Viewer Comments: Lumbar Spinal Stenosis - Describe Your Experience

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The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Spinal Stenosis:

Lumbar Spinal Stenosis - Describe Your Experience

Please describe your experience with lumbar spinal stenosis.

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Comment from: rchbrmd53, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: October 27

I was originally diagnosed with degenerative disk disease, the problems being pain in my neck, numbness and tingling down my right arm, numbness in my hands so bad that I couldn't even hold a fork to eat. I had an MRI done with good success. A little better than a year later, I had the same symptoms on the left side. The first surgery covered C2-C5 with spinal stenosis, and the second MRI showed that there was damage to the vertebrae above and below that spot. I ended up having a second surgery which covered C2 to T2. I got relief and went back to work, and was told that should do it. I was taken to the hospital with heart attack symptoms, but it turns out it's my neck again and I'll probably have to have a third surgery. I'm a 53 year old male, and I am very active, but the arthritis keeps eating everything anyway. Before you have surgery done, get a second opinion, and if you do have the surgery, make sure you have a reputable surgeon to do the procedure. Once you have the first one done, it will put pressure on everything above and below where you had it done, so expect more complications in the future. My advice is deal with it as long as you can before you have any procedures done, and do your research before you do, because once you start, there is no end. Good luck to you all.

Comment from: 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: September 10

I'm a 36-year-old male, and two years ago, I had a disk rupture in my back while getting ready for work. It was the disk between the L-4 and L-5 region. Sixty percent of the disk ruptured into my spinal column and did nerve damage. I had surgery to remove the bulge but still have severe pain and numbness in my foot and leg, including shooting electrical pains in various parts of my body and swelling in my left foot. I also have nerve damage on my left side. I'm taking narcotics to help control the pain and muscle relaxers to help with the spasms in my back and legs. If it had not been for the loss of feeling in my leg, 100% the day before the surgery, I would have opted to not have it and let my body heal itself. I would not recommend surgery for anyone who does not absolutely has to have it. I hurt as bad today as I did before and there is nothing else I can do about it. And my surgery was done by a neurosurgeon. My condition is so severe that it has kept me from working or having a normal life. Where do you turn when you're told by different doctors that, “You're as good as your going to get?” I have no answers, but to those of you who are hurting and have lost your ability to live a normal life, you're not alone. Good luck to everyone, and just maybe they will come up with a way to stop the pain.

Comment from: 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 10

As I read the comments, I am crying. I have been diagnosed with lumbar stenosis and degenerative disc disease and deal with pain daily. Due to these conditions I have a lot of muscle imbalance issues, which within themselves cause a certain amount of pain. I too have been to everyone for help, one says surgery, one says no, one says I have fibro. I am managing life with 4 kids, business not to mention running a household with meds, but I know the current climate regarding pain management, it will come to an end. I don't sleep and I am borderline depressed. Inactivity is not the answer, as much motion as I can get in my back the better. To get this motion a certain amount of pain medication is necessary.

Comment from: bassmaster, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: March 07

I went to my family doctor for back pain and was told (after an x-ray) that it was arthritis and I will have to live with it. I then went to a neurologist and an MRI showed lumbar spinal stenosis and two discs (L-4, L-5) out of place. I did not want surgery so I went to a chiropractor and had traction for about six months. This resulted in the discs going back into place. As to the stenosis, I am living with it.

Comment from: dee, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 02

I was diagnosed five years ago with lumbar spinal stenosis. Also, around the same time, I was diagnosed with MS. I saw a doctor who started me on medications, and sent me for an MRI, which showed a narrowing of my spinal cord in my neck. Anyway, after many other treatments, today I got my first bilateral lumbar transforaminal treatment. I was very glad to find this site. It helped me understand a lot of things about my condition that I did not know before.

Comment from: 45-54 Female Published: February 16

I have just been diagnosed with stenosis of L4 and L5. I have had 2 previous surgeries for cervical stenosis, affecting c3, c4, c5, c6 and c7. I live with daily pain from the previous surgeries. By the end of almost every day, I have headaches that are so severe I cannot function. Now I am having difficulty walking and standing from pain because of the lumbar stenosis. I will put off surgery as long as I can, because I know from my previous experience and from others I have talked to, that when you have surgery you are only trading one type of pain for another. My advice to anyone who is thinking about surgery is DON'T DO IT unless the compression on your spinal cord is so severe you are in danger of permanent damage.


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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Spinal Stenosis:

Lumbar Spinal Stenosis - Symptoms

What was the treatment for your lumbar spinal stenosis?

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