Spine FAQs

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I've been having low back pain off and on for years. The last two years have been the worst. I've been seeing a chiropractor who adjusts my low back for me. The X-rays taken as part of my evaluation show significant degeneration of the lumbar spine. I'm just wondering if it wouldn't be worth it to have some better imaging studies done. Would MRIs or CT scans provide us with a better idea of what's going on down there?9 years 49 weeks ago1518
My wife just had the new multidetector CT scan done on her spine. They found plenty of arthritis in her spine to explain her low back pain. But the radiologist seemed to poo poo the idea that those changes were really the cause of her pain. I don't get that. Why would he say it doesn't have anything to do with her symptoms?9 years 49 weeks ago1497
What's the difference between acupuncture and trigger point therapy? I've had both for chronic neck and back pain. I can't see that they are any different in how the treatment is done or the effects.9 years 49 weeks ago2516
My sister has chronic headaches that seem to be connected with neck and shoulder muscle tension. She's going to try something called trigger point injections. What are these? How do they work?9 years 49 weeks ago1720
With so many risks involved with neck surgery, is it really worth it to go under the knife if your problem isn't life threatening?9 years 49 weeks ago1958
My father had degeneration of his lower back discs and he had surgery called arthroplasty. I believe it is replacing the discs. My mother has the same problem just below her neck and her doctor says he can't do the same type of surgery. Why not?9 years 49 weeks ago1820
If someone has pressure on the nerves in the spine, can they be permanently damaged?9 years 49 weeks ago2146
My wife recently had severe back pain about a month after being in a car accident. She also began losing control over her bladder and was wetting herself. Her doctor said that it was a syndrome called cauda equina and that surgery was urgent and had to be done right away, but now, a month later, she's still wetting herself and she still has pain. What was the point of the surgery?9 years 49 weeks ago1615
I saw someone the other day who had one of those metal rings on her head with pins. Is that thing actually screwed to her head? That thing looks heavy.9 years 51 weeks ago1832
About six months ago, I had surgery to remove a tumor in my sacral bone. This morning, I was bending over and I felt and heard a pop. I don't have any pain or further loss of motion. But I'm pretty nervous I might have broken something in there. I know I have plates and screws holding everything together. Should I call the doctor right away or wait-and-see before hitting the panic button?9 years 51 weeks ago3090
Mom had a sacral tumor removed that involved taking a lot of the soft tissues around the bone along with half of the sacral bone. She ended up with a bad infection. The home health nurse keeps talking to us about nutrition. I'm not sure why she focuses on that instead of getting rid of the infection. She's pretty skinny herself, so maybe she's got an eating disorder. How can I tell her to bug off in a nice way?9 years 51 weeks ago2872
I've been seeing an osteopathic physician for the last six months for chronic low back pain. She wants me to see a physical therapist now and maybe even an acupuncturist. I'm wondering if she's run out of ideas to help me. Should I find another doctor?10 years 3 days ago1391
I'm totally panicked. I just came back from a car accident that was my fault. I hit the other car head on. Fortunately, I wasn't going very fast. I'm worried the lady in the car will get a whiplash injury and sue me. Is there any chance that front-end collisions cause less injuries than rear-end fender benders?10 years 3 days ago1810
They say not everyone who has a car accident gets a whiplash injury. But it's my dumb luck to be one of them. I'm not an overly emotional or hysterical person. I usually heal quickly after a cut or other minor injury. So how come, after six months, I still have headaches, neck pain, and jaw pain from the accident? Why me?10 years 3 days ago1827
I'm so discouraged. I hurt my back a week ago and it's not getting any better. Am I going to become one of those people who is always complaining about a sore back now?10 years 3 days ago1492
I hurt my back over a year ago and my doctor said I'd be fit to go back to work in a month or two if my boss changed my job for a while. I don't want to ask that because he might just fire me. Is changing jobs really going to make a difference in the long run?10 years 3 days ago1560
What should I ask a doctor if I'm trying to find out more about him and his ability to do surgery on my back?10 years 3 days ago1794
I'm confused. I have a slipped disc in my back and I don't know if I want to have surgery. What are the risks of back surgery?10 years 3 days ago1925
My mother has spinal stenosis and her doctor wants to operate. I am against it because I know that if anything happens to her back in surgery, she may be worse off than she was before. What should I say to her?10 years 3 days ago1789
Ok, they can do hip, knee, shoulder replacements. If someone has severe back pain because the vertebrae can't hold up any longer, why can't they do vertebrae replacements?10 years 3 days ago1845
My father never hurt his back in his life, he was active and healthy. Now, his doctor is telling him that his severe back pain is being caused by dying discs. What does that mean?10 years 3 days ago1488
My sister is a physical therapist. She's been helping me after my recent surgery to fuse two bones in my neck. She says I don't really need the neck brace I was given, but it scares me to go without it. Is it safe to go without it now?10 years 1 week ago1681
On the basis of a few questions he asked me, my doctor thinks I should see a counselor to help me deal with my back pain and depression. He thinks the two are linked together and the only way I can lick one is to work on both areas at the same time. I don't see the connection myself. Is there any way to research this on my own?10 years 1 week ago1528
Our 32-year-old daughter is pregnant on bedrest because of a bulging disc. There is some concern that if she doesn't have surgery to remove the disc, she could end up paralyzed. Is it really safe to do this type of operation on a pregnant woman?10 years 1 week ago2010
What is a cauda equina problem?10 years 1 week ago2151
I've been having some neck pain, and I can't turn my head all the way to the left to match how far I can go on the right. My physical therapist assures me that this will all clear up with a few treatments. I'm worried there's more to it than that. What if there's a tumor on one side or some kind of blockage?10 years 1 week ago2191
My mother has to have surgery for her back as it's really deformed (hunched). What types of complications are possible for this type of back surgery?10 years 1 week ago1734
My mother has very bad arthritis in her spine. She now has a very hunched back and can't look up straight. She's embarrassed to go out. Is there anything she can do?10 years 1 week ago3801
I wanted to get a disc replacement for a bad disc at L45, but the surgeon said that I was too old, too fat, and too retired. Well, he didn't put it quite that way, but that was the take home message I got. So, who can get one of these new discs?10 years 2 weeks ago1739
My surgeon has approved me for surgery to replace a disc at the L45 level. I'm planning to work right up until the day of surgery. My wife is concerned that I should take a break from work and rest before the operation. Does it matter either way?10 years 2 weeks ago1424

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