How often do you experience this or is it ongoing/constant, and would you feel comfortable telling us the diagnosis from your Dr or details of your testing results?
I have pretty much the same sensation. There are times I experience what I call an electrical surge(like when you need a surge protector for electronics, putting a finger in a electrical socket, or putting your tongue on the positive end of a battery) that will originate in my lumbar area and streams of the electrical sensation will travel down the backs of my leg(s). For me this generally occurs after certain activities that utilizes my L5 and down joints/discs. I also experience an ongoing electrical sensation that is weaker, and occassionally an electrical burning sensation on the top side of my right ankle. This is due to my nerve impingements from various abnormalities at the L4, L5 and S1 level that is diagnosed as Lumbar Radiculpathy.
When sleeping on your back try using a pillow under your legs, and for side sleeping try using one between your knee(s) and/or the mattress. This will help keep your spine more aligned and straight. I also use one for sitting and driving, putting it behind my back and a bit at my tailbone region. I actually was using a pillow for sleeping well before my back issues.
It's possible you are reading too much into it. I have not had surgeries at this point, so I can't comment on that respect.
From the sound of it, you have a good knowledge of spine issues. YOU are your best health care advocate. If you are feeling that you are being pressured into something you do not feel comfortable with, then ask a whole lot more questions and don't consent to anything until you are satisfied that you have exhausted all the research, options and other possibilities. Please do not be bullied into something because of the title they hold, like Dr. Some of them forget that they are human just as we, not God(no disrespect intended), and often fail or make mistakes otherwise why do they need malpractice insurance? Sounds like the one Dr/Surgeon you had/have has let the title and such go to his head. If you choose to stay with this Dr/Surgeon due to his 'world renown' abilities, can you look past his demeanor atleast for a time?
And please, do not let them give you anything that holds any ingredients to your allergies. That could be fatal.View Thread
PS If you are not experiencing ANY relief from the shots, epidurals you need to tell your Dr that, and what ever he is doing or having you do is not working, so what other options are there - ask him/her. You can decline on getting the epidurals/shots. That is what I did, I just said no, and I did not get any grief from my Physiatrist, pain mgmt Dr, for refusing it. And as mentioned, with the proper diagnosis I was given, the shots would've done nothing except waste money and time and more pain and suffering.View Thread
What type of Dr(s) have you seen? What type of tests have you had done? I originally went to see my PCP, he did x-rays and ordered an MRI with the results going to a Physiatrist in pain mgmt, After getting no where with the Physiatrist as to why I was in such pain and no results in reliveing the pain, I went to an Orthopedic Spine Specialist where I got my proper diagnosis and from then on my Physiatrist found better pain relief mgmt for me.
What I have found out, along with many others, is that an Orthopedic Spine Specialist is basically the only type of Dr(Neurosurgeon too I think) that can proper read MRI's and other testing of the spine.
I'm guessing you have more going on then what you are being told, as was the case for me. Check with you insurance for In-Network and Out-of-Network Orthopedic Spine Specialist service providers. Or search in your area on-line, by phone, family/friend referral or the phone book. Also try some teaching universities as thy generally offer services to the public.
You didn't mention how old you are or if you had injured your back at some point or how. I'm assuming that the Dr you saw was a GP or PCP.?. Are you covered under any type of insurance, even state provided? There may be something going on with your back that an X-ray would not pick up on/show. An MRI is more through. And it took me seeing an Orthopedic Spine Specialist/Surgeon to have my MRI read correctly and have a proper diagnosis(as many others on the board). Is there a teaching university near you that has spine specialists? They may be able to help with little or no cost, and get an MRI to help in getting a proper diagnosis.
You could start out with some lower back stretching exercises and core strengthening exercises. This can be dangerous/deterimental to any condition you may have without a diagnosis. So I wouldn't suggest it or anything until you have a real diagnosis.View Thread
Hey Lovelyhzleyes! I sincerely hope you get some accurate and definitive answers from your specialist. I don't remember which specialist you are seeing, I'll have to go back and reread to find out. I hope it's an Orthopedic Spine Specialist.
I wrote a reply the other day and WebMd was busy so I will re-cap. X-rays can indicate degenerative disc disease(DDD), and MRI shows greater detail including some soft tissue. There are many parts to the anatomy of the spine so different parts can have different issues. If you look at or read the detail notes of your MRI you will see many different terms used such as the following:
FINDINGS: There are five lumbar vertebrae. The conus medullaris has a normal appearance, terminating at the L1 level. There is minimal disc desiccation at L2-L3 and L3-L4. Minimal narrowing and desiccation is noted at L4-L5. There is moderate degenerative disc disease at L5-S1. The above findings are stable.
Findings by Level: L1-L2: No significant disc bulge, herniation or central stenosis is present. The neural foramina are patent bilaterally. The facet joints are within normal limits.
L2-L3: Minimal disc bulging is noted. There is no spinal canal or neural foraminal stenosis.
L3-L4: There is mild diffuse disc bulging. No spinal canal or neural foraminal stenosis is present.
L4-L5: Mild diffuse disc bulging is noted, with mild bilateral facet arthropathy. No neural foraminal stenosis is seen. The appearance is unchanged from the previous exam.
L5-S1: No significant disc bulge, herniation or central stenosis is present. The neural foramina are patent, bilaterally. The facet joints are within normal limits. Diffuse disc bulging is noted. There is mild bilateral facet arthropathy. No significant neural foraminal or spinal canal stenosis is present.
STIR images demonstrate endplate edema at the L2-L3 and L5-S1 levels.
IMPRESSION: Overall, stable MR imaging of the lumbar spine. Degenerative disc disease is noted, as above. No critical spinal canal or neural foraminal stenosis is dentified.
In summation with the multi level and degree of the DDD and facet arthropathy it is determined to be Osteoarthritis of the spine, and with the narrowing-central & spinal canal plus neural foramina nerve compression is determined to be Lumbar Radiculpathy. If you note the last (italics/underlined) sentence the term 'Critical' is used. It was explained to me that lose of bladder or bowel control could be a result of 'Critical' nerve impingement or compression.
At the different disc levels( ie; L1/L2, L2/L3, L3/L4 etc..) there are different nerves that extend to different parts of the body, hence, how they are affected by them. Here are some links I have found - use their search box to narrow down your concerns and their other tabs to go from page to page. Learn as much as you can so you can better understand your situation.
Hey Lovelyhzleyes! Chimming in here. I didn't see in your postings how long you have been dealing with this and what type of Dr's and tests have been done or when/how the cervical stenosis was able to be diagnosed.?.
You mentioned incontinence. How old are you, as this could be from peri-menopause/menopause or instestinal/bladder issues. Please bring it up during your visit with your spine Dr. as some people with extreme spine conditions have incontinence related to their condition. If he can rule that out, then I suggest you visit your PCP about this. Generally, as far as I know, as long as you're not emptying out your bladder in that manner it's of Way lesser concern. It is a possible side effect of one of the medications I take. You can search for drug side effects using WebMd's Pill Finder/Identifyer. There is a/an add'l button you can click on that has a broader description of side effects.View Thread
I'm assuming that atleast one of the Dr's you saw or are seeing is/was an Orthopedic Spine Specialist. Have you been to a Pain Management Dr? If so did his title include Physiatrist? What are some of the things you have tried other than surgery to manage your pain, like physical therapy, water therapy, stretches, exercises....?View Thread