MRI Results, can you help me help myself?

Posted , 5 users are following.

Hello, I recently had an MRI for back pain, I was a bit dissapointed when it came through only to scan my lower back but never mind - that's another story!

So the results show at L4-L5 I have what most people have - Degenerative disc disease with reduction of disc hydration and loss of disc height. The doc has explained this as 'wear and tear' as i'm not 20 anymore..........I am however only 38 and I want a good long healthy life! I love to run and haven't done so for over 6 months due to pain and although the doc said find something else to do i'm keen to get back out there soon.

What i'm wondering is is there ANYTHING I can do for this wear and tear? YOGA?? Cod liver OIL??

Any experience and tips greatly received!!!!

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11 Replies

  • Posted

    Hello Mason,

    I am sorry you have back trouble. I have suffered myself since aged 40, so for 20 years now. What works for one may not work for another. I have tried many things over the years including meds, cod liver oil and glucosamine and acupuncture. One thing i will say is that inpact exercise such as running won't help. Everything is trial and error. Light exercises and stretching helps. I pace myself everyday. Depends also on what job you have. I don't know about you but i find sitting for long on unsupported chairs very painful. Walking is good exercise. Make sure you have a fairley firm mattress. Don't be taken in by expensive goods from companies trying to part you from your money, none of these will work. 

    I hope you find some relief and what works for you. 

    Elizabeth.

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  • Posted

    Mason,

    Can you tell me a little bit about your symptoms, I have degenerative disc issues as well but I can run and exercise whenever I want. I had a lot of pain and my MRI showed degenerative disc desease and other things! I didn't except that answer and I kept going back! It turned out I had an auto immune desease that was causing my spine and hips to build up with inflammation.

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    • Posted

      My back in general I would consider to be 'weak', but only since 10 weeks post partum when I was carrying my baby and simply sat down on the bed, my back just 'went' and I would say along the bra strap line on the right side was the worst pain, I could hardly turn and the pain got worse throughout the day for 3 days, in the end I went to the chiro and had a rib joint put back in place, 1 week later, another rib, and on week 3 another. In the end I went to the doc who prescribed physio, they worked well with me but eventually wrote to the doc and signed me off that they could do no more.

      My bottom is the worst, it hurts every day and I can't sit on certian chairs for long, nor the floor - Diagnosis - Bruised from having children and be patient.

      As for the upper back which wasn't scanned it can hurt through the night or in the shower, its probably just weak but in the my heart I want another scan. The thing is i'm currently waiting to see the Gyno to get on the waiting list to have an ovarian cyst removed so my back will just have to wait - hence the post.

      I just want to do whatever is possible to help myself.

      I should probably add that when I stretch over the cot forward I can always feel a pull in the original problem zone. Weird.

      I hope you aren't in too much pain?

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  • Posted

    Whatever you do, do not do what I did. When I injured my back I did it exercising and it was in excruciating pain and I let that stop me from exercising. 10 years later I am laying on my couch taking opiates for the pain. I can't walk for more than a few feet and I spend my days trying to get through the day with this pain. If you find you have trouble sitting for very long use a cushion like what you would have for a kitchen chair

    A great exercise to replace your running would be the elliptical machines. It does not do the jolting on your body that the running will do. Walking is fine but I just don't know if you can stand to walk without wanting to start running. Another one to try is bicycle riding. I was unable to do the bicycle riding because of my tailbone. Perhaps if I could have done that I might not be where I am today.

    If you are going to insist on doing something on foot be it running or walking make sure that you buy very good shoes and inserts that will take the brunt of the impact as your foot hits the pavement. Or even better still join a gym where you can run on their track which is softer than concrete.

    Use ice or heat on your back as needed. I've been told that it doesn't matter which you use it's whatever feels good to you. I typically use ice but a lot of people choose Heat.

    One more thing, do not take a lot of NSAIDs. I took Aleve twice a day for a year after I injured my back and it gave me GERDS. So now I have to take stomach medicine for my GERDS. I know that it's good for the back because NSAIDs help with inflammation but don't take it for too long.

    I don't have any other advice at this time. It couldn't hurt to see a physical therapist. At least they can advise you on your exercise regimen. Of course stretching is a very important thing to do both before and after your exercise. Good luck to you

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  • Posted

    Your issue is definitely the result of an injury! I suspect it will get better with time if it's just a muscle. I hope it is just a muscle since the MRI didn't show anything down low on your back. But since you remember the exact place when it started to hurt leads me to believe it probably is a muscle. Most people I talk to including myself don't have an exact place and time their back started to hurt when it is a disease! People with an injury do remember though. When it's a disease it usually builds up slowly over time and becomes chronic. If I was you I would definitely have them do another MRI scan on the upper part of your back to make sure you don't have an injured disc or something else. Since you mentioned the chiropractor adjusting ribs it's possible there is something wrong higher up on your back. Good luck.

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    • Posted

      I have but two questions to you #1 are you a doctor? and # 2 have you examined this person? That would be the only way for you to be able to say with certainty that this is an injury. You should stop trying to diagnose somebody. Making suggestions of what it could be is one thing but saying what it definitely is something completely different.
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    • Posted

      I went 20yrs without being diagnosed and I suffered! So when I see people reaching out for suggestions and the doctors have no answers I'm going to try and help because it was not a doctor that recommended I might have a disease! So many people on here reaching out because the doctors can't give them any answers so I'm sorry that you don't appreciate it.

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    • Posted

      Roccdeezy I don't know what the heck I was thinking the day I wrote what I did to you. I must have been unhappy about something. Because I just re-read it and although you could have worded it differently, it was really not out of line and I want to apologize. I am sorry for my harsh words.

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  • Posted

    Thank you all for taking the time to reply and share views.

    I might look into a private mri and see hiw much i'm looking at, i've been back and forth to the doctors lately and waiting to go on the waiting list for an ovarian cyst removal.

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