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Date of last update: 10/01/2017.

Forum Name: Spinal problems and back pain

Question: Spondylolysis and disk protrution in L4-L5 getting worse

 turipz - Sun Sep 04, 2005 2:55 pm


I am 35 years old. I have been living with Spondylolysis and disk protrution in L4-L5 for some 17 years now. In the last year or so, things have started getting much worse. I feel excrutiating pain most of the day, suffer severe movement limitations and it keeps getting worse. I feel fine when I lay on my side or on my back with my legs raised slightly. I have no problem bending forward all the way down to the floor - but almost any movement back or sideways kills me. I walk bent forward sometimes because I cannot streighten-up.

I have found the following interesting facts:
1. Paddling (Kayaking) where I sit in an enclosed Kayak with a waist-line back strap as a back rest makes my back feel better for several hours after which things get back to agony again.
2. I have been using a back-support belt ( like a girdle) which contains these magnets for several days now - and again - symptomatically - my pain reduces while I wear it and for a short time after I take it off. I don't know why this helps - but it does. The heating? The magnets? The Immobilization? Placebo? I don't know.

What long term medical options do I have that could help me suffer less? Considering the relief I get from the above two items - should I consider Vert. Fusion surgery? Please help... I cannot even hold my 8 month old baby doughter any more. Thanks.
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Tue Aug 08, 2006 7:03 pm

User avatar Dear turipz,

Lumbar Spondylosis and herniated discs cause back pain that may refer to the buttocks and lower limbs.

If the nerves are compressed numbness and muscle weakness may occur.

Associated, Muscle spasm alone can cause this pain.
In cases of pain due to muscle spasm, self care and avoiding the precipitating cause (proper posture) will lead to a gradual but clear improvement in the pain. Home treatment includes the use of analgesics, cold or hot therapy.
If no improvement in 48 hours occur then the pain could be due to the direct effect of the vertebral bone problems on the nerves or the nerve roots .

First, anti-inflammatory agents, analgesics, and muscle relaxants may be prescribed for a short period of time. The affected muscles should be immobilized and/or braced.
Physical therapy, heat, electrical stimulation, and other modalities can be used to control muscle spasm and pain.

Surgery is considered if the condition is progressing or If there is severe neurological deficit.

A spinal physician is the one able to determine if surgery is the best treatment for the patient after evaluating the patient personal, social, occupational and disease condition.

Follow up with your doctor is essential.
Hope you find this information useful.
Best regards,

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