Pain in the leg

by Engjellushe Icka
(Pogradec, Albania)

Pain in the leg

Dear sir/madame
Thank you for giving us this option to share our problems with you!
My mother is 72 years old 58 cm tall and 80 kg. She complained since several years from the back pain and legs pain when she walks after half an hour or so. Recently she started to have stronger pain and she can not walk longer than 5 minutes because she can not bear the pain in the leg and hips. She walks bending like a boat in the high waves.
Yesterday she had an examination to the back with the Magenetic Resonance. I am writing down the examination results (the ones that show problems)
-Discal hernia minimal foraminal sinister L3-4
-Discal prolabation posteromedian L3-4; L4-5
-Discal prolabation posterolateral dexter L1-2

The doctors said that she should have the surgery absolutely. Please advise!

Thank you

[Hello Engi,
Thank you for your enquiry, and congratulations on your written English which is a great deal better than many writers from English speaking countries. Only her height? 58 cm?!!!

The big question is whether the conditions in her spine are actually the ones causing her pain, and inability to walk.

For example, an arthritic hip could cause similar pains, as could a sacro-iliac condition. What's needed is a careful and thorough examination.

And that she's probably had, and your doctors are probably right.

Chiropractors do treat conditions like this, but it depends on the severity of the arthritis in her back, and how large those prolabations are. Prolapse in English.

However, her condition is obviously worsening, and despite the risks, and no knowledge at all concerning how good your neurosurgeons are, she may have no option but to go for surgery.

Has she been for physiotherapy? An exercise class? I've no idea whether there are chiropractors in Albania or not.

Use this Search this site … function for exercises she could do at home.

I hope this has contributed.

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.

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