Bad lower back pain

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Nomad, Aug 31, 2008.

  1. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    husband has had on and off lower back pain for perhaps a year...the last six months it is coming more frequently.

    A few months ago he had an xray and it didn't show much of anything. He was suppose to have some sort of nerve test at that time and didn't go in. The pain got better and then he forgot about it.

    Now, the pain is worse and he is beside himself. He went to see my rheumatologist who scheduled and MRI the other day and gave him a script for Naproxen. The Naproxen barely helps. The doctor is out of town...we might know the results late Tuesday.

    He is usually okay in the morning, but it gets worse as the day goes on. It is REALLY bad after he has been sitting down for awhile. There are times he is in agony. One time, (a long time ago), he had me take him to the ER for a shot.

    Does anyone know about back pain? Particularly the sciatic nerve. I do think it can be worsened by stress. However, I also think there is something very definately going on physically . He does not want to take anything strong, although he would consider it for occassional use very temporarily. What might help to relieve pain? Anyone have this and what was helpful?

    Thank you.
    Lasted edited by : Aug 31, 2008
  2. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Is it radiating down the back of his leg? That's usually the sign the sciatic nerve is involved. Mine acts up once in a blue Moon. I think it's a left over from being preggers with easy child and I'd suddenly find my hip sliding out of joint. Could be brought on my physical exertion, walking wrong on bad shoes........ect. Or could just be plain worse.

    Sounds like he needs to be seen in any case.
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Wow...I am amazed not too many folks have lower back pain here????
    Thank you for your radiates down his lower leg.
    I found a book on amazon yesterday about how certain exercises are often helpful and ordered it. We are really looking forward to receiving it.
    MRI results come back tomorrow.
  4. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    Use ice. I'm surprised they only gave him Naproxen. If he can lie on his back with knees up and push his lower back into the floor that might provide some temporary relief. Can't suggest much else, other than what he's doing. Nerve test would be helpful. He should probably be going to pain managment doctor or an ortho. They can give an injection of steroid directly into the sciatic notch which would probably give him some relief.
  5. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    Many thanks..
    I did forget to mention that from time to time they have been giving him those steroid shots. The first time it lasted a long time and now only a few days. The doctor offered to give him a narcotic and he didn't want it. Of course, all weekend he says he regrets this...
    I bought a book at amazon re: exercising...looks fascinating...
    will mention the one you suggested...thanks Loth
  6. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Has he tried a chiropractor?
  7. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    The majority of my pain is in my lower back and right hip - had sciatica involvement in the past. But, we're still trying for a diagnosis and I've had it since childhood. It's just gone to a whole new level in the last year. Sitting isn't what bothers me (as long as I can sit Indian Style), it's standing and walking that causes agony. I haven't found much to work for me, but if I happen onto something, I'll let you know.

    I know I saw a yoga video that I'm going to order that is made specifically for people with back pain. I'll look it up and let you know what it is.

    Also, if he's a side sleeper, have him sleep with a pillow between his knees. It helps to keep the spine aligned correctly.
  8. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Here's the video:

    Also, I usually want ice for relief, but when I want heat, I want moist heat. I take a small towel, get it damp and toss it in the microwave for about 30 seconds or so.
  9. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    Are the docs sure he doesn't have a herniated disk?
  10. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am sending support - back pain of any kind is just awful. There is a book on Trigger Point Therapy by a man who was a piano repairman. He learned about massage and physical therapy after his daughter was hurt working on a stage set. It is the first book on this page of amazon books:

    I left the entire page rather than going to the exact book because I thought it might help others. I am going to send it to kjs for help with her difficult child's migraines too. (I hadn't seen that book before today - I am planning to order it come payday!).

    I have had really good luck with this book, though it can take some time to really figure out how to use it best. I use it with a therapy cane (on this page - top listing, though the double ended one looks interesting - ) and it can be amazing.

    The therapy cane is one of the best health care investments I have ever made. It lets you rub your own back!! and is great for those trigger points. This next tip may sound gross, or bizarre, but bear with me. If you take the therapy cane and put a clean pantyliner on it (so that it stick on it) you can then apply flex all or aspercreme or another muscle rub to your back when you are home all alone. Again, it sounds bizarre, but it was a "fix" born of necessity - husband was out of town and I got a bad back spasm.

    I hope this helps.
  11. Of course, the MRI will tell you a lot. Everything will depend upon the findings.

    I'm a very big believer in physical therapy. husband went that route rather the surgical one that the doctor recommended. Strict adherence to the therapy and the exercises has him back running marathons in tip top shape.
  12. jal

    jal Member

    I would warn against going to a chiropractor until you have the MRI results. If it is a slipped/ruptured disc pressing on his nerve more damage will/can be done than good. I ruptured a disc at 14 playing volleyball. The sciatic pain traveled from over my right buttock to the bottom of my foot. It was a tingling numbiness with white hot pain. If this is the type of pain he is experiencing (the tingling and sciatic route in leg) I would suggest a heating pad with-moist heat first. One way to relieve sciatica is to lie on your stomach and raise yourself slowly onto your elbows, slightly arching your back. This will take pressure off the nerve.

    I had that ruptured disc removed and have proceeded over the past 21 years to slip 4 others. I too agree with-the othropedic route/physical therapy. All of my 4 others were relived that way. One of my last problems was a tiny piece of the disc they removed when I was 14 (80% of disc removed and 20% stayed during surgery) came out and lodged in between my spine an sciatic nerve. I went back to my neuro surgeon who did my surgery some 17 yrs earlier and he wanted to do a fusion (meaning surgery & 8 months in a body cast). Tried the ortho surgeon as a second opinion and through therapy, cortisone shots and a heck of a lot of luck (including a bad cough) I got that sucker popped out.

    Best of luck - back pain is so debalitating!

    P.S. Even lower back pain can be a sign of a slipped/herniated disc, even with-o the presence of sciatica. The MRI is KEY!