Based on the symptoms that you describe, it sounds quite possible that your problem is being caused by a herniated disc pressing on your nerves. However, a herniated disc is not the only possible cause of such symptoms.
A common problem that elderly people experience is pain which comes on only when walking. Lying or sitting down is not painful, but attempting to walk can produce pain in the back, the thighs, or the calves.
In most patients with spinal stenosis, a laminectomy is all they need for relief. However, some conditions require something additional for best results: a fusion. I do this procedure at the same time as a laminectomy. Some of your own bone is harvested from a particular area on your pelvis that can spare it safely.
There is a common deformity of the spine that is familiar to very few people, even though it occurs in up to five percent of the population (that’s one person out of twenty). It is called Spondylolisthesis (Spon-di-lo-lis-thee-sis), which is Greek for “slippage of the spine.”
The condition is not dangerous because the slippage almost never progresses once adulthood is reached. Therefore, the treatment is usually aimed towards simply relieving pain. I have had good luck treating this with braces and therapy for muscular strengthening to help restore stability to the lower spine.
Whenever she tried to walk to much, her back would begin to hurt, and then the pain would spread down her legs. If she sat down, the pain would go away. It got slowly worse over the months, to the point where she started giving up golf. That just wouldn’t do!
The vast majority of doctors deserve that trust. However, there have been numerous occasions where a patient will see me in the office and tell me that another doctor has recommended surgery. To be honest, I’m sometimes shocked at some of the explanations why surgery is recommended over conservative treatment.
What is the natural history of scoliosis? Curvatures tend to stop getting bigger once a patient is done growing. Once a girl’s had periods for two years, her curves are unlikely to progress much after that for the rest of her life. The exception to this is if the curve gets bigger than about 50 degrees.
Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature in the spine that some children, mostly girls, develop around 10 to 12 years old. It is almost never painful, except for perhaps a slight ache. Most of the time, it is discovered during a school screening.
Our spines curve naturally in an “S” shape from front to back. This curving gives our spines a springiness that helps absorb shocks as we walk and run. However, our spines are not supposed to curve from side to side.