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Forum Name: Spinal problems and back pain

Question: L5-S1 SPACING


 NIKA155 - Wed Apr 22, 2009 12:31 pm

I FELL ON MY JOB ABOUT A WEEK AGO, AFTER GETTING MY X-RAY RESULTS IT STATES MILD DISC SPACE NARROWING L5-S1, DISC SPACES ARE OTHERWISE PRESERVED....CAN SOME ONE TELL ME WHAT THAT MEANS AND IF THAT IS THE CAUSE OF THE PAIN I AM HAVING IN MY LOWER BACK BUTTOCK ARE.....
 Tom Plamondon PA-C - Mon Apr 27, 2009 6:04 pm

User avatar Hello,
Mild disc space narrowing by itself is not an alarming finding. Many healthy painfree people may have disc space narrowing in the spine.
Part of this may be the time of day, week or month. The disc heights change with levels of hydration in the disc.

Now, pathology may also cause disc space narrowing. e.g. a disc herniation may result in narrowing of the disc space.

If the pain is localized to the back and causing no neurological symptoms (numbness, tingling, burning radiating pain into the leg) then treating the pain with hot/cold packs and NSAIDS for a week is reasonable. If symptoms worsen or neuro symptoms start, doing an MRI may help determine if the disc space narrowing is causing the symptoms.

In any case, see your family physician for a clinical exam and any needed further testing.

Take care and keep us posted.

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