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Susie
07-03-2005, 06:11 PM
working on how to cure the sciatica that bedevils me>>

Oh, I do sympathize. I've been dealing with it for one year now. Nothing so far has seemed to work. Along with that, there have been a number of other medical problems. Like you, it's not life threatening, but hard to deal with, nevertheless.

Susie

ktinkel
07-04-2005, 05:45 AM
Oh, I do sympathize. I've been dealing with it for one year now. Nothing so far has seemed to work.A year! Oy. Not sure how you manage.

I started physical therapy last week, and it does seem to help. Mostly stretching exercises, moist heat, and some sort of electric tickler thing. But helping isn’t the same as fixing it.

Mervyn Long
07-04-2005, 08:22 AM
>But helping isn’t the same as fixing it.

Together with the sciatica, lower back pain, and when its chronic (always there) it can corrode one's ability to function. Tried epidurals, physical therapy, local pain shots .. been going about 4 years now, every day, all day . Anyone with chronic LBP has my kinship and sympathy.

Mervyn

ktinkel
07-04-2005, 09:00 AM
Together with the sciatica, lower back pain, and when its chronic (always there) it can corrode one's ability to function. Tried epidurals, physical therapy, local pain shots .. been going about 4 years now, every day, all day . Anyone with chronic LBP has my kinship and sympathy.Oh, no — unbearable even to think about it. I am so sorry to hear it.

And it sure does corrode (nice term) one’s ability to function. Sustained projects of any sort become impossible — just can’t concentrate. And the muscle relaxants I was taking for a while made concentration even harder — it was like being sort of nasty drunk all the time.

I’ve been sleeping in a recliner (!!), which seems to help somewhat (keeps me from twisting around, anyway). And these weird stretching exercises. I still have hope, though you and Susie are not very encouraging.

In kinship, for sure. Alas.

Susie
07-04-2005, 03:58 PM
A year! Oy. Not sure how you manage.

I started physical therapy last week, and it does seem to help. Mostly stretching exercises, moist heat, and some sort of electric tickler thing. But helping isn’t the same as fixing it.

I had four months of physical therapy. Much the same as you. It didn't help that because of the pain of the sciatica, I fell in December on the opposite leg, and tore the muscle. The muscle above the ankle is shot, and the right foot doesn't operate real well. I had to use a cane for several months, but I can manage without it now. The worst problem is that I don't have good balance, and can trip very easily. I do hope your physical therapy works. I know on the days I had it, while it was painful right after, I felt pretty good the rest of the day.

Susie

Susie
07-04-2005, 03:59 PM
>been going about 4 years now, every day, all day
Mervyn

Four years! I don't think I could handle it that long. I still live with the fantasy that this will end. I've taken enough anti-inflammatory meds and pain meds to last me a lifetime, I think.

Susie

Kass Johns
07-04-2005, 04:45 PM
Egads! I've had sciatica for about 15 years now! I just "deal" with it... babying it when it flares up. I remember many times walking back to my hotel in SF at Seybold or MacWorld and having it attack me. That's when I kick into "penguin walking" and just shuffle for a minute before I fall over. Good thing I don't care how people perceive me. I just take an immediate seat on the ground if needed when it hits. That calms it short term until I can get to a laydown space.

Mine flared up bigtime in March upon the final cleanup week (after 3 months) of my friend's estate. It's been a big pain since. Have had to do my regular "stuff" from a seated position, rather than standing (laundry, dishes, gardening, etc). I have been trying to stretch myself back into shape in recent weeks before yardsale (end of July) and garage reorg (next week). This is why I am hiring a couple of my teen students to do my heavy lifting in garage reorg and help me with yard sale.

It's never been the lifting that got me, it's ALWAYS the bending that kills me every time. Prolly losing about a thousand pounds would help!!! Duh!



BTW... Hi! I was drawn in by the thread title and thought it might be a miracle cure!
I'm trying to get back to my "normal" routine now that school's finally over (last week) and I have a new system to test out (I bought a used G4 from W so I could get with the game, OSX & CS2). Gallery due to open in August so I have July to catch up with/cleanup/paint/reorg my life, home, garden, friends, and learn this new &^%*!!@! system.

ktinkel
07-04-2005, 05:20 PM
Egads! I've had sciatica for about 15 years now! I just "deal" with it... babying it when it flares up. Yikes! I do not see how you could live with it. When it is bad enough I cannot sleep, think, read, or sustain a conversation. Sitting is one of the difficult things (certainly no help), and lying down or sleeping makes it worse.

Maybe we have different ailments. Mine is actually piriformis syndrome.

Anyway, do not want to compete with you, that’s for sure. I’ve been sleeping in a chair for two months now and am heartily sick of it.

Nice to see you here again. Stick around why don’t you?

Kass Johns
07-05-2005, 12:35 AM
Nice to see you here again. Stick around why don’t you?

I will try to be here somewhat regularly again until the next "fire" breaks out and I get in over my head on the next project! ...Or I break out with some stupid "disease du year"! FYI, The bubonic plague is now killing squirrels in my neighborhood. Since I had West Nile last summer, I am sure getting the plague is just a matter of time!!! (You know me.)

I had hoped someone here would have a great fixit for the hips. Mine are really bad right now compared to recent years, but I know what I did to 'blow them out" this time and so am accepting of consequences. I just need to get serious about getting back into some sort of functionality. I feel so helpless right now not being able to do things for myself. I'm not good at asking for physical help. I hate "owing" someone. But now that I have teen students available, I can PAY them to slave for me! That's at least one great benefit to me from the teaching gig. [grin]



BTW, as per another older thread I just saw... I had seen Steve Job's commencement address in our newspaper and so I discussed the calligraphy comments in one of my lectures to my students (The Digital Revolution). They thought it interesting, especially since I had given them a small calligraphy project in class and another letterform project. And naturally, I spoke at length about type, type designers and why we should all worship it/them! Also as a calligrapher myself, I was pleased with his comments.

Mervyn Long
07-05-2005, 07:18 AM
>Egads! I've had sciatica for about 15 years now! I just "deal" with it... babying it when it flares up.<

[Assuming Yorkshire accent}: Ee, but you're lucky! <g> In fact, an 'acute' version of LBP/sciatica implies periodic times of relief, which one can look forward to as being the far side of the problem which one will reach by keeping one's head down and toughing it out. A 'chronic' version offers no end, no relief to which to look forward, just full-time, always on pain, and *that* can be devastating.

Mervyn

ktinkel
07-05-2005, 10:57 AM
I will try to be here somewhat regularly again until the next "fire" breaks out and I get in over my head on the next project! ...Or I break out with some stupid "disease du year"! FYI, The bubonic plague is now killing squirrels in my neighborhood. Since I had West Nile last summer, I am sure getting the plague is just a matter of time!!! (You know me.)Oh, good. Not the fire and disease part — but we’ll be glad to have you stick around!

Mike
07-05-2005, 11:04 PM
Have you tried acupuncture? It was something I was fairly sceptical about until we had a very arthritic dog treated. It worked like a miracle. Before the treatment she couldn't stand up without help; two days after the treatment she was running around like a puppy.

Deciding that the effect couldn't have been psychosomatic I had treament for migraines. Before the treatment I averaged a migraine about once every two weeks (needing at least one whole day in bed and sometimes two). After the first treatment I didn't have a single migraine for two years -- and then it was only a mild one.

It doesn't work for everything (or everyboody) but it's certainly very effective in some cases and, I would imaginne, could be very effective for topical pain.

Has anyone tried it? If so, has it worked?

Kass Johns
07-06-2005, 12:35 AM
I just remembered what I heard about last week. My health-food fiend friend and I discussed the pain I have and the fact it is just so damn inflamed right now. I had been considering going back on megadoses of ibuprofen to get the inflammation down but I bruise & bleed so easily I didn't really want to add to my blood thinning.

She recommended green tea steeped with fresh ginger root... just a few gratings of fresh ginger root. She said the green tea is naturally antioxidant, but when ginger root added, it becomes anti-inflammitory too. She warned me to steep the tea in hot (not boiling) water, then she strained out the ginger root pieces from the cup. I plan on trying that when I next get to store for fresh ginger root.

Maybe you want to give it a shot? Just a thought...

k

ktinkel
07-06-2005, 05:47 AM
She recommended green tea steeped with fresh ginger root... just a few gratings of fresh ginger root. She said the green tea is naturally antioxidant, but when ginger root added, it becomes anti-inflammitory too. She warned me to steep the tea in hot (not boiling) water, then she strained out the ginger root pieces from the cup. I plan on trying that when I next get to store for fresh ginger root.

Maybe you want to give it a shot? Just a thought...Tell you what — you try it and let me know how it goes. For now, I’m trying to do what the doctors are telling me to do. I love ginger, and use a lot of it anyway, fwiw.

Mervyn Long
07-06-2005, 09:19 AM
Have you tried acupuncture? It was something I was fairly sceptical about until we had a very arthritic dog treated. It worked like a miracle. Before the treatment she couldn't stand up without help; two days after the treatment she was running around like a puppy.

Deciding that the effect couldn't have been psychosomatic I had treament for migraines. Before the treatment I averaged a migraine about once every two weeks (needing at least one whole day in bed and sometimes two). After the first treatment I didn't have a single migraine for two years -- and then it was only a mild one.

It doesn't work for everything (or everyboody) but it's certainly very effective in some cases and, I would imaginne, could be very effective for topical pain.

Has anyone tried it? If so, has it worked?
Mike - in the past members of my family have tried acupucture as a last resort for pain control (an MD acupuncturist) without any luck. At this time in the the world's history I'm leary of anyone sticking re-used needles into me.

Found a strange thing, though, that for me the intensity of the LBP is linked to taking statins. I'm a scientist and together with my cardiologist set up a test protocol which discovered and checked out the link between the two. Statins don't *cause* the lower back pain, they exacerbate it strongly. So now, when the pain gets past the point where I can handle it, I stop taking the statin for a while, take a vacation.

Wierd, but there y'go <g>

Mervyn

Mike
07-08-2005, 12:09 AM
Found a strange thing, though, that for me the intensity of the LBP is linked to taking statins.

Not knowing what statins were I took a look on Google. They obviously exist as medication but are they in normal foods as well?

Mervyn Long
07-08-2005, 07:09 AM
Not knowing what statins were I took a look on Google. They obviously exist as medication but are they in normal foods as well?
Mike - I think all statins are synthesised, but not truly sure that they don't exist somewhere in nature. They are this decade's 'wonder' drug doing useful things for cardiac heart disease and thought to be helpful both with Alzheimers and even cancer it has been suggested. They work by lowering the low density lipids in one's blood (LDL - the bad cholesterol). But the worm in the bud is showing up with certain statins, when taken in large doses, causing liver and muscle problems.

The effect of statins can be gained in natural ways in many people, mostly by using a high fibre, low fat diet. Genetics play in this, of course, and for those who do not respond to dietary measures, lipids are the answer.

Mervyn

Mike
07-08-2005, 11:37 PM
The effect of statins can be gained in natural ways in many people, mostly by using a high fibre, low fat diet.

If that includes a high fibre, low fat, and high alcohol diet then I'm OK. <g>

I have high blood pressure and the doctor recently put me onto some different tablets as the others weren't doing anything useful. These ones didn't seem to do anything for the blood pressure but made my ankles swell so much that I could barely walk.

Next week I have to go and tell her that I threw them in the bin.

ktinkel
07-09-2005, 05:48 AM
I had four months of physical therapy. Much the same as you. It didn't help that because of the pain of the sciatica, I fell in December on the opposite leg, and tore the muscle. The muscle above the ankle is shot, and the right foot doesn't operate real well. I had to use a cane for several months, but I can manage without it now. The worst problem is that I don't have good balance, and can trip very easily. I do hope your physical therapy works. I know on the days I had it, while it was painful right after, I felt pretty good the rest of the day.How awful for you!

I am trying to use the physical therapy as a way to learn how to do the stretches myself because it does seem to need daily attention. My knees are so bad that I cannot do some of the most effective exercises, but have about four that seem to be helping.

(Sorry, but didn’t see this message until this morning. Tsk.)

Mervyn Long
07-09-2005, 10:42 AM
If that includes a high fibre, low fat, and high alcohol diet then I'm OK. <g>

I have high blood pressure and the doctor recently put me onto some different tablets as the others weren't doing anything useful. These ones didn't seem to do anything for the blood pressure but made my ankles swell so much that I could barely walk.

Next week I have to go and tell her that I threw them in the bin.
Well alcohol does relieve stress so it can't be all bad, eh? <g>

We all have our quirks, and perhaps one becomes too aware of health and medical problems in the US, but if you'll accept a well-meant comment, it's work working with your doc to get the BP under control. A single BP reading doesn't mean too much (unless it's *really* whacked out) since the readings can vary immensely. One way to track it is to buy a small electronic BP meter and take your at-rest pressure every other day or so, at about the same time of day each time for a coule of weeks. But that's probably more involved than you wish to get.

Mervyn

Susie
07-09-2005, 07:03 PM
How awful for you!

I am trying to use the physical therapy as a way to learn how to do the stretches myself because it does seem to need daily attention. My knees are so bad that I cannot do some of the most effective exercises, but have about four that seem to be helping.

(Sorry, but didn’t see this message until this morning. Tsk.)

No problem. One of the exercises my therapist gave me is this. Lie on your tummy on the bed or floor or wherever you wish. Do not use a pillow and have both arms down at your side. You should move your head from one side to the other about halfway through. Try to do this for 30 minutes. What it does is take the pressure completely off your spine and can give you a little relief for at least a short period of time. It really works. I at least know I can get a little temp relief. The thing about it is that I'm a restless person, and 30 minutes seems awfully long.

Susie
07-09-2005, 07:05 PM
I agree with you. Getting my BP under control took a number of visits to the doctor and changing meds as well. I bought an inexpensive BP monitor similar to the cuff they use in the doctor's office, and I check frequently. I recently went on another medication that's known to cause slight elevations in blood pressure, so now I check it every day when I get up.

Mervyn Long
07-09-2005, 07:20 PM
Susie, perhaps you recall a thread we had some time ago about exothermic (self-heating) pads? I find they give me great relief from LBP. The ones I use are called 'Thermacare' and are so thin you won't notice them when you wear them under your clothes all day. Really are worth a try. If you do try them, remember that if you don't want the pad to run it's whole 8 or so hours in one go you can wrap the pad in foil after part of that time, stuff it in the freezer and get most of the remaining hours a day (even 2 days perhaps) later.

Mervyn

Mike
07-09-2005, 10:42 PM
One way to track it is to buy a small electronic BP meter and take your at-rest pressure every other day or so, at about the same time of day each time for a coule of weeks. But that's probably more involved than you wish to get.

I have one of those which I use every few days. I even enter the readings into a spreadsheet! My BP generally hovers just above 150/90 with a pulse rate of 45 to 50 (which seems rather slow but the doctor has never commented on it).

I think your right that I should talk to the doctor but she only works here two half-days a week and it generally means sitting in the waiting room for 2 hours or more (they refuse to operate an appointment system).

Still, I have to see her next week. We've booked a holiday in Peru and the holiday company require us to produce a doctor's certificate to say that we're fit enough to go.

Mervyn Long
07-10-2005, 08:48 AM
150/90 used to be considered okay not that many years ago. Now physicians are pushing the 'ideal' lower and lower wanting systolics in the 130s and diastolics in the low 80s, perhaps even lower. Same with cholesterol where the 'ideal' LDL is now down around 70mg/dl.

One has to wonder if this is not due to an idea that if low in good, lower is better, a sort of general principle. I often think that it's the blind leading the blind.

Mervyn

Michael Rowley
07-10-2005, 03:00 PM
Mervyn:

150/90 used to be considered okay

I woder when the physicians will get around to quoting blood pressures in hectopascals—or do they think that they're are at the forefront of scientific terminology by using millimetres of mercury instead of inches?

low in good, lower is better

I hope they don't apply that unequivocally to heartrates, where zero is reached only when one is dead.

Susie
07-10-2005, 04:24 PM
Susie, perhaps you recall a thread we had some time ago about exothermic (self-heating) pads? I find they give me great relief from LBP. The ones I use are called 'Thermacare' and are so thin you won't notice them when you wear them under your clothes all day. Really are worth a try. If you do try them, remember that if you don't want the pad to run it's whole 8 or so hours in one go you can wrap the pad in foil after part of that time, stuff it in the freezer and get most of the remaining hours a day (even 2 days perhaps) later.

Mervyn

Yes, I do remember the thread, although I had forgotten about it. I'll get one of those. I remember getting a sample in the mail, but I don't believe I kept it. Getting old is hell, isn't it?

djb
07-10-2005, 07:35 PM
Getting old is hell, isn't it?

Beats the alternative, most days...

Mike
07-10-2005, 11:57 PM
150/90 used to be considered okay not that many years ago. Now physicians are pushing the 'ideal' lower and lower wanting systolics in the 130s and diastolics in the low 80s, perhaps even lower.

Some years ago Audrey collapsed in a restaurant in France. They called the doctor who diagnosed low blood pressure. When we got back to the UK our doctor said that low blood pressure wasn't a problem.

Maybe it should be higher in France. Maybe we should all move to France and get an instant cure!

ktinkel
07-11-2005, 05:39 AM
Some years ago Audrey collapsed in a restaurant in France. They called the doctor who diagnosed low blood pressure. Since she was in France I am surprised they didn’t diagnose liver trouble — it seems to be the catch-all ailment there.

Mervyn Long
07-11-2005, 08:44 AM
>where zero is reached only when one is dead.<

Cures that high BP problem too <g>

Mervyn

Mervyn Long
07-11-2005, 08:46 AM
> Maybe it should be higher in France. Maybe we should all move to France and get an instant cure!>

Grub's better too. Sounds like a plan. Keep moving around until what you are anyway is normal <g>

Mervyn

Susie
07-11-2005, 05:31 PM
Beats the alternative, most days...

Well, there is that!

Mike
07-11-2005, 11:46 PM
Since she was in France I am surprised they didn’t diagnose liver trouble — it seems to be the catch-all ailment there.

I wonder if that might have been construed as a slight on the restaurant food.

Mike
07-11-2005, 11:49 PM
> Maybe it should be higher in France. Maybe we should all move to France and get an instant cure!>

Grub's better too. Sounds like a plan. Keep moving around until what you are anyway is normal <g>

Mervyn

Well, I now have another plan. They say that exercise is good at reducing BP so this afternoon I'm having 8 tons of crushed stone delivered that I'll need to spread over the front yard. With outside temperatures around 25 - 28 centigrade this week that should provide a fair bit of exercise.

Mervyn Long
07-12-2005, 11:43 AM
Well, I now have another plan. They say that exercise is good at reducing BP so this afternoon I'm having 8 tons of crushed stone delivered that I'll need to spread over the front yard. With outside temperatures around 25 - 28 centigrade this week that should provide a fair bit of exercise.
Wot a plan!!! If I ever run into a 8 ton pile of crushed stone that needs moving, I'll .... avoid it like hell <g>

Mervyn

ktinkel
07-12-2005, 04:16 PM
If I ever run into a 8 ton pile of crushed stone that needs moving, I'll .... … call Mike! He can probably be there within 24 hours! <g>

Mike
07-13-2005, 12:06 AM
Wot a plan!!! If I ever run into a 8 ton pile of crushed stone that needs moving, I'll .... avoid it like hell <g>

Mervyn

It's OK, I've got plenty. Looks more like 10 tons to me!

ElyseC
07-13-2005, 04:11 PM
It's OK, I've got plenty. Looks more like 10 tons to me!Woo! What a party! Have fun! I'm jealous...NOT! :-)

Mike
07-13-2005, 11:16 PM
Well I took some time out yesterday and went to see The Australian Ballet dancing Swan Lake. Absolutely superb.

Didn't get to bed till 1.30 though so I feeling a little fragile this morning. It's 8.15 and already the temperature is 25 Centigrade so I'll probably take it a bit easy today as well.

annc
07-14-2005, 01:23 AM
Well I took some time out yesterday and went to see The Australian Ballet dancing Swan Lake. Absolutely superb.Ooh, was that the Graeme Murphy choreography? It's had rave reviews here since it was first performed a couple of years ago, but I've yet to see it. Everyone expects Murphy to do really radical things, but apparently this is wonderfully traditional.

Didn't get to bed till 1.30 though so I feeling a little fragile this morning. It's 8.15 and already the temperature is 25 Centigrade so I'll probably take it a bit easy today as well.Jumper weather here. ;-)
Well, not really, but long-sleeve shirt...

ElyseC
07-14-2005, 06:53 AM
Jumper weather here. ;-)
Well, not really, but long-sleeve shirt...Long-sleeve shirt?? That's 77F in 'Murrican language, which for the neighborhood kids is easily play-in-the-sprinklers temps! Of course, if you're talking about my kid, just present water spray in someone's yard and he'll be there running through it even at lower temps. He'll play in it way beyond the point where he's soaked to the skin and his teeth have begun chattering! But I guess that's a 5 year old boy for ya. <g>

Mike
07-15-2005, 03:06 AM
Ooh, was that the Graeme Murphy choreography? It's had rave reviews here since it was first performed a couple of years ago, but I've yet to see it. Everyone expects Murphy to do really radical things, but apparently this is wonderfully traditional.

Yes, it was Graeme Murphy. There were, I think, some modern influences and quite a degree of originality but all within the context of a traditional ballet. If you do get an opportunity it's well worth making quite an effort to see.

Jumper weather here. ;-)
Well, not really, but long-sleeve shirt...
Yes, but this is Wales where is quite unusual for it to be dry and most unusual for it to be hot as well. I'm trying to make the most of it but have to spend today indoors as I have to complete a book by Monday.

annc
07-15-2005, 12:05 PM
Yes, it was Graeme Murphy. There were, I think, some modern influences and quite a degree of originality but all within the context of a traditional ballet. If you do get an opportunity it's well worth making quite an effort to see.They don't often come up here, but I will try to go next time. At least they do come; the so-called 'Australian Opera' only performs in Sydney and Melbourne.


Yes, but this is Wales where is quite unusual for it to be dry and most unusual for it to be hot as well. I'm trying to make the most of it but have to spend today indoors as I have to complete a book by Monday.Dry and hot is fine. We get it dry and hot in October (spring is dry and dusty here) and that makes it easier to work outside. In summer, we get it humid and hot, and nobody wants to work outside, even us natives.

marlene
07-16-2005, 12:08 PM
I'm leary of anyone sticking re-used needles into me.

I had acupuncture years ago (for headaches), and the guy used disposable needles. I assumed they all did.

mxh

Mike
07-17-2005, 12:47 AM
I had acupuncture years ago (for headaches), and the guy used disposable needles. I assumed they all did.

mxh

I think they all use one-use needles these days. Goodness, even our dog had single-use needles stuck into her.

And for anyone with a real phobia of needles they can do it without needles these days -- they use a laser.

When Tess got hit by a car she limped badly for a long time (over a month). The vet couldn't diagnose anything wrong without her having an x-ray, which wouldn't have meant an anaesthetic. Rather than do that we took her for accupuncture. The accupuncturist couldn't use needles on that part of the leg as there wasn't sufficient flesh so he gave her laser treatment which cured the problem in a couple of days.

terrie
07-18-2005, 12:50 PM
Has anyone tried a physiatrist?

A friend of mine was told (by an ortho) that she had a torn (or damaged...not sure which) rotator cuff and was referred to PT as an initial approach to the problem. The PT didn't help and the ortho was recommending surgery when a friend mentioned that she might try a physiatrist.

On her first visit with the physiatrist, the body work he did helped immediately and she was given some exercises to do and will continue to see the physiatrist regularly for the next couple of months.

Anyway...might be worth looking into...here's the url's she gave me:

http://www.aapmr.org/condtreat/faq.htm
http://www.aapmr.org/condtreat/what.htm

Terrie

ktinkel
07-18-2005, 01:24 PM
Has anyone tried a physiatrist?Fascinating — never heard of that specialty, but it all makes good sense to me.

I have just been referred to an orthopedist; going on Wednesday. I see there are two physiastrists near here, so depending on what ensues after that appointment, I may make an appointment with one of them.

Thanks, Terrie!

terrie
07-18-2005, 02:05 PM
>>kt: Fascinating — never heard of that specialty, but it all makes good sense to me.

My friend has been *very* pleased with this guy...

>>I have just been referred to an orthopedist; going on Wednesday. I see there are two physiastrists near here, so depending on what ensues after that appointment, I may make an appointment with one of them.

Do keep me posted...the interesting thing with my friend is that he said that she does NOT have a torn (or damaged) rotator cuff--it's something else that I can't remember--and that's why the PT wasn't really helping because of course it wasn't addressing the real problem...

Terrie

PS...I'd never heard of them either and when I first read my friend's email, I read it as psychiatrist rather than physiatrist...'-}}

ktinkel
07-18-2005, 03:42 PM
I'd never heard of them either and when I first read my friend's email, I read it as psychiatrist rather than physiatrist...'-}}It looks to me as if an obscure speciality (Rehabilitation Physicians or something like that) has decided to try PR with a fancy new name.

What was interesting to me was that so many of these specialists are women (around here, anyway; I only looked at Milford, Stratford, New Haven, and Bridgeport, CT, of course).

Anyway, for me: one step at a time. But thank you for that heads up — that may be my next step!

Susie
07-18-2005, 06:46 PM
Has anyone tried a physiatrist?

http://www.aapmr.org/condtreat/faq.htm
http://www.aapmr.org/condtreat/what.htm

Terrie

Terrie - I'm so glad you mentioned this. I was referred to an orthopedist, but have been dragging my heels...this sounds like an absolutely wonderful solution. I've pulled up the list for my area and am going to try one of the doctors. I'll report back on my experience. I like what one I looked up had to say. My PT never helped much at all, except for a couple of hours afterward. I'm so worn down from fighting the pain, and am ready to get my life back!

ktinkel
07-19-2005, 06:20 AM
Terrie - I'm so glad you mentioned this. I was referred to an orthopedist, but have been dragging my heels...this sounds like an absolutely wonderful solution. I've pulled up the list for my area and am going to try one of the doctors. I'll report back on my experience. I like what one I looked up had to say. My PT never helped much at all, except for a couple of hours afterward. I'm so worn down from fighting the pain, and am ready to get my life back!That’s how I feel. My orthopedist appointment is tomorrow, so I will keep it. But if they don’t basically act the way the physiatrists say they do, I too will be off to see one of them.

I have my fingers crossed for you! Being held captive by pain is no good.

terrie
07-19-2005, 11:48 AM
>>kt: Anyway, for me: one step at a time. But thank you for that heads up — that may be my next step!

You're welcome...let me know what happens...

Terrie

terrie
07-19-2005, 11:49 AM
>>susie: I've pulled up the list for my area and am going to try one of the doctors. I'll report back on my experience.

Do keep me posted...my friend Mercedes is very pleased with the results so far...

Terrie

ktinkel
07-20-2005, 04:29 PM
I've taken enough anti-inflammatory meds and pain meds to last me a lifetime, I think.Have you taken Relafen? I started that tonight. Had x-rays of my lower back and find that I have arthritis, and some collapsed discs. Sigh.

So: 10 days of this Relafen stuff, along with PT. Then we will see.

Susie
07-20-2005, 07:09 PM
Have you taken Relafen? I started that tonight. Had x-rays of my lower back and find that I have arthritis, and some collapsed discs. Sigh.

So: 10 days of this Relafen stuff, along with PT. Then we will see.

No, don't believe I've heard of Relafen. I've been taking Lodine. As long as I take it as prescribed and regularly, it does seem to help. I also take Ultracet for pain, but I suspect it does not do as much good as the Lodine. I'll be interested to hear about your PT. I'm not sure what they did for me in PT was as it should have been, and it really didn't help. My initial diagnosis was scoliosis from childhood, with disc deterioration, which I would expect at my age. Now I know why I have always had back problems.

Susie

ktinkel
07-21-2005, 07:04 AM
No, don't believe I've heard of Relafen. I've been taking Lodine. As long as I take it as prescribed and regularly, it does seem to help. I also take Ultracet for pain, but I suspect it does not do as much good as the Lodine. I'll be interested to hear about your PT. I'm not sure what they did for me in PT was as it should have been, and it really didn't help. My initial diagnosis was scoliosis from childhood, with disc deterioration, which I would expect at my age. Now I know why I have always had back problems.Relafen is an NSAID; so is Lodine, sort of (but I’ve only ever had it from the dentist, even though it is considered to be an arthritis remedy). Have no idea how they compare. Ultracet is acetaminophin (like Tylenol) plus a sort-of narcotic. That too I’ve been offered after dental implant surgery, but after using it once chose to use ibuprofen or aspirin instead.

An old friend, a radiologist, called last night, and told me (told me? Hah — raved at me), saying I must insist on having an MRI, that x-rays and physical therapy are just treating symptoms, and that an MRI could help them discover the exact cause and fix it.

Sounds like surgery to me, but I suppose it could be anything. Not sure I can easily call an orthopedist on one day’s acquaintance and tell him how to diagnose me. (Besides, I am somewhat claustrophobic and wonder if I could stand a closed MRI.)

Anyway, other paths to pursue. This Relafen definitely helps; I really noticed when it wore off, so will now be careful to take the two daily doses 12 hours apart!

ElyseC
07-21-2005, 10:26 AM
(Besides, I am somewhat claustrophobic and wonder if I could stand a closed MRI.)A friend just went through an MRI out of desperation to discover the source of her horrid pain (found out it was bone spurs in her neck) and she's definitely claustrophobic. They searched around and found an MRI machine that had some kind of opening on top as well as at both ends. Maybe there's more than one kind by you, too.

ktinkel
07-21-2005, 11:33 AM
… an MRI machine that had some kind of opening on top as well as at both ends. Open MRI machines are fairly common here, but some doctors don’t like the image quality.

Anyway, I don’t think I will take that approach just yet. One step at a time, for now. I just got home from P.T., so feel a little sore; but I have been improving — just not fast enough.

Susie
07-21-2005, 06:06 PM
An old friend, a radiologist, called last night, and told me (told me? Hah — raved at me), saying I must insist on having an MRI, that x-rays and physical therapy are just treating symptoms, and that an MRI could help them discover the exact cause and fix it.

Sounds like surgery to me, but I suppose it could be anything. Not sure I can easily call an orthopedist on one day’s acquaintance and tell him how to diagnose me. (Besides, I am somewhat claustrophobic and wonder if I could stand a closed MRI.)

The procedure lasts about 45 minutes or more, and it's very noisy. I can't even stand being in an elevator for very long. I did have an open MRI last December. My doctor wanted the MRI, and I told her there was no way I could tolerate the MRI - I'd be screaming help after about 15 seconds. The open MRI wasn't bad, but I still felt a little clautrophobic. You have to sit completely still for the procedure. Not easy for me! They did run a movie for me during the MRI, but I couldn't hear it because of the noise of the machine.

ElyseC
07-21-2005, 07:54 PM
Glad you're improving. I think I finally know what that's like.

Ever since my first rear-ender accident April 1990, the injuries from that were then compounded when we were hit from behind again (a double hit, four cars involved) on my birthday in 2000, I've had constant neck and upper back pain. Well, after years of my neck being adjustable only via activators (those "thumping" gizmos), my neck is now being able to tolerate manual chiropractic adjustment again. Not only is it tolerating it, but it is showing progress. My upper back, however, is now pitching a fit. With the neck beginning to return to correct function, the areas that have been compensating for it are now having to unlearn what they've been doing.

ktinkel
07-22-2005, 05:32 AM
With the neck beginning to return to correct function, the areas that have been compensating for it are now having to unlearn what they've been doing.Ah, yes — compensation. I will have hell to pay when that begins to be sorted out. I am so crooked now I could be that man in the fairy tale/riddle!

Glad to hear of your progress.

mel576
07-01-2006, 02:02 PM
Chronic lower back pain is so terrible!! I have been dealing with it for a few years along with sciatica. My former doctor said he was sure there was nothing wrong, and that the pain "is all in your head" and due to depression. After I dumped him, I went to a new doc
who suggested x rays,and an MRI. Although the results are pretty severe, and according to neurosurgeon will need surgery if I want to be pain free.. (thats an option!!!!)Can you believe my first doctor, i feel like sending him a copy of my MRI!!!! Does anyone have any ideas or thoughts about whether I should send him the report???

ktinkel
07-01-2006, 05:56 PM
Chronic lower back pain is so terrible!! I have been dealing with it for a few years along with sciatica. My former doctor said he was sure there was nothing wrong, and that the pain "is all in your head" and due to depression.

After I dumped him, I went to a new doc who suggested x rays, and an MRI. Although the results are pretty severe, and according to neurosurgeon will need surgery if I want to be pain free. (thats an option!!!!)

Can you believe my first doctor, i feel like sending him a copy of my MRI!!!! Does anyone have any ideas or thoughts about whether I should send him the report???Oh, dear — you have my sympathy.

Since I first posted about all this last year, I have found myself to have a chronic lower-back condition. After my MRI, my surgeons say there are surgical possibilities but there is a high failure rate. I have also joined some back pain groups and find that almost without exception those who have undergone operations are in misery.

The problem with MRIs is that if they took them of everyone over, say, 35 years, they would find all sorts of problems (bulging discs, narrowing of various openings, stenosis here and there, etc.). They do not actually know which thing they observe actually causes our pain.

So I continue to look for alternatives.

I now have facet injections of cortisone four times a year and take Neurontin (1800 mg/day) and use 400mg ibuprofen as needed. (The injections help me for about 5 weeks; the other 6 or 7 I limp along.)

I learned useful exercises at physical therapy, and when I actually take them, find them still to be useful (mostly stretching). I also use heat and ice.

But no one’s experience can explain anyone else’s. The doctor who suggested it was all in your head and due to depression wasn’t doing his job, IMHO. Pain causes depression; he should have referred you to someone for both of those problems. Again, IMHO.

None of this helps, I realize. But I do wish you the best of luck. Chronic back pain truly sucks!