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Doctors wont help, arm going numb

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  • Does your mom go to the appointments with you? If not, maybe bring her with you to see if the doctors would listen to her better than it seems like they're listening to you. I'm just wondering if maybe they're not taking you seriously because of your age. I really hope that's not the case. From my personal experience my MRI/X-Ray/CT was all ordered by my Dr not my pain management Dr. I really hope you get some help or feel better soon! I'm sorry you're having to deal with this.
    L5/S1 DDD/Herniation/Stenosis/Hypertrophic facet joint
    Been in pain since 2000
    Pain management/Medicine 
    TLIF L5/S1 04/20/17
  •  Hi Erink.....I hope your pain mgt. appt. is soon so you can get a neck MRI. Some cervical spine problems can show symptoms in the legs. Since you are so young, a whole spine MRI would be best. Sometimes you can have sciatica with no back pain as well. It's not normal to have arm numbness for a whole year, and this should be promptly investigated. So, yes PM clinics do send you for MRI's and can refer you to another specialist as they coordinate your care. Getting this appt. was a very good step and hopefully you'll get the care you need soon. Take care. 
    Ol' Spiney..Micro-D L4-L5, TLIF L4-S1 -post op central HNP L4-S1,stenosis, retrolisthesis, EF, facet arthropathy, lumbar& cervical DDD. FBSS- Medtronic pain pump & SCS
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  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,228
    It sounds very good that you are being referred to pain management. That was best thing for me!
    My PM doctor did variety of tests to find cause of my pain while helping to take the edge off of my pain levels.
    And it may depend on the doctor, but my PM doctor does order MRIs.

    On right side of page, FAQs, under ....Medical Information.....may be helpful to you.
    There are posts explaining how to prepare for doctor appointments, ex...Preparing for first pain management appointment.
    Some of the posts are specific to particular doctor, ex..surgeon, PM doctor....but I have found that information from all the readings had something useful for me re all my doctors.
    Information can help you with suggestions or reminders of questions to ask PM doctor.

    There can be trial and try again re finding cause of pain and again for finding appropriate treatment. Many of us here experienced that..or are still experiencing it.
    It is not easy to be in pain, undergoing tests, and feeling vulnerable and sometimes confused with the system.
    It's not always easy to remain strong in advocating for yourself, but you must!

    It is a sad lesson to be learned at such a young age, but no one knows your pain like you do! Not finding cause or proper treatments often means you have just not yet have met the right doctor...the one who understands exactly what you're talking about!
    Lets hope that your new PM doctor is such for you, as my PM doctor was/is for me!

    When I was at the beginning of my pain journey and/or having new symptoms develop, I would bring a friend with me to doctor office.
    I spoke for myself, and even at your young age, is your relationship and clear communication with the doctor that is so important.
    But I would occasionally bring a friend with me, in your case your mom..?.....and I gave my friend permission to speak and ask her own questions, if I forgot to mention something to PM doctor.

    At the beginning, I would at times minimize, or forget, just how severe whatever the pain was that I was trying to describe.
    My friend was able to help with my recollections of just how severe and regularly I was trying to deal with the pain.
    She also took notes for me, as esp at the beginning of finding pain management care, it can be overwhelming with details and I wanted to be able to explain what I learned from doctor to my loved ones who were supporting me.

    I wish you the very best with your PM appojtment!
    Please keep us posted on how you are doing!

    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • Hi Eric,  I feel so bad that at this young age you are going through these troubles .  I am not a doctor, but your symptoms are similar to what mine were, and it seems to me that you will need to have surgery considering your issues .   Just so you know, the surgery is not all that bad and you are young, and you would recover quickly .  It sounds to me like you may have something pressing on your spinal cord, and that is why it is causing you issues in all of those particular areas.  If your regular doctors will not prescribe you an MRI, your pain doctor will !   Make your appointment as quickly as you can ,  and make sure that you have your parent or parents with you .  I will be 40 in July, and I can tell you that  when I woke up from surgery I could already feel the difference, you need to see a neurosurgeon !
  • Another angle...if you do find a doctor willing to do an MRI (btw did you have any injuries that might have given you a whiplash? My injury -bike-happened to me at 15 and my neck problems showed up immediately) make sure you find a HD MRI machine. They are the latest and not all MRI machines are created equal. Some are old, and won't show your problem. Not only that, but prices on a MRI can vary by shop around!  But I had no less than 13 MRI's and believe me I know what I'm talking about. The HD Mri is the absolute best out and yes, clarity does matter.
    3 neck fused,bars,DDD thruout
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  • I'd get an appointment with pain management (they are hard to get), but I would absolutely go to a neurologist as well. Nerve symptoms need to be examined and addressed by specialists not primary care docs. A neurologist will probably order an MRI and start with x-rays. MRIs often don't show nerve issues unless they are spinal in nature. GL!
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