very bad back pain going down left leg waist swelling.

by john warner




» Very bad back pain going down left leg waist swelling

Every so often I get an excruciating pain in my lower back; this radiates down my left leg.

I lean to the left involuntary and all round my waist swells; it takes about a week to go straight again. An xray when like this shown my spine badly bent to the left.

It straightens up eventually; do you know what this might be. My doctor seems baffled.

Hello John,
Yes, it's not particularly mysterious. Patients with a slipped disc go into what's known as an antalgia, or functional scoliosis. There is a bulge of the disc and it threatens the nerve root, so the body takes on this posture to reduce the pressure on the nerve. It serves no purpose to force yourself up straight.

The bulge occurs in two ways. Under the nerve root in which case you lean to the same side, or lateral to the nerve root, in which you lean to the opposite side.

Both are serious and lead to a difficult sciatica if neglected. I recommend intermittent bed rest until you come up straight. Don't bend and try not to sneeze or cough.

A daily set of exercises, done every morning before getting out of bed is vital.

I hope this contributes.

Dr B


» Very bad back pain going down left leg waist swelling

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