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

The main site has all the formal medical articles and videos for you to research on.

Central disc protrusion l5 S1



  • Dave

    The ISAEC is supposed to expedite urgent cases so maybe worth a shot, although it does appear to be just another bureaucratic money pit. You mentioned that this is a relapse, did you have sciatica symptoms before and are they worsening? The word "stable" in a radiology report is usually used when there is a disc fragment or extrusion. Is there any mention of either? Any of the above could help move you through the ISAEC system a bit quicker.

    You are wise to stay far away from chiropractors, and don't worry about cauda equina. It takes a pretty large herniation to cause that. If your sciatica waxes and wanes with activity and rest you may have a good recovery with conservative treatment. But it wouldn't hurt to get some other options teed up.

    This forum does not permit recommendations of specific doctors. There are lots of spine consultants searchable online. Try adding these locations to your Google search: Vail Colorado, Bogen Germany, and Barcelona Spain. Happy hunting.

  • Hi Ronb. I had a sciatica symptoms from my disc bulge througout the years on and off(it’s been close to 10 yrs now).My first injury was at work around 2011 or so I think.Since my relapse around the end of October,my sciatica symptoms are a bit worse.I sometimes get pain down into the right foot and the right testicle when I stand or sit too long.Lying down with legs raised is the only relief I get, which I find myself doing all day.It is tempting to just take the surgery,but it’s a choice you can’t undo once it’s done.

    My MRI report did not mention extrusion or disc fragment, it just said “ central disc protrusion at l5 S1 with stable appearance,no significance contact with the traversing S1 nerve root or exiting S5 nerve roots.”

    I just hope it’s not an extrusion or disc fragment in there, and that they forgot to mention that.

    Thanks for the tips on looking for doctors, I will search today.

  • advertisement
  • Dave

    While the disc protrusion may appear "stable" when you are laying on your back (and are symptom-free), it may protrude further when the disc is loaded. You could opt for a weight-bearing MRI, but none in Canada that I know of. If you can "prove" the disc is impinging on the nerve, then you might be offered discectomy or fusion. Neither would be my first choice because of the relatively high revision rates, and disc replacement, especially at L5/S1, is not 100% guaranteed.

    I had the same symptoms as you and the testicular pain was the most unnerving, but for me sitting or standing for more than 10 minutes was difficult. When symptoms started in my left leg I went to the USA for a quick MRI which showed a large tear. I figured surgery couldn't make me any worse (I am 95% better @ 4 months). You have had symptoms on and off for 8 years from a work injury, and re-injured it at work. If your work is physically demanding, you might start planning for a career change even if you get better, with or without surgery. If you claim Worker's Comp you will get quicker referrals, but will be suspected of exaggerating your symptoms.

    Being laid up with sciatica is not fun, but it's not terminal. Research your options, and keep your GP in the loop and on your side. And keep your receipts, out-of-country medical expenses are tax deductible. 

  • @Ronb    

    I heard there’s none weight bearing MRI machines in Canada either.I think the closest is in Buffalo,New York.I live in the Kitchener/Waterloo area.I think Buffalo is close to 3 hours away from me.I heard the MRI test at this clinic cost over $500 US,so it’s a little pricey,but according to the website,lots of Canadians go there for second MRI tests.Maybe it something I will consider when I have enough money.

    My second relapse happened at home actually. I was hitting the bag in my basement. I threw a right cross, and I guess the twisting of my torso “threw out my back.” 

    Unfortunately at this time, I was going to a spinal decompression centre, and after the re-injury,I went about 3 more times, and I don’t knoe if it caused more damage.So I stopped going because of my sciatica symptoms. 

    It wasn’t until my MRI results mid December, that I realized that I should not let anyone mess with my spine, because I was also considering going to a chiropractor.

    Since then I took time off work, and haven’t been back.Money is tight and I want to apply to EI or disability, which sucks because I like to work and make my own money. On top of all that I am sponsoring my wife out of country, and she has an interview on the 28th of this month.So you can imagine the amount of pressure and worry that I feel.

    I just hope I make the right decision, whatever it may be, and that I can get back on my feet soon, because this is really depressing me.

  • Hello Dave, I had an 8mm herniated disc in my L5S1. The pain was horrific. I was scheduled for surgery and then the week before it started to heal. I do stretches 3 to 5x a day. I walk every day. I did an epidural shot that did nothing. I did not do surgery and I'm thrilled that I didn't need it.

  • advertisement
  • @Jan 

    I’m glad you didn’t need the surgery.Although I have a central disc protrusion,according to a physiotherapist,who saw my MRI report told me that I have ligamentum flavum(enlarged ligament) and facet joint hypertrophy( enlarged facet joint) leading to left lateral recess narrowing touching the L4 L5 nerve roots.I am real worried now because my own GP did not explain this to me.

  • ryanneedshelprryanneedshelp Posts: 54
    edited 01/21/2019 - 9:06 AM

    This might be over simplifying it as I don't know how healthcare works in Canada, but can you change your primary? And if you can, explain the pain situation and bring your results to the new primary and get a referral that way. As for pain management, I hold on to Advil and Tylenol and have them on standby. But maybe you can ask your current primary for nerve pain relief

  • Ryan:

    I never tried to change my primary and don’t know how the process works.I was going to wait for my GP to get back from her 3 week vacation and try to get that referal,if that doesn’t work im switching primaries for sure,and try to explain the new one my issues.Hopefully he or she is compassionate enough and understanding,and reluctant to just hand me drugs.:/

    I also may try going to the Hospital and just get a referal there,but last time I was there I waited like 3-4 hrs to been seen by a doctor,and with back issues waiting sucks.

Sign In or Join Us to comment.