15mg of Percocet every 4 to 6 hours, and Valium once at night... Which I have to stop taking the Valium when I start P.T. I told you I would keep you updated on what I chose to do and how things turned out.

I also asked my physical therapist, a physician's assistant, and my Neurosurgeon about Psychosomatic pain. They explained a lot about it to me, but told me that there are ways to diagnose it, and ways to tell the difference between the two. I, of course, wouldn't understand all the diagnostic terms, but they basically told me that in general, people with with Psychosomatic pain don't ever consider that it could be a possibility for them. Also, in my case, I asked them about it because I wanted to know if there was a chance that could be my problem, but they said that all my complaints and feelings of pain matched up perfectly with my x-rays, MRI's, P.T. evaluations, and regular check ups at the N.S.'s office. I think for me the biggest factor is the success of my surgery. I feel my muscles being tense and my range of motion gets more and more limited from the lack of use of the muscles.. No bending, lifting, twisting after surgery. But now that I am cleared for P.T. I can't WAIT to start. I requested to start now. I can't take nerve pain medication because I'm on Wellbutrin SR (which works AMAZING). So, I am excited to see how much stronger I feel and how much better my ROM with be after therapy. I'm supposed to go three times a week for 6 weeks, then do stuff at home. Can't wait! I will update you more once I start. I was also told there's a good chance that my L5-S1 disc will go, since I'm so young, and have many years left, God willing, with my spine, and with the added stress from the Fusion above it, it could be 2 years from now, could be 20. A lot of it depends on how well I do in physical therapy and how ergonomically I choose to live my life. They'll teach me those things in therapy. Sooo... That's about it. Not sure if you will have the faintest idea who I am, or of talking to me, but I didn't forget to update you like I said I would! Laura

Q: I am 16 days post fusion surgery after trying every therapy imaginable, chiro, massage, physical, laser, and acupuncture. The pain in my back and legs and feet was at times unbearable. Not only did I get a second opinion but also a third before giving into the fusion. I'm scared, I'm a mom with six children and don't know what the future holds for me. If you have any advice about anything please please give it to me. Thanks for your time, Tasia.

Q: sir, i suffer from shoulder pain along with right hand fully. ensuring the cervical problems thru MRI SCAN , But there is no major problem at all. but since 4 years it is still paining . give me any idea to recover. d.venugopal

Q: Hello, I suffer from back pain and have since my early 20s. Now at 38 it seems to be a daily thing to deal with. If it isn't in my neck it's in my hip and down my leg. It's always somewhere! I go to chiropractic therapy and have even tried acupuncture, with little or minor improvement. Maybe a string of good days here and there. Nothing really works except Advil or Aleve to offset the pain. I'm interested in reading the Sarno book, but if there is something better that you would recommend, I'm listening. thanks for your help, love the site and your honesty. Brian

Q: I am looking for info to present to the VA concerning establishing a link between previous back surgeries to now shoulder problems. Glenn

Q: Hello, I was skeptical of your method and did not want to buy book. However, son bought for me anyway and I am so sorry to doubt. Book is great and I really think it help me so much. I thank you and will tell all friends about book. All my doctor could not help, but book is much better. Thank you, Vladimir

Q: I was involved in a head on collision in March of 2007. It was not my fault. The airbags did not deploy in my car so my head slammed into the steering wheel and then bounced off. Ever since the accident I have been experiencing a constant "ache" in my upper back (between my spine and shoulder blade). I received all the "normal" treatment: physical therapy and chiropractic care. I was then sent to a pain management doctor who performed all the "normal" tests: nerve blocks, emgs, steroid injections, nerve ablations, and ultimately discography. The discography showed radial tears in my C4-5 and C5-6 discs. The C5-6 disc is the one we are focusing on. Now i am faced with a decision. I can either have a neuroplasty to try and remove the torn ligaments/scar tissue, or I can have neck surgery to remove/fuse the discs. I am 25 years old, have trouble sleeping, lifting, and pretty much everything else. However, one doctor is telling me to have the neuroplasty, while the other is suggesting surgery. I was hoping you could offer me some advice as to which is better at this stage in my treatment. Amanda

Q: Hello, I'm a 25 yr old otherwise healthy male. I fell on my back 4 yrs ago and have had increasing sciatica since. Several months ago I provoked my back worse than ever and had back pain for the first time which radiates out like painful electricity. Now this sensation has spread to fill my entire upper body on both sides: face, arms, neck, shoulders, the entire length of my spine and partway down my legs. I have no disc herniations on MRI and no spinal lesions showing up either so MS is unlikely. I am beyond frustrated with my body and overwhelmed with the constant pain from this undiagnosed injury. Have you ever heard of something like this?? I honestly don't know how long I can endure this pain. Thank you, Matt

Follow up: So do you believe actual physical injury can occur since obviously the body tears and breaks in many cases. I'm curious how can you differentiate between mentally induced and true injury? Matt

Q: I had thoracic surgery from T3 to T6 for a recurring spontaneous cerebro-spinal fluid leak. The surgeon had to remove the spinous process to get access to the dura. He obviously had to cut through muscles. This operation was over 7 years ago. I still suffer from extreme upper back pain at the operation sight. I was very strong and fit at the time. Do you have any advice, i have tried some physio therapy but it did not help. Should i invest in a some support gear? Do you have any suggestions? karin

Q: if a person has more than just pain in the back and down the leg and is experiencing tingling nerve sensation in the feet and around the ankle can the approach you suggest work,I do understand just not recognizing the pain can and does work,but can there actually be mind over matter being that there is an actual physical problem caused from a old injury. Brian

Q: Hi, I have read your book "Cure Back Pain Forever". I have been applying your cure and believe in them. I just have one question, once you are free of pain will the subconscious mind still try to protect with pain, if stressful times come in play? Robert

Q: I saw Dr. Sarno in 1984 for back pain ie. 25 years of drugs for relief of lower back pain and was "cured" in 1 hour. I am now suffering form leg cramps which can be severe at times. Is this directly related to TMS? Dave

Q: Hi there, I wonder if you can help me. My boyfriend and i have a cleaning business. About a year after it was up and running, he started to suffer from chronic lower back pain. This was right at the bottom of his spine and round about the right hand area. For nearly a year now he has been told all sorts of different things. Spondalaeu was the first, then his weight was to heavy from another, which i can assure you is not the problem. He has been treated with acupuncture, Reiki, seen by a very expensive osteopath and also a top man who treated many of the rangers football club lads, in order to sort out any injury's. None has helped and none have ever really given a straight answer to what the problem is. The reason for this in my opinion is that no-one actually knows. He lives on tramadol and bruefen every day. He is chalk white some times and dizzy with pain. He has stopped work for rest and as soon as he steps one foot out the door with any swinging, pushing or pulling movements, its right back to square one. he has private health insurance which will not cover him for an MRI. I don't really understand the politics with this, as i suggested the NHS but that also was causing a problem due to private medical care. More to the actual point though. About 2 years ago my boyfriend was diagnosed with viral meningitis. He was taken to hospital with fluid in the brain and a headache to knock you out. The doctor then tried and i must stress the word tried to give him a lumber puncture, he made several attempts, failing each time, his back was a mess. the doctor eventually got it in and that was that. Now my query and also concern is that by any chance could that incident in any way have affected his back? Severed tissue or cut into muscle or nerve ending's leaving an unhealed wound that will cause him nothing but excruciating pain? Could this be the cause? He is in utter agony all the time, even relaxing back rubs are painful. I also wondered if strengthening the muscle by lower back exercise's might help? I am really at a loss, so is my boyfriend. Please could you help us in any way or point us in the right direction. I would hate for this to be a medical mistake and he is left to suffer the consequences. I have read of a woman who had a failed epidural and suffering lower back pain for the rest of her life. I would hate for this to happen to my boyfriend, but would also be glad to at least know. Thank you for your time, i most appreciate it. Hope to hear back soon and i am very sorry about my spelling and grammar. yours faithfully, Linda

Q: Are there any side effects after having a steroid injection for coccydynia ? Duncan

Q: I went to the doctor. she said I had something related to a bulging disk. what is that? I did it at work. Mechanda

Q: I have cramps in the middle of my back. When I stand for a period of time my middle back cramps to the point that I have to lay down. One dr. put me on muscle relaxers for the cramps but I still get them. I am now having a burning sensation in my back. In the lower area where it would hurt if you had a kidney infection. Sometimes the burn radiates around to the left side on down the buttock area. I was recently in the hospital and my kidney function is fine. I have seen 2 doctors and they don't have any idea of what is causing it. Do you have any idea of what may be causing it? If I were to go to a specialists, what kind do you think I should see? Pat

Q: HI,MY NAME IS RACHEL AND I HAVE READ YOUR BOOK AND DR. SARNO'S BOOKS TOO. I DO BELIEVE THAT I HAVE TMS AS I EVEN NOTICE THAT WHEN I WORRY EXCESSIVELY OR DOUBT THE REASON FOR MY PAIN OR FEAR IT OCCURRING I FEEL PAIN ALOT. HOWEVER, I KEEP ON HEARING AND SEING DIFFERENT DIAGNOSIS'S WHICH MAKE ME OVER THINK THE WHOLE PAIN PROBLEM AND CAUSE ME TO WORRY TOO MUCH. FOR EXAMPLE, A DOCTOR HAS MADE A VIDEO ON THE INTERNET (ON YOU TUBE) SAYING THAT EMOTIONS DO NOT CAUSE THAT MUCH CHANGE WITHIN THE PHYSICAL BODY AND HENCE NOT ENOUGH TO CAUSE PAIN. WHY DO DOCTORS NOT KNOW ABOUT TMS? IT MAKES ME FEEL SKEPTICAL SOMETIMES, BUT I HAVE BEEN TO EVERYONE THERE IS TO GO TO FOR TREATMENT AND NO-ONE HAS FOUND ANY REAL PHYSICAL PROBLEM WITH ME. I EXPERIENCE SHOOTING SCIATIC PAINS DOWN MY LEFT LEG AND TWINGES IN MY LEFT HIP AND LOWER BACK REGION. IS IT POSSIBLE THAT POOR POSTURE OR OVERPRONATION CAN CAUSE THIS? I DO NOT THINK IT CAN REALLY, BECAUSE IF IT DID WOULDN'T EVERYONE BE IN INTENSE PAIN ALL OF THE TIME. ALSO, I FEEL PAIN IN DIFFERENT LOCATIONS AND I HAD V11 MONTHS OFF FROM MY RUNNING AND MY PAIN NEVER WENT AWAY. PLEASE CAN YOU JUST CONFIRM TO ME THAT THIS IS TMS, BECAUSE I DO NOT KNOW ANYONE WITH THIS PROBLEM, AND MOST PEOPLE DO NOT SEEM TO THINK THAT THE MIND CAN CAUSE SUCH PAIN., THANKS, RACHEL

Q: I'm a 72 yr old male,and had a serious lower back/left leg pain incidence (first time). I ended up in the ER of our local hospital. After exam and pain meds I returned home. When I first tried to walk , at home, I fell straight down several times...my left leg just gave away. I am now trying to walk every day to regain the (squat) muscle. Can TMS seriously impact a muscle in this way? Seems like I really do need PT in addition to redirecting my mind. My lower back pain has subsided a bit, but something is seriously wrong with the leg. Thanks for your help! Bill

Q: Thank you for all your dedication to this amazing website. I have an incomplete spinal cord injury from my job as an RPN in a hospital. I have been in a wheelchair for 6 years and I am 38 years old. I am grateful everyday for my beautiful life but I can't help thinking that there is something more that could help me walk again.I need to try but none of my doctors have answers. I am extremely interested in the stem cell treatment and sent my email to a (stem cell research center). please tell me your thoughts. Yours Truly, Patricia

Q: please could i be explained what it is RATZ CATHETER INJECTION and for what kind the pain that can be used.will that work for sciatica pain,neuropathy pain.? Margaret

Q: A month ago I lost feeling in my left foot along with foot drop, it was sudden, while driving. I drive a bulk tank truck locally in Houston Tx. Three weeks after the injury my neurologist found a problem in my L5 and has scheduled an MRI. Workmans comp has denied a claim as i can not provide a specific accident to cause this injury. I have not fallen twisted or done anything to injure myself. I was off two weeks of the three mentioned. Within days after returning to work i started having lower back pain while driving, which i did not have at the time of the injury. I continued to work, but the pain increase as i drove but was relieved when i got out of the truck. I did some investigating of the seat in the truck and found the lumbar support and seat back to be broken. The lumbar support was pushing out on the seat only on the left side. I retracted the lumbar support so that the seat back was flat and more even across and that has cured the extreme pain while i drive. I still have the foot drop and numbness. I do not know how long this seat has been broken but the truck has only been in service for 14 months and the warranty is out on the seat. I have contacted the insurance company and informed them of my findings and they have said the claim will still be denied. I need to know if there is anyone i can contact to have this seat inspected to verify that it is broken and the cause of my injury without allowing the company to remove it and have it come up missing. Tim

Q: hi , i am 18 years old and i am getting really bad back pains in my upper back and also get chest pain at the same time sometime. when the pain comes it is not just normal pain it is really bad pain. I get the pain at night when i am asleep which wakes me up. i have been so see my GP and am now waiting for the spinal clinic to contact me, but i was just wondering if you had any ideas what would be causing this and any ways which would help me relieve the pain. please contact me back Aaron