Do I need a "diagnosis" before using RYB?

Discussions relating to Lower Back Pain.
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Posts: 26
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:10 pm

Do I need a "diagnosis" before using RYB?

Post by GUEJ » Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:06 pm

So glad to have found this forum. The other back pain forums are so depressing. Filled often with people on permanent meds who have accepted their lot in life. I refuse to accept that this will be permanent.

As a new member, here's my medical history and some questions at the end:
-Am otherwise healthy and fit 40 year old woman
-Had scoliosis surgery 24 years ago with Harrington Rods down to L3
-Have had NO pain or back issues for 24 years until a kickboxing class last Oct., followed by a few weeks of chiropractic adjustments.
-Other than running, which produced pain down the outer right thigh/pelvic/upper buttock area, I had no major pain for months. I skiied all winter, lifted weights and biked.
- In the spring, I began a swimming program, which included freestyle and breast stroke. By the end of June, my pain went from an occasional annoyance that would go away in 2 days, to chronic.
- Up until August, I couldn't walk or be on my feet for very long, but I had not pain when sitting or laying down.
- No idea what happened, but over the past 2 months, I have become severly debilitated. I cannot walk for more than a few minutes at a time, my pain is about an 8/9 every day, and a 10 every night; I can't sleep without valium, and only for a few hours. The pain is now on both sides of my pelvis and hips, but still worse on the right.
- MRIs, Xrays, and CT scans (and opinions from 4 surgeons) all confirm that there does not appear to be any obvious cause to the pain. No impinged nerves, just mild degeneration (which I think is good news, except I am in so much pain I need help!)
- I still have a 30 degree curve in the last 2 unfused vertebrae in my lower back, and my right hip is higher and pelvis turned in due to this.
- I have tried epidural injections, nerve blocks and facet joint injections, without any even temporary relief. Next suspected area is the sac joint.
- I have been in physical therapy for many months. I really like my PT guy. Unfortunately, once the pain ratcheted up, any stretching I did almost seemed to make it worse.'s the deal. Do I even bother to go to a neurologist? How do you know when it's time to see a Prolotherapist? I would like to start the RYB program, but honestly, I am so scared of even more inflammation, which, on top of existing chronic pain, is unbearable. Do I need to know what I'm dealing with before starting this program? My one doctor still wants me to get a pelvic MRI and a bone scan to have further info and to rule out any other possible causes (I do have strong family cancer history, but I strongly suspect this is all due to muscle/ligament/joint overuse and imbalance due to the prior fusion surgery and uneven distribution of forces). I've had at least a dozen people recommend acupuncture.

I have 2 young kids that I can barely interact with. I don't leave the house unless I'm going to a doctor's appointment. I have not exercised in any capacity since July because anything I do "blows up" my back. I feel like my life has come to a screeching halt with no relief in sight, and the pain keeps spreading and getting worse.

Any thoughts or opinions from all the veterans out there would be so GREATLY appreciated. I apologize for the long post, but it's my first, so I wanted to get it out there.

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Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:33 am

Post by gourd_girl » Wed Oct 22, 2008 12:54 pm

This is my first reply to any messages on the forum, but your story is so similiar to mine I had to reply to tell you this pothole you have found yourself in is NOT permanent and will pass. It won't be a quick fix, but it will improve. I am 41 and began with pain last year at 40 thinking that 'old age' could certainly not be here already. I went through PT in Sept. last year with a mild pain in my right buttocks/hip that had been there about 1 year. They diagnosed it as SI joint rotated forward. Went through PT for 6 weeks, exercises caused SI joint to rotate backwards, finally got that figured out and things improved. Our cat died in Nov. and when I buried her I was standing on my 'good' leg kicking with my 'bad' leg. That was my mistake thinking that I was well. After the burial I went inside and bent down and my good hip 'went out'. I tried to get back in PT the next day, but prescription had run out, and they wouldn't see me since it was a different side. Went back to doc and he x-rayed hip, nothing wrong. I asked if one side of the hip was unstable already (meaning SI joint), could that cause other side to be unstable as well. He looked at x-ray and said that was a stable hip, nothing wrong with it. He wrote me a script for PT but I didn't go because I couldn't believe his comment about a stable hip. I tried to do all PT stuff myself for the next couple of months. By Feb. things were very wrong and I was in severe pain all the time. Went back to GP who sent me back to original ortho and went to PT another 3 weeks. PT says bad hip has illium upslip. He pulls on the leg and puts it back in place and it feels normal, but muscles have been in wrong position for so long it returns to bad position. In the meantime all the exercises I'm doing makes my body feel on fire. MRI shows bulging discs at l4-5, l5-s1. They recomend 3 steroid injections which I take. They give minor relief, but don't address the hip/SI problems. I continued with the exercises, but like you, stretches were my enemy and made the problem worse. I tried accupuncture - no good. I went to a different ortho who recommended yoga. I tried yoga, but moves were too advanced for the condition my body was in at the time. I finally got to the point where I stopped everything to let my body calm down. I stopped everything for a week. Then I would feel better and start exercises and have the same problems again. If you have high hip and pelvis turned, the SI is most definitely the problem, as was with me. The conventional exercises that most PTs give encourage an even workout on both sides. But if you have high hip or pelvis tilt on one side, the exercises exacerbate the problem. In the last 2 months I started seeing a different PT who has a different approach geared to bodies that are uneven. He mostly does massage to loosen the muscles, but then gives simple stretches for one side to even out everything (and it's not hamstring stretches or or leg stretches or anything the other PTs gave me, in fact he said that would be the worst thing to do right now). The stretches have helped and my body feels more balanced. I've started walking again, real walking, not shuffling. He says walking is the best exercise, and to incorporate walking sideways and backwards to activate those muscles too. I was in the shape you are in and it's hard to ever believe that you can get out of that hole again, but YOU CAN. Give your body some time to rest, and then go slow. I've rambled on enough right now, but if you want the stretches, let me know. I have a 7 year old son, so I know what it's like to feel like a disabled mom. You WILL get better.

Posts: 26
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:10 pm

Post by GUEJ » Wed Oct 22, 2008 5:07 pm

Thank you sooooo much. Everytime I bring up the S1 joint, the doctors 'poo-poo' me. Because I had previous scoliosis surgery and still have a curve on the bottom of my spine, they are convinced it's somewhere along that line. I had a bone scan today to rule out fractures, etc., so those results will be telling. I'm focusing on the S1 joint too going forward. My physical therapist does not believe it's out of the question at all. Given my scoliosis, I do have a pelvic inward tilt, and one hip higher than the other. Interestingly, there is a physical therapists convention in town in 2 weeks, and my physical therapist persuaded the head of the conference to examine me as a "difficult to diagnose" case. So, I"ll have the benefit of someone fresh looking at this. I go back to my orthopedic doctor next week with the results of the bone scan. If the bone scan turns up nothing, I'm going to really press upon him to either diagnose or rule out S1 problems.

Thank you so much for the information and the encouragement. It is so hard to see this coming to an end at this point. I just need to know it won't be forever, but I guess it really does start with a proper diagnosis. I am glad you have your life back and seem to know how to keep it in check. I'll keep you posted next week! Thanks again. You made my night. It's been a rough day. I now have friends taking my kids to all their activities, etc. I feel like my life is passing by before my eyes and I'm not participating.

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