Back Pain ranging from 0-8 with no apparent reason/logic

Discussions relating to Lower Back Pain.
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Joined: Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:58 pm
Location: Hawaii

Back Pain ranging from 0-8 with no apparent reason/logic

Post by zoid » Wed Jul 05, 2006 5:58 pm

Aloha from Hawaii,

About six months ago, I re-tweaked my knee
(original injury was about 3 years ago
while running - medial meniscus tear) while
dancing. The knee puffed up, swelled and
then got better as time passed.

Prior to the injury,I used to work-out really hard
(weights/gym) then go back to my office and sit-all-day
with hardly any stretching. The Problem with my back
started about 1 week after I re-injured the knee.
It wasn't gradual. I woke up one day to a nasty
burning sensation around my mid/lower back. I thought
it was because I wasn't working out, so I went to
the gym, got on the elliptical for about 20 minutes
and the pain went away for a week.

It re-appeared in a week and this time, I didn't
go back to the gym and the pain persisted since then.
Intermittently disappearing and then re-appearing without
any seeming rhyme or reason. During the course of the
next several months I saw every-conceivable health
practitioner I was able to sniff-out. None have
given me a diagnosis that concur with my symptoms.
One of them suggested that my illio-psoas
was compromised (used to bike a lot/hills). This was
the only (rational) explanation I've had given the set
of symptoms I have. Which are:

This is too weird: ;)

* Pain around the abs. Kinda like a stitch.
This can get really bad.
* Burning sensation around the lower back.
* Burning sensation around the *front* of both
legs/thighs/butt. Sciatica occurs (I believe)
on the back of the legs. So.. this one is
a mystery. I don't believe the sciatica nerve
branches out to the front of the legs?
* Burning sensations sometimes around the mid/
upper back.
* Tension around the mid/upper back about 10
minutes after I wake up.
* Pain is almost always bad about 10/15 minutes
after I wake up.
* During the day it can taper to a 0 pain situation
and never gets to be terrible.

I have stretched out consistently and worked out
with a PT etc. over the last six months. I believe
I'm getting better, the level of pain is much lower,
however, anytime I go back to my previous level of
activity (running/swimming/biking) I have (almost always)
no pain during the activity but pay dearly the next

My friends tell me I'm not giving myself enough
time to heal? I can never be sure. Why shouldn't
I run If I have no pain?

Kinda frustrated.... will appreciate any advice.


PS: Anyone heard of Dr. Stuart McGill? His books/research seem to have some very valuable information, a large segment(not all) of which concur with Dean's theories.

Posts: 429
Joined: Thu Oct 27, 2005 12:05 pm
Location: Wilkesboro NC

Post by randolph » Fri Jul 07, 2006 4:59 pm

Hello zoid

I'm can't comment on your symptoms ... yet ... I've got some thinking to do to reply with anything intelligent ... but for now ...

Yes, I've heard of Dr. McGill. I believe he's done some really great work on lower back disorders. His book on LBD is excellent and has helped me eliminate exercises that were actually hurting me, and add a few, like flossing and arm-bridge, that seem particulary helpful for a sciatica sufferer like me.

Bye for now, Randolph

Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2005 11:41 am
Location: New Jersey

New exercises???/

Post by krd » Fri Jul 07, 2006 5:31 pm

Hey Randolf

I saw your post, and I was wondering what your new exercises were and if there is anyway that you might be able to enlighten me with some of them. This is a frustrating bout of sciatica. Some days are better than others... but you know what I mean.

If you could let me know what flossing and arm-bridge are, I can use all the help that I can get. Also, what are the one's that were actually hurting you. Much appreciated. Be posting.


Posts: 429
Joined: Thu Oct 27, 2005 12:05 pm
Location: Wilkesboro NC

Post by randolph » Sun Jul 09, 2006 5:33 am

Hello again zoid

No reason to be frustrated ... sounds like some of the mysteries are due to a lack of information. If I was you, I'd:

See a GP if you haven't already. They are the best at diagnosing and can narrow down the possibilities and recommend specialists, if necessary. It's a few hundred $$ well spent.

Google "dermatones". Maps have been made of where on your spine referred pain generally is caused. We call it sciatica when deformed discs at S1/L5/L4 impinge on the sciatic nerve and cause pain on the back side of the leg(s) down to the toes. But higher up the spine, there are characteristic patterns of pain, some including regions in the front of the hips and abdomen and legs. Stay away from chiropractic sites giving this info; these dermatone maps are part of what GPs learn to narrow down what is causing a patient's pain.

Thank your friends who have recommended slowing down ... seriously consider doing so. Dr. McGill says in his book on LBDs that healing generally takes a lot longer than our bosses give us time to heal. We're talking several months to sometimes years, even for minor back strains caused by muscles/ligament damage without disc damage. Our desire to be super physical fit (I'm a reformed fitness manic) is sometimes counterproductive. You might want to read books by Dr Dean Edell on what medical science has discovered about what really constitutes fitness and how much exercising actually lengthens our productive years. It apparently doesn't take as much activity to receive the life-lengthening benefit from exercise as the folks selling us exercise equipment would like us to believe. I'd say: if it hurts the day after an activity (even if it doesn't hurt doing it at the time), then there's a message there to slow down.

Take these relatively mild symptoms as a wake-up call to find out what unnecessay stresses you are subjecting your back to. (I say "mild" not because it doesn't hurt, but because you can still get around, even do some of your favorite athletic activities; some of us are having to learn to walk again) My gut feeling is that in your admirable pursuit of physical fitness, some of your activities and exercising may be micro-traumatizing your back ... which will eventually lead to some major failure. Maybe your PT can help you discover which of your movements/activities are potentially troublesome, and recommend ways to have fun now without causing you problems later in life. Dr. McGill's two books are also excellent helps in this area.

Hope some of this helps you. And please keep us posted on what you find out and what helps you recover. We're all learning here.


Posts: 429
Joined: Thu Oct 27, 2005 12:05 pm
Location: Wilkesboro NC

Post by randolph » Sun Jul 09, 2006 5:44 am

Correction, zoid.

That's "dermatoMe". I misspelled it above. :oops: has a good map.


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