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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

Is your pain worse the longer you stay in bed? Can you say what activities make it better or worse?

You have to keep in mind that all my comments are based on what is in the MRI report. There may be things visible in the images that would provide more information. When I began my journey I relied on my internist to handle my care. He "read" my MRI and told me that my spine was fairly normal for someone my showed some wear and tear but there was nothing major going on. He ordered a series of epidural steroid injections (ESI). When my sciatic pain continued to worsen and I kept complaining to him, he finally agreed to send me to a spine surgeon. (Mainly to get me to hut up I think!). By now this had been going on for over 14 months, during which time I was told that everything was fine.

Imagine my shock when the spine surgeon, after glancing at my MRI for about 30 seconds, tells me I have spondylolisthesis but just to confirm, sends me across the hall for a flexion/extension xray. It is confirmed and I am told that while it is a smallish spondylolisthesis, it is nevertheless causing all my symptoms and the only way to address it is with a spinal fusion. Within a blink, I go from thinking my spine is OK for my age to needing what I perceive to be the most major spine surgery!

The surgeon told me the timing of the surgery and the decision to have it were up to me. When the pain go on much, I would get it done.

I'm not saying there is anything going on with you that the radiologist failed to notice...but when you continue to have unexplained pain, sometimes you have to take things into your own hands. It can be very frustrating and involve countless trips to a variety of doctors, specialists, practioners.

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