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Back Problems Message Board


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A recent MRI showed that my L5-L6 disc is 80% gone. In other words I only have about 20-25% of the disc left. I have no herniations. The other lumbar discs looked good. I do have sharp, severe, and sudden lower back pain depending on what I am doing. Has anyone had this condition? I am a weightlifter and this pain is destroying my life right now. Is surgery the only way to fix this? I have had lumbar epidurals and they did help a lot! But they only lasted for 1 month. I cannot bend or lean forward without severe pain. Any info or experiences would be appreciated. I already had an L4/5 microdiskectomy and laminectomy 8 years ago. But that level is fine. One final note...Most people have L/5-S/1 vertebra. I actually have a very rare condition where I have an L/6 vertebra and not an S/1 vertebra. The surgeon said it simply means that my S/1 vertebra is more similiar to a lumbar vertebra than a sacral vertebra. Whatever that means??? But it is very rare he said.
[B][I][U]Thanks, Joe.[/U][/I][/B]
[QUOTE=Cowpin8;4151919]A recent MRI showed that my L5-L6 disc is 80% gone. In other words I only have about 20-25% of the disc left. I have no herniations. The other lumbar discs looked good. I do have sharp, severe, and sudden lower back pain depending on what I am doing. Has anyone had this condition? I am a weightlifter and this pain is destroying my life right now. Is surgery the only way to fix this? I have had lumbar epidurals and they did help a lot! But they only lasted for 1 month. I cannot bend or lean forward without severe pain. Any info or experiences would be appreciated. I already had an L4/5 microdiskectomy and laminectomy 8 years ago. But that level is fine. One final note...Most people have L/5-S/1 vertebra. I actually have a very rare condition where I have an L/6 vertebra and not an S/1 vertebra. The surgeon said it simply means that my S/1 vertebra is more similiar to a lumbar vertebra than a sacral vertebra. Whatever that means??? But it is very rare he said.
[B][I][U]Thanks, Joe.[/U][/I][/B][/QUOTE]

Hi, Joe! I read your post and just wanted to share some information that I have learned concerning the L6 vertebra. It's called Bertolotti's syndrome. They say it is rare, but I believe more people have it than they know, since it is often not diagnosed or just called a transitional vertebrae. I have had low back pain for 20 years of my 44 years of life only to learn recently from an orthopedic trauma doctor that it is a congenital defect called Bertolotti's syndrome. You may want to do an internet search on the topic to learn more. Hope that helps!





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