Body

  • Broken Hand
  • NSAIDS: To Use or Not to Use
  • Hydrocele, Spermatocele and Strained Groin
  • Hand: Arthritis
  • Open-Heart Surgery
  • Osteopenia and Increasing Bone Density
  • Body: Pain Meds vs Sex
  • Appendectomy and Climbing Training
  • Body: Injury Truths
  • Body: BPA and Waterbottles
  • Body: Bouldering for Bone Density
  • Body: Chronic Injury
  • Body: Bouldering for the Bones
  • Body: Antibiotics and Tendon Damage
  • Back

  • Lumbar Bone Spurs
  • Options for Disc Herniation
  • Back: Spinal Fracture
  • Back: Preventing Hunchback
  • Back: Herniated Disc
  • Abdomen

  • Abdomen: Muscle Tear/Hernia
  • Arm

    No items found.

    Shoulder

  • Thoracic Musculature Tightness
  • Chronic Posterior Shoulder Pain
  • Supraspinatus and Labral Tears
  • Chronic Shoulder Pain
  • Shoulder Replacement
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Exploding Shoulder
  • Shoulder: Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
  • Shoulder: SLAP Lesion and Cortisone
  • Shoulder: Frozen Shoulder
  • Shoulder: Torn Labrum, SLAP Lesion
  • Shoulder: Separation
  • Shoulder: Pain and Virus
  • Biceps

  • Bursting Biceps
  • Elbow

  • Golfer's Elbow
  • Elbow: Brachioradialis Pain
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Medial Epicondylosis Tendonitis
  • Dodgy Elbows Revisited
  • Synovial Chips
  • Quack Elbow Treatments to Avoid
  • Elbow Pain and Cortisone Use
  • Do Compression Sleeves Work?
  • Elbow: Tennis Elbow
  • Elbow: Medial Tendonosis
  • Elbow Pain and Dodgy Elbows
  • Elbow: Tendonosis
  • Elbow: Medial Epicondylosis and Taping
  • Elbow: Tingling and Numbness
  • Elbows: Minimizing Fingerboard Injuries
  • Elbow: Medial Epicondyle Tendonosis
  • Elbow: Stress Fracture
  • Elbow: Pain and Hangboarding
  • Wrist

  • TFCC Tear
  • Wrist Pain From Cleaning Routes
  • Wrist: Klienbock's Disease
  • Wrist: Ruptured Tendon
  • Snap, Crackle, Wrist
  • Wrist: Fractured Scaphoid
  • Wrist: Instability
  • Hand

  • Broken Hand
  • Hand: Hook of the Hamate Fracture
  • Fingers: Everything You Need to Know About Finger Stress
  • Hands: Dupuytren's Disease (lump in palm)
  • Hands: Numbness and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fingers

  • Swollen Right Index Finger
  • Pinky Numbness
  • Avulsion Fracture
  • Hand: Arthritis
  • Finger Numbness
  • Fourth Metacarpal Break
  • First Pulley Strain
  • Freezing Fingers Today, Benefit Tomorrow?
  • Cysts in Fingers
  • Ruptured Finger Pulley
  • Major Finger Pain
  • Fingers: What To Do with a Ruptured Flexor Digitorum Superficialis
  • Fingers: Everything You Need to Know About Finger Stress
  • Fingers: Hyper-extended
  • Fingers: Cysts and Pain
  • Fingers: Cracked Fingertips
  • Fingers: De Quervain's Tenosynovitis
  • Fingers: NSAID Treatment
  • Fingers: Torn A2 Pulley
  • Fingers: Trigger Thumb Syndrome
  • Fingers: Stiffness, Soreness
  • Fingers: Grip Position and Injury
  • Fingers: Cortisone for Tendon Injuries
  • Fingers: Pinky Finger Pain
  • Fingers: Electrostimulation
  • Hands: Numbness and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Fingers: Taping Truths
  • Fingers: Flappers
  • Fingers: Trigger-Finger Syndrome
  • Fingers: Torn A3 and A4 Pulleys
  • Fingers: Cysts
  • Fingers: Arthritis
  • Fingers: Numbness
  • Fingers: Blown Tendons
  • Leg

  • Leg: Achilles Tendonitis
  • Leg and Knee: Broken Femur and Shattered Kneecap
  • Leg: Pulled Hamstring
  • Leg: Fracture
  • Knee

  • Outside Knee Pain: Tibiofibular Joint
  • MCL Injury
  • Blown Knees
  • Knee Tendonitis after Ankle Fusion
  • Meniscal Tear on a Drop Knee
  • Knee: Rockfall Causes Lump
  • Knee: Chondral Injury of the Lateral Tibial Plateau
  • Leg and Knee: Broken Femur and Shattered Kneecap
  • Knee: Ruptured ACL
  • Knee: Ruptured Ligament and Meniscus
  • Knee: Synovial Cartilage Damage
  • Ankle

  • Osteochondral Talus Fracture
  • Knee Tendonitis after Ankle Fusion
  • Snapped ankle tendon
  • Possible Death of the Talus Bone
  • Broken Talus Bone
  • Ankle: Loud Pop Ankle Roll
  • Feet

  • Bunions
  • Dr. J Attacks Fungal Toenails
  • Feet: Broken Foot
  • Feet: Gout and Pseudogout
  • Feet: Toe Fracture
  • Video Spotlight
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    Options for Disc Herniation

    15-May-2015
    By

    Right now I’m in so much pain my doctor lets me inject pure opium (just kidding). Seriously, though, I’m experiencing some pain around my quadratus lumborum muscle in the low back. I’m taking Gabapentin and it helps, so a lot of the pain must be nerve related. The pain goes away while I’m lying down or sitting. Standing and walking cause the pain to ramp up. Do you have any advice? Drink 18 Red Bulls a day, take five grams of vitamin C? Anything? MRI’s show mild herniation, but zero doctors out of four have recommended surgery. Muscle relaxants help with my symptoms but not the problem.

    —Chris Dylan/El Paso, Texas

    Pure fantastical opium …those were the days. I remember when people used a concoction containing opium to calm their crying children. Lucky for me, I was a fussy baby. The problem here is that your QL spasm is a response to your disc herniation, and no amount of pharmaceutical placation will resolve that.

    Eighteen Red Bulls these days will probably just give you some funky heartbeats. Back in the mid 1990s when you could only buy them in Asia and they contained some truly potent amphetamines, 18 might have been fatal!

    Five grams of vitamin C is a long shot even for hippies. Although research suggests high doses of C can reduce the duration of a chest infection, I’ve seen nothing to suggest it operates as an analgesic.

    Spinal surgery has come a long way, but you’d do well to avoid it until that Mack truck is so close you need to look left and right to see its headlights. The different surgical options depend on the severity of your disc issue, where it presents, and if it puts pressure on the exiting nerve root. Not least of all, it depends on how much pain you are in. Sometimes a bulge that appears moderate or even small can produce an inordinate level of discomfort, which, even without neural symptoms like numbness and weakness in your legs, can be rather debilitating in terms of life’s finer pleasures.

    Although I think cortisone is bandied around like fairy floss at the carnival it does have some use in pain control if the bulge looks like it may resolve. Mostly they do, given enough time. Patience might allow you to avoid the risks of anesthetic, surgical malfunctions and issues associated with fused vertebra.

    That you have to at least try conservative management is a given. Osteopath, PT, chiro, acupuncturist, blah blah, whatever humps your camel. Do it, and if it doesn’t work try something else.

    If all fails and life has lost its fun, see a surgeon, but don’t book anything this side of six months unless you’re in paroxysmal pain or need a catheter to pee. Ride it out as long as you can and give your body every opportunity to do what it does best—heal thyself!

     

    This article was published in Rock and Ice no. 213 (October 213).

     


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