Sadly, I searched for this forum and found it.
I am 45 and have had numerous (too often debilitating) back issues since I was 16 and got trampled during a soccer game. Always hoping youth and strength would prevail, I became a firefighter (using my spine and back muscles in ways that are not healthy,) later doing a great deal of physical labor only to be followed by a couple of bad falls (slides) down stairs (riding my back like I was on a luge.)
Until recently, I have never been diagnosed with anything worse that a sprain or muscle spasm. I have seen a Chiropractors, Orthopedists, and a neurosurgeon, not to mention my GP who is always ready with a prescription pad. I have done this for 30 years. I said recently because I now have 4 bulging disks, one being L2 which is causing horrendous sciatic pain.
My back is a mess, but I have another concern in that my sister and her back. She has very similar issues. She has chosen the surgical route 5 times, including a stimulator implant, with no positive results. She will have her 6th surgery in May, a spinal fusion. She is only 42.
I am not a fan of surgery. For now I am using TENS, NSAIDS and other non-invasives.