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Back Pain - Worried !!

Old 03-26-18, 08:19 AM
  #26  
cyclintom
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Originally Posted by John Young View Post
Thank you for replying

Do you have numbness in part of your arm and sometimes a weird feeling a bit like very mild pins and needles in your leg (one side only) ?

And did you ever have your bloods done and have Immunoglobulins A Raised a bit over normal ?

Sorry for all the questions just trying to ease my worry
Having blood levels off somewhat is NORMAL. They usually give normal limits of different readings but that is only a guide and not a strict limit. For instance, I have high LDL's but HDL's four or five times normal. So the one offsets the other and they say there's nothing to worry about with blocked arteries. My hematocrit is always low as is my iron even though I'm careful to eat well and take vitamin and iron supplements. I put that down to riding all the time and wearing RBC's out faster than normal.

So I wouldn't worry unless and until there is something to worry about. If your doctor referred you to a hematologist I would think that you expressed worry to him and he is only easing your worry.
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Old 03-26-18, 09:46 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Cuyuna View Post
Your post didn't make sense.
quoting the areas that the OP stated, I gave my concern for it linking to a possible heart issue.
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Old 03-26-18, 10:20 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Troul View Post
quoting the areas that the OP stated, I gave my concern for it linking to a possible heart issue.
Yeah, that was the part that didn't make sense. How to you leap to "heart issue" from the OP's post?
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Old 03-26-18, 11:23 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by cyclintom View Post
Having blood levels off somewhat is NORMAL. They usually give normal limits of different readings but that is only a guide and not a strict limit. For instance, I have high LDL's but HDL's four or five times normal. So the one offsets the other and they say there's nothing to worry about with blocked arteries. My hematocrit is always low as is my iron even though I'm careful to eat well and take vitamin and iron supplements. I put that down to riding all the time and wearing RBC's out faster than normal.

So I wouldn't worry unless and until there is something to worry about. If your doctor referred you to a hematologist I would think that you expressed worry to him and he is only easing your worry.
Thank you and yes I told the doctor my past history with cancer (20 years ago) and I think they are being careful. But I was told years ago that after I was cured of my hodgkins disease (cancer) I was no more likely to get any other cancer than anyone in the street.
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Old 03-26-18, 12:01 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Cuyuna View Post
Yeah, that was the part that didn't make sense. How to you leap to "heart issue" from the OP's post?
google common symptoms to heart issues.
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Old 03-26-18, 12:42 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Troul View Post
google common symptoms to heart issues.
I'd put "heart issues" pretty low in the list of the things that the OP might be worrying about. You and Dr. Google don't make a very good care team.
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Old 03-26-18, 03:21 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Cuyuna View Post
I'd put "heart issues" pretty low in the list of the things that the OP might be worrying about. You and Dr. Google don't make a very good care team.
Im no doctor, but I'll take a look lol
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Old 03-27-18, 12:07 PM
  #33  
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My wife suffers from a traumatic compound back and hip injury. She had a fused L4-L5 vertebrae and a "port and polish" in her hip joint. She rides a mid-range 27 speed hardtail MTB with a suspension seatpost and a firm, but comfy saddle. She is more athletic on a bike than any other activity. She can not, under any circumstances, ride a rigid bike. She rides low-technical singletrack and pavement with ease. Too much climbing is still a struggle though. (about no more than 200' in a 3 mile range)
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Old 03-28-18, 07:54 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by restlessswind View Post
My wife suffers from a traumatic compound back and hip injury. She had a fused L4-L5 vertebrae and a "port and polish" in her hip joint. She rides a mid-range 27 speed hardtail MTB with a suspension seatpost and a firm, but comfy saddle. She is more athletic on a bike than any other activity. She can not, under any circumstances, ride a rigid bike. She rides low-technical singletrack and pavement with ease. Too much climbing is still a struggle though. (about no more than 200' in a 3 mile range)
Its amazing and encouraging to any of us that your wife still rides at all. That is some true grit and determination there

I am still out riding and at the moment it actually seems to help which is brilliant
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Old 03-28-18, 04:20 PM
  #35  
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It amazes me too at her abilities. She can't drive a car if her life depended on it due to the seatback contact to her back. She can't sit or stand in one position for more than 10 minutes, but she can pedal 20-30 miles in a day. It's her therapy.
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Old 03-29-18, 03:29 PM
  #36  
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She is inspirational
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Old 05-06-19, 03:49 PM
  #37  
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OK not been back here in a while and thought I would post an update as it may help others

My back pain was not actually back pain it was over used muscles in my bum area. Not sure what they are called but my doctor did tests (same doctor I saw when I had cancer) and phoned me quick to put my mind at rest. I don't have any cancer and the raised levels in my blood can be quite common. I had over used the 'Bum muscles' from being on the bike over the years and they had been pulled and were tight. I found some stretching exercises to do and it was all sorted so a brilliant result. I was so relieved in a way only someone who has had cancer would know and I certainly hope no one on here ever find that out.

One lesson DON'T use consult doctor Google
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Old 05-07-19, 12:39 PM
  #38  
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My lower back gave me lots of pain and discomfort as a result of my years handling kids in car seats.

Four or five years ago I began using an inversion table. I hang upside down, stretch, twist and turn for 5 minutes everyday, This therapy had made my lower back pain disappear.

Highly recommend it. The tables are inexpensive and are readily available on Craigslist and the like.

In addition I take a Curcumin capsule (500mg) everyday along with Glucosamine.
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Old 05-07-19, 01:15 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by John Young View Post
One lesson DON'T use consult doctor Google
WebMD=surefire way to convince yourself that you only have 6 months to live.
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Old 05-07-19, 01:51 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
WebMD=surefire way to convince yourself that you only have 6 months to live.

Exactly right
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Old 05-07-19, 05:55 PM
  #41  
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the initial symptoms (lower back, weird tingling/numbness in different lower areas) sounded a lot like my issues.
slipped/bulging disc. acts up once or twice a year and slows me down for 4-5 days. the tingling/numbness of the sciatica
can be mildly annoying or really uncomfortable (sitting in a car, watching a movie). the sciatica comes along every 4-5 years or so
and usually takes 2 weeks to a month to vanish after doing an hour stretching (20 mins upon waking/20 mins lunch-afternoon/20 mins before bed)
regimen daily. swimming also seems to help. laying around and watching movies/tv seems to be the worst thing for it.
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Old 05-07-19, 08:49 PM
  #42  
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Not a doc, but IMHO your doctors under-communicated and you under-questioned. You deserve some answers. Ask the doctors:

1) I presented with a complaint of back pain. What next steps are needed to figure out the back issue? What imaging is needed to rule out spondolysis or spondylolisthesis?
2) How do globulins relate to back pain? Given that globulins vary naturally and may be unrelated, what do you think the globulin deviations indicate? What are the possibilities and probabilities?
3) Do you have a definitive diagnosis? If diagnosis is not definitive, what do you plan for next steps? When: What is the schedule? Is physical therapy indicated? Why or why not?

Spondylolistheis is a disc slipping forward or backward and putting pressure on nerves (with pain sometimes). Spondolysis is more generally degradation of the spine. So the discs (that are like a lube plate on a semi-truck hitch) collapse. Or a bone spur (stenosis) grows. Or there's arthritis. And pressure is put on a nerve and you have pain.

Again, not a doc but I have had back pain from stenosis. In my case its been managed with exercise and stretching. But I'll probably need surgery sometime this year. In my case, they get an MRI (not an x-ray) that allows really good readouts of where the bones and discs of the spine decay.

If the docs won't or can't give you an explanation and a plan you feel comfortable with, walk out and find another doctor.

By the way, immunoglobulins are antibodies. Antibodies are proteins produced that have two ends: one that recognizes and gloms onto stuff that the body thinks is nasty. Since there are a lot of different nasty things, there are many (several million) types of each of the antibody types. The other end of the antibody binds to something in the body that allows the body to remove that nasty thing. There are several types, such as G, A, M, E, and D. A and M both fight infections. A is in your GI tract and respiratory passages and fight stuff you inhale or eath. M is in the bloodstream and fights bad things that get into the blood. Worrying about cancer because one of these is slightly high, and the other is slightly low, may be a bit premature. But I'm no doctor. Get your doctor to tell you what's going on, and to lay out a plan for you do discuss. A plan that you understand. If the current doc won't, fire him/her. Call you insurance company and let them know you were dissatisfied with the original doc(s). Call your in-network system to see if they have an omsbudsman that will help you find a good doc.
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Old 05-09-19, 07:09 PM
  #43  
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First word of advice: you are your best diagnosis. If you feel something is wrong there probably is something wrong no matter what the doctors say. Second word of advice: Go get it checked out by more than one spine or ortho specialist.

I blew a disk out many years ago and it took me almost a year of excruciating pain before I finally relented and went in to a spine specialist. Got surgery on the morning of 9-11 and woke up in a different world but with no pain.

About 4 years ago I started noticing a weird sensation in my right upper torso. I let this go because it didn't hurt for the first three years. Then it did start to hurt, bad, really bad as in just as bad or worse than the blown disk.

I kept riding because that would actually loosen my back up enough that I could sleep about 3 hours on a good night. I had seen three different doctors (specialists) and neither one diagnosed the problem. Then I fell on my bike on a night ride. It went down hill from there.

I went to my general practice doctor who is actually one of the most talented doctors I have ever been to. He said it was most likely my back. He gave me the name of the best spine doctor in my town. An MRI indicated I had a tumor on my spine and it had closed off my spinal column over 90%.

It was benign and I had it taken out. Pain free and lovin' life again.

Don't wait, get an MRI and find out what it wrong and address it head-on with courage. There is a light at the end of the tunnel.


---

Last edited by drlogik; 05-09-19 at 07:16 PM.
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Old 05-10-19, 03:22 AM
  #44  
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MRI aren't a panacea. Sometimes they can help, other times they do nothing at all. Same with X-rays. I have both, more than once. And after all the radiation I was no better off than when I started.
Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
WebMD=surefire way to convince yourself that you only have 6 months to live.
On the other hand, be thankful we're not living in the 1920s. Had I don't this in the beginning it would have save me so much anguish and back and forth repetition between doctors.

Remember, doctors will only tell you what they're allowed to under legal restrictions and liability. I learned that the hard way. And researching told me more about my condition than all my doctors combined.

No one is more responsible for your health than you. So its to your advantage to be as educated about your condition as possible. Always do your own research.
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Old 05-10-19, 05:17 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post

No one is more responsible for your health than you. So its to your advantage to be as educated about your condition as possible. Always do your own research.
You are talking to someone who was born with a congenital heart defect and had his aortic valve replaced with a St. Jude in 1990. I know how to approach health issues. I also know not to freak out after reading stuff on the Internets.
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Old 05-10-19, 05:46 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by WizardOfBoz View Post
Not a doc, but IMHO your doctors under-communicated and you under-questioned. You deserve some answers. Ask the doctors:...

2) How do globulins relate to back pain? Given that globulins vary naturally and may be unrelated, what do you think the globulin deviations indicate? What are the possibilities and probabilities?...

By the way, immunoglobulins are antibodies. Antibodies are proteins produced that have two ends: one that recognizes and gloms onto stuff that the body thinks is nasty.,, There are several types, such as G, A, M, E, and D. A and M both fight infections. A is in your GI tract and respiratory passages and fight stuff you inhale or eath. M is in the bloodstream and fights bad things that get into the blood.

Worrying about cancer because one of these is slightly high, and the other is slightly low, may be a bit premature. But I'm no doctor...
As the OP posted:
Originally Posted by John Young View Post
Thank you - Yeah I have been to the doctor and been refereed to a hematologist as I have history with cancer - I had Hodgkins 20 years ago
Originally Posted by John Young View Post
Thanks everyone I appreciate you all replying. I know I might seem to be worring for nothing and of course everyone is right about Dr Google I am just a little paranoid.

I had Stage 4 Hodghkins years back and was luck to survive it and don't want to go through anything like it again or put my family through it
Originally Posted by John Young View Post
I have had a little bit of back pain now and again for about 6 months. Nothing bad just the odd ache. The a few weeks back it got really bad.

Went to doctors and they did blood tests and one test showed Immunoglobulins A was slightly high and my M was slightly low. I had no idea what this was but after googling it seems it can be a sign of something nasty called Myeloma (Cancer)…
MYELOMA is a not infrequent hemtologic malignancy, as is Hodgkins Disease, though an uncommon symptom of back pain, and should be familiar to nearly all MDs, particularly hematologists. Immunoglobulin levels per se are not (necessarily) diagnostic.

Free Internet medical advice may well be more expensive than it initially costs.

BTW, I note that the Custom User Title of @WizardOfBoz ("Not a Doc") is "Generally bewildered."

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 05-10-19 at 06:15 AM. Reason: added BTW
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Old 05-10-19, 06:32 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by John Young View Post
I was not after a diagnosis and I am seeing a doctor in a few weeks...
Sounds about right. OP is in the U.K.
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Old 05-10-19, 07:21 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by John Young View Post
Thanks everyone I appreciate you all replying. I know I might seem to be worrying for nothing and of course everyone is right about Dr Google I am just a little paranoid.

I had Stage 4 Hodghkins years back and was luck to survive it and don't want to go through anything like it again or put my family through it
If it makes you feel any better your paranoia is not unique. Mine grows greater with every passing year. Every time I have a chest pain I swear its the big heart attack, then it turns out to be indigestion.

Still, if there's a history, I'd pay a little more attention to the symptoms than say something that doesn't run in my family like kidney stones. Another disease with symptoms of back pain. I'll say a prayer that is just a minor annoyance and nothing more.
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Old 05-10-19, 08:46 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
As the OP posted: MYELOMA is a not infrequent hemtologic malignancy, as is Hodgkins Disease, though an uncommon symptom of back pain, and should be familiar to nearly all MDs, particularly hematologists. Immunoglobulin levels per se are not (necessarily) diagnostic.
The point of my writing was to encourage the OP to be more assertive in questioning his doctor, and to insist that the doctor explain what aberrant lab results mean. The OP did that, and the Doc told him that the lab results were not of concern (which is the conversation I was encouraging!)

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Free Internet medical advice may well be more expensive than it initially costs.
If you've read other posts by me, you'd know that we are in violent, complete agreement. People with no medical degree (or even people WITH medical credentials but who have not done a physical exam, nor a patient interview, nor are aware of the full range and history of lab results and other tests) giving advice is a recipe for disaster. Hence my point "Ask your doctor..."

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
BTW, I note that the Custom User Title of @WizardOfBoz ("Not a Doc") is "Generally bewildered."
I'm not a doc. At least a medical doctor. I have a PhD in chemical engineering, and write math models of human disease (diabetes, Ewing's sarcoma, hypertriglyceridemia, NASH/NAFLD, neuropathy....) for a living. I am a consultant to the pharmaceutical industry in drug discovery and development and work with scientists, MDs, engineers, and the like to efficiently find and develop effective, and safe new therapies.

The models I write are causal, physiological models, not merely statistical ones. That is, a model I write would not be a correlation between fasting plasma glucose and insulin resistance. Rather, physiological models keep track of blood glucose over time taking into account exogenous sources (e.g. eating, or IVGTT dosing) and endogenous sources (gluconeogenesis) and sinks (muscle) and storage/release (glycogen and G6P pools in muscle and liver). So I learn physiology enough to write useful models. (A favorite book is "Medical Physiology" by a favorite author, Professor Arthur Guyton, MD). Point is, while I don't come into the conversation possessing an MD, I'm not a complete naif. I know enough to be bewildered, I guess. There are things I know better than most Docs (e.g. the statistical basis for sensitivity and specificity of tests among other things, which was one motivating factor in my note to the OP).

Last, someone with an MD after their name IS a doctor. Doesn't mean that he/she is a good doctor. Doesn't mean that the Doc communicates adequately. A summary of my post would be "Interpreting slight deviations in lab results using the interweb is a fool's errand, so insist upon a conversation with your Doc to get a better understanding of what's going on, and what the plan going forward will be". I suspect we agree on that last sentence.


Do I take it that you ARE an MD?

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Old 05-10-19, 10:30 AM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by John Young View Post
My back pain was not actually back pain it was over used muscles in my bum area. Not sure what they are called ...
Entirely possible. Lots of folks have over-used and/or under-stretched muscles around the pelvic region (hip flexors, quads, hamstrings, glutes/piriformis, IT band). Lack of flexibility in these areas can cause all sorts of problems, in the back, knees, with the gait, etc.

Even if it turns out that tight, overused, under-stretched muscles in the glutes aren't the full cause, a variety of stretches in the target areas can't hurt.

Take a look at this reference, which is a wonderful compendium of poses and stretches for Yoga.

Yoga Stretches for Improving Flexibility @ Sensational-Yoga-Poses.com.

Specifically, I'd suggest looking at the Pigeon pose, the Screaming Pigeon pose, the Happy Baby hip stretch. These specifically target the glutes, piriformis, hip abductor areas.

Also, consider any of the stretches related to the glutes, hamstrings, groin, and hip flexors. For starters, that'll help get you much more flexible in those areas. All of which, when combined with strengthening, can help raise the bar between your performance zone and the injury point.


* I've dealt with old injuries in the area of the hip-related muscles for decades and rely on these to avoid overworking them, ensuring good flexibility. Without such focus, I'd likely have long since been rendered incapable of walking, cycling, even swimming.
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