Review for Lower Back Pain

  • Age 55+
  • Female
  • 120 lbs
  • 5' 3"
  • SF Bay Area, CA
  • Injury Status Recovering
  • Number of Surgeries None
  • Repeat injury? No
  • Physical activity per week 4-8 hours
  • Chronicity 18+ Months
  • How much did pain interfere with your day-to-day activities in the past week? A little bit
  • Have you been off work or unemployed due to low-back pain? Yes, under 1 month
  • Have you felt depressed or hopeless in the last 7 days? Rarely
  • How much did pain interfere with your enjoyment of life in the past week? A little bit
  • What best describes your pain level on average in the past week? Mild
  • Additional Diagnosis/Symptoms Sciatica (pinched nerve, radiculopathy)

Treatment Ratings

    McKenzie Method
    NSAIDs - Anti Inflammatory drugs, Strengthening Exercises, Yoga, Postural Modifications, Stretching, Cortisone Injection, Ice, Walking/Hiking
    Not Improved
    TENS/Electrical Stimulation, Meditation, Traction, Rest, Acupuncture, Physical Therapy
    Heat, Chiropractor, Massage, Opioids

It took 2 months to diagnose my unbelievable hip pain as originating from a torn disk at L2/L3. Couldn't sit nor stand. Only slowly hobbling around brought relief and 2400mg Ibuprofen daily. Tried everything including Feldenkrais but it was only getting worse. Got Steroid injection at Stanford but they missed the actual spot by over an inch. Found McKenzie booklet which worked; I could be painfree 10 min at a time - a glimpse of hope to get better without surgery. Discovered Dr. Jeffrey Saal in Redwood City who injected steroids at the right place. Immediate relief, at least of the worst pain, for about 2 weeks. Finally slept more than 20 min uninterrupted. Slow progress from there. Still pain, still on Ibuprofen. Better than opiates! Kept working in order to distract myself from the misery. After 18 months I could drive in a car again. The 3rd Steroid injection lifted me over the hill and recovery started in earnest. Very gentle yoga helped regain strenght. Painfree after 3 years!

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