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I am hoping to get some advice and input concerning my problem. I have been experiencing a burning type pain under the breast area and also in the upper back area. I am wondering if this could be caused from bad discs in the back? I have had MRI's, epidural shots, Cat Scans, and nothing could be found. My neurologist says it might be "nerve pain." I have had two series of epidural shots, which haven't helped much. I can't seem to get a decent explanation as to what "nerve pain" is, and what might have caused it. All my neurologist says is it could be a touch of fibermylagia.....as well as nerve pain. I am confused, disgusted, and at my wits end! Has anyone else had this type of pain? I would appreciate any advice and thoughts, as I don't know if I should be seeking another type of doctor, and if so, what kind of doctor? Thanks so much for reading my post, and I will welcome some advice.
Welcome to the spiney board! Along with a bunch of other pain my upper back is messed up too. So far they haven't found a reason for the pain, but it's only been 5 years or so. The burning, stabbing, aching is common and it does go into the chest. Sometimes it even mimics a heart attack! Hang in there we are all in this together. Fred
Hi, Chablis,
Welcome to the board. I have that exact pain. I had a herniated disc and surgery for it in Feb. and that pain got worse after! I just had an injection Friday. So, I don't have great advice for you, but I have some sympathy! Have you consulted with a pain specialist? If nothing else, maybe they have some more ideas on how to make you more comfortable. If you find something, please let me know!

Hang in there,
- Margaret
Hi Margaret and Fred; Thanks very much for answering my post. I feel better knowing that the pain I am experiencing isn't that unusual. Last night I woke up around 3 a.m., and did, indeed, think I was having a heart attack. It was scary! I got up and took an ibuprophin, and was able to go back to sleep. But, I called my family doctor and was able to go in and have an ekg done. He said it was fine, but wants me to have a stress test next week. Not the kind you walk on a treadmill, but some kind that they put dye into you and then check your heart. I am nervous already, and not having that until next week. However, my doctor said if I do have a "nerve issue" going on, that is something that is hard to diagnose. So, my question was, "Then how in the heck does a doctor know if it is nerve damage?" He didn't answer that!!

So, on Wednesday I am going to go have another round of epidural shots and cross my fingers that I will get some relief. The first two rounds didn't do a heck of a lot, so I am skeptical, but will try anything. I have so many issues; bad disc's in both back and neck, bad knee, the muscles in the back of my legs hurt.......pain all over the place, and no answers or relief for the past six months. I can't imagine going 5 years like you, Fred, or having pain after surgery like Margaret. After surgery, you think you are going to feel better!

I appreciate your thoughts and your welcome to the board. I will keep you posted, and will faithfully read all the posts on here to keep informed of everyone's experiences. I know I will learn a lot. My best to you both and hope to talk again.

Thanks,
Judy
I am just a bit confused(nothing new there) in your first post you stated that 'nothing could be found' as the possible trigger for your pain,but in this last one you mentioned herniated discs within your neck?believe me, herniated discs within your neck most certainly can be causing any number of various types of pain issues.what did your neurologist actually say about the possible correlation?if i were you,i would actually see a good neurosurgeon and not neurologist just for a consult as to what could be causing what.they just have a much much clearer understanding of how discs/nerves can create pain.i have had to see plenty of both ologists and surgeons and the neurosurgeons just really have a much better overall working understanding of the c spine(they actually go in there).if you have anything more than just a headache, you need the expertise of a good neurosurgeon.

just exactly what did your MRI state about your biggest c spine issues?do you have your own copy of the reports?if not,get them and see what it states in the summary at the end?do you have any posterior bulging in any c spine disc that could be making some level of actual contact with your cord at all?"something' really appears to be irritating the heck out of a nerve or nerves somewhere up there,or you would not be having the symptoms you are currently experiencing,there just has to be a trigger ya know?i really do think just seeking out a full eval with an NS really could help you better define the real issues within your c spine.most NSs will just look at your films themselves and really don't go by what any radiologist read states.they just have much more experience in seeing the smaller things that could be causeing much bigger symtoms.it wouldn't hurt at this point.you need answers and it does not appear that your neurologist really knows whats up,a good NS most likely would.this would really be my next step for answers if i were you.i DO wish you luck in finding out why this is occuring,beliebve me, i know how you feel right now.please keep us posted,K? marcia
MKA..thanks for responding....you are so right! I think most doctors, unless they are very highly qualifyed in their field........don't know what to do with a patient like me and you. I did have a epidural shot, as well as trigger point injections in the neck.....but, I gaurantee you, MKA, the relief from ha pain will only last a few days.

However....we will keep fighting......thanks again and hope to chat again!

Judy
hey judy.if you could try and answer some of the questions i posted to you(other post),it would really be helpful for me to try and help you.do you actually have the MRI report?was one ever done on the thorasic area as well?with any given MRI report you also have to consider that they are only as good as the person who is doing the reading.even docs can blow off certain things they see in the hard films as "not a pain generator"if they just do not fully understand the level of what a particular finding truely means.i had two NSs tell me that my cavernoma inside of my cord couldn't possibly be causing this really incredibly freaky pain/pressure crap i was feeling underneath my R shoulder blade,but when i saw the head of neurosurgery at the U of MN,it was a whole different story.he knew right away where it was coming from.it all depends on overall knowledge and experience of the docs/specialists you are seeing.knowing what was actually stated on your MRI would really help alot here.thanks judy,Marcia
Hello Marcia and everyone! I am sorry it took me so long to reply; things have been busy and hectic! I am sorry my first post was a bit confusing! I have a tendency to ramble on and just type whatever comes to mind, and I probably jump here and there trying to explain things! I do have neck issues; but all my doctor said was "boy, your neck is a mess"! I didn't even question the results of the MRI, as I was just so happy there wasn't any brain tumor/cancer, etc! At that time, I took steps to help the weird headache feelings I was having, such as going to a chiopractor, and then the trigger point injections. My neuoroligist did say that the squeezing, burning pain at the base of my skull was indeed from the discs in the neck. So then, I was satisfied with that diagnosis, although I still have some trouble with the funny feelings in the neck and lower skull area...as well as a buzzing sensation in the ears.

Then about 5 months ago, after doing some heavy cleaning, moving furniture, etc., I developed a "stitch" in the right side. Ignored it for a week or so, thought it was a pulled muscle. Then I went to my family doc again, and he sent me to therapy. Went for about 3 weeks with no relief. Then had another MRI of the back, and stomache (thought I might have gall bladder issues,), and those two tests came back ok, according to my family doctor. I do have the actual copies of the film, but not the written report. This "stitch" developed into the full fledge pain that I had first described as to the burning sensation in the chest (below my breast area) and the upper back area. It is still there, but not quite as bad as in the beginning.....just had another shot last week for both my neck and the upper back area. The MRI of the back area did not show anything significient other then some degeneration of the discs in my back and some arthritus. So, now my neurologist is saying that I might have nerve damage, or perhaps a touch of fibermayalgia. Boy, am I confused!

But wait...here's more! The past two weeks I have had terrible cramps in my legs, and such pain in the muscles in my calves. As well as pain in the lower middle back now. My pain is just moving all around the place, and nobody knows nothing!! Your idea, Marcia of seeing a neurosurgeon is an excellent one; I have never thought about that. I have an appointment with a rhemotologist next month, but I am going to look into your suggestion. The neurologist doesn't seem to be doing me much good with those shots.....as ibake&pray said, they don't seem to do much good.

I hope I helped clear some thing up in this post! Sometimes I get so overwhelmed and confused, I forget what doctor I went to, what tests I had done, and when!!

One more short thing; I am also taking Atenolol (bp medication) and just read that can cause muscle aches and pains. I am currently cutting my dosage and am going to wean off it for a bit to see if that helps my legs. Worth a try for a little while.

KKmom, Marcia, and ibake&pray....I really thank you so much for your help and thoughts. It does help to have somebody to "complain" to, and to listen to me! My best to you all, and hope your doing ok.

Judy
Oh my gosh, I have been on the other board and just poped in to take a look on the back board (been on spinal column board) I do indeed have some of those same symptoms, and more. Also been rushed to ER for cardiac work up, nothing, currently seeing neuro surgeon for first time tomorrow, after many doc's. My new doc believes may very well be herniated disc, really bad pain, started in left upper chest, shoulder, neck and back area, and low & behold moved in hip and pain in left leg, just recently both legs and really radiating down back. Can hardly move my arm shoulder at times and lost alot of range of motion in left shoulder. Pain is so bad no much of any thing is working. Hard time even walking last couple mornings, could not believe it, doc got me into neuro surgeon almost over night, thank god, he believes it is something that cannot wait anymore. I am praying they find out for sure, but yes the pain had moved and has me alittle baffled, pins and needles at times in hand and one foot, really bad pain and swelling under breast in ribs. Been going on long time and came back this may and never left, worse every day, honest, I know I hurt it a couple years ago between moving and lifting at work, should have got it looked at right away and did not, all kinds of weird symptoms popped and had me stumped for along time, mimicking other health problems. Anyone else out there with anything like this, your replys would be a blessing. Thanks Sammy
[QUOTE=feelbad;3141348]hi sammy,have you actually had an MRI done yet on your c and upper T spine?i am willing to bet,given your symptoms that you DO have some issues up there that are creating all of the strange things you are feeling.it would make sense,really.i too am amazed that your doc got you in to see a NS that quickly,it IS very fast compared to the like one to three month wait that the majority of patients have to wait just for that initial appt.hopefully this NS will be able to help you.but an MRI with contrast,if you have not actually had one yet will most likely show something up there,just given your symptomology.it almost sounds as tho you also may have some level of sympathetic involvement too.this would most likely(if true) place your main problem somewhere down at the c 7 T 1 area of your spine(tho that SNS chain actually runs the length of your column,but the main 'junction" area is at where the C meets the T)?i guess you will just have to wait and see.please let us know what you find out.good luck,marcia[/QUOTE]

Marcia, just got in from nuero surgeon,had MRI June 1 showed some problems, bone loss and minor disc problems, not enough to cause these problems they say, surgeon gave maybe 2 minutes of his time, more tests, bone scan on shoulder and EMG. not original nuero Doc wanted me to see, felt nuero would repeat MRI says changes can occur rapidly,no repeat mentioned, MRI with contrast, is that differant then a regular MRI? Don't want to be out of work long. Doc say shoulder problems can also cause alot of these symptoms in chest area. Of course can't wait to get rid of this pain. Don't get why so much pain in other area's unless it is do to swelling, and yes I am very lucky yo have gotten in, keep in mind though a good Nuero may be worth the wait. Hopefully this one will be better next visit. Anything paticular help your pain and discomfort? let me know Sammy
Hi Sammy, Marcia, and all. Just dropped in to check the new postings. Sammy, you sure sound like you have lots and lots of pain, and I am sorry to hear that. Just the pain I have around the middle chest area and back, as well as now my calves is driving me crazy! I especially feel bad when I get up in the morning. Like you, Sammy, I have gone to this doctor and that, had many tests, and everything turned out ok. Just some disc deteriation, and a bit if arthritus. My family doc sent me to a neurologist, and that is when I started having injections; however, he really didn't give me a definite cause of my pain.....just suggested that it might be some nerve pain going on also. I am going to take Marcia's advice and eventually seek out a neurosurgeon. I think Marcia is quite intelligent when it comes to these kind of things. I am going to a Rheumotoligist next month to see about the fibermyalgia thing and to see what he has to say....might as well give him a try! Might also see about having an MRI of my back area....I actually forget if I had one or not of that area with all the other tests I have had.

Take care, Sammy, and I wish you luck. I use the old "ice pack" trick when I get to hurting too bad. I shift it here and there; actually I should get 3 or 4 others to use with all my sore spots!!

My best to eveyone and take care.

Judy
[QUOTE=chablis3;3144668]Hi Sammy, Marcia, and all. Just dropped in to check the new postings. Sammy, you sure sound like you have lots and lots of pain, and I am sorry to hear that. Just the pain I have around the middle chest area and back, as well as now my calves is driving me crazy! I especially feel bad when I get up in the morning. Like you, Sammy, I have gone to this doctor and that, had many tests, and everything turned out ok. Just some disc deteriation, and a bit if arthritus. My family doc sent me to a neurologist, and that is when I started having injections; however, he really didn't give me a definite cause of my pain.....just suggested that it might be some nerve pain going on also. I am going to take Marcia's advice and eventually seek out a neurosurgeon. I think Marcia is quite intelligent when it comes to these kind of things. I am going to a Rheumotoligist next month to see about the fibermyalgia thing and to see what he has to say....might as well give him a try! Might also see about having an MRI of my back area....I actually forget if I had one or not of that area with all the other tests I have had.

Take care, Sammy, and I wish you luck. I use the old "ice pack" trick when I get to hurting too bad. I shift it here and there; actually I should get 3 or 4 others to use with all my sore spots!!

My best to eveyone and take care.

Judy[/QUOTE]

Judy, I just wore out an ice pack, sprung a leak, need some new ones, I rotate between moist heat & ice, doc say moist heat but many times I prefer the ice. one night not long ago I sat up in the bed with moist heat on one area and ice on another, I could not move and fearing I would dislogde on, I actually got a good laugh out of that. I hate the mornings that is the worst time the day, can't wait to get them over with, had a pretty decent one today, got so excited I started 3 things at once and had to stop and make myself do one at a time, never thought I would be excited or trying to organize a closet! You have pretty much been told same as me, I am going for test ordered by neuro. monday. I would just be happy to know what the heck is wrong. Took pain med before I even got out of bed today, try it again tommorrow. Anyone hear know anything about Lyrica? Doc put me on it and not hearing such good things? Have The MRI done if you can, and when you get a chance let me know what other tests you have had, we sound as if we may have at least some simularities, thanks, Marcia does indeed sound pretty smart, so Marcia anytime you want to be buddies I like getting good advice. Sammy
Hello everyone!
I just had to respond to this topic because this is the first place I have found someone who is experiencing the exact same upper back problems. (I have been looking for more than 3 yrs for an explanation for my symptoms)
I have had 3 MRI's of my C & T spines and of course it does depend on the Radiologist interpreting the report. I am a Radiologic Technologist so that is not news to me.
My first MRI (2004) showed a focal left paracentral HNP at T7 which was touching the cord; and mild disc bulging at C5-6 & C6-7.
My second MRI (2005) showed left sided disc protrusion & osteophyte spurring at T7-8 with effacement of the left anterior aspect of the thecal sac. C5-6 central protruding disc w/ mild effacement of the thecal sac. C6-7 protruding disc w/ mild effacement of the thecal sac & mild stenosis.
My most recent MRI was in June of this yr. The HNP at T6-7 unchanged. Small anterior osteophyte formation at multiple levels of T spine. C5-6 mild to moderate posterior central disc protrusion w/ mild stenosis. The disc protrusion may contact the anterior aspect of the spinal floor.
Before my first MRI, I was sent to a cardiologist and had a full cardiac work-up because of my symptoms. Some of my tests were slightly abnormal so he suggested a heart cath. I declined because I really didnt believe it was heart related. I spoke to one of my Radiologists who recommended that I have an MRI. (which I did) Then I went to an orthopedic Dr who recommended that I have an epidural and also gave me a rx for Neurontin at bedtime to see if it would help with the burning, tingling & numbness I was feeling beneath my left breast. I decided against the epidural at that time. I have been on Neurontin for about 2 yrs now and cannot say that it has helped me at all. Last wk I went to a pain management Dr (who I know personally) and he did a Thoracic epidural. He also suggested that I stop the Neurontin and try Lyrica. I started the Lyrica 1 wk ago and started weaning myself off of the Neurontin but I cannot tell that the epidural helped at all. I went back to him yesterday and he said I had terrible muscle spasms all the way down the left side of my back. He didnt think I should do another epidural. He did about 20 trigger point injections. He said if I havent noticed any difference with the Lyrica yet that its probably not going to help so I am going to stop taking both and see what happens. (I have swelling & wt gain with both) He gave me Norflex (muscle relaxer) and Lidoderm patches to try. He also noted that I have mild scholiosis and thought maybe a chiropractor could help alittle. He recommended that I have deep tissue massage therapy and try to be aware of my posture. I do notice that I tend to slump my shoulders forward and thats when I will have the most symptoms. I hope & pray that somehow I can find some relief. Maybe the muscle spasms are compressing & inflaming the nerves which are giving me the symptoms in my chest and rib area. The epidural gave me some terrible hot flashes that still havent quite gone away. I also had some unexplainable low blood sugar issues for a few days after the epidural. I knew the steroid can cause blood sugar to be elevated in diabetics but never heard of it causing it to drop.
The Dr that I work for has been giving me vicoprofen to take as needed when I just cant stand it anymore. When I take it, thats about the only time I feel alittle relief.
Anyway, it really is helpful to know that Im not alone with these crazy symptoms. Hopefully, one of us will be able find the answer for us all. :) (sorry so long)
[QUOTE=CHKUEHN1;3145840]Hello everyone!
I just had to respond to this topic because this is the first place I have found someone who is experiencing the exact same upper back problems. (I have been looking for more than 3 yrs for an explanation for my symptoms)
I have had 3 MRI's of my C & T spines and of course it does depend on the Radiologist interpreting the report. I am a Radiologic Technologist so that is not news to me.
My first MRI (2004) showed a focal left paracentral HNP at T7 which was touching the cord; and mild disc bulging at C5-6 & C6-7.
My second MRI (2005) showed left sided disc protrusion & osteophyte spurring at T7-8 with effacement of the left anterior aspect of the thecal sac. C5-6 central protruding disc w/ mild effacement of the thecal sac. C6-7 protruding disc w/ mild effacement of the thecal sac & mild stenosis.
My most recent MRI was in June of this yr. The HNP at T6-7 unchanged. Small anterior osteophyte formation at multiple levels of T spine. C5-6 mild to moderate posterior central disc protrusion w/ mild stenosis. The disc protrusion may contact the anterior aspect of the spinal floor.
Before my first MRI, I was sent to a cardiologist and had a full cardiac work-up because of my symptoms. Some of my tests were slightly abnormal so he suggested a heart cath. I declined because I really didnt believe it was heart related. I spoke to one of my Radiologists who recommended that I have an MRI. (which I did) Then I went to an orthopedic Dr who recommended that I have an epidural and also gave me a rx for Neurontin at bedtime to see if it would help with the burning, tingling & numbness I was feeling beneath my left breast. I decided against the epidural at that time. I have been on Neurontin for about 2 yrs now and cannot say that it has helped me at all. Last wk I went to a pain management Dr (who I know personally) and he did a Thoracic epidural. He also suggested that I stop the Neurontin and try Lyrica. I started the Lyrica 1 wk ago and started weaning myself off of the Neurontin but I cannot tell that the epidural helped at all. I went back to him yesterday and he said I had terrible muscle spasms all the way down the left side of my back. He didnt think I should do another epidural. He did about 20 trigger point injections. He said if I havent noticed any difference with the Lyrica yet that its probably not going to help so I am going to stop taking both and see what happens. (I have swelling & wt gain with both) He gave me Norflex (muscle relaxer) and Lidoderm patches to try. He also noted that I have mild scholiosis and thought maybe a chiropractor could help alittle. He recommended that I have deep tissue massage therapy and try to be aware of my posture. I do notice that I tend to slump my shoulders forward and thats when I will have the most symptoms. I hope & pray that somehow I can find some relief. Maybe the muscle spasms are compressing & inflaming the nerves which are giving me the symptoms in my chest and rib area. The epidural gave me some terrible hot flashes that still havent quite gone away. I also had some unexplainable low blood sugar issues for a few days after the epidural. I knew the steroid can cause blood sugar to be elevated in diabetics but never heard of it causing it to drop.
The Dr that I work for has been giving me vicoprofen to take as needed when I just cant stand it anymore. When I take it, thats about the only time I feel alittle relief.
Anyway, it really is helpful to know that Im not alone with these crazy symptoms. Hopefully, one of us will be able find the answer for us all. :) (sorry so long)[/QUOTE]


CHUEHN1,(wrote earlier must not have gone through) OMG, sure sounds alot like my symptoms, dont know if you seen the MRI results I posted at one time,so here is a brief decscription:Osteopenic changes noted in thoracic spine. C5-6Mild broad based posterior disc protrusion without compromising exiting nerve roots, C6-7 Mild hypertrophic changes & minimal disc bulge.Degenerative disc disease and spondylosis also noted in the cervical spine. Do you know if MRI reports specify how for down or what part of spine included in test? This only mentions the T1&2, also it states Axial images obtained from the levels of C3-4, down through C7-T1. So was any images done of C1 & 2, really confused never even thought about it until I read your message. yours seems to show more than mine, although my sister was in pain for 4yrs. had MRI in beginning of problem showed nothing major,much later (years when her problem appeared on another MRI), big problems to, go figure. I am disgusted, going for EMG monday,although Neuro says not expecting anything to show, bone scan of shoulder area tommorrow. Looking into shoulder, which does not explain other symptoms, My chest area,rib(under breast) arm and shoulder,upper back really hurt, can go up neck all the way to hip,all left side. Mostly upper Left torso, numbness & tingling in hand,fingers, sometimes left foot (burning feeling, or hot spots) ,left leg can feel heavy & so forth, pain really starting to radiate in upper to mid back. No bra since May. Went through whole cardiac work up, including heart cath(when it started (approx:21/2 years ago) & again last week. When I moved in my new house,I know for a fact I hurt myself moving in and continued to get bad through work,I am a home healthcare aide,used to do some major lifting & I am not big. Been to so many docs. so many opinions right down to being told to get psych, help, of course now that it is out of control new Docs office paying aliitle attention, I am not really blaming them I just feel they need to listen alittle better. PT pointed out most of problems, totally swelled in neck, shoulder, major & minor Pec. Area & under ribs. Can't tell you how many docs. thought at first it was shingles., interesting thing when ever sugar tested lately in office or ER it was up, said it could be from pain, you ever have yours checked before all this, even though I was on steriod pack, mine was off before that. I will tell you just discovered while I was on steroids still in pain, went in got and extra injection of steroids in hip, along with script for low dose of oxycodone, felt better for couple days, soon as steroid finished (same day) muscle spasms like crazy and pain, has to be the inflammation, doc. just started me on lyrica couple days ago, I also tried the lid.patch,did nothin. Pain really radiating in upper and mid back lately. Off work for now & really worried about my job. First visit with Neuro, seen him all of 2 minutes, never even asked hardly any questions, not even for PT report, not real encougaed there, plan on trying to corner him next appointment. did not even want notes my doc. told me to make (of symptoms & take to him). by the way my cardiac test were slightly abnormal to, mentioned once again maybe pain, be careful it is not your heart, all these meds. & Pain can't possably be good for it, stress to. I am praying for results to. Cannot bare it much longer ruining my life. PT was only one who said with those symptoms has to something Neuro., he sent me back to doc, because could not control swelling & pain, can barely lift my arm most mornings because of shoulder hurts so much, pulls chest area and it is off and running, heart starts racing if not controlled and send my vitals rith off chart. Any of this sound familair to you? PLEASE write back, maybe we can compare & see what happens. Sammy
[QUOTE=sammyo1;3144854]Judy, I just wore out an ice pack, sprung a leak, need some new ones, I rotate between moist heat & ice, doc say moist heat but many times I prefer the ice. one night not long ago I sat up in the bed with moist heat on one area and ice on another, I could not move and fearing I would dislogde on, I actually got a good laugh out of that. I hate the mornings that is the worst time the day, can't wait to get them over with, had a pretty decent one today, got so excited I started 3 things at once and had to stop and make myself do one at a time, never thought I would be excited or trying to organize a closet! You have pretty much been told same as me, I am going for test ordered by neuro. monday. I would just be happy to know what the heck is wrong. Took pain med before I even got out of bed today, try it again tommorrow. Anyone hear know anything about Lyrica? Doc put me on it and not hearing such good things? Have The MRI done if you can, and when you get a chance let me know what other tests you have had, we sound as if we may have at least some simularities, thanks, Marcia does indeed sound pretty smart, so Marcia anytime you want to be buddies I like getting good advice. Sammy[/QUOTE]
sammy, you sound like me with the ice packs and the heat! Also to the fact that when you feel a bit better, you start overdoing it...like 3 chores at once! My pain seems to move around; from under the breast area, around to the middle back, then lower back, as well as the calf pain. Never stays in one place! I did try Lyrica as suggested by my neuroligist, but only took about 3 of them as they made me very dizzy. I don't like that feeling; it scares me. Am now trying some natural stuff I sent away for; I figured it can't hurt. Also going to go to a Spine and Pain Clinic next week where they do tests to see about blood flow in legs, etc. Maybe I will find something out at this place. Good luck to you on your upcoming test. Please let everyone know the results.

Judy
CHKUEHN...sounds like you have had so many tests and tried so many things; the darn shame of it all is that none of us seem to have found any results. It is amazing how we all seem to have been through many of the same things, same meds, same injections.....with no results. I just cannot imagine what we are doing wrong!!! You mentioned muscle spasms, and I am thinking that I might have the same thing happening. At night I wake up with the feeling that my heart is jumping around, and I have the burning in the middle of my chest when this happens. Perhaps that is a combination of acid reflux happening along with a spasm. Seems like when I get up and take an anti-acid tablet, the burning goes away somewhat. I am trying to diagnose myself at this point. With me, I wonder if the pain in my back and legs has caused me to have acid reflux from the stress of the pain. Going for a colonoscopy and the test where they stick the scope down your throat next month to check into that. Takes forever to get in to see all these different doctors. I also had epidural injections as well as trigger point, both in the middle back area and neck area. I tolerated them well and did not have any hot flash feelings. Actually, the trigger point ones helped my neck problems and alleviated the strange numb head-achy feeling I was having somewhat. I have been having these injections for awhile now; going about every 4 months or so. The two injections I had in the middle back, spaced a few weeks apart, were for the pain around my middle area and legs, and these haven't done much so far. I guess our spines and nerves can do just about anything to us, causing so many different kinds of pain. The trick is finding out where, how and what to do about it! It is good to have a group of people offering suggestions and advice, and sharing experiences.

Take care and good luck.
Judy
[QUOTE=chablis3;3146552]CHKUEHN...sounds like you have had so many tests and tried so many things; the darn shame of it all is that none of us seem to have found any results. It is amazing how we all seem to have been through many of the same things, same meds, same injections.....with no results. I just cannot imagine what we are doing wrong!!! You mentioned muscle spasms, and I am thinking that I might have the same thing happening. At night I wake up with the feeling that my heart is jumping around, and I have the burning in the middle of my chest when this happens. Perhaps that is a combination of acid reflux happening along with a spasm. Seems like when I get up and take an anti-acid tablet, the burning goes away somewhat. I am trying to diagnose myself at this point. With me, I wonder if the pain in my back and legs has caused me to have acid reflux from the stress of the pain. Going for a colonoscopy and the test where they stick the scope down your throat next month to check into that. Takes forever to get in to see all these different doctors. I also had epidural injections as well as trigger point, both in the middle back area and neck area. I tolerated them well and did not have any hot flash feelings. Actually, the trigger point ones helped my neck problems and alleviated the strange numb head-achy feeling I was having somewhat. I have been having these injections for awhile now; going about every 4 months or so. The two injections I had in the middle back, spaced a few weeks apart, were for the pain around my middle area and legs, and these haven't done much so far. I guess our spines and nerves can do just about anything to us, causing so many different kinds of pain. The trick is finding out where, how and what to do about it! It is good to have a group of people offering suggestions and advice, and sharing experiences.

Take care and good luck.
Judy[/QUOTE]

Judy, just caught that part about waking up with burning, feels like like heart jumping around bi, I have had that also, except my heart will race like crazy, I have acic reflux, I try real hard not to eat at night, but yes feels like muscles are in spasm to, I hurry up and grab the rolaid compleate, scary feeling huh, wakes you up right out of your sleep. My sister in law was in the hospital for cancer and she had terrible gas pain (sometimes a good belch helps relieve some pressure) she said it got so bad she doubled over, they gave her gigerale(canada dry or vernours) worked like a charm she said. I am going to get some to keep in house, also said the hospital gave her gingerale mixed with prune juice to go to the bathroom, worked to, said taste ok, figure all these people on meds. might like that little suggestion.
Sammy
When I am having severe pain, my heart races too and I feel really anxious like I am having an anxiety attack. A couple of months ago I started having chest pains at work. My blood pressure was high, I was having palpitations and my heart rate was high. The Dr I work for sent me to the ER. After laying down for awhile, everything returned to normal though they still wanted to admit me because my heart rate was still alittle high and because I have a very strong family history of heart disease. I refused to be admitted because I still didnt think it was my heart. I was scheduled to see the Cardiologist again and had the full cardiac work-up repeated. This time I was sent for a 64 slice CT of my heart which is about as accurate as a heart cath. It was all normal. I am a smoker and that is probably making things worse.
Since I work in a Dr's office, I tend to try to diagnose myself. Its so hard for me to take off work and when you have children, vacation days are usually spent with sick kids, etc. I know I have made things worse by neglecting myself. We recently built a house and my husband & I did all of the finishing work ourselves. We did all of the moving and are presently in the middle of a huge landscaping project. I kept reading that strengthening your back muscles would help. At age 44, I dont think my back has ever been any stronger than right now. Now the pain mgmt Dr is telling me to stop doing all of the laborous work I have been involved with.
As for the blood sugar issue, I have occasionally had a drop in my blood sugar when I was skipping meals, etc. But nothing on a regular basis.
I believe bad posture makes my upper back hurt worse. He told me to work on keeping my shoulders pulled back but then I feel like I am pushing my chest out. He said I especially need to be aware of my posture when I am sitting at a desk, driving, etc. I have noticed that it doesnt bother me as much in the morning but intensifies as the day goes on. Laying flat on a hard surface helps me too. The pain I have starts just below the bottom of my shoulder blades and radiates around my left side (radicular neuropathy) in a spiraling pattern to my rib area beneath my left breast.
According to most of the Drs I have talked to, you cannot read too much into MRI reports. They are not 100% accurate and it is common to have nerve issues and it not show on the MRI. It should only be used as a piece of a puzzle to diagnose your problem. Your symptoms should give the most information. An MRI of the C spine should include all cervical vertebrae down to the first couple of thoracic vertebrae. T-spine should include the last of the cervical down to L1-2. etc. As I said, you really cant put too much emphasis on the report. My C spine MRI sounds the worst but I am not having pain there at this time.

~Cindy~
Ch Kuehn- my problems sound nearly identical to yours as well. I have a herniated disc at c5c6 and c6c7 as well as t8t9. Neurontin did nothing for me except make me gain 30 extra pounds. I have pain in different parts of my chest at different times. My ribs also hurt sometimes when I lightly touch them. My chest surgeon says my ribheads are not dislocated after a ct scan. My pain management doctor says my ribheads are dislocated after touching my chest. I have seen spine surgeons who do not know whats causing the pain. It turns out the spine surgeons who I have seen, big names I may add, are old time clowns who are fusion guys and have very little experience in the thoracic area. When I asked them about their experience in # of thoracic surgeries they get insulted. Turns out very few in US are proficient in thoracic area which is why we cant get straight answers. I have an appointment this month with a thoracic expert at HSS and several others in phoenix, pittsburg and boston. I am insisting all these thoracic guys also consult simultaneously with a chest guy so we can get a more accurate diagnosis. I will be relentless and find a doctor who cares and gives straight accurate information. Then I will pass it on to you folks so we can get cured and forget about the schmuck doctors who do not know what they are talking about which seems to be the majority.
[QUOTE=CHKUEHN1;3146987]When I am having severe pain, my heart races too and I feel really anxious like I am having an anxiety attack. A couple of months ago I started having chest pains at work. My blood pressure was high, I was having palpitations and my heart rate was high. The Dr I work for sent me to the ER. After laying down for awhile, everything returned to normal though they still wanted to admit me because my heart rate was still alittle high and because I have a very strong family history of heart disease. I refused to be admitted because I still didnt think it was my heart. I was scheduled to see the Cardiologist again and had the full cardiac work-up repeated. This time I was sent for a 64 slice CT of my heart which is about as accurate as a heart cath. It was all normal. I am a smoker and that is probably making things worse.
Since I work in a Dr's office, I tend to try to diagnose myself. Its so hard for me to take off work and when you have children, vacation days are usually spent with sick kids, etc. I know I have made things worse by neglecting myself. We recently built a house and my husband & I did all of the finishing work ourselves. We did all of the moving and are presently in the middle of a huge landscaping project. I kept reading that strengthening your back muscles would help. At age 44, I dont think my back has ever been any stronger than right now. Now the pain mgmt Dr is telling me to stop doing all of the laborous work I have been involved with.
As for the blood sugar issue, I have occasionally had a drop in my blood sugar when I was skipping meals, etc. But nothing on a regular basis.
I believe bad posture makes my upper back hurt worse. He told me to work on keeping my shoulders pulled back but then I feel like I am pushing my chest out. He said I especially need to be aware of my posture when I am sitting at a desk, driving, etc. I have noticed that it doesnt bother me as much in the morning but intensifies as the day goes on. Laying flat on a hard surface helps me too. The pain I have starts just below the bottom of my shoulder blades and radiates around my left side (radicular neuropathy) in a spiraling pattern to my rib area beneath my left breast.
According to most of the Drs I have talked to, you cannot read too much into MRI reports. They are not 100% accurate and it is common to have nerve issues and it not show on the MRI. It should only be used as a piece of a puzzle to diagnose your problem. Your symptoms should give the most information. An MRI of the C spine should include all cervical vertebrae down to the first couple of thoracic vertebrae. T-spine should include the last of the cervical down to L1-2. etc. As I said, you really cant put too much emphasis on the report. My C spine MRI sounds the worst but I am not having pain there at this time.

~Cindy~[/QUOTE]

Cindy, My Neuro gave me no time to tell or ask anything, hopefully next appointment. I don't get why he would not ask for pt reports or anything. Maybe doing his own evaluation still seems weird. My doc says if he cannot explain pain after test it is pain management for me. That is not real encouraging about the dependancy of the MRI reports. I don't want to live years in this kind of pain. I am 42, but feel 80 somedays. Do you know if anything may have triggered your pain, took me awhile to figure it out. As for the heart thing ditto, all the way down to family history. My pain would come & go until this May. I know the day I went for MRI was the best day I had,funny huh.I wonder if things can shift. weird question but weird symptoms. Does pain management help for you? What other tests have you had? Real bad yesturday, I know there is the inflammtion there, and since coming off anti inflammatories the pain and tinlgling Ect.. gets worse. Feel a little guilty saying this but I am glad others have some of these symptoms maybe we can put some little pieces together, maybe not but beats feeling like its just you with all these strange symptoms. First test today, talk to you soon, been on other boards to just seeing about other symptoms. Sammy
[QUOTE=sammyo1;3147491]Cindy, I know I ask you this & you may not know , but do they list on MRI report from the they sart the test & finish such as C1thru L1 ect...
My Neuro gave me no time to tell or ask anything, hopefully next appointment. I don't get why he would not ask for pt reports or anything. Maybe doing his own evaluation still seems weird. My doc says if he cannot explain pain after test it is pain management for me. That is not real encouraging about the dependancy of the MRI reports. I don't want to live years in this kind of pain. I am 42, but feel 80 somedays. Do you know if anything may have triggered your pain, took me awhile to figure it out. As for the heart thing ditto, all the way down to family history. My pain would come & go until this May. I know the day I went for MRI was the best day I had,funny huh.I wonder if things can shift. weird question but weird symptoms. Does pain management help for you? What other tests have you had? Real bad yesturday, I know there is the inflammtion there, and since coming off anti inflammatories the pain and tinlgling Ect.. gets worse. Feel a little guilty saying this but I am glad others have some of these symptoms maybe we can put some little pieces together, maybe not but beats feeling like its just you with all these strange symptoms. First test today, talk to you soon, been on other boards to just seeing about other symptoms. Sammy[/QUOTE]

Sammy, I suppose it depends on the Radiologist reading the MRI. I think most will only mention the vertebrae with abnormalities. Then there is usually a general description like "no spinal canal stenosis, cord compression or abnormal enhancement following contrast."

I have found that anti-inflammatories do nothing for my pain. Vicoprofen will at least take the edge off.

I did not take the Neurontin or Lyrica last night and was awake almost all night. I seem to have alot of hot flashes when I dont take it for some odd reason. So I have that horrible anxious feeling this morning. Im going to try to go without it this weekend but if the symptoms get worse, I will restart it. At least then I would know that it is helping in some way.
[QUOTE=CHKUEHN1;3147600]Sammy, I suppose it depends on the Radiologist reading the MRI. I think most will only mention the vertebrae with abnormalities. Then there is usually a general description like "no spinal canal stenosis, cord compression or abnormal enhancement following contrast."

I have found that anti-inflammatories do nothing for my pain. Vicoprofen will at least take the edge off.

I did not take the Neurontin or Lyrica last night and was awake almost all night. I seem to have alot of hot flashes when I dont take it for some odd reason. So I have that horrible anxious feeling this morning. Im going to try to go without it this weekend but if the symptoms get worse, I will restart it. At least then I would know that it is helping in some way.[/QUOTE]

Boy I hope I don't experiance that with Lyrica, We will have hot flashes soon enough. I am trying it cause I am at my wits end, I need to get back to work, three appointments next week and neuro should have the test results at least for blood, bone scan and EMG, next friday. Want to be back at work the following week, if I still have clients left. Bone scan today, Maybe something will show, any one else you know of have a bone scan, I go for ultra sound on my breast, after two mammagrams, thursday,everyone keeps asking if I am worried, no I need to get out of this pain, then maybe Ill worry about the ultrasound. I may have to lock the nuero in the room with me friday to get answers, almost feel desperate enough to do it. vicophren, that has a little anti inflammatory in it, does'nt it? part motrin is it not. I don't think much though. I start on 2 Lryrica next tues. 50 mg each, I was alittle tired driving today, when do you take your doses? Sammy
Chab,I understand what you are trying to say, really can't say, I do know it happens so fast out of the blue at times, usually with the pain or muscle spasms. Doc say thinks bodies way of responding to pain, although I do know If I don't watch what I eat (bad @ night) It can really kick in, I know I am swollen in rib and Chest area always thought maybe has something to do with it. All I know I hope it stops, if I discover whats wrong & conrtolled that and the reflux and tachycardia went away I would be able to say it is directly linked. I am holding hope. Sammy
I guess we can start a frustration club, I am in thats for sure, had to apologize to family today so moody, tired of pain with no explantion, & tired of meds, then spoke to my sister-law-law in florida who was diagnosed with cancer and felt I should aprreciate what I have, I do but hard. I hope I get some answers soon, new post in spinal cord forum, also pain in chest area I believe it said burning under breast ect....Don't quote me tired, if interested for you all take a look under "new on board" thread. We will all keep looking, right, don't have a choice. Sammy
hey CH.bone spurs generally wont 'cause' pain in and of themselves,only when they are directly affecting a nerve or grow into the foramen and start causing stenosis within it,or of course if they are affecting the cord itself.they would have to be directly affecting one of the above for you to actually feel that they even exist.just how severe is your herniation.that alone could be the issue,espescially if it is covering the dermatome that correlates with it.i myself have had at least about one hundred TP injections(between 15-20 per visit) just over the past few years since my hell began back in 01/02,some worked some didn't.can you actually feel the TPs back there,little wads of tissue/muscle there?these are generally caused by the ongoing inflammation going on within the nerves at your herniation site.the nerves get inflammed and in turn start irritating the heck outta the muscles back there.that is what actually creates TPs.i,if i got any relief at all,would usually get it from the injections around day two or three.sometimes they work and sometimes they don't do squat.it kind of depends on if you actually have real TPs and if they were responsible for actually generating pain for you.a tennis ball placed between your back(inside a sock)and a nice solid wall so you can roll it around and into those TPs really works rather well to calm things down for me when it gets kind of ugly back there.its always worth a shot.its about the closest i could come to to replacing the hands of my therepist when my ins co said i was not making enough 'progress" to justify them continuing to pay,despite the fact it was working so well for my pain.i guess the pain relief part doesn't matter to the ins co.

what types of docs have you consulted so far?what have you been given as far as any realtreatment options?what is the extent of your herniation(what does it state in the MRI summary?)?depending on how severe the herniation actually is and just what is being affected would in turn kind of dictate the type of treatment options availiable to you.if you could actually post that info it would help alot.Marcia
Hi chablis3 & everyone, interesting news, went for EMG, very upfront & informative DR. Told him why I was there, right off the get go he said he could see I was in alot of pain, said it always shows in the eyes. DR. said EMG's did not always pick up nerve problems & he was pleased I went for bonescan, He started the test on the left arm, OMG, not a comfortable test when your in Pain to begin with. nothing showed in the arm, he was curious I believe because of my symptoms, so he had me roll over on my side and did the thoracic area, well he was alittle shocked because the EMG was picking up slight readings, which he said is very rare in that area. He said he would have bet it was in the neck area & believed it would have showed else where, said these symptoms can come from c6-7 area and/or thoracic area.
Needless to say he said I was a very confusing & complex case. I asked him if a slight reading was a good indicater of helping find out the problem & he replied absolutly. Before I left he said he was glad the bone scan was done & he would recommend having a myogram (I believe that is the test he said) done. So I am keeping my fingers crossed that this is a clue as to getting some help with this problem. Anyone else have A bone scan & EMG done (curious about EMG in thoracic area)? Funny thing arm does not hurt in the spots the EMG was done but boy my back so tender there & sore. Maybe we are getting a step closer, hope so cause sure in pain & getting tired from all the meds, fighting not to get depressed. Sammy PS. Almost forgot he also noted alot of inflammation, said steroids I was on should have helped that, Well still inflamed,bad. He said must be feeling alot of pain from that.
Sammy, sounds encouraging that maybe its a step in the right direction.

Marcia, My muscles in my back always feel hard & tight. Of course its hard for me to tell if its actual trigger points. Because of all of the work we have been doing the past yr, my back muscles are in great shape. We built a large house and did all of the finishing work ourselves. I did almost all of the painting myself of the 4700 sf of living space including all of the caulking, etc. Back in the spring, we started on the landscaping. My husband & I laid about 20 pallets of sod. We are on the side of a mountain so that made it harder. More recently we are working on 2 retaining walls. (one in front & one in back) The landscaping blocks & caps weighed 40-60 lbs each. We are also building a 1500 sf paver patio in the back which was about 13 pallets of pavers. In one weekend we moved 30 tons of dirt to fill in behind the retaining wall and spread 15 tons of gravel. Just wanted to give you an example of how much work I have been putting my back through but I have to say, I think building those muscles helped to support my back better. For the past 2-3 wks I have not done any strenuous work like that and I have felt worse so Sunday I started helping my husband again with our project. I think it also gets my mind off of the pain.
My most recent MRI reads this way: Mild Left paracentral posterior disc herniation at T6-7 which does not cause significant stenosis or narrowing." The MRI I had in 2004 stated it was touching the cord but it is still surrounded by CSF. The only Drs I have been to so far is the Orthopedic in 2004 & the Pain Mgmt Dr 3 wks ago. I am going to try the Chiropractor & massage therapy to see if that helps. Not sure which way to go after that.
CHK, My house is a couple years old, when moving in I know I did something, really hurt, would come & go, same as you worked my butt off helping my husband with landscaping(he was recoving from surgery)he drove my crazy dictating how & what to do, he told me I dug a hole in the wrong spot (for a bush) fill it back in & move over an inch, everything I did according to him I had to redo, so I held the shovel up & said it is time for you to go in a rest NOW, HA!, funny I did everything in the old house and it was just fine. He was just frustrated & bored, he wanted to be able to do it & he could not.It was like in the 90's stiffling hot, you could imagine I was in no mood.(Got off track). The point I am trying to make is I did the same, kept right on going, the pain & symptoms scared me & I just wanted to pretend it was not there, & I loved working & keeping busy,After all I was superwomen did it all, In retrospect I know now I made things worse, so be careful, I kept going even after trip to hospital, everytime the pain & symptoms would ease or go away I was off & running on to the next big project, & was lifting alot at work, I am very small, & looking back I was really kind of dumb, no way should have been lifting like I was. I just know all that I did is why I am where I am at today, & it is not a fun place to be, now if I wanted to dig a hole it would have to be for a vegtable plant (thats all I am capable of).Watch your self & do not over do, don't want it to catch up with you some day. Be careful, Sammy
Hi Everyone, Just dropping in to see how everyone is doing. I just finished reading everyone's posts. Boy, Sammy, you sure have done some really hard work with your new house, and I see that Chkuehn also has put some hard work in also. I used to be able to do things like that, but now I can't even cut the grass. I miss doing physical work; I always liked a bit of hard work. Now it takes me forever just to dust and vacuum! Sammy, I hope you get some good results and find out something from having the EMG and the bone scan. You sound like me, as to being a confusing case! I wish you luck, though, and I hope this doctor finds an answer for you. As for an update on me.....I am still searching for answers. Finally had my appointment with a new doctor at a Back and Pain Management Practice. Nice man, gave me a through check up, and said he think he can help me. Then...proceeds to tell me he is going on vacation for two weeks! I am so angry about that, and the fact that his office girl made me the appointment knowing I was a new patient, and surely knowing he was going on vacation. He had me go have an MRI of the back, but I can't find out anything until he comes back from vacation. I am calling the office tomorrow and demanding to speak to another doctor, as I really am in pain. Also called my neurologist to see if I could go in this week for a shot.....he is also on vacation next week. Makes me wanna cry!!!

But, has anyone experienced any pelvic pain? I had a slight yeast infection about three weeks ago; went to my gyno, took meds, and it went away. Then, came back last week and seems like all my tests at the gyno came back clear this time. But, I am still having pelvic pain and a slight burning feeling now and then. I am just wondering if the inflammation from my back could cause pelvic inflammation also? I am grasping at straws here, but wondering what you all think about this new developement? Any thoughts? Thanks and take care, everyone.

Judy
Nice to hear from you, Sammy. You may be right about it being National Vacation Week for doctors! I live in Delaware. Nice state with lots of doctors, but can't find one to help me. I have an apointment with a rheumotologist next month, and I am also changing family doctors this coming week. Oh boy, now you have to deal with having your meds changed, on top of pain! What a terrible trial to go through. The doc I went to, the one on vacation, did give me some samples of Celebrex to try, but they didn't do anything for me. Yes, I was wondering if perhaps the inflammation from my back could cause the pelvic pain. Since everything seems to be connected somehow in our bodies, I thought this might be a theory in my pelvic pain. Is your husband having problems as well? You said he will be starting radiation soon. My goodness, I hope he will be ok. I am glad I don't work; I could never get up in time to make it to work. I don't know how you do it being in pain.

Thanks for the mail, Sammy, and good luck with your meds, and my best wishes to your hubby. Prayers to you both.

Judy
Hello everyone. Just checking in to see if anyone has found an answer to our pain. I am going to a Chiropractor this morning. Hoping he can at least do something to take the edge off. Been a really stressful couple of weeks. I am the Mammographer as well as the office manager of our practice and we have been short-handed. Of course I get to take up the slack and do 3 jobs. I notice that as my pain worsens during the day, I get more anxious and on edge. I get very emotional and can break down at any minute. Anyone else feel that way? It also makes me sort of paranoid. I have been worried about my job among other things and that is something I have never felt insecure about. Its almost like I cant think rationally.

Anyway, we will see how it goes today.

Have a good one!

Cindy
I've had upper back and chest pain and have seen a chiropractor. I have herniated t8/t9 and other invaginations in the thoracic spine. Ever since I stopped seeing my chiropractor (who I've seen for a year and who is a terrific person) I've been feeling better!
Went to the Chiro again this morning. He seems to think my C spine herniated disc is causing some of the pain down around my scapula. He did another myofascial release. Said the adhesions are so bad that he really cant do an adjustment in the area of my T-spine where I am having the most pain and spasms yet. Said I shouldnt be as sore as what I was last wk when he did the myofascial release. (thank goodness)

Like I said previously, I would not put too much faith in the MRI results. Sammy, have you had plain film xrays of your spine? (standing) I never thought it could give me any answers to my problems but it did. The scoliosis did not show on the MRI and that seems to be the root of my problem.
Hope everyone had a good labor day weekend. always nice to be off work. ;)

Just wanted to check in to see how you all are doing. Im still seeing the chiropractor. I go back to my Pain Mgmt Dr this week. Hoping he may have other recommendations as I cant say that I am feeling any better though the Chiro seems to know where my pain is coming from and gave me some insight as to how it originated.

BTW, I have gone 3 days without any Vicoprofen. I didnt sleep well at all and I think the pain was worse but at least I could lay down, etc when it was bad rather than how it happens when I am at work and I have to just keep working and do the best I can to deal with the pain. (which is why I end up in tears on the way home)
Hello Everyone! Just dropping in to see how everyone is doing, and so sorry to hear that we all seem to still be in the same boat; with our pain and our frustration! My back, neck, side, are still giving me the same problems and pain. I finally have my rheumotoligst appointment on Friday (after waiting a month and a half to get in). He probably won't have much to say, but I want to check with him to rule out any fibermyalgia. Then, next week I go to the new back doctor; the one that went on vacation for two weeks after my first visit with him. But, I have to tell you all about my vacation last week! Went to Wildwood, N.J. for a week, and wasn't feeling real well when we left. I ended up in the emergency room with a bladder infection, our little dog got sick and we had to take him to a vet, and my sister's cap fell off of her front tooth! What a vacation! I have been having re-occuring bladder infections for some strange reason; been going on for over a month now.

I was given meds to take at the ER, came home, and then was having problems with the meds they gave me...ended up with my right leg swelling. Went to see my new family doctor (whom I like), and am now on different meds! Now he wants me to go see a uroligist! I feel like I am making a career out of going to doctors...and I know you all feel like that, also.

So, that's what has been happening with me, and I did read through all your posts to catch up with everyone. It is upsetting to hear that nobody has found any good results as of yet. I think I might try that natural remedy that John mentioned in his post. Sounds interesting.

My best to everyone, and take care; my thoughts are with you all!

Judy
Sammy, thanks for the reply, and glad to hear from you as well. Yes, I have been drinking lots and lots of cranberry juice as well as water. I hardly ever drink water, which is good for you, so your doing the right thing by drinking lots of it! I would love to have a glass or two of wine, but afraid to drink that good stuff! I also wondered if what I had been taking might be causing the bladder infection, but the only things I take are vitamins, blood pressure pills, and I did try a few Celebrex, but just took a few of those. I was also using a natural spray (sprayed under the tongue) that was supposed to help with muscle and joint pain. I did stop using that, though. I have to wonder if the bladder infection is from all the stress of being in pain? I am not sure if stress could cause bladder infections or not? Sorry to hear your so sore from helping the elderly couple; which was so nice for you to do. Hope you feel better soon. You sound like me; do things one day, and pay for it the next few days. Yes, do call a rheumotoligist right away as it does take forever to get in to see one. I'll keep you posted on my visit tomorrow.

CHK...I feel so bad for you having to deal with work and pain. That has to be tough, and I can understand why you break down on the way home. I have felt like doing that also, and I don't even work. It is terrible for both you and Sammy to have to deal with all that pressure and stress. I surely couldn't do it; I can hardly get my housework done these days.

Thinking about you both, and sending my best. Take care!
Hi Chablis, yeah it seems us spineys are always having pain..if not constantly, then on & off... I get various pains in my spine, arthritis pain, nerve pain, muscle pain, etc. as well as in other joints too. It seemed like my rheumy thought I had lupus & fibro but now all of a sudden it seems like he doesnt know. I know how frustrating it all is.

Sorry that you ended up in the ER on your vacation, that's a bummer. But at least they found something & youre being treated for it. I get alot of bladder infections on & off too and I have to have some bladder tests done next week.

THey can be caused by bacteria for various reasons - like bacteria getting in there from the outside; holding too long before going to the bathroom; or there can be several medical conditions that cause you to not to empty your bladder completely, which causes too much urine to stay in the bladder for too long, and then bacteria can multiply b/c it's not leaving your system. And there are certain diseases that put you more at risk for getting these infections such as diabetes, kidney problems, some autoimmune diseases, some spine problems can damage nerves to the bladder....

Sometimes I get weird bladder problems but no infection is found. To me many flares i've had seem to coincide with times I have bad spine problems (heriations, stenosis, sciatica). I mentioned that to my Gyno (who is sending my for my bladder tests)..I said might it be related to my spine problems & she said it could be, but wants me to have some additional tests done. So that is good, as least she is concerned about it; unlike my rheumy, who didnt think anything of it. And ditto on feeling like I have a 2nd career visiting doctors and labs and imaging centers!

I think you probably should have the bladder issue checked out to make sure nothing else is going on.
Hello fellow thoracic chest and back pain sufferers. I have just returned from HSS in an effort to help identify our pain. I had a triple phase bone scan with a radioactive isotope, MRI of the thoracic spine and ct scan of the thoracic spine. Incidentally it is the seventh ct scan this year relating to my chest and thoracic spine. I have also had a full body emg. I am awaiting the results and will compare them to other tests I have had prior. I am consulting with seven prominent orthopaedic surgeons and neurosurgeons and am determined to find a gdam freaking answer to why we are all suffering the same pains with very similar diagnoses'. I will keep everyone posted and please keep me posted as well. I am a 41 year old male who is sick and tired of feeling like hell everyday. I was an avid athlete and plan on getting back to my life.
I went back to the pain mgmt Dr yesterday. While I was there, I was having an anxiety attack because of the pain. (of course Im diagnosing myself based on the symptoms... never had them until the past fews months) they seem to start when my pain gets bad and the spasms increase in intensity. Anyway, he agreed that it probably is anxiety. He gave me a rx for Xanax. I really dont want to get started with another drug that could be habit forming. I will give it a try when I have another bad attack and see how it works. I also dont want to take something that may make me sleepy so we will see.
He gave me a rx for Limbrel 500mg. Its apparently a new type of anti-inflammatory that you take twice daily. You have to take it 5-7 days before it starts helping. Guess its worth a try. My PM Dr does not like to give Narcotics. I have been getting the Vicoprofen from the Dr I work for but I dont want to keep asking her for it so I hope the Limbrel helps.
He also did a Cervical Epidural which certainly was a strange experience...different from the Thoracic Epidural that I had last month. When the dye went in to check for placement, I could feel it go to the painful area below my scapula that gives me alot of problems so hopefully we are getting close. Initially, I didnt think it could be related to my C-spine problem because I dont have pain down my arms or neck pain. Anyway, now I am optimistic that maybe we are heading in the right directions. Guess I will know in a couple of days when the steroid kicks in.
Hi Sammy and Chk and all! Went to the rheumotoligist today and was told the good news is I don't have fibermyalgia, but after reviewing the MRI of my back, he said I do have "very messed up disc's", and arthritus in my back. He said the leg cramps and bad pain and burning I am getting uncer the ribs and my side can also be from the disc's. I kind of suspected he would say that, but was glad to hear I didn't have fibermylagia. So, his advice was to definitely keep my up coming appointment with the back doctor week after next. This bit of information, after about 45 minutes in his office, cost $245.00! I sure hope my insurance pays some of it!! Just thought I would let you all know my experience today!

Baybreeze, thanks for your input on my bladder problem. I also was wondering about the connection between the back problems and the bladder infection. I went to the ER here at home last month with a 2nd flare-up, and at that time all my tests came back clear....and I was having bad pain in my back and side then, which made me wonder if one had to do with the other. I have had people say that stress can also cause bladder infections, and boy, the pain we have with our problems certainly brings lots of stress! At least your gyno said "it could be", while mine said she did't think there was a connection. I will keep my appointment with the uroligist next week just to see what he might say. Let me know how your tests turn out!

Sammi and Chk...I think it is a very good idea to take the Zanex or Valium when you get anxious. I know I wake up in the middle of the night sweating, and heart jumping around, and sometimes dizziness, and I am certain all that is anxiety. Not only from all the pain, but from the stress all of us are having trying to deal with it and the frustration. I even talk to myself and tell myself to take deep breaths and calm down!

MKA...I hope you can find something out soon as to what is going on with you, and maybe some of your findings will help us! It must be so hard for you being an athelete and not being able to persue that just now. But, keep up the good work of seeking an answer, and hopefully some day soon you'll be back to your strong, physical self. Good luck to you.

Take care everyone!
Judy
Hi Sammy; I am glad I don't have fibermylagia; I hear that is also very painful. Yes, the rheumotoligist is actually the first one to read my MRI report, as I haven't been in yet to see the new back doctor, who was the one that ordered the MRI in the first place. I actually took the film in to the rheum. guy; they gave me my film at the MRI place. I tried taking Lyrica...the neuoroligist I had been going to for eridural shots/trigger point injections perscribed it. I didn't like it at all because it made me dizzy. When I get a side effect like that, I won't take it because it scares me. I don't like that dizzy feeling! My hands were getting numb and tingly back then, and that is why the neuroligist perscribed it. So yes, it should help you with that part, but not the pain. If you can tolerate it, it would probably be good for you to take it. I wonder why your ribs are sore, and also the swelling in your chest area. Do you think you might have pulled a muscle when you were doing all that work over the week-end? I hope not; that's all you need on top of everything else!

I am so sorry to hear your sister-in-law has cancer. I lost my adopted grandaughter last year (21) to brain cancer. It is very upsetting to me when I hear of someone having cancer. I wish your sister-in-law well and I will pray for her. Oh yes, those pain meds can make a person cranky, and I don't blame you for hiding in your room! I do that sometimes, and I also don't feel like talking to people at times. The rheumotoligist asked me if I find myself getting tired and depressed......of course my answer was a big YES!

I hope you are taking it easy this week-end, and not doing much work! You need to rest up and realx a bit. Have a good week-end, and I will be thinking about you!

Judy
Hello Mammy and nice to meet you! I read your post and am going to look up the thorasic spine/dermatome chart, both. Seems like your also having the same issues we all are with our back problems. I don't know at this time exactly which disc's are giving me trouble; I have to go back to the doctor that ordered my MRI to get a full explanation. All I know is my lower back hurts like heck, and I get leg cramps and achy legs.

I am sorry to hear both you and hubby are having trouble and hope it improves soon for you both. Oh, that would be so nice if you could get someone to come in and clean. I hate not being able to do my housework the way I used to. I can still do light stuff, but I always liked to tear things apart when I cleaned and move things around. Those days are over! I hope your WC pays for some help, as well as a chair lift. I have a rancher house, all on one floor, and I sure am glad for that. I can't climb stairs very well. My daughter has a split level home, and I haven't been in her upstairs for two years! My hubby was talking about moving just the other day, and I would love to, but there is no way I could pack things in this house and then re-arrange another house! 10 years ago I could, but not now!

I have neck problems also, and along with the back thing, I know what you mean about the "neck to tailbone thing!" I can tolerate my neck pain, but the back just does me in. Keep us posted here on anything you might find; there are good people here and we are all interested in anything new and informative.

Take care, Brenda, and visit again. It was nice reading your post. My best to you and hubby!

Judy
Good morning everyone.

Just checking in to see how you all are doing. Im pretty sore this morning but its my own fault. My husband works for Honda and yesterday the company rented 6 flags for the employees and their families. All the walking about killed me. My kids kept asking me to ride some rides with them and I finally gave in and did it. I thought.....geez, Im 44 and this just isnt right that I can no longer do these things with my kids. It didnt hurt immediately afterwards but later in the day when we went to the waterpark area, I didnt have a place to sit except on the curb. I just couldnt stand to be on my feet any longer. I started feeling anxious and the pain was getting to me so I had to take a vicoprofen to make it through the rest of the evening. Thank goodness I took them with me. My kids had a blast and I dont regret riding the rides with them at all. Wont be too much longer until they will be grown. I think the walking was what got to me the worst. My lower legs are really sore and also my mid back but I dont think my back is any worse than normal. The worst area in my back is about the level of my bra strap and it radiates around to the front rib area. They are sore to the touch as well as my sternum.
Not sure if the cervical epidural helped. I dont think I am having the spasms at my upper back as bad.
Anyway, I am thinking about getting a tens unit to try. The PM Dr said it may help. After that, not sure which way to go. He said he dont know what else to do if the epidural doesnt help. :(

Hope you all have a great day!
Hello Everyone! Yea...I made a phone call this morning and got the back rehab place to see me tomorrow instead of next week! I complained a heck of a lot to the receptionist and she fit me in!

CHK, sorry to hear you got so sore from your day at 6 Flags. That is so frustrating when you go someplace like that and can't fully enjoy yourself because you know your going to pay for it later. I am sure your kids enjoyed you getting on some rides with them, though. I have had a few cervical epidurals in the past, and even though they didn't take the pain away completely, they did ease it. I have a tens machine I borrowed from my sister, and I find it also helps a little. Sometimes I put the patches on and walk around with it on while I am doing housework. You might like one; I think it helps somewhat.

Sammy...how did your doctors appointment go today? Hope it went well. Let us know! I don't have any numbness in the chin or lip area, but I do have constant ringing in my ears stemming from my neck problem. I also get weird headaches; almost like a brain freeze problem like you get from drinking something real cold. I know all that is from my disc's in the neck, and I bet the numbness you get is from your neck. I have the cracking too when I turn my head back and forth. I didn't do a thing this week-end except sit and watch football games; thought I would take it easy and maybe my back wouldn't hurt as much.......didn't work...still hurt that night when I went to bed.

I did look up that Dermatome chart that Mammy mentioned. It was very interesting. I can see why when a person has back problems, it can affect a whole bunch of other areas as well. Looking at all those nerves that jut out from the spinal column explains why we seem to hurt in so many different areas. Thanks, Mammy, the site was informative!

Hope everyone has a good day today!

Judy
yesterday I went back to the Chiropractor and this time he did a cervical decompression. This was the first thing that I have actually noticed a difference. I am not pain free but it eased the crushing pressure I feel in my chest and decreased the pain alittle. I went back this morning and had it done again. I could have laid there all day. :)
CHK, I am so glad to hear you got some relief from the treatments at the chiopractors. Maybe a few more will have you feeling much better. I wish you luck and hope they work for you.

Sammi, I feel so bad for you. I just can't imagine why you are having all that swelling in the rib and chest area. I am glad you did turn around and go back to your sister-in-laws; being in that much pain and with your heart racing....that is very scary. Maybe you should have gone to the ER like CHK suggested; they probably would have done a CAT scan right then and there. Good thing you did go ahead and schedule one, though; maybe that will show something. I can imagine how your struggling to keep you job. You have a lot of pressure on you with the job and trying to find out what is causing your pain.

My latest is: Went to the rehab doctor and he reviewed my MRI. He did show me the film, and I do have a herniated disc in the lower back and also a couple of degenerating discs. The one is really bulging out. He suggested the epidural shots, and then today I went to see the doctor that gives them. So, Monday I am scheduled for the first one, then another one the following Monday. I have had these type of shots before, but only in my neck area and middle back. I asked the doc that gives the shots (a woman) about my leg pain and she said she isn't sure if that pain as well as the pain in my side under breast is from the herniated disc or not! She said the only way to tell is to have the shot and see what kind of relief I get. At least she was honest. So, here we go again and I feel like Sammy....my trust in doctors is going down hill fast!

Take care and my best. I wish you both well.

Judy
Hi everyone! Just a hello, and wanted to catch up with you all. There was some mention of having the deep tissue therapy and it reminded me that I tried that, but only went twice. It actually hurt as the girl was really digging into my muscles. Were you told to drink a lot of water afterwards? They say you have to to help get rid of the toxins that are stirred around from the massage. It would be worth you gals trying it, though. Might help!

Sammy, you mentioned about wearing a bra...which I hate to wear myself, but I found some really nice sports bras in a magazine I received in the mail. I got a couple as they are really cheap, and also bought one with magnets sewn in the back part. Haven't tried that one yet, but the others are so comfy. You just pull them over your head...no straps, and they wash nice. The company does have a web site, but I am not sure if I can mention it on here. Do you know if it is ok to do so? I think you might like these bras.

CHK, I do envy you with that hot tub! Hope you find time to get in it often, and hope it helps with your pain. Have you ever thought of trying a TENS machine? I was using my sister's, and now ordered one of my own. I found that helped some with my back. You can also order them on the internet at a fair price.

Here's my news....went yesterday for my first epidural injection in the lower back. They gave me something to relax me through an IV, but I didn't feel any different as to the relaxation part. It doesn't put you to sleep; just relaxes you. I didn't even feel the shot itself, and was surprised when the doctor said ok, your done! I was scared it might hurt in the lower back, but it did't at all. I did have a restless night, though, had a headache and was a bit anxious all night and a little queasy. The dr's office called today to see how I was, and the nurse said that is a common side effect of the steroid med and the stuff they give you to relax you. I felt goos today though, and just got a brand new mattress, so I hope I get some sleep tonight. I might have another injection next month if I am still in pain...if I need it.

So, my best to you gals, and hope something soon works for you both. I know how frustrating it is!! Good luck to your hubby, Sammy, and you take that half of Zanax if you need it! That won't hurt you...you can always stop taking them when you feel better. I took Ativan for awhile years ago, and got off them ok.

Thinking of you both, and take care!

Judy
CHK....I never had any injection to relax me when I went to the neurologist for shots in my neck, and I got through it ok. This place I went for the lower back is a new place, and I guess this is their procedure. But, I really don't think I need it next time as I didn't feel any different relaxation wise! And, your right, they rubbed something on my skin and the shot went so fast, I didn't even notice it. The only thing I noticed different from this shot is that I did have a bad headache all night, and was a bit anxious. The next day I also noticed my face was red looking around the cheeks, but today that is gone. I am bad at keeping track of what was in the shots the neurologist was giving me....they might have been cortisone, where this one was a steroid injection. Maybe that is why the mild side effects this time? Yes, I also read that the steroid injections can make you gain weight, which I don't need, but I am not going to worry about that just now.....I am just glad I found a bit of relief from the pain!

Have a good day!
Sammy, I know what you mean about not being able to wear the clothes you want to. I wear all my clothes loose...I can't stand anything tight on me anymore. I am thinking that you sound like you have some nerve damage going on since you have all that pain anound the rib area. That is what my neurologist suggested to me when I first started complaining about the burning, crampy, pain under my breast area. That has gone away now, thank goodness, and I am not even sure why, but I am glad! I only get a sore feeling now and then in that area, but it does go away. I was reading someplace that sometimes a hernaited disc will heal on it's own, and sometimes it takes 6 months or so. I have to wonder if this is actually true! I can't see how that can happen...especially since we can't lay in bed 6 months and do nothing! Oh yes, I definitely know what you mean about giving up on doctors. I am tired of getting the bills in the mail. But, seems the only route we can go is what we have been doing...the pain management, the chiopractors, the shots, etc! What else is there, except maybe making a decision to go have surgery right off the bat? I almost would do that if I could find a good doctor that would tell me that would correct my problem with my disc's. It gets so frustrating and expensive seeing all these other people.

Took me a long time to find out I did have a herniated disc/degenerating ones too, and I am peicing it all together in my mind that this can cause all kinds of aches and pains that move around here and there in the body...as well as affect the nerves. I wish a doctor would have sat me down and told me all that long ago!!

Don't give up, though, Sammy. When you go to your appointment Monday, speak your mind and ask all kinds of questions . Make that doctor listen to you!! Good luck and let us know how it turns out.

Talk soon!
Sammy, I dont think an MRI would mention ankylosing spondylitis. I believe it would take more than an MRI to diagnose that condition; though it would give clues. I think I mentioned ankylosing spondylosis previously in this thread as it went along with alot of the symptoms some are experiencing here. Do a search on it and see. Also ask your Dr about it. I had my Dr order some blood tests a couple of wks ago. I had a CBC, Sedimentation Rate, C- Reactive Protein and HLA B27. I had been searching the internet to see if any blood tests could help diagnose my problem and found this:

"HLA B27: Your doctor may order this test if you have joint pain, stiffness, and swelling. HLA type B27 is associated with autoimmune diseases such as ankylosing spondylitis and Reiter syndrome. The test may be done along with other tests, including an ESR, C-reactive protein, and rheumatoid factor."

All of my test results were fine. (thankfully)

I have felt better the past couple of days. I am still seeing the Chiropractor and having the (non surgical) Cervical Decompression. I think its helping. Im not having so much rib pain, tingling, etc and not as many spasms in my upper back. He has also been adjusting my neck. He (and the PM Dr) believe my problem is more related to my C spine problem at C 5-6 & C 6-7 causing symptoms in my upper back radiating around to my ribs on the left side.
Norene, wow sounds like you swell up like me, what is the B-27 gene, and is what your speaking of hard to diganos? Because I'll tell you I have been doctor to doctor, the last couple days have been miserable, I am so swollen I could not get my dress off last night, my husband pulled it over my head by time he got it off I was in tears. I heard a crack in my scapula area thursday evening while changing the sheets on my bed, every since then the pain is out of this world, Same thing happened last week, heard a cracking or snapping sound same area that day the pain was unbearable. Does that ever happen to you? I have had it in the neck, I told my rehab. doc last visit about the neck & he said it was because I am so inflammed, all the pressure. Well what ever is going on it is getting worse. I swear I could feel the swelling all way up to my collarbone & even the right side by my scapula was hurting, that never happens. It hurts to breath, I am getting sharp searing pains in the chest area. Like knife pains, I know I am about as inflammed As I have ever been. My movement of the left side with the shoulder area is extremely limited when I am swollen up bad. I'll tell you if this pain gets any worse not so sure I can handle it. I don't know how to get through to these doctors how painful it is. They can see some of it, but I am going to tell him it is getting out of control. My ribs feel huge. Weird feeling. Thanks so much for the info. Exactly how were you diagnosed & by what doctor? Sammy
Sammy,
I am so sorry that you are in so much pain. I made my GP test for the B27 gene and RA and Osteo at the same time(its a blood test). My GP did not want to do this test saying there is no way I would have this disease. My father had it and my brother has it. When it came back positive I knew I had AS. When you have a positive B27 gene with the presence of arthritis, you can pretty much assume you have AS. I had 5 MRI's, over two years with Dr. Silverberg at Etobicoke Hospital in Toronto, Canada. It is difficult to diagnose in women because our symptoms are all over the map. The info on this disease is not current and most of the info on AS is not quite accurate. MY GP refused to believe I had this disease because I was to old and a women. I think 38 is young.The AS was probably dormate until I had a serious bacterial infection which brought it on. When they finally told me for sure that I have AS, and it was not in my head I was relieved. I studied AS and truly believe knowledge is power. Keep up with the good fight they will find out what is wrong. Do you have any breathing problems. I was diagnosed with Asthma with this disease. I tell the doctor's now ( bring it on)
Norene
The B27 gene is nasty, it brings in other problems like gastoral intestinal problems(the burning in the chest), colitis. crohn's and IBS. My husband has crohn's disease. Also we avoid the deadly nightshade plants. Potatoes, peppers, eggplants, tomatoes cause inflammation.
Hi Chk, I am currently taking celebrex which isn't doing what it should. It will be by injections if I decide to take Remecade. My doctor gave me six months to research it and I have to answer him November 13. There is some scarey side effects but they are rare. It is supposed to stop/delay AS.
Hope you are well.
Norene (Canada eh!)

Sammy, don't give up, make the doctor take the blood test for the B27 gene. Go swimming as much as you can in warmer water, it is the only place I was pain free.
Sammy, nice to hear from you, and yes...I have said the exact same thing...if I could go have surgery tomorow, I would be there bright and early! In fact, I say that to myself every night while I am tossing and turning in bed. Seems like nights are the worse, and when I first get up in the morning. After I move around a bit, and get my shower, I loosen up a little, but never get rid of the pain completely. Having surgery is really a very hard decision, and from what I have read, some people end up not getting any relief anyway....so, that makes a decision even harder. But, at this point, I really don't know what else to do. I understand what you mean about "pity parties", and I think all of us on here should have them...we deserve them! I think my hubby is getting disgusted with me because I don't want to go anyplace. I want to.....just can't! But, I hope you find something out tonight when you have the MRI..that should show what is going on with you.
Please post as soon as you know something.

Meantime, take care, and know that I, as well, as others, are thinking of you and sharing in your frustration. Good luck to you.

Judy
[QUOTE=chablis3;3125769]I am hoping to get some advice and input concerning my problem. I have been experiencing a burning type pain under the breast area and also in the upper back area. I am wondering if this could be caused from bad discs in the back? I have had MRI's, epidural shots, Cat Scans, and nothing could be found. My neurologist says it might be "nerve pain." I have had two series of epidural shots, which haven't helped much. I can't seem to get a decent explanation as to what "nerve pain" is, and what might have caused it. All my neurologist says is it could be a touch of fibermylagia.....as well as nerve pain. I am confused, disgusted, and at my wits end! Has anyone else had this type of pain? I would appreciate any advice and thoughts, as I don't know if I should be seeking another type of doctor, and if so, what kind of doctor? Thanks so much for reading my post, and I will welcome some advice.[/QUOTE]

I would.. b4 my first heart attack, my left shoulder was KILLING me.. they said this n that, nerve pain etc.. i would go and get it checked out by a cardiologist :) to be on the safe side :)





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