Herniated Disc Questions and Answers Archive 2009 Part 2

This Q&A section is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Any medical condition should be referred to a qualified medical professional.

Q: In November of 2008 I was diagnosed (via MRI) with bulging discs in the L3 to L5s1. I have been in physio since December of 2008 and just began Aquatherapy. I am on celebrex and nortriplyne on advise of the Doctors at the Pain Clinic. First Nerve block September, 2009. I am experiencing lhermitte's sign as well as weakness in the in the legs to the foot and siacta in the right leg. I also experience when the low back pain is bad, twitching and shock like feelings in my arms and hands. I am off work, walking daily and physio and nothing seems to be helping. Is lhermittes common in lower back disc herniations? Should I be requesting another MRI of my upper back and neck? Everything I have read is that lhermittes is a classic finding in MS. Sarah

Q: Hi, My name is Christopher. 23 year old student at the University of Waterloo. I injured my back during weight lifting in May. It has been 4 months since the injury. MRI result showed that i have herniated disc at L4, L5 and L5-S1. I have been trying to stay strong and deal with the pain but I am really afraid that I will have to live with this for the rest of my life. I prayed and cried at night without letting my parents know. I was very active before the injury and I feel like my life has completely shattered since the accident.

I don't know what to do and where to seek for help anymore. I have an epidural steroid injection done a while ago but it didn't really work for me except making me very depress. I don't mind dealing with the pain, but I just want to know how long will the pain last for so that I could prepare myself for the worst. I just feel like sharing my story to someone. Thank you for your time and kindness. God bless. Christopher

Q: FINDINGS : Alignment of vertebrae is normal. Vertebral bodies and appendages show normal signal intensities. Central and bilateral para central disc herniation at L 4 - L 5 level causing thecal and root compression. T 2 hypointensity of L 2 - L 3 , L 4 - L 5 and L 5 - S 1 discs suggest degeneration. Spinal canal and neural foramena are mildly narrowed at L 4 - L 5 disc level. No Intra dural / Intra medullary lesions. Terminal cord and cauda equina are normal . Pre and para spinal soft tissues are normal. IMPRESSION: CENTRAL AND BILATERAL PARA CENTRAL DISC HERNIATION AT L 4 - L 5 LEVEL CAUSING THECAL AND ROOT COMPRESSION. SPINAL CANAL AND NEURAL FORAMENA ARE MILDLY NARROWED AT L 4 - L 5 DISC LEVEL. please help me. I believe the knowledge therapy should be an alternative to surgery. Olasoji

Q: Thank you for taking my question: My MRI results are as follows,L2-3 Disc is desiccated and reveals broad based posterior & left paracentral herniation. It indents the thecal sac, both descending nerve roots predominantly left and causes mild narrowing of the central canal formina, bilaterally. The herniation measures 6mm in size.L3-4 Disc is desiccated and reveals broad based posterior & left minimal foraminal herniation. It indents the thecal sac, left exiting nerve root and causes mild narrowing of the central canal and neural foramina, bilaterally. The herniation measures 4mm in size.L4-5 Disc is desiccated and reveals broad based posterior herniation, with bilateral foraminal components and annular fissure. It indents the thecal sac, right descending nerve root and causes mild narrowing of the central canal and neural foramina, bilaterally. The herniation measures 5mm in size.I have pain in my lower back and hips most of the time. Both legs get week with walking and the back of my thighs get moderate pain. This pain is one and off for 2 years. This flairs up about every 30 days with major pain.My O.S. is having a hard time tying my symptoms with the MRI results. I would appreciate your feed back. Thank you Rich

Q: Hi, is there anything that your program can do in regard to a large herniation L4/L5 with sequestered fragment. I was diagnosed with this as well as a small L5/S1 herniation. I developed a drop foot left side and lots of weakness and numbness. Is there anything to be gained with knowledge therapy? I did have a micro disecktomyL4/5 but still have the weakness etc. Any hope? I have great mobility expect for the weakness in the foot and pain is getting better. Im worried about the L5/S1 herniation getting worse! Thank you for your time. Charles

Q: Had a Pro Disc C installed @ c4/c5 level and still experiencing right arm pain and numbness in feet. 3 Months physical therapy. What options should I explore? Lyrica seems to help. Carl

Q: Hi,I found you online and you seem like you might know something... I have been in numerous car accident's and hit by a truck walking. My pain was the worst in C-5 Cervical, it has gotten so bad year by year. The pain is so bad in the disc that starts at the spot where the bone sticks out where the neck and body are together, not sure if it's 5, 6, 7, . The bulge is so hard and large my son is always telling me to let him push it back in... I only have relief with muscle relaxers and pain meds. I've also been having seizures, blurred vision, nausea, dizziness. Not sure what I should due, my mom had Harrington Rods put in, it's been horrible, my friend needed Titanium in her neck, seems like they have made me scared of anything invasive... can you help, I know you're so busy, but I'm so tired of being in pain, Thanks Kelly

Q: Dear Sensei, Hi my names Matt I'm 25 and have always been healthy and active with no problems or pain with my body. I recently pulled my low back lifting, I stretched alot and rested and it seemed to heal. I work in wildland fire and about 2 weeks later I was hiking in steep terrain with a 50 lb fire pack and a 30 lb chainsaw when my foot started falling asleep, thought boot was to tight and continued hiking. After removing boot numbness increased up my leg with severe pain. Since thenit's been a month, physical therapy isn't helping. I cannot support any weight on the ball of my left foot and have moderate pain from low back to left foot. Got MRI and doc wants to do a micro-discectomy, I'm scheduled for the 21st. Seeking other opinion I appreciate your input:)MRI findings: L1-4 normal. L4-5 shallow central protrusion 3mm and mild SCS.L5-S1 An 8mm central protrusion is present. There is a large epidural mass which extends from the disk superiorly to the mid L-5 vertebral body. This lesion mild increased T2 signal and is isointense to the disk on T1 weighted images. This finding consistent with a sequestered disk fragment. The fragment measures approx 10-15-18mm (ap-transverse-craniocaudal). The sequestration is noted to be central to left paracentral, with resulting severe SCS. The left L-5 nerve root is unaffected. There is displacement of the decsending nerve roots as well. The right neural foramen is normal. Mild facet athropathyis present. I'm confused?? Sorry so long. Thx Matt

Q: Could you explain my MRI findings, L5-S1 loss of disc height with dehydration. There is a central to right-sided diffuse posterior protrusion, which abuts the ventral dural sac and may encroach upon the antermedial margin of the traversing right S1 root. Could you explain this in a way I could understand . And how bad is this? I've had low back pain for 10 years now Thank you. Chris

Q: I think that my husband is suffering from oxygen deprivation back pain. It is 3 months now,what can I do to help him? Lana

Q: Can the pain start from the back of the head and radiate to the neck? Pls let me know whether this can be treated by knowledge therapy. The pain comes and goes, an x-ray showed shortening of the disc space. Alfred

Q: After 4 weeks of increasing left flank pain an mri scan revealed a very large sequestered disc fragment from t11-12 disc, pressing on my spinal cord and also compressing t11 nerve root. I have been resting at home for 4 weeks since and pain has eased. Am VERY worried about the huge size disc tear i must have because the fragment was measured at 12mm x9mm and 6mm thick. Can such a tear heal or seal up and how long would it take? can healing be helped? Am scared to move or bend the wrong way for fear of opening up the tear and having nucleus fluid leaking out. Will my body attack and reduce the fragment or might it calcify and be a huge risk. thanks, peter

Q: I currently received a unfavorable decision from my disability. I don't understand what they are saying about the latest MRI I had done. My results are T12-L1 spondylotic change and disk space narrowing. Focal right lateral disk herniation no nerve root impingement noted. L2-3 more broad based left lateral disk herniation displaces L3 nerve root. L3-4 left lateral disk bulge producing some narrowing. L4-5 mild spondylotic change, result mild bilateral narrowing. L5-S1 unremarkable. Ok question is they say that my pain does not follow the report. I have pain in my lower back, but, and down my right leg. Sometimes in my left leg but mostly in my right. Can you explain why they are saying it does not match up. Wanda

Q: Dear Sensei Adam Rostocki, I am Nguyen and I am living in Vietnam. I have been suffered from herniated disc from more than one year. I am just 23 and have just married. (when married, I did not know that I had this problem). I have just found this website when I was really depressed and this website open a new opportunity for me. I have tried many way of curing but it seems not help.I really need help from you, Sensei. I am working in the office full time and have to sit almost 5 to 6 hours a day since my job is almost a research work. Do I need to rest more because I usually have a severe pain at the end of a working day. I read about the Knowledge Therapy. Can you suggest what I should do from now on to improve my herniated disc? Sorry if my mail is too long. Hope to talk to you more about this. I look forward to seeing your e-mail. Again, thank you very much for your website. Best regards, Nguyen

Q: I had an mri and the results show this.At C3-C4, there is a broad-based disk bulge predominantly to the right. This abuts the anterior thecal sac without central canal or neural foraminal stenosis.At C4-C5, there is a broad-based disk bulge. There is no significant central canal or neural foraminal stenosis.IMPRESSION:Minimal spondylitic changes with a broad-based disk bulge at C3-C4 and contacting the anterior thecal sac, without significant central canal or neural foraminal stenosis.What does all this mean?I have problems with my neck hurting all the time, and my right arm is numb and tingling all the time and I also lost the use my arm for the most part. My right shoulder hurts a lot as well. What does all this mean and what is the right kind of treatment should I look into. Thanks, Gary

Q: I just got my MRI results and don't understand them.Note that I was in a car accident. I was stopped and was rear ended by a 16 year old going 120km/hour and as per her statement to the police "I never saw her, I did not hit the brakes, it's all my fault". She did not see me and the other 50 cars that were stopped!!! Anyway.

At C6-C7 there is a mild, broad posterior disc protrusion partly effacing the anterior thecal sac but causing no mass-effect on the cord and no central stenosis.At L3-L4 and L4-L5 there is mild, bilateral facet hypertrophy.There is a grad 1 anteriolisthesis of L5 on S1. Bilateral spondylolysis is suspected and there is also mild L5-S1 disc with hypertrophy. There is degenerative desiccation of the L5-S1 disc with mild narrowing of the disc space. As a result of the spondylolysis there is mild "uncovering" of the intervertebral disc with small amounts of disc osteophyte complex also projecting into both neural foramina. There is no central stenosis, although there is mild to moderate stenosis of both foramina, a bit worse on the right where there is some potential encroachment on the exiting right L5 nerve root.Can you explain what this means in normal language? Thank you so much, Anne

Q: Hi i'm a 21 year old, recently diagnosed with a large herniated disk on my lower back. My doctors advice was bed rest and surgery, but i'm considering surgery as a last resort. I'm panicking because everything i do seems to result in more pain, i usually feel fine if i move around all day, but when night comes i sleep for 3 hours and the rest i experience total muscle spasm in my left side that doesn't let me sleep and nothing i do creates relief, and i would be unable to get out of bed with the pain. if i rest in bed for the day my body jams and i am unable to walk up straight. I don't know what is right, will this pain pass no matter what i do? Steffi

Q: I injured my back at work over a year ago, I went on worker's comp. and had an MRI and discography done to find the cause. They both have found my L4-L5 and L5-S1 discs degenerated and ruptured. The only option I received from the "insurance doctor" was I needed either a spinal fusion, which he did not recommend, or live with the pain. I am 28 years old and cannot even walk without being in pain. I need recommendations to ask the next doctor I go to as I know nothing about any of this. I read most of the content in here but I need your input. Please help! Josh

Q: Hi I had a L5/S1 hemi laminectomy for cauda equina 4 years ago,which left me with alot of numbness in the right foot leg and saddle area.Recently started having problems again.Results of my latest MRI scan were loss of signal at L.5/S1 discs loss of height and end plate changes.There is an L.4/5 disc bulge and a small annuar tear.There is some scarring.There is an enhancement of the right S1 nerve root which appears swollen.there is also some degeneration.Lately i have experienced some nasty back spasms and have now got sensations in right foot right buttock and feel as though I am sitting on something. I am feeling very depressed and nervous at the moment as to what will happen next.I would appreciate your opinion as to what to do next. End of tether. Thank you, Martina

Q: Dear friend,I am a dentist from Greece.I suffer from cervical herniated disc for almost ten years now.My biggest herniated disc is the C6-C7 one.For the last 2 years my right hand started losing its strength and i must say that i am despondent.I would like to ask if your method could help me,or its only for lower back problems? Nick

Q: hi, i had an accident at work,and herniated disc L5/S1 it was complicated as there was a problem with a nerve etc, the operation didn't go well and i now have a 10inch scar on my back, and still have pain in my leg and a dead foot. A specialist looked at post op MRI scan etc and said that i had a dehydrated /degenerative disc in that area and even if i hadn't had the accident it' was likely that the disc would have herniated in the next 1-2 years. in fact his words were imminent!! i had no back problems before ,i was fit and walked everywhere .Do you think he is right in his diagnosis Lynne

Q: MRI FINDINGS;Sagittal images of the lumbar spine revel a normal alignment of the vertebral bodies.Vertebral body heights well maintained. There is no compression fracture or subluxation. Conus is seen at the T11 level.L4-L5 Disc bulging is present. There is no significant stenosis or herniation identified.L5-S1 There is a broad-based left paracentral/lateral disc herniation (extrusion). The herniation extends into the left lateral recess and left neuralforamen causing mild stenosis. There is some crowding of the left L5 nerve root in the left neural foramen best seen on series 2 images 3 and 4. Layman's terms? Carlo

Q: Hi, I am 23 years old. About 1.5 years ago I was shoveling concrete and as a result I developed a rear left herniation in my L5/S1. The nerve pain is for the most part healed but I am developing a sharp pain in my shoulder and tingling down my right arm to the middle and ring finger when I perform certain actions. I also feel as though my right lat is knotted and a couple between my spine and right shoulder blade. Does this sound like a neck herniation? What can I do to alleviate the pain and get me back in the gym. I am very active and love lifting weights. If there is any advice you could give me it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Tyler

Q: Hello! I'm writing on behalf of my 58 years old father because he is in a desperate situation. Five years ago he had here in Europe - Romania a double cervical herniated disc surgery - between C5-C6 and C6-C7. Doctors used as a substitution of the intervertebral discs, his own pelvic-abdominal bone. The doctors attached a metal plate made from titanium for support . This titanium plate was "bounded" with six screws. After these years my father has again back problems and needs an MRI but the big problem is that the doctors who made the surgery are not sure if all the screws they put inside my father's neck are from titanium 100% or some of them have the core made from steel. They made a CT scan but didn't help them to clarify the problem and there is no documentation about the screws. This way he can not get the MRI he needs. Doctors said that if his condition will get worse they have to make first the surgery to get the titanium plate and screws out and only after that to make the MRI to see where exactly the new problem occurred in the spine. The titanium plate and screws after 5 years joint together with the tissue so good that the surgery to remove them is really dangerous. My father's body didn't reject the plate and screws, he recovered well enough after the surgery, but now he has numbness in his left arm and leg so he needs the MRI. My appeal for you is to tell me if you know any other way for us to find out from what kind of material the screws inside the neck are made from. Thank you for reading my long post and I apologize for my writing mistakes. With consideration, Magda

Q: Please inform me in India Where this spinal decompression therapy is using ? the Name of the Hospital and its address. Binoy

Q: Hi i was wondering if you could help me... i seemed to have injured my disc over a year ago where the pain was constant yet bearable (only felt if i bend over etc...) i was able to go to gym etc... Earlier this year on holiday, i seemed to make the injury alot worse. the pain is constantly there (right side of buttock, Calf pain in left leg) can't lift anything. back feels very unstable. Had an MRI the results were "There are signs of disc dehydration at the level of L5/S1 with right sided postero lateral disc protrusion with pressure effect noted here on the down going S1 nerve root" i have been to physio, chiros ortho's. feel lost nothing seems to help i am only 23 years old:( Please any assistance or guidance will be much appreciated. Milton

Q: I have read your story and your latest update. Have you ever had surgery? Do you still see a chiropractor and acupuncturist. I am a registered nurse and had an injury. It was work related. I do not believe I need surgery to fix my problem. I would like to know if you are back to doing your normal activities. If you have time it would be great to talk with you. Grace

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