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chronic disc degeneration


Super J
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Any advice? After a long few months of severe lower back pain,cramps and pins and needles in my legs,and numereous visits to Chiropractors I found a physiotherapist who refused to asses me without a scan or two and, now its solved,I have severe disc degeneration between L5/S1. Now,I have been given an entire gym workout program for core,lower back and abs, and its really working, for when I bend down,lift heavy objects and general posture, as for cycling,no good! Great posture helps nothing if you bent over in a racing position and believe me, you cannot contract your core for 3 hours during a race,I can barely breath when flexing my core!! My question is this, after finishing the Satalite race on saturday in 7th V/B I could barely walk or hold my torso up straight and by the time I got home,my spinus errectus had swollen up to the extent that it looked like I had half a tennis ball under my shirt! What can I do...... I've tried pain killers,anti-imflamatorys,deap heat,athritic drugs........ Any ideas?

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Well I know you don't want to give up cycling so, why not ride a recumbent? It will solve your back problems, while it might not be the in thing and take you longer to ride. The joy is still there trust me. They like mini gocarts I love them.

 

By taking anti-flam tablets you still doing damage. Rather take it easy and walk another day bud.

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See a good surgeon and consider a operation.....

Edit: Before you damage the nerves beyond repair.....

Edited by Niner
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Sho, not really sure what to suggest other than carrying on with what you're doing and chatting to your doc/physio. I tore the L5/S1 disc, and eventually had surgery to remove the piece of the disc that was compressing the nerve running down my leg. The doc was concerned that the nerve would itself would be damaged without the op. It took a while to heal, but since then (8 years ago) I've had no problems. I mtb and road cycle amongst other sports. It sounds like your physio is pretty clued up so he/she is probably a good person to talk to. I also went to numerous specialists before what was wrong was finally diagnosed (took about 4months), and quite a few of them probably did more harm than good.

Edited by Katy
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See a good surgeon and consider a operation.....

Edit: Before you damage the nerves beyond repair.....

Worst advice I've ever read. Surgery should be the LAST thing you do.

 

Firstly, if cycling aggravates your back, then STOP cycling. Your health is worth more than riding a bike.

 

You will need to strengthen your core and help your body to help itself. I'm really not sure if a gym program is the best bet here. Have you tried pilates? I have a friend who suffered a similar thing as you, he saved his back with pilates. It's non evasive, and is designed this way. Check it out before you go under a knife. You can't go back from that.

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Any advice? After a long few months of severe lower back pain,cramps and pins and needles in my legs,and numereous visits to Chiropractors I found a physiotherapist who refused to asses me without a scan or two and, now its solved,I have severe disc degeneration between L5/S1. Now,I have been given an entire gym workout program for core,lower back and abs, and its really working, for when I bend down,lift heavy objects and general posture, as for cycling,no good! Great posture helps nothing if you bent over in a racing position and believe me, you cannot contract your core for 3 hours during a race,I can barely breath when flexing my core!! My question is this, after finishing the Satalite race on saturday in 7th V/B I could barely walk or hold my torso up straight and by the time I got home,my spinus errectus had swollen up to the extent that it looked like I had half a tennis ball under my shirt! What can I do...... I've tried pain killers,anti-imflamatorys,deap heat,athritic drugs........ Any ideas?

 

If you end up seeing a surgeon seriously consider seeing a Neuro Surgeon who will then suggest an orthopedic surgeon. The Neuro surgeon will do the nerve work (move them out the way etc) and the orthopedic will drill, hammer & chop.

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I've been told about the surgery but apparently I am "too young" and I don't just get it while cycling,just standing in the mall or jogging,picking up the kids,throwing the dog a ball but cycling is worse cos I am a big gear churner so I brace my torso so this puts more pressure on the disc,I've started to concentrate on spinning more but still,more than an hour in the saddle kills me....

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I've been told about the surgery but apparently I am "too young" and I don't just get it while cycling,just standing in the mall or jogging,picking up the kids,throwing the dog a ball but cycling is worse cos I am a big gear churner so I brace my torso so this puts more pressure on the disc,I've started to concentrate on spinning more but still,more than an hour in the saddle kills me....

 

I was 18 when I had the surgery and it was definately the right decision for me, but then, I couldn't even walk. I would definately try all other options before you go for that, but if you do land up having to have it, it's most likely not the end of the world. I have no problems at all now, and do a lot of sports.

 

I was told that high impact activities such as running, are quite bad in terms of the effect they have on your discs. Just confirm with your doctor, because although you struggle to hold the cycling position, it may not be doing as much harm as running. Have you considered at least moving your setup into a less agressive position for the moment, while you buildup your core strength?

Edited by Katy
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I was also diagnosed with DDD (L4 &L5 discs) a few months back after suffering from chronic backpain.Im in my mid 30's. Mine not as bad as Super J, and only painful occasional mornings when getting up out of bed or standing up. I even cycle for 3-4hours without issues and even jogging with little trouble. I use no medication.

 

I think because i always focused on doing core muscle exercises whenever I go to gym helps alot with gaurding the spine and therefor curbing the pain.

 

Specialist told me i would eventually need surgery (read when Im in my 50s or later), mentioned something about fusing steakie bone and prosthesis for 2nd disc. Procedure not covered by my medical aid. No surprise there! :angry: . Not to mention the limitations it would have on quality of life.

 

I'll only consider this as a last option. For now biokineticist and fisio does the trick for me.

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"Do you guys know of any meds I can try to aliviate the pain apart from voltaren tablets?"

 

Vicadin.

Morphine.

Vicanden and Morphine.

 

Of course you will need a 'friend' who is a docter.

 

Seriously. If you take painkillers to exercise you will end up in a wheel chair. Maybe consider another sport. Sport is not more important than health.

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MyPaid Forte was the only thing that worked for me.

 

Had the op - doc wanted to operate again. Pilates def the long term answer.

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Do you guys know of any meds I can try to aliviate the pain apart from voltaren tablets?

 

The way I understand it, the position you're in while you're cycling is arranging your disc so that it presses one of your nerves. So if you just carry on riding on painkillers you will probably land up with long term nerve damage. Which is why I suggested riding more upright (if you have to ride) whilst you try to fix the root cause of the problem.

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Get a proper bike fit as well. Often people mistakenly think that a shorter stem is the answer, but you may just end up curving you spine to "fit" on the bike. I have found that a longer stem with a more stretched out position works for me, keeping my spine nice and straight. Like others have mentioned, a strong core that you can get from pilates is key. I was lucky enough to have a physio that is also a pilates instructor. Every morning without fail I do my stretches and core exercises. If I'm slack for just one week my back tells me all about it.

Edited by velo
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The way I understand it, the position you're in while you're cycling is arranging your disc so that it presses one of your nerves. So if you just carry on riding on painkillers you will probably land up with long term nerve damage. Which is why I suggested riding more upright (if you have to ride) whilst you try to fix the root cause of the problem.

 

+1

A good reason to add some spacers below the stem and fit some riser bars (if you ride mtb)

How low are your bars compared to the saddle at the moment?

Raising the bar height a few cm's can make a huge difference.

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Out of interest, how old are you Super J?

 

Disc degeneration is 'normal' to a certain extent. Your body undergoes wear and tear.

if you do proper core strengthening I see no reason why you shouldn't be able to ride.

Hopefully you are on a dual suspension bike though! (or are you a roadie??!)

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