Patient Comments: Lumbar Spinal Stenosis - Experience

Please describe your experience with lumbar spinal stenosis.

Comment from: depunkin, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 21

I"m 49 and have suffered with pain since my early 20s, occasional at first. Since my late 30s it"s been 24/7. At 44 I was finally diagnosed with lumbar spinal stenosis. I was told this was caused by the early onset of arthritis. I just recently had surgery. My stenosis was severe and 4" of bone was removed to release the pressure on the nerves. I also had to have fusion of L3 through S1. My prognosis is good. I"m still in a tremendous amount of pain but was told it would get better in 2 to 3 months. I"m looking forward to living with no pain and no more opiates! Hang in there. There is light at the end of a long painful tunnel.

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Comment from: jhonni, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: May 01

First surgery was to "clean out the debris" from disks L5 S1 imploding; left me in bad state. About 4 years later second surgery due to spinal stenosis, took up to 2 years just to walk a few blocks. Eight years later I am still in chronic pain and gravity is my enemy. I cannot carry more than 5 lb. a few blocks before the pain really kicks in. I have tried everything but to no avail. I have been forced to treat pain with opiates when nothing else will get me out of very severe pain. My lower left leg and foot can balloon and right buttock feels like I was shot with an arrow. I am only 56. Is this what I am going to have to put up with for rest of my life!

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Comment from: Wilhelm, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: April 23

In 1988 I had back surgery due to ruptured disc; after surgery my diagnosis was failback. I have lumbar spinal stenosis with radiculopathy, with numbness of bilateral legs and feet. My right foot is totally numb. About 3 months ago I have had sciatica, it is the most painful thing I have experienced. It feels like a lightning bolt has struck me in both legs. I am unable to walk for long distances and unable to sleep. I have had to live with chronic back pain since a young man, and I would not wish this on anyone. Thank you for letting me share this. Good luck to all that have this diagnosis, one day we will be pain free.

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Comment from: Waterdoc, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: March 06

I am 56 and first was diagnosed with lumbar spinal stenosis about 5 years ago. This began as a tingling in the leg and radiated down to the knee. Stopping and bending for a short time once worked. Then medication got involved, but now the pain is getting unbearable, as my job requires walking anywhere from 3 to 5 miles a day in the facility. I am not a fan of invasive surgery as my wife had 9 back surgeries, and it has not turned out well. I am currently looking into the new laser surgery for this, as it requires a 2" maximum incision and much less down time. The drawback is finding a doctor in my area that is trained for this surgical procedure. The closest is a mere 700 miles from my home. I feel for all those who are going through this as I know your pain, and unless you have or have gone through it, there is no way for another to understand. Hopefully technology makes rapid advancements for spinal diseases like ours. Best of luck to you all.

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Comment from: Jean, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 12

I just found out today that I have lumbar spinal stenosis. I was at a spine center having my very first steroid injection, when the doctor mentioned the results of my MRI showing this. At first I was to have a caudal spinal block, but once he saw the MRI results he changed that injection to be more specific as to where my problem is generating from. This diagnosis is scaring me as to what my future holds. All I know is the pain is unbearable! I"ve had back pain every now and then due to what I thought was scoliosis. I actually thought that may have worsened but when he told me this I was shocked. I"ve been in contact with the spine center for pain medications. I"m allergic to all narcotics and the nurse mentioned possible muscle relaxers. I need relief!

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Comment from: bcrone, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 11

I was diagnosed with lumbar spinal stenosis, arthritis, and a herniated disc at around 40. My family does have a history of back problems. I also have malformed hip sockets which caused the labrum to be injured. I have had surgery to repair on the left hip. I was told to take ibuprofen at 2400 mg a day, which I cannot take any longer due to ulcers they have caused. I am in so much pain at night it is unbearable. I am waking up at least 10 times per night to have to adjust and stretch. We have not had health insurance in several years so there has been no follow up. I dread living 40 more years like this! I am hoping to get insurance soon so this can be taken care of.

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Lumbar Spinal Stenosis - Symptoms Question: What were the symptoms of your lumbar spinal stenosis?
Lumbar Spinal Stenosis - Treatment Question: What kinds of treatment, therapy, or medication did you receive for lumbar spinal stenosis?

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