Please Help!

  1. Please, I need your help and advice!
    I have been suffering from lower back pain for 10 days, the pain radiating to the front of my left hip and down my left leg. NSAIDs have done nothing for the pain, which is CONSTANT, and unbearable after just a short ime on my feet. I have been seeing my chiropractor everyday. I got an MRI done, and it shows 2 bulging discs, 1 at L3-4 and 1 at L4-5. My chiro told me that if my symptoms don't improve in the next few days, she will send me to get an epidural shot, or start me on an oral steroid taper.

    Is there anything else that can be done?

    I am going to a neurosugeon for a 2nd opinion on Wednesday.

    I'm a little nervous to tell my chiro that I am getting a 2nd opinion, but I feel she should know.

    I have been off work for 1 1/2 weeks, and I am getting very discouraged at my lack of progress in healing.

    PLEASE, any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!

    Thanks in advance. Gotta go ice my back now
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   babs_rn
    Sounds like you've got the right idea; though an orthopedist may be more help.
    Good luck!
    Barb
  4. by   babsRN
    WOW...another babs out there! Cool! Anyway...your story sounds like mine from 20ish years ago...same problem, same diagnosis. Had multiple epidural injections...months of horrible pain(sorry)...but then the clouds cleared and now I do have short recurrances(2 days tops of pain maybe 1-2 times per year) but nothing like what I had and what you are problably going through now. Had multiple second opinions, even was scheduled for surgery at one point. Showed up to the hospital for the surgery and the neurosurgeon canceled at the last minute because he "just couldn't start that downward spiral that would start" once my back muscles got cut(was only 23 at the time). I hated him at that moment because all I wanted was relief. Now I'm so thankful he didn't do it. It's going to taking time to heal...don't push it. It's a soft tissue injury. I'm sure technology has many more options available to you now that weren't there for me. But hang in there and don't do anything without thinking it through completely. Good luck...b
  5. by   hpyrn
    be very careful, ex hubby was scheduled for surgery, got a second opinion who advised him to go home and rake leaves, he did that and went to work the next day, so be careful in your decisions.
  6. by   babsRN
    Hpyrn's got a point...it was along bike ride that took my pain away once and for all. If I'd known that I'd have gotten on that bike a whole lot sooner! b
  7. by   LasVegasRN
    First, I wouldn't feel guilty about getting a second opinion, obviously the back cracking from the chiro isn't helping or you wouldn't still have pain and symptoms.

    Second, unless your MRI showed some degree of nerve impingement/encroachment, you may not be a surgical candidate. Before they decide to do surgery you may want to try some active therapy with a physical therapist.

    Third, depending on what part of the country you live in, the next treatment would either be a discogram - to try and determine the actual source of disc pain, or, nerve conduction studies - to determine degree or extent of radicular/nerve impairment, or, lumbar epidural steriod injections to relieve the pain.

    Sounds like a lot, but you want to try conservative treatment first to avoid something that you can't change once it's done!
  8. by   rachet65
    Thanks for all the advice. The MRI does show nerve impingement.
    Also, my chiro is not doing any adjusting (cracking) at all- just ultrasound, massage, electrical stim and ice.

    I can't believe that physical activity (bike riding, raking leaves) took the pain away! Maybe I will go out into this beautiful spring day and prepare my garden for planting! Sounds better than surgery any day!

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