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My story

Hello everyone,

I read on here frequently but I have never posted anything.  I am possibly looking for someone who may have had similar symptoms to what I am experiencing.  I just don't know what to do next, and I'm not looking for advice, I know you're not doctors, just maybe some guidance on what has worked for others.  

I'm a 36 year old male.  5'8 165lbs.  

I started in my early 20's with some pretty intense sciatica.  I drove an hour to work and sat on a wallet with way too much useless crap in it.  I saw a chiro and everything pretty much went back to normal.  

Then around ages 22-30 I would have spasm episodes in my lower back from various things.  Anything from flushing the toilet to swinging a golf club to picking something up off the floor.  I never saw a back doctor, just chiropractors which always seemed to give me some relief.  And these weren't just a little twitch or a little pain, I literally could barely move for 3-5 days.  

In 2015 the sciatica came back.  I didn't know what to do so I went back to a chiro, I paid through the nose for "decompression therapy" or some places call it traction.  Every time I was on the machine for 15-20 minutes I would have to lay there for almost another half hour before I could move due to another terrible spasm.  After 2 months of therapy I felt great, sciatica basically gone, low back pain very minimal.  I stopped doing the traction and just went in for normal adjustments.  About a month later, the sciatica came right back, even worse than it was before.  Because the traction is so expensive and not covered by my insurance, I decided to go without and just deal with it.  

Then in June of 2016 I was golfing with my dad, and I took what I believe to be my final golf swing ever.  I heard a pop and Immediately went into spasm.  From there on I have had constant pain/sciatica/muscle spasms that is incredibly painful.  I started off on norco 5's.  Then up to norco 7.5's, then to percocet 7.5 which I am currently still taking.  I have tried neurontin, and cymbalta, those both did not agree with me.  My doctor recently suggested we could possibly try suboxone, which I've read some have had good luck with.  

Some of the procedures I've had done this year:

4 level lumbar rhizotomy in Jan

2 level lumbar bilateral steriod in March and another in April

SI joint steroid injection in June.

Just had an MRI done on Monday and the doctor says there isn't anything else he can help with and they are referring me to a rheumatologist.  When I look at the MRI on my computer, I see two discs that are black.  Both of them are pushing into whatever the white spot is on the right side, so I'm not sure what this means, but the doctor seems to think everything is ok.  

Thanks for reading, please share any thoughts you may have.





  • jadehdjjadehd CaliforniaPosts: 18
    edited 08/21/2017 - 3:47 PM

    There are no medical professionals on this site, but, from reading your last comment about the MRI it sounds like those two discs have degenerated because the discs on an MRI are supposed to look white and fluid-filled, but when they are black that means they have degenerated. The white spot on the right side I believe you are referring to is the spinal canal where the nerves and such are located. From what you said it sounds like you do have issues in that area, but if i were you Id get a second opinion just to be sure. Good luck! 



    As you state...........There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
    This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test 

    6.03 You agree not to respond to any request for analysis of diagnostic tests (ie MRI, CTScans, EMG, etc.)

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

  • Your story sounds very much like my own, except mine didn't start until I was 31, I'm  now 35, I've been living with sciatic pain for the last 4 years, I also tried every chiropractor and therapy this side of the Mississippi including traction and nothing seems to help, then a few weeks ago my sister (who is also a physical therapist) told me that one of her clients had prp done in her knee and she had great success with it, so I had it done in my spine almost a week ago  and I'd say my pain has improved by about 50% 

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  • Hey Jack, thanks for the response.  I have an appointment with a rheumatologist hopefully next week so we'll see where that goes.  I did some research on the prp and that sounds promising, but most likely out of pocket.  How are your symptoms now after a couple of weeks?  

  • RDavidGRRDavidG Jacksonville FlPosts: 233

    Dexter, to begin with, you'll find very few chiro fans on this site! I cringe every time when I hear I went to a Chiro for traction or a "alignment " Your standard X-ray will only show bones, not, nerves ect..ect...So please save your money! Please see either a orthospine   MD or a neurologist! There are so many test that you haven't gone through that can show them EXACTLY whats going on and a PROPER treatment plan! Until then, their only guessing! Where a MRI shows certain things, so does a CT with contrast, mylogram as well as EMGs, sometimes you have to be your own advocate and demand that certain procedures and test are done!

  • Hi Dexter11

    Keep us updated on your appointment with your rheumatologist.

    You clearly need specialist treatment so take advice at that appointment.

    Hope your pain levels are lower today




    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015
    L4-S1 TLIF with decompression June 2017
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  • Thanks guys, pain is miserable today but it's just seems like the norm to me.  Feeling sluggish and tired along with twitchy muscle spasms.  I agree with you David, I'm done with chiropractic, it seems like wasted time and money at this stage of my problem.  Hoping to get another opinion from a new neurologist in town, heard great things about him from quite a few people.  At this point I just want to know the cause of all of this pain, it might help me deal with it mentally because I'm feeling more and more depressed as the days and sleepless nights go on.  

    Thanks for all your kind words, and best of luck to all of you suffering as well.

  • So I finally had a Rhumetology appointment, they are testing me for possible Ankylosing spondilitis.  I'll have more info in a few weeks when I revisit the doc.

  • Hey Dexter, just reading your post again, I had my PRP done August 15, I gotta say, it was very successful for me, I'm about 95% better than I was before my treatment! I highly recommend you look into it! If you need information about the clinic, just send me an email and I'll give you their contact information. 

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