Multi Problems

by Rick

1st part of my story; in 1974 while in the military boot camp I got shin splints and had feet problems. Then on 1974 the main tank gun knocked me off the tank and put me in the naval hospital for 2 weeks as I had severe Epididymitis.

Then shortly after I had severe feet and ankle problems, Neck pain and a lot mid and of lower back problems for 40yrs.

Now I am told i have prolifererative bony changes scattered the length of my spine and mild disc spacing at L5 - S1 with endplate sclerosis and subchondral sclersis of the facet joints L4-5.

My question is what did the hard fall onto a cement tank pad do to me? as the fall was bad and i landed on my feet very hard. I have had constant knee and bilateral feet pain and severe back pain for years and no one ever asked about my medical history and even now no one has figured out what's wrong with me until i asked for a new foot doctor and he said falls do something to the back and create feet problems.

They just did Xrays and found the above, I am scheduled for an MRI, But again what happen to me? when i was knocked off the tank and in the naval hospital for Epididymitis and no one ever checked for other injuries.

Any help or explanation to what happen to my spine, feet, knee from that injury would help me understand what happen to me as I am a disabled veteran who has suffered many years! Thanks Rick.

Hello Rick,
I think you've already told me the answer. That fall obviously injured a great deal more than the crown jewels. Your feet, hip, spine... but other things have almost certainly happened along the way too. A couple car accidents thrown in... so to pinpoint at this stage what the effect of that initial injury is, is impossible to assess.

In any case, is it actually important? Most of us have a long history of this and that. What's important it to get it treated, and get better. You won't be cured, not with pills, surgery or chiropractic. You have a chronic condition, like diabetes for example that needs treatment and maintenance.

I would be very surprised, not having examined you, or seen the xrays remember, if you weren't say 50 percent better at least after a course of chiropractic treatment. Would you be satisfied with having to live with half the pain of the last few years?

Start looking for a thorough experienced chiropractor who is prepared to struggle through this with you; chronic pain patients are hard on the doctor too, and some aren't willing to go the extra mile with you.

Don't expect miracles, and ask for exercises if none are forthcoming; you may just be very pleasantly surprised. Take your xrays and scans with you.

Not all chiropractors work with feet, so ask first. Don't just settle for a very expensive pair of orthotics for your shoes. Someone who will work at, and adjust your feet.

I'm sure there's someone around your corner able to help.

Dr B

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Interesting challenges of the day

1. Mr S is a 76 year old man with neck pain of some 9 months duration. Luckily, most of the discomfort is upper cervical which is only rarely arthritic; his lower cervical spine is a degenerative mess that I've left alone. After seven treatments his pain and stiffness is 50 percent better, and he's happy in the circumstances. He can sleep through the night now and that makes a huge difference.

2. Mr P is 32 year old man with very severe lower back pain radiating to the big toe which is 30 percent numb. He had an episode three weeks ago, took anti inflammatories and was soon better as is typical of the medial disc herniation. But before it healed, after a trivia it came roaring back, much worse. The characteristic crossed sign was evident; sitting in a chair, straightening the right leg provoked severe left back pain and tingling in the leg. He's doing well.

3. Severe lower back pain is scary; just ask Mrs P. Just watching her get out of the car I she was in trouble; she had a slipped disc at L4 making her lean towards the opposite side; luckily she had no pain in the leg. Despite family pressure that this was far too severe for a chiropractor, she persevered. Within five days she was standing upright, and after two weeks almost painfree. 

Despite a hectic job, she wisely took my advice and stayed home for what I call exercising bed rest.

4. Mr S has had lower back, groin and back of thigh and calf pain for fourth months.

He has a pincer deformity in the hip causing the stabs in the groin, and a degenerative facet causing the sciatica. Both are responding well to chiropractic and he's well pleased; sixty five percent better after three treatments.

5. Mr T is a wise man; he's taken a warning TIA seriously and has lost 15 pounds, and has at least as much again to lose. A change to a low starch diet and half hour daily walk has made the difference; but the walking is making his foot and back miserable. The expensive orthotic is hopeless; luckily his hips and back are fine, but he needs a simple heel lift.

6. I too have had serious lower back issues, luckily fixed by my own chiropractor; so I too have to do my exercises, take care when lifting supers full of honey, gardening and using the chainsaw. Regaining the function of your spine is just as important as the pain.

7. My own granddaughter, only 7 is hypermobile giving her pelvic, knee and ankle issues. Xrays show a mildly dysplastic hip. Years ago we would have called it growing pains. She too regularly needs chiropractic care and luckily responds well. Increased range of motion is more difficult than too stiff in my opinion. Our care is for kids too.

8. This 65 year old lady is a serious gardener; every day she is bending, lifting and digging for 2 to 3 hours a day. It regularly catches her in the sacroiliac joint, so she has a treatment once a month that sorts it out. She does her lower back exercises faithfully.

9. This 88 year old lady is an inspiration; every day she is busy in the community. With a nasty scoliosis she manages very well with a chiropractic adjustment every six weeks and exercises faithfully done.  

10. Mr X is a 71 year old retired man who wants to continue with maintenance care every six to eight weeks; he had suffered from two years of lower back pain when he first came a year ago. He has no discomfort now after 8 chiropractic treatments, but is aware that danger lurks.

11. Mrs C has been having severe headaches, and taking a lot of analgesics. It's a non complicated upper cervical facet syndrome, and she's doing well.

12. Mr D is a 38 old year man with chronic shoulder pain after a rotator cuff tear playing cricket. It responded well to treatment, but he knows he must do his exercises every day; for two years he couldn't sleep on that shoulder.

13. Mr D, a 71 year old man, has a severe ache in the shoulder and midback since working above his head. Trapped nerve tests are negative but he has advanced degenerative joints of Luschka; after just two treatments he is 50 percent better. Can we reach 90?

And so the day goes; chiropractors shouldn't be treating the elderly most medical sites state but that's so much bunkum.

Have a problem that's not getting better? Looking for a different slant on your pain? Want to pose a question?

Interesting questions from visitors

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Greetings, Dr B.
You helped me quite some time back with a soothing and professional response which turned out to be exactly correct. I now consult a local chiropractor. You write a superb newsletter, too.

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Knowing that up to 70% of the time the correct diagnosis is made with no examination, no special tests, no xrays, but just from the history, there's a fair chance I can add some insight to your unresolved problem. But at least 30% of the time, I may be quite wrong! Give plenty of detail if you want a sensible reply.

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