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joeyd 05-10-2010 03:13 PM

Herniated disk
My daughter has a moderate disk herniation on L4-L5 and a mild disk herniation on L5-S1. She is in her junior year of college and plays lacrosse.
She is home for the summer and seeing an orthopaedic later this week to review her MRI from last month.
I am not looking for a solution just some opinions from anyone who has experienced something similar. We have a relative who is a chiropractor and have considered his opinion but want to make the best decision for her therapy and rehab. I am not concerned with her ability to play lacrosse next year simply want her to get the best treatment available to allow her to be healthy and pain free.
Appreciate any input.

jeremyj 05-10-2010 03:35 PM

Get at least 3 opinions bofore you do anything.

I had a herniated disk at L5-S1 due to a vertebrae broken when I was in high school. It herniated 3 years ago (I am now 37) and multiple doctors told me surgery was a "no brainer". I went the minimally invasive spine fusion route and was walking around the next day. Hell, I had to...the 73 year old man in the room next to me had the same procedure and he was walking around. I guess my point is, surgery worked for me. If I had a choice, I would have put it off as long as possible.

Best of luck to your daughter.

Jettglx 05-10-2010 03:43 PM

My back would go out from time to time, tighten up and make me walk all funny and hurt. But one time I felt something just give way and the pain was bad. I had shots in my back, chiro, you name it. Got the MRI, blew out L5/S1 and went right to Beth Isreal Spine Institue in NYC. It got to the point that I could not drive without such severe pain down my right leg. My foot always felt like it had pins and needles and got to the point my calf muscle on my right leg started to atrophy. The nerves going down to my leg stopped working, I could not stand on my tip-toe and started to walk with a limp. Got in for surgery, cut me open, stiched me up and the pain went away. I am not 100% and am still very careful but it was the best thing I could of done

bamaboy473 05-10-2010 03:50 PM

Does your family have genetic history of bad backs?

LI Sound Grunt 05-10-2010 03:54 PM

I had the L5 S1 issue and numb leg and severe pain and almost totally crippled for a while - Hydrotherapy and time and some streetching exercises fixed it - walke dwith no crutches in 6 weeks and one year later 90% back - 2 years later totally back. everybody is different. There is lots of info out there - Check with your insurance support/information services. Healthnet had a great video on this.

Youngins should heal faster - what you describe does not sound like a surgical issue from what I know of it. See a neurosurgeon and get other professional advice. It was only the neurosurgeon that told me I would get better on my own and have the same outcome with or without surgery in time. Others wanted to operate.

Spineguy 05-10-2010 04:02 PM

take a look at trans1 axialif

nanjemoycat 05-10-2010 04:02 PM

I fought it for a whole lot of years, to the point that I could not move my legs. Had the surgury the next day, what a relief. Chiro did absolutely nothing for me but make it worse.

joeyd 05-10-2010 04:10 PM

Appreciate all the responses, wish it was me rather than my daughter. She deals with it really well, just want to do what's best for her. Bama, my back hurts but I'm 53, no family history.

FASTFJR 05-10-2010 04:11 PM

I went thru the same thing 2 years ago. Do as the above says and get three opinions. I had 4, 2 Orthopaedic and 2 Nuro. I went with the nuro. My recover was 3-4 months before I was back to a 100% again.

r.waddill 05-10-2010 05:33 PM

I went through the same thing with the L5 exruciating sciatic nerve pain on the right side. I went through chiro,the stretching machine, pain management, chortizone shots,messages and took oxycodone like they were tic tacs even mixed with alchohol and nada.
I went in for surgery 2 days in the hospital the surgery was done by a nureosurgeon and it was like someone turned the fricken light switch off. Absoulutely a life changer for me. I went in the day of surgery had it done got up the next morning and gone the pain was frickin gone. I thought I had ghost pain but nothing.
I know everyone is different but for me it was a total game changer. Plus i head a great doctor great bed side manner. The hospital in stuart was fantastic clean even had a view of the river. the nursing staff was excellent.
It was one of those deals that you get a few times in your life where your expectations were not only met but far exceded anything in my wildest dreams!!!

Don't screw around get a really good neurosurgeon. Do not use any other kind of doctor.

number9 05-10-2010 06:29 PM

I went through similar experience about 25 years ago. Hip and leg pain. Leg and foot numbness sometime causing limp or difficulty walking. Took close to a year to get a diagnosis from a neurologist who also performed surgery. Prior to seeing him I was willing to do anything to stop the pain and not take medication.
We discussed the possibility of surgery, my expectations, lifestyle and type of work I did. He told me there's no guaranties, might not be able to lift heavy items and suggested looking into a supervisor/management position post surgery. Figured as bad as it was now at least I can function with the pain and didn't want to risk a worse outcome. Walked for at least an hour every day and after about 18 months was able to stop taking Motrin for the pain.
The surgery and outcome has improved substantially since 1985 but still not something to rush into unless the condition becomes chronic IMO.

floffshore 05-10-2010 07:06 PM

man, you guys really got my attention. i have herniated L3, L4, and L5... major sciatic pain 24/7.. right leg pain.. dificulty walking...etc...

Ive been dealing with this for like 2 years now.

I stopped riding motocross because of this pain.

Now i'm really considering surgery.

I did the chiro, the pills, pills + alcohol, all kinds of self-medications.. and still hurting24/7..

I'm 35 years old

casco_schooner 05-10-2010 07:24 PM

I would not mess around with chiro at all go to the best you can find before 0bummercare takes over and you have to wait...

AK_angler 05-10-2010 07:48 PM

Google Micro Spine. I know a few people that have used them, they do things most doctors in the USA have never heard of (for some reason). I was going to use them when I re-herniated my disc and broke the fuse but my freakin insurance was 1 of 2 carriers that still concider it experimental. I would definatly take a look at them.

strikerthree 05-10-2010 11:11 PM

Find a Chiropractor who has a spine decompression machine it will be the best thing for your daughter go to youtube and type in spinal decompression its amazing

Garett 05-11-2010 04:26 AM

A.R.T. sure saved my back ;) ~ :thumbsup:

Semper Fi-sh 05-11-2010 04:36 AM

She might have this...

I do and im fused L4L5L5S1

Endoscopic Spinal Fusion using cadaber bone and coral instead of from hip..

Feel good except for drop foot.

sr31aj 05-11-2010 05:42 AM

Another vote for the neurosurgeon route. Had a laminectomy for herniated disc 12 years ago, no regrets. Don't let the "surgeon" part of neurosurgeon scare you off - my guy sent me to PT the first time I saw him, gave me a couple years before we had to resort to the knife. Due to the particular complexities of back trouble, 3 opinions is really important, AND make sure those 3 are an orthopedist, a neurosurgeon, and a chiropractor. Neurosurgery worked for me, but lots of people have had success with the other routes, also.

P.S. Although it's hard to say that pain is a good thing, I remember being told that it was better than numbness or pins and needles because those would be signs of nerve damage from which you might not fully recover unless treated post haste

joeyd 05-11-2010 05:55 AM

There is a local guy I see advertise for the spinal decompression chamber and I am going to research it. Thanks.

Severance 05-11-2010 06:10 AM

I truly understand the pain she must be feeling. For several years I struggled with low back pain which also created leg pain to the point that I was miserable at times. I went to a great chiro for years and would feel better for a day or two then the pain would come back over and over. For months my internal physician sent me to theraphy which would also help for a couple of days until that final day in November 05 when I could barely pickup my feet to walk. The thought of surgery was frightening in that one of my best friends had previously had back surgery 5 times and was still in pain. Finally in December 05 I entered the hospital in crucial pain and left two days later feeling like a new person.
The neurosurgen had done for me what no pain mediction or theraphy could possibly do.
Since that time I've never regreted my decission to undergo surgery for the herniated disc.
Occassionaly I will have minor pain in the area and will go in and have accupunture for twenty minutes and the pain is gone in seconds. I would never suffer back pain to this extent again knowing what I know now.

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