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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

Hello, I am new on this board. I am 48 yr. old, and when I was in my 20's was told I had "Degenerative Disc Disease". I managed quite well, and worked for 21 years in a high stress and very physical (lot of heavy lifting) job. When I started having symptoms of early arthritis around 1990, I was advised by doctor to seek other job not so stressful on my joints. I always test Negative for RA, yet was told I did have RA. My knees are shot, my ankles, and hips. They say I have "Severe Bursitis" in the hips.
I managed to work through the pain until about 2 years ago, when I fell down a flight of stairs (my knee gave out!)...landing on my tail bone all the way down. I immediately experienced total paralysis of my body from the waist down. My husband got me to ER, where by then, the "feeling" had returned to my body. Two years later, even though the "feeling" has returned, I still have trouble "feeling things". Such as descerning cold and hot, a touch... I have terrible bone pain in my legs. My patella (front & back) stays out (both knees). Very painful. I lost my sence of Taste & Smell after this happened, also.
The ER sent me to an Ortho Doctor who did an MRI. When he got the results back he said that I needed to see a Rheumatologists. Said that it was out of his hands! My life has been a disaster since then. Was told I had everything from FMS to MS to AS... you name it. Was put on MTX and that almost killed my lungs. Had severe problems from that, and still lingering.
Durning all of this, No One has addressed the MRI. They all say I could NOT POSSIBLY be "having pain" in my spine. My pain does not travel, or move... it is consistant. Walking is a chore. Sitting is deadly!
I noticed some people on this Board listed the results of their MRI and were told what it meant. And I am wondering if someone could help me with mine, since no doctor will even look at mine.
performed using sagittal & axial T1 & sagittal T2 weighted images.
*The L1-2 & L2-3 levels are within normal limits.
*There is central L3-4 disc Protrusion with Annular tear. This causes deformity of the Ventral Aspect of the Thecal Sac.
*There is central L4-5 disc protrusion also causing deformity of the Ventral Aspect of the Thecal Sac.
*There is Central L5-S1 disc Protrusion with annular tear. This appears to be abuting the Medial Aspect of the Right S1 Nerve Root as it exits the Thecal Sac.

I finally found a Sports Doctor this past May, who actually x-rayed my bones. All other doctors did NOT. They all claimed that they just "knew" I did not have inflammation! (Even though sed, crp, etc. was so high) But yet this new Sports Dr. showed me I did. And also he showed me the Arthritic "changes" of my bones! He put me on dose pack of Medrol, then after, kept me on 10 m of Pred. daily. That has helped the swelling tremendously. But not helped the SPINE/HIP/LOW BACK PAIN. He put me on Vicodine for this. It has helped.
So, according to my MRI after my "fall" 2 years ago, WHAT KIND of doctor should I see? And what is your opinion of what is "wrong"? The other doctors said that there should be NO PAIN, and it was "all in my head"...
So could someone interpret this MRI for me. My back is getting worse. Daily I struggle just to lift my leg and walk. And standing "straight" is not even achieved at this point in my life! And it is getting "stiffer & stiffer".
I am 48, have always been very athletic and active. Never had fluctuation of weight. Stayed around 110 all my life. Until now... I am losing weight due to pain, and not being able to eat.
Can someone help? Sorry this is sooooo long!

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