Looking for back pain info and support

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I am seeking info on spine related conditions, as well as pain relief solutions and life management support, on behalf of my husband.  My husband is 40 years old and has degenerative disc disease in his cervical and in his lumbar regions, and has an herniation in the thoracic region.  In the cervical area he also has some bone degeneration that is causing impingement of root nerves as they exit the spinal cord.  I am trying to find out if it is common to have such widespread degenerative disc disease.  Everything that my online research indicates is that it is generally restricted to one area, but I think that this can not be the case.  There must be other people who have experienced such a wide scope of this condition, and I would love to be able to find them.  Additionally, I am hoping to find some support and info concerning the nerve damage that he is experiencing.  Is this a serious issue?  Am I making it more of an issue than it needs to be?  Is it common to develop some nerve damage related to degenerative disc disease? Your input would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Posted

    Degenerative disc disease is a common condition of the spine. As people age there are discs between the vertebrae start to dry up and cause less cushion for the vertebrae. And this is what typically causes the pain that you feel. There are at least as many people who have this condition and have no pain. So it in itself doesn't necessarily mean that's where it's pain is coming from. Degenerative disc disease is essentially the beginning of arthritis. When I first hurt my back I had a couple of bad disk and DDD. I was in my early forties at that time. Today I am 5 56 years old and I recently had another MRI because my pain had gone overboard and because I hadn't had one in many years. Well now I have 7 bad discs all up and down from my Thor attic to my lumbar. I also have arthritis in my facet joints and in my SI joints. It's the arthritis that is causing me the most pain and I am know that that is what follows a DDD diagnosis typically. As far as the nerve damage I can tell you that it's not unusual I don't have that I've been very lucky. But I know a lot of people on all of my pain sites I go to that have nerve damage. It can cause radiating pain down your arms and down your legs. Since he has it in his cervix area that radiating pain would be down his arms if since he also has it in his lumbar region he can have it running down his leg. I just got told that the pain in my legs that I'm feeling is without a doubt sciatica which is nerve pain. And I am very unhappy about it because it hurts like hell. I recommend that your husband do two things. Number one he needs to request referral to a pain management doctor. Different kinds of medication to help control the pain and it can also do injections and ablation and the list goes on as to what a pain management doctor and do to help your husband. Has he tried a TENS unit? If not I suggest he'd buy one as soon as possible and give it a go. I get a lot of success with my TENS unit but the pain relief is only good while the TENS unit is on it doesn't stop it for any length of time after you take it off. You can buy these online or you can also buy them locally as well. The other thing I suggest your husband do is join some pain support groups. A popular social group whose name begins with an F and nI can't say on here without being moderated has some groups that he can join. Some are just for pain patients others are specifically for those with back issues.

    I hope I helped you and have given you some information that you were looking for. Give your husband a great big hug and give him all the support you can because if he's in pain he needs to know that you know he's not making it up and he's not being a big baby and he is everything he was before the pain.

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  • Posted

    Hello Flowergirl526,

                I am a 53yr. old women, my diagnosis for my cervical degenerative disc disease came when I was 2 months shy of 30yrs old. I have also been diagnosed with lumbar degenerative disc disease 4yrs ago ( though I suspect it started over 10 yrs. ago). I have been living with chronic pain for over 20 yrs. and at times it has been extremely difficult.  I hardly discuss it with anyone other than those closest to me because most people don't believe me. They try to give me advice thinking I can easily solve the problem. For myself the nerve damage creates more pain and as far as I know there really isn't much they can do for it. I believe nerve damage is something that is to be expected when you have impingement of the nerves, and that in and of itself creates more pain in areas other than just in the neck and back. At least that is the case with me.

             As to whether this is common, I wish I had an answer.  My Mother suffers from the same conditions that I and your husband do. I was told at 30 yrs old that I was "too young" to be suffering from Cervical degenerative disc disease and that I was not a candidate for surgery. (Though personally I am not interested in having surgery, for many reasons). I have found some relief from spinal injections, but they are only a temporary "fix" and can be rather costly. I take pain medication, and have been taking Lyrica (for almost 2 yrs). It enables me to take less of my opiods medication. Medical cannabis also provides some relief.

                      I sympathize with what your husband is going through and he is lucky to have you to stick by him. It can be a long and lonely road. I hope some of my story helps. Hang in there! Lisa

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  • Posted

    Sorry to hear about your back troubles... Sounds like you are going through a lot of pain and discomfort. I was going through the same thing for 3-4 years until i found a book called Healing Back Pain By: Dr John E Sarno. After finding a cure for my back pain i said i will reach out to everyone i can. 

    3 Years ago I was in a car accident that caused a whip lash in my neck which resulted into major Neck, Back and Left Arm pain. After MRI's and Ex rays doctors told me i have a C5-C6 herniated Disc. After 2 years of Physical Therapy, injections, seeing neurologist and spinal doctors nothing could help. My Back surgeon advised surgery and I thought that was my way out of this misery. 3 months later I had the surgery and i finally started feeling better! I continued to get rehab and massages for a year and a half after the surgery and i felt great! All of a sudden the pain came back with a vengeance. At this point i could not bare the pain i was dealing with.. I could not sleep, lift, sit or lay down without feeling some kind of pain or extreme discomfort. 

    This is when i found Dr. John E Sarno's Book. I've been reading all of his books this year and i can finally say i cured my back pain. This may sound crazy to some of you but what most of you are experiencing is not actually "back pain". It is oxygen deprivation that is making you think you have a back abnormality. We have a conscious and an unconscious mind. Most of you may have thoughts or repressed anger in your unconscious that you may have never addressed or faced. What your body is doing is distracting your mind from reaching into your unconscious by causing you to focus on a physical pain such as Back pain, Leg pain, Sciatica and so on. 

    Unfortunately Dr. John E Sarno is no longer with us and has passed this summer. I do not work for him or any of his colleagues trying to sell his book. I'm just a normal guy that experienced all of your troubles. Its an easy read and the book is 8 dollars on Amazon. Give it a try and you will thank me later.          

    Reviews on Amazon speak for themselves smile 

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