Long gone summer


14 replies to this topic
  • mnm567

Posted June 10, 2007 - 06:43 AM

#1

Hello Fellow TTR's,

I am severly bummed. I just found out today I have a ruptured and torn disk between my L5 and S1 vertabrae. I was hurt while fighting fire back in Jan. An entire ceiling came down on me. I rehabed fine and was riding in no time. While at work this morning, I was getting changed into my duty clothes and BAM! my back gave out. I couldn't move. EMS showed up, gave me some pain killers via IV and I was taken down the stairs of my fire house. I went to the hospital and had an MRI. Bad news. I will probably have surgery, a disk replacement. What does this mean for riding? I am scared. I am 27, I have 25 years of my career left, and I want to ride. Has anyone had a disk replacement, and were you still able to ride motocross? My moral will definately be suffering in the next several months. I could be out for 6-8 months. No work, which I love, and certainly no riding. I guess what I am asking for, is some inspiration. Thanks in advance! Matt

  • BergArabia

Posted June 10, 2007 - 07:28 AM

#2

Matt I am really sorry to hear about this. It is a tough break.
I am glad that they can put you back together again though and thing will come back eventually..
I hope you can find something to keep the mind busy for the next 6-8 months.
Time to read those books and study that course you always wanted to but never had time for..
Hope this helps..

  • rexbond007

Posted June 10, 2007 - 07:30 AM

#3

get a second opinion before surgery,

like a chiropractor

use surgery as a last resort. I know people that have come out worse than they went in.

wish you a speedy recovery...

  • CO_Rider

Posted June 10, 2007 - 07:43 AM

#4

I agree with rexbond007. Get a second opinion and make surgery the very last option. I have the same thing you have but 2 (L4-L5 and L5-S1) and I am also 27. I talked to different doctors and none of them recommended surgery. I get a steroid injection which helps out for pain. I would really try to get a second opinion before the surgery and try to avoid it if you can.

  • mnm567

Posted June 10, 2007 - 10:49 AM

#5

CO_Rider, You are able to ride after the shots you received? I am worried about doing anymore damage. Thanks for the pick-me-up guys! matt

  • MikeDD

Posted June 10, 2007 - 12:42 PM

#6

Sorry to hear about your injury Matt and thank you for doing what you do. Back injuries are undeniably the worst injuries possible. It affects everything you do and makes life painful.

I compressed a couple disks in my back when I was 20. I pretty much couldn't do anything for 6 months or so. It hurt so bad getting out of bed, I didn't want to do anything anyways. They were telling me that I needed surgery and like you I was very hesitant on doing that. What I had were nerves that were being pinched every time I moved. Even if I just turned my head I could feel it in my lower back, damn it sucked. I went to therapy for months with very little results. I was convinced at that point that I needed surgery to get better. I went to another doctor however that gave me a very detailed stretching book and regimen. I kind of blew it off at first by really only doing the regimen once a day. I did feel a little difference with just that so I increased the stretching to where I was finally doing it 4-5 times a day. Within a couple weeks I was a new person and had almost all of my mobility back. Like a dumbass though once I felt ok I stopped stretching altogether. I used to ride crotch rockets back then and noticed when I would get done riding I would get shooting pains. If I kept up on my stretching though they would go away.

I still stretch everyday. It makes me feel good and my back has never been better. If I stop stretching for any length of time I can feel the difference. Once a day is plenty for me now. I try to warm up a little before stretching too, it really helps.

Riding puts a lot of stress on your entire body. I would definitely recommend stretching before and possibly after too. For me there is no way around it. I have to stretch or my body will get angry. Hope this helps Matt. Just know that something like 98% of back surgeries are unnecessary. Do whatever you can to get better without surgery. I think a lot of people think surgery is the quick fix but the odds are you will not get any better after and risk damaging yourself further. Just make sure you do everything possible to get better before opting for surgery.

Take care buddy,

Mike

  • grayracer513

Posted June 10, 2007 - 03:43 PM

#7

If you have a disc that is dislocated (slipped), therapy or chiropractic work may help. If, as you have said, the disc is ruptured, whether it has any chance of ever healing on its own depends entirely on whether of not it's herniated. By that I mean a common condition wherein the gelatinous tissue inside the disc is protruding through a tear in the outer membrane. If that is the case, it will take years to heal, if it ever does.

A good friend of mine ruptured a disc and spent years going through one kind of chiropractic voodoo after another with no results except the pain would go away for a couple of hours right after the therapy. Then he finally had the surgery to repair the real damage, recovered in a couple of months, and has been fine ever since.

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  • Florida_426

Posted June 10, 2007 - 05:46 PM

#8

Matt,
As GR said if the disc is truly herniated forget the chiropractor. I had two levels replaced (P.L.I.F.) in 2004 for two severely herniated discs and it made all the difference in the world. P.M. me if you want to talk about the procedures. I'd see a good neurosurgeon for a through work up even if you are already in the hospital. Best of luck, I know this pain all to well, same level plus L4-L5.

Bill

  • sauce

Posted June 11, 2007 - 02:15 AM

#9

get a second opinion before surgery,

like a chiropractor

use surgery as a last resort. I know people that have come out worse than they went in.

wish you a speedy recovery...



I agree. I know a few people that have had the surgery and still had back pain on occasion, where as others with no surgery have healed well (It took a long time) and do not experience the back pain any more. Remember…a doctor or Surgeon is a SALESMAN. If they don’t operate they don’t get paid. They always want surgery, it’s how they stay in business. Ever wonder why a doctor does not talk about vitamins or Herbal solutions? Because they can’t get you back in their office with that for another visit or refill. And a back doctor won’t ever refer you to a Chiropractor. Try a Chiropractor for a few months then revisit the surgery idea. The body is designed to heal itself. Do searches on the WEB and your will see many of the same opinions. Hang in there.

  • bg10459

Posted June 11, 2007 - 06:48 AM

#10

Remember…a doctor or Surgeon is a SALESMAN. If they don’t operate they don’t get paid. They always want surgery, it’s how they stay in business.

Not necessarilly. This is an indication of credibility, though.

I went to see an orthopedic surgeon for back pain a few years ago. He told me my only options were to live with it or get surgery. Needless to say I have not seen that doctor since. I have, however, seen two different spine specialists (one just a few days ago) and both said surgery is a last resort when therapy and pain management have failed. My mother also had a doctor tell her she needed surgery immediately and scheduled her for 3 days later. Fortunately she spoke to me before surgery and she went for a second opinion. Again, no need for surgery.

If you've got degenerative disc failure, a chiro is not going to help you (although they will disagree. IMO, they are snake oil salemen). A cortisone injection may provide relief, but it will be at the expense of tissue damage, especially where the needle penetrates. A Vax-d table may provide relief, but it's expensive, rarely covered by insurance and only temporarily correct the problem.

I don't know what the answer is as I am going through the same thing now with degenerative disc failure at L3, L4 and L5, but I would go see a spine specialist. One indication of a good doctor is one who wants to see films themselves (x-ray or MRI) rather than just read the radiologist report.

  • mnm567

Posted June 11, 2007 - 11:22 AM

#11

Thanks for the advice! I have an appoitment with a spine specialist tomorrow at 8am. At that time, I hope to be receiving an epidural. Why so soon? I am getting married this Saturday and need to be pain free or have limited pain for the ceremony and the honeymoon. I am worried that if don't have surgery, this will happen again whether it's riding, playing hockey, or a routine housefire at work. One doctor already told me I should scale back on some of the activities I do, ie riding. That's out of the question. I want to go the distance and not have to change my lifestyle. I am careful when it comes to lifting things and body mechanics when it comes to work, home etc... The problem was an entire kitchen ceiling (which was a layer of plaster then a layer of drywall) fell on me at one time and folded me in half. Freak accident to say the least.
How risky will it be to ride after any kind of rehab or repair? surgery or therapy? Will the rupture heal on its own? These are the questions I have for the spine specialist. I again thank you fellow TTR's, I knew several of you have been in my position, and didn't hesitate posting this in the Yamaha section knowing I would get a fast response. I will keep you posted, especially since I have nothing else I am able to do. Matt

  • SC_Spode

Posted June 11, 2007 - 12:22 PM

#12

Thanks for the advice! I have an appoitment with a spine specialist tomorrow at 8am. At that time, I hope to be receiving an epidural. Why so soon? I am getting married this Saturday and need to be pain free or have limited pain for the ceremony and the honeymoon. I am worried that if don't have surgery, this will happen again whether it's riding, playing hockey, or a routine housefire at work. One doctor already told me I should scale back on some of the activities I do, ie riding. That's out of the question. I want to go the distance and not have to change my lifestyle. I am careful when it comes to lifting things and body mechanics when it comes to work, home etc... The problem was an entire kitchen ceiling (which was a layer of plaster then a layer of drywall) fell on me at one time and folded me in half. Freak accident to say the least.
How risky will it be to ride after any kind of rehab or repair? surgery or therapy? Will the rupture heal on its own? These are the questions I have for the spine specialist. I again thank you fellow TTR's, I knew several of you have been in my position, and didn't hesitate posting this in the Yamaha section knowing I would get a fast response. I will keep you posted, especially since I have nothing else I am able to do. Matt



Matt,

As Gray and others have said, if it's a rupture then it needs to be mechanically repaired. Think of it as an external cut. Would you get stitches or therapy for that? :)

If it's not ruptured, you may be able to avoid surgery. I would look at the surgery as a last resort - however, if that's what is needed to repair the injury, then get it done.
But, I wouldn't let an ortho near my spine. I would have a neuro do the work.
I've heard a lot of horror stories and numerous success stories, but I'd only let a neuro cut my back.

As far as a chiro goes - there are a lot of quacks that give the good ones a bad name. My bro-in-law is a great one that specializes in sports injuries and rehab. But he'll be the first to tell you when you need to see another doctor.

I have a bulging disc between L4-L5. Ten years ago it was so bad that I couldn't walk; I had an MRI done to confirm the condition.
I started educating myself on the matter and explored all my options.
I went to an ortho for advice and after a few quick tests he wanted to schedule me for surgery to snatch the disc and fuse the vertabrae.
I asked what other options I had since I viewed surgery as a last resort.
He left the room and after about 15 minutes I went to the front desk to see where he was. The receptionist told me he was seeing other patients and reported he was done with me.
I couldn't believe he would just walk out on me when I didn't gleefully agree to make his next beach house payment. I told her I had half a mind to file a complaint against him.
The moral of the story: He didn't have my best interest at heart, only his.

Ten years later and no surgery, I'm doing great. My bro-in-law has helped me immensely with some procedures and exercises and we've identified the mechanism that causes the problem, so now I manage it and life is good.

So -
Spend as much time as needed to correctly diagnose the condition.
Once that's done, determine what your options, if any, are.
If it's an option, do the reversible ones first (read: a fused spine is NOT reversible).
Remember - YOU have to live with the result, not the doctors. Make an informed decision. The time spent up front learning what to do is the best time you can spend.

Good luck!

:thumbsup:

  • grayracer513

Posted June 11, 2007 - 01:39 PM

#13

Another thing to bear in mind is that there have been some huge advances in what's possible with surgery over those past years, too. They're doing things routinely now that you couldn't have imagined as little as ten years past.

  • SC_Spode

Posted June 11, 2007 - 02:55 PM

#14

Another thing to bear in mind is that there have been some huge advances in what's possible with surgery over those past years, too. They're doing things routinely now that you couldn't have imagined as little as ten years past.


Very true.

I have a friend that had a condition similar to mine that had a procedure to shave the disc that was irritating the nerves and causing a lot of pain.

It was done outpatient and he was walking around his neighborhood that evening. A few weeks later after it healed, he was riding again and has been pain-free since.

:thumbsup:

  • mnm567

Posted June 12, 2007 - 05:44 AM

#15

Well went to a specialist today. I have a degenerative L4-L5 disk with an tear and a buldging L5-S1 disk. The are going to give me an epidural tomorrow and soon start me on a P.T. schedule to see if I can rehab without surgery. I hope it works. Thanks again! Matt





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