Back Pain Questions and Answers
Archive 2009 Part 6

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: Dear Sensei,I am a 41 y/o male. I have been suffering from lower back pain since my early 20's. Of late the pain is getting worse especially when I got up from bed in the morning and if had a game of tennis or running the night before. My symptoms include pain during sneezing which I have bend down to minimize the pain. Now the pain and discomfort is almost constant. My visits to the masseuse and doctors did not give any results. Would like to know more about your programs..are the exercises? Thanks in advance for your kind reply. Regards, Zul

Q: Wife 50 Years old suffered back injury (Car Accident) 2001 had fusion on C4-C6 one plate did all. Outcome was great feeling better with limited movement. 6 months later went through Ulnar nerve surgery stemming from pinched nerve from Plates.Went through two of these out come was ok till sometime after having pain from same pinched nerve. Dr's said nothing they could do. Recommending Pain clinic. In short the treatment of her pain from this clinic led to 12 -14 treatments after the 5th didn't help anymore and it just got worse every treatment. It was so bad that she was hospitalize for malnourishment fever loss of weight and more. Released from hospital after their treatment and continued to go down hill. Till we saw spinal and infectious decease Dr's they did the correct MRI and found the infection In T1 & T2 and Disc in between destroyed so a week in hospital then Treated at home Pic Line and antibiotics did this 2 times now there talking about debridement. is there any exact info on this debridement of T1 & T2? Paul

Q: I was very relieved to find your website, especially the blunt reality that it can be so very painful, but also that you have to have faith and cant succumb to fear... your website help lifted my spirits on Wednesday- four days after I fell from a hammock (approx 3 feet) and landed perfectly on the right hand side/small of my back. Its been frustrating getting support and suggestions from my doctors, who tell me to "wait" and let the meds/body heal. Well I'm on day 6, feeling mentally better but still very painful to try and get in and out of a car (OUCH) and also into bed at the end of a day. Trying to have faith and feel optimistic, but I am a very active person, so this has been quite a test of patience for me. Scott

Q: Dear Sensei,I have written you before and would like to take advantage of your insight once again. I have read your book, Dr. Sarno's book and viewed his DVD several times and believe myself to be a candidate for a TMS diagnosis. Most of the personality traits, pain resistant treatment-7 doctors, multiple or no diagnosis, 2 MRI's and a discogram demonstrating no remarkable disc abnormality, epidurals(failure),radiofrequency abblation for supposed facet joint arthritis (dismal failure), physical therapy, drugs (refused), nerve test on leg (normal). The only positive realized was the fact two spine surgeons informed me I was definitely not a candidate for surgery. My pain management doctor now believes the trouble is not in my back but possibly Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. When I told him fatigue was not one of my symptoms, he answered some people with Chronic Fatigue were not tired!

My concern is after reading Dr. Sarno's book I experienced my worst pain episode the next day and after viewing his DVD several times my pain level has escalated a great deal. The pain upon arising in the morning (my worst) I am now experiencing in the afternoon and evening as well. I am barely able to stand or walk. Is it possible the unconscious is creating a fierce backlash against my attempting to end its control of my pain? I have been journaling and bringing to the fore many thoughts and feelings I had been unwilling to confront and also have an appointment with a counselor to explore these feelings in depth.There seems to be no other explanation for this sudden escalation of pain. Your comment would be greatly appreciated. Thank you again, Beth

Q: i had an MRI test which states that cervical spondylotic changes with evidence of muscular spasm at C5/C6 diffuse dorsal disc bulge causing neural foraminal narrowing with effacement of exiting nerve roots bilaterally. please comment on it. Hassan

Q: Hi, I have suffered from lower back pain for the past 9 weeks.I am uninsured so after about 3 weeks of pain when I went to the ER all they would do for me was give me a low grade muscle relaxer.They asked me a few questions and determined I had a pulled muscle.They refused to give x-rays because I am uninsured and was unable to pay for them upfront.My pain began in my lower back and I was unable to stand up straight after sitting.It switches from one side of my back to the other.Over the weeks It has changed and now I have a pain than runs down my butt and hip and it still switches from side to side every few days.I am unable to walk for very long periods or stand very long either without pain and spasms.When trying to grocery shop I have to sit down every 10 minutes if not sooner.I went to a general practice doctor yesterday and she did several exercises with me and determined that I had a bulging disk.I was given a cortizone shot that has really helped and steroid pills to take for the next 6 days but I still feel some of the pain today coming back.I am supposed to go back for x-rays and an mri but can not afford to and am seeking alternative treatment.My questions for you are first:what can I do to relieve my pain and possibly cure my back myself so I can do my shopping without having to sit every few minutes,second:does your book offer real treatment for my type of pain,third: can a bad mattress cause these type of back problems because mine is old and uncomfortable? Any exercises you could suggest to help me would be great. Thanks so much for helping people in pain! Daphane

Q: Hello, I am Daniel a 40 year old male, in the US Army, stationed in Germany. I have been doing some research and came across your web page. In 2007, I was diagnosed with spondylothesis of the L5/S1 which was found while treating another issue (Avascular Necrosis of the right femoral head). I had no pain as a result of this spondylothesis. In Feb 2009 while getting rehabilitation for a hip resurfacing surgery, I started to experience nerve pain when walking in my right calf. Over the past few months this has increased, as well as numbnes in my right foot which also includes burning pain when touched to the small toe and one next to it. I have seen 4 surgeons, both neurology and orthopedic. All say the same thing, I require a spinal fusion of the L5/S1. I tried one last thing, with injection therapy which really did not seem to help. The doctor that ran the 2 week long inpatient physical therapy and injection therapy also stated that a spinal fusion would be required. In researching for a surgeon that does the most invasive procedure for the fusion, I found a doctor who assisted in the development of the ProDisc. When reviewing my case, he observed that my L4/L5 was DDD. This doctor is going to perform a spinal fusion of the L5/S1 and do an ADR using the Prodisc on the L4/L5 in order to elevate the added stress that will happen to the L4/L5 from the fusion.

Just wanted to see what your opinion maybe about this procedure. Finally, when I asked him my recovery time, he stated that I should be able to do light desk work and start driving within 2 weeks of the surgery. Is this a realistic recovery time? Thank you. Daniel

Q: Hello there, I have been suffering from sciatica for 15 months following a L4/L5 disc herniation. This started with pain in the right buttock which I ignored and eventually after about a month the disc herniated and I had acute sciatica which was treated with a cocktail of drugs and also chiropractic adjustments (which may or may not have helped)... Now 15 months on I still get the pain down my right leg in my buttock thigh and calf, these can be quite bad at times and require rest or hot/cold packs or TENS treatment before the pain is alleviated. I recently spoke to my chiropractor and he advised my to look into having microdiscectomy surgery done because the symptoms have been there for so long... That's my sad story! Now, My question is: does this sound familiar and are there are real alternatives besides the dreaded knife?? Thanks, Aidan

Q: A list of doctors in the Boca Raton, Fl. area utilizing Accu-SPINA ( IDD THERAPY )Thank you, Ronnie

Q: I have been diagnosed with a herniated disc of the L5-S1. It says there is mass effect on the left nerve root. At L3-4 there is mild narrowing of the spinal canal. It says it could be from an old fracture(which I don't remember ever doing). My back has hurt off and on for 8 months but this last time I feel it down my leg and foot. Right now my back doesn't hurt but my calf does causing me to limp. Also half my foot feels numb. I know that Dr Sarno says to push through the pain and continue doing what you had always done before. I am a very active person who works out 4 times a week lifting, running, and cycling. My doctor wants me to see a neurosurgeon before doing anything. Should I see this Dr or push through it and ignore the pain. My calf and foot have felt like this for 1 month. Thank You for any advice, Chris

Q: my fiance has narrowing of the spinal canal ok ? plus spinal stenosis , plus on this paper report it says something about her having osteophytosis along the vertebral body margins at c5/6 level large spurs projects into the c5/6of up to 7mm the doctor basically said she needs surgery but shes got a 50 50 percent chance of permanent paralysis , its pressing on her nerves in her cervical and lumbar spine , give me the bests answer you can? i'm no doctor but i'm learning from others about not to do surgery unless necessary ..what would you advise ... shes on pain killers oxycodone 10/325mgs she gets 100 pills a month but they don't help the pain ../ please help me with advice, her name is cindy shes 44 yrs old i'm 38 yrs old. ty from steven

Q: Hello, Well my story began about 2 years ago. I began having back pain when I was only 16 years old and until now the pain has NOT gone away. I continually complained to my parents who didn't think much of it because they thought I was too young to be suffering from anything serious. But as months passed and as my condition worsened they finally took me to see the doctor. I got to the point where I couldn't even sit on a chair for more than 5 minutes. Standing for long period of time was unbearable and it was an all and all reckless period. So after speaking with my doctor she told me to set up an appointment with an Orthopedic. So I did. He did some test and told me that it wasn't anything too serious. My tail bone has slightly moved, but if I did some exercises to strengthen my back it will cause it go back in place and stop it from moving. He recommended I take some classes in physical therapy and I did which were of some help. I also bought a donut seat which eased the pain up and I could finally could sit on a chair comfortably! But the pain wasn't gone totally. It did lessen for a period of time but now its back.The pain starts from my lower back down my buttocks and down unto my upper thighs. I feel so weak at times due to the pain. I feel lazy and unmotivated. I still try to do some exercises to strengthen my back but it doesn't seem like its doing much to help it. My back is really bothering me and I really don't know what to do anymore. I honestly I just hate going to the doctors because they never have an answer or they tell you something in which you already know. Its very aggravating! Do you have any advise for me? Does sleeping on the floor help your back? What sorts of therapy do you advise? Sara

Q: Dear Sir: Is walking good for sciatica pain? I use a treadmill almost daily for 30 minutes. I'm the woman who wrote you that I herniated from the L3 to the S1. I had surgery in 2005. I will find my MRIs - pre-surgery, and make sure you see them. In the meantime, is it always good to be walking even with lumbar pain? Inertia seems to make everything worse. Susan

Q: Thanks for your reply. I feel that my condition is not stabilizing, the moment I'll stop taking pills, in few weeks the pain will reach its most acute state, getting me almost bed ridden. So will I be able to get relief from alternative treatments such as knowledge therapy or herbs therapy? In your opinion what course of treatment will be most suitable to me in order to stabilize Ankylosing Spondylitis conditions and lead a normal life without having any sort of dependency on painkillers? Many Thanks! Avinash

Q: My 14 yo. daughter just saw a specialist, had xrays and will have an mri in the next 2 weeks. We were there for her scoliosis and found that her curved back is due to scheuermann's kyphosis . She has not yet menstruated and my hope is that we are not too late for correcting with the boston brace. The doctor prescribed a providence brace but I realize through my research that the providence will not be enough. I am extremely upset for my daughter. Her curve is very noticeable although I do not have the degree to that yet. She has a 20 degree curve for the scoliosis. She has taken ballet since she was 5 and I am also finding that there could be a link to low estrogen and no cycle along with spinal problems. We are heading in for a blood test to check the estrogen tomorrow. Can you share your thoughts on how aggressive we can be? Kelly

Q: In 2005 I herniated from the L3-L5-S1. I had a laminectomy and diskectomy. Although I still have numbness in left leg and foot,it helped some, for awhile; but 4 years later the pain is radiating from the backs of my knees to my buttocks. I also have terrible burning in feet & legs. Are there ANY exercises you can recommend so that I can avoid repeating the surgery? I do not believe it will help to cut again. Thx. Susan

Q: I have been experiencing severe back pains on an ON OFF period now for the past 10 years.They seem to come sometimes when I have a really bad day at work I mean mentally and emotionally and physically.Some times its so bad that I cant even more and have to crawl to the bathroom.Now days its getting worse and I am scared it will ruin my life.I am 40years old weighing 100kg and am 187cm tall. Please do advice and are there any supplements that are really good for this,now I just take pain killers until the pain is bearable. Suresh

Q: Hello Mr. Rostocki, This is Avinash from Dubai and I was Googling for getting information on how to get relief from back pain and I came across your web site. I was really delighted to see that someone has created a web-site completely dedicated to the information and cure related to back pain.

About my story, well, I have been diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis. I am 35 years old now and have been suffering with the back pain over a decade. But in last couple of years it has been aggravated. Initially it was more at the lower back and hip areas but now I have the pain in the center of the back. For last one and half year I am on medication. I am taking Arcoxia 60mg 3 to4 times a week (Not every day). I was taking this medicine everyday until April 2009. When I was taking it everyday, the pain was minimal. Since I wanted to reduce dependency on the pain killer, i reduced the dosage after consulting my doctor. When I was going through your site, I could not see Ankylosing Spondylitis specified in the list on the left side of the home page. So my question is, will I get a permanent cure from the problem I am suffering? Waiting for your reply, Regards, Avinash

Q: I had L5-S1 removed and fused one year ago and ever since my surgery the back of my left leg and the bottom of my left butt cheek sweats when I have a bowel movement. So far four doctors have no idea why this is. Anyone have an answer or have heard anything like this? Jay

Q: I am wondering if you injured your tailbone 40 years ago, if treatment can still help today. I was 10 years old and we were in a gym assembly at school. I was about to sit down and someone pulled my chair away. I naturally thought the chair was there and went to plop down quickly, so it was a hard fall on the concert gym floor. I couldn't move at all after the fall, and was carried out of the gym by a teacher. I remember being in excruciating pain for weeks and not being able to do much of anything. We lived on a farm and my parents did not know much about treatment, so I had nothing done to my back or tailbone. I started noticing bad back pain around 16 years old, and have lived with this awful pain my whole life basically. Like I said before, my question is it still possible to get help now? I live in Vancouver, British Columbia. Do you know of any doctors there that could help? Elsie

Q: Thank you for reading this Sensei. My name is Leigh. I have suffered from differing degrees of back pain for the last 10 years. I am 32 yrs old. CT scans have showed L5-S1 bulges, although i suffer no neurological changes, i do endure significant lower back pain. I studied Aikido for 2 years before i injured myself at work and i have great respect for those that teach in the field. My pain is always there - it seems worse if i try to much physically. Could it be psychosomatic?? I am a stressed person. Mt doctor wants to try Amitriptyline 10mg as a chronic pain treatment. Do you have an opinion on my situation? Kind regards, Leigh

Q: Please help...I've been in agony for eight months now. Tried everything as well. What can I do? Desiree

Q: Sensei,I have had some pain relief with my lower lumbar disc herniations by reading Dr. Sarno's book and journaling. I find this to be a difficult as it conjures up some feelings of failure in life. My question to you is, have you been able to resume full body workouts including long distance running? Marty

Q: hi there, i was very happy to read your web page, hoping that the horrible jaw pain i am suffering is in fact psychosomatic. i had tight, sore jaw muscles following grinding cheap muesli, and my dr recommended stretching out the jaw muscles. i stretched them to a ridiculous extent, i guess, as i believed a good stretch should be sustained for 15 seconds and hurt a bit (as with a tight calf muscle). however my dentist, who didn't examine me, said that it would be almost impossible for me to have done a permanent injury to myself. i have some experience with psychosomatic pain when i developed RSD (now CRPS) following a fractured toe 18 months ago. i healed myself after reading about john sarno's work and having hypnotherapy. now i have been plagued with jaw pain for 5 months. the emotional issues could still be a factor.... do you think i should consult someone regarding the medical cause of my problem, or give the psychosomatic scenario my best shot? thank you so much for your time, it is much appreciated.. cheers, suzanne

Q: Hi, my name is Joe and I am 20 years old. I have been experiencing back pain for almost a year and a half. It first started my senior year in high school, during a wrestling match. I got it checked out after and was diagnosed with Degenerative Disc Disease, which healed about 5 months later. Then a year later I herniated my back while squatting for football at college. I started with Physical Therapy, which really didn't help. Then was introduced to spinal injections, which helped with the pain running down my leg, but I still had pain in the left side of my lower back. After I returned from college I was still having the lower back pain so I decided to try spinal decompression, which hardly helped. Now I still have the lower back pain and I can't bend straight down to touch my toes, which I was able to do before without feeling pain in my lower back. If I walk more than 5 minutes I start feeling the pain in my lower back as well. I was wondering if you could give me any advice about my situation. Thanks Joe

Q: Hi, I am a 34 year woman who has been suffering bad back pain for the last 16 months. I had an accident at work and herniated c-4 c-5, c-5 and c-6 and had to have a double fusion. In that same accident I caused a disc in the lumbar region of my back to bulge into the spine. I also have a small annular tear as well as scoliosis. I have been in physical therapy for the entire time since surgery and I have had 3 steroid injections. Nothing has taken my pain away. The Dr. says my only option is surgery but I don't want to go that route considering my age. I'm willing to try any method alternative or other. If you have any suggestions I would be forever grateful. Thank you for taking the time to read this. Kelly

Q: Hi, Am a 26 yr software Engineer. Am having a back pain for the past 1 month. i should say my back pain starts 3 months back.Initially there was not much pain.But later it got aggravated. i did nothing till now to cure my back pain. i thought it was due to traveling or some gastrocities problem.But nowadays when i started to work and when i got up from the chair, My back is paining like anything. i spoke to my brother who is a doctor told me take orthobidMR. I had taken it from yesterday. I use to got office by two wheeler and most of hours i sat and work. i rarely go for a walk. please advice me what should i need to do?? My height 168cms Weight 75Kgs. MuthuManikandan

Q: hi i was on clomid and now completed it ovulated and hoping for a good result, however i am experiencing swollen sore breasts and backache as cramping pains more or less period symptoms, i was due for my period today or tomorrow do you think there is no chance of pregnancy? Adline

Q: Hi. I was reading about disk disease and i think there is an inaccuracy in there. My mother which is 71 now has had DDD since the age of 25 and by the age of 40 her left knee had lost all cartilage and is bone to bone along with parts of the spine also having worn very thin. I myself turned 30 this June 2009 and i have been told i have military neck kyphosis and have had scoliosis since i was a kid. the same doctor and his partner found a bone spur in between c4 and c5 vertebrae. i have what is similar to restless leg syndrome in my upper back in between the shoulder blades and in my shoulders and elbows, chronic neck and full back pain most severe in the upper spine. the doctor that told me about all this said that before the MRI he had given me a placebo which had no affect i still could not be still at night and still had pain. he then put me on loratbs and except for still having very tense muscles the pain is nowhere near as bad. but now I have no insurance and I'm still suffering with the nerve pain from the bone spur. is there anything i can do besides surgery ? i have been dealing with this for ten years almost and would give anything to be normal again and be able to lay down and go to sleep like a normal human being. please give me some advice. thanks for your time, Lonnie

Sensei, Sir, I apologize for not reading your bio first as i am also a long time student of martial arts particularly tae-kwon-do and jiu-jitsu i am starting to have trouble with my flexibility in jiu-jitsu i can't seem to pass guard as well and i'm having alot of muscle pain due to pinched nerves from my bone spur i believe. I have more confidence that you may be able to help as i now know more about you. Again thank you for your time. Lonnie

Q: dear sensei rostocki - you'd recommended getting an mri as a good first step, which i did. the summary was back with l4/l5 disc herniation, medium sized (7-8mm), on the right hand side. this is consistent with my symptoms of loss of some feeling in right foot, weakness of dorsiflexion, pain down leg, etc. i've read your book, which i think is really useful, and i'm trying to actualize it. but i'm really tempted to get a cortisone injection and physical therapy, as recommended by my physician. what do you think? thanks for your time and attention. bill

Q: I have had 2 back fusion surgeries since Dec 2007 & am in worse shape since the surgeries. I am interested in your method, but am not too computer savvy & wonder if you are selling a book or method that you have to pay for. Thanks Walt

Q: hi i would like to know i have this pain between my shoulder blades for almost two months now ,and about two weeks ago the pain started in my chest it is like it is right through and when i swallow something it hurts in my chest and it feels like my breast are paining ,the doctor first said i have alot of acid ,and then he said it is kidney infection and last week he said it is stomach infection and shoulder has this burning pain and due to stress i developed a ulcer and the heartburn is bad ,and when i breath sometimes it also hurt thanking you, beverley

Q: Dear Sensei Adam, I am convinced of the powerful mind-body association influencing one's health. My personal back pain of three years happens to fit most parameters of TMS including mis-diagnosis, resistance to pain treatment and personality type. My dilemma is understanding fully the conscious mind presenting an embellished version of a primitive, damaged and not very admirable true self. How depressing to present a false image to the world over a lifetime, especially when it is a construct of the seemingly awful subconscious. The acceptance that you are not who you believe yourself to be would be helpful. The constant struggle to maintain a socially acceptable status quo would be explained. But everytime your true inclinations are brought forward to the conscious mind doesn't this throw a blanket of suspicion on your entire persona? Trying to second guess true intentions is very tiring. The last thing I would ask is do you believe self-protection of the conscious can become self-punishment of repressed transgressions also thru induced pain? Is it the same process or different? I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on these matters.I may have "missed the boat" entirely and would like your comments on that as well. I find your website to be both informative and sincere. Thank you Sensei, Beth

Q: I am almost 6 months post spinal fusion (L4 - L5 - S1). This operation was done only after "years" of severe back pain. I went through many rounds of PT and Steroid Shots before having the surgery. While I like my Doctor I feel I was given VERY LIMITED information up front. While I bare some responsibility for understanding everything - I was in so much Pain I just wanted "something" done. I am SOOO Miserable now. The disc pain is gone but I am definitely having issues. I am in a lot of pain. The evil Disability people forced me back to work. (Please note: I WANT TO WORK! not trying to milk the system) I just dont know where to turn exactly... Is it common to have this much pain this far out. Still taking quite a few Vicodin - having a lot of trouble sleeping. Is there a place where I can go to find "actual and verified" statistics on how long it truly takes for people to recover. What is the average amount of time people should be off from work. I am convinced that I was forced back to work too early. I was doing ok ..but am now going the wrong way with my recovery. I am in constant pain and it is wearing me down. Please direct me to some good - verified and reliable information. I anxiously await a reply as I am quite desperate. Kim - Pittsburgh, PA Also - Just wanted to share something that has helped me along a bit... I started wearing a "SPANX" type product merely for the purpose of some support once I came out of the brace. It does not actually provide support of course but I find the compression very comforting! (Just wanted to share) There really needs to be a spinal fusion support would realy help to talk and share ideas, suggestions, stories. Any help would be appreciated.... Kim

Q: My husband has been in pain for quite some time with his neck and shoulders. We have been to the Doctor and he has been given Catafast sachets and later Rantudil Forte with a topical gel called Fastum. If possible, he has gotten worse. I was wondering if you could help us with some advice on how to ease his pain because it is making his life very difficult. Thanks a lot regards, Helen

Q: hi after fainting back in june i experienced severe face tingles and a hard bony like lump appeared just behind my earlobe this causes me to feel very dizzy sick and numbness in my face and head my physio thinks it could be a prolapse and my chiropractor thinks my left vertebra slips out constantly but the lump is behind my ear i have not had any scans because im pregnant what do you think this is its affecting me really bad thanks for your time Ashlee

Q: My 13 yr old son was found to have a "straight neck" during his football physical. The doctor suggested he not play football due to this condition. Does this "straight neck" condition put him at greater risk of injury than normal? My research on the subject indicates that this is a quite common condition. I've also talked to several people that also have "straight neck" and played football all through school. Thank you, you're opinion is valued. Tyrone

Q: In May of 2007 I had a Level 3 spinal fusion of my L4-S1 In Sept. 2008 I had the hardware removed (severe pain) and I'm having severe pain in my lower back (stabbing, pinching) and can't walk. What do you suggest. Thanks Dee

Q: Please re-accept as a question. First, 3-4 weeks ago I began to have what felt like a muscle sprain in RHS mid back. Incidentally, it coincided with beginning summer swimming with grandson, which may or may not have been the onset cause. It does not seem to be spine related, which I am no stranger to. At night certain bed movements cause brief intense pain. It's similar to an electrical shock knocking the breath out of me. If this causes something like a hic-hup it jolts my stomach or inner organs intensifying the momentary pain. (I dread to think what coughing spasms would do.) I immediately arise to get vertical and the pain subsides quickly. During the day I very seldom, if at all, have the night time effects, but still feel something similar to a pulled muscle. In your opinion what is the cause of my problem? Gary

Q: Sir,I've been suffering from severe upper back pain for the last one year. The pain seem to start from a small area on my left upper back which spreads later on.when i touch that area where the pain originates i can feel a small swelling which slips off. I've been to several orthopedic surgeons,and they say that there is nothing wrong with my back.But still the pain persists. Recently i met a doctor who told me that my pain is due to nerve entanglement. He prescribed me some medication,and i had relief for a while but later on i started having pain again. The pain worsens if the climate is cold and my work demands me to sit on chair for at least 8 hours a day.Please help me. Riyas

Q: dear sensei rostocki -i read your book and thought it was wonderful; i'm working on it. i also read the questions and your answers in the interactive q&a section, in which you highlight getting an mri, which seems at odds with your recommendations. should i get one? my own pain began about three weeks ago. it started out being lower back. as my back loosed up, it migrated to my upper leg. and in the last day, my foot feels, not numb, but something. i've discussed all this with my doctor, who feels we could wait a few more weeks, then perhaps do an mri. what do you think? should i focus on my emotional issues, anger and guilt, and accepting myself, or go straight to getting more diagnostic aids? thanks for your time, and the work you put into your book and this site. bill

Q: Dear Adam, I hope this email finds you well. My husband has what has been described as a moderate bulge in his L5. His symptoms are simple: his tailbone aches, and he has burning at the end of his penis. These symptoms come on at the same time and are worsened by bending over and lifting. He has been to several spine doctors, who don't seem to agree on whether this L5 bulge could be giving him these odd symptoms. He has had four cortisone shots, none of which did much. He has been to a urologist, who doesn't detect anything wrong with his prostate. Any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated. Best wishes, Elli.

Q: I have pain in the right lower side of my back.It kills me to bend over.I also will take a spasm there once in a while.I work at a motel doing rooms and also laundry,on my feet alot.When I get home from work and then sit down and then get up. omg it hurts.I am all bent over and can hardly move. I am 58,can you help me please, Julie

Q: Dear sir,I was injured March 10, 2007. I am a T-10 Asia A complete. I have terrible Chronic Nerve pain in the L-1 Groin area. My back itself has no pain. Despite my injury I feel well except for this dying pain that is ruining my life. Do you have any suggestions besides drugs, or spinal injections. Thank you, Joe

Q: 3-4 weeks ago I began to have what felt like a muscle sprain in RHS mid back. Incidentally, it coincided with beginning summer swimming with grandson, which may or may not have been the onset cause. It does not seem to be spine related, which I am no stranger to. At night certain bed movements cause brief intense pain. It's similar to an electrical shock knocking the breath out of me. If this causes something like a hic-hup it jolts my stomach or inner organs intensifying the momentary pain. (I dread to think what coughing spasms would do.) I immediately arise to get vertical and the pain subsides quickly. During the day I very seldom, if at all, have the night time effects, but still feel something similar to a pulled muscle. Gary

Q: Hello, my name is Valerie. I am 29 years old and am currently suffering from horrible neck pain. It started about 2 1/2 weeks ago when I was hospitalized for a Multiple Sclerosis flare up. My left leg is weak and I am in need of a cane to get around. Last Saturday I was staying at my parents house and my mother gave me a memory foam pillow to sleep on. I woke up the next morning with horrible tightness and pain in the neck. I went to the chiropractor Tuesday (with no improvement) so went back Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday morning. Here it it Sunday and my neck is not relieved and my pocket book is depleted from all the chiro visits. I have been doing ice therapy, salonpas ointment pads (think icy hot but less harsh and smells better) and I am at a loss I don't know what else to do. I am in so much pain and it is affecting every aspect of my life..please help. Valerie

Q: My Mom (87 y old) is suffering because of her lower back pain.Her all tests (as blood test ,USG and others)are ok. I was visiting my Parents recently and my Mom spine problem is getting worse. I brought with me her x-ray result which was transferred on the disc. Is any chance to check this result and give diagnose or is needed MRI or other tests? Please let me know what I can do to help my Mom. Sincerely, Leokadia

Q: I was diagnosed with ddd in upper back just below neck, pain is going from neck area to left arm up to elbow, I have been taking therapy, with little or no improvement, can you, please advise of any remedy, therapy or life style change which may help this condition. Aman

Q: I was injured at work and herniated C4-5 and 6-7. I had neck fusion and surgery for my hand (carpal tunnel)at the same time. I worked with the injury for a year before I agreed to surgery. Anyways, to make the story short, after surgery I developed a frozen shoulder that needed to be manipulated. I was put to sleep for this procedure. I got the range of motion back in my arm but I remain in pain for over two years. I get headaches regularly and I have pain between the shoulder blade and the spinal cord with numbness in both arms and hands. Additionally, I have referral pain to my left rib cage, both shoulder and forearm. The rainy weather causes a lot of pain and there are a number of trigger point through the back. Lyrcia is helping some with cort. shots. Is there anything else that would work or is this the best it will get? Peggy

Q: I am a normal 19 yr old, though would not be very active, i have been having back pain for nearly a yr, i have had an x-ray and MRI but nothing appeared to say what was causing the pain. I have also been attending physio for nearly 10 months. My physiotherapist says that the muscles in my back have spasmed. I suffer from pain from the bottom of my back up into my shoulders and neck. Although physio has eased the pain slightly it has not completely recovered and every few months the pain goes back to being terrible. I do not know what is causing my pain and seems to get sore no matter what e.g. sitting too long, walking too long, swimming anything really. please if you could suggest any other treatment i can try it would b greatly appreciated. Sarah

Q: Cant remember when it started. But every so often I'll get a severe and sudden stabbing pain in my lower middle back that seems to radiate to me sides. I also suffer from daily headaches (for months now) and sudden stabbing pains in my chest. I have had EKG and chest x-rays (doc couldn't find anything but gave me pain killers and insisted it was just plurisy). I disagree. I in pain and discomfort all the time. Please help! Cati

Q: I had L-4/L-5 fusion 1.5 yrs. ago. I had some stenosis, as well. Now, progressive heel pain; stabbing, on outside of bottom of heel. Is it in hip or fusion? Where do I begin?? Cathy

Q: I'm male,Age 37, first time i felt leg pain and 5 years later i got back pain. recently i tested blood and MRI, in MRI (loss of lumber lordosis was noted, in my blood test (ESR 29 mm) and CRP is (Negative) and the rest of blood test MRI is normal.I can't stand and walk for a long time. what can i do for my back treatment. Thanks, Shafi

Q: I have three herniated discs. L 3 4 and 5. I see a chiro regularly and take cymbalta as well. over the past few months and especially the past several weeks I've had chest pain in my upper right side and upper should blade area. My primary doc said I had three dislocated ribs and sent me back to chiro. I've had several adjustments and still have moderate pain. what else can be going on? they want me to get a MRI. I also have numbness and burning sensatiom in my mid back at bra line. on and off I have a crawling like feeling on my left side of rib cage. help! -Nameless

Q: A few years ago I injured my back lifting weights. Since the injury my lower back muscles have become "loose and lumpy". The doctor I saw said it was scar tissue? Do you agree? How can I fix this? My back is now easily injured. Thanks. Doug

Q: I have had lower back pain & both leg pains below the knee for a few years. in December 2007 i had an mri done here is the report. have look and see what you think of it. after finding the bone marrow disorder a lot of test were done but they were negative, thank God. but my pains got worse i have pain all over my back down to my hips, my bottom, my neck, side of both my legs and some days i get pain on my right side leg from hip to the feet. I had another MRI taken on the 29/01/09 see report below...

All vertebral body heights are maintained with no collapses. Within the cervical spine there are osteophytic disc bars at C3/4, C4/5, C5/6 and C6/7 which indent the ventral theca only and at C5 causes moderate right C5 and right C6 neuroforaminal narrowing. Minor degenerative lumbar changes are noted with small non-compressive disc bulges at L2/3, L3/4 and L4/5. The spinal canal is capacious throughout and the spinal cord and conus return normal signal.First MRI Throughout the lower thoracic spine, the lumbar spine and the sacrum the bone marrow signal shows irregular low signal on the Ti and T2 sequences indicating replacement of the normal fatty bone marrow. The changes are seen in all parts of the vertebrae. There is no skeletal deformity. Additionally there is some disc degeneration with posterior disc bulging. This is most prominent at the L3/L4 level but there is no nerve root involvement. Bone marrow disorder, clinical correlation suggested. It has been notified that this is a clinically important finding and that the referring clinician should receive the report promptly. Regards, Mohamed

Comment: I have suffered a pain in my back by over doing jobs like bending over to lift things and over doing it. Katerina

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