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T4/T5 & T5/T6 Herniation with mild cord impingement

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Unread 08-07-2009, 11:28 AM   #1
clp2442
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Default T4/T5 & T5/T6 Herniation with mild cord impingement

Hello all. I'm a 32 year old mother of two (10 months and 3.5 years). On the first of the year I fell on a wet tile floor, my feet went out from under me and I landed smack on my tailbone. I developed pain in my mid-back and had a MRI which revealed the herniations. I've been through physical therapy with no improvment and am slated for epidural steroid injections.

Has anyone dealt with herniations here? I hear they are quite rare and cannot find much information about them on the internet. Does the spinal cord impingement pose an issue? I have read it isn't good and an emergency surgery could be necessary at any time. I have pins/needles/numbness in my left arm. My worst pain is in the form of muscle spasms across my back in the T4 - T6 range, and pain that wraps around my chest.

Any insight or advice would be great.

Thanks.
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Unread 08-12-2009, 07:24 PM   #2
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First off I wanted to welcome you to Neuro Talk! So glad you found us. I’m sorry about your pain and problems with your back. I have been in your situation quite a few times. However mine is Lumbar.

I have attached a few links that might help you to understand your pain and numbness problems. If you have any questions just private message me…

This link is to the information above called useful information...
http://neurotalk.psychcentral.com/thread171.html

This link is a great place to go for any medical information.
http://vsearch.nlm.nih.gov/vivisimo/...herniated+disc

Again, take care!
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Unread 11-06-2009, 02:15 AM   #3
DownLowNY
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Default Same boat...any answers?

I am also a 32 year old female, no kids but I work in bars & restaurants, so I am on my feet, reaching and carrying things on 12hr shifts, which I imagine is similar to keeping up with toddlers, complete with whining and complaining.

This past March I started having the most awful, unusual pain in my left shoulder blade area. It would move around under my arm by the end of the day and eventually got so bad that I couldn't put a shirt on over my head. i thought maybe I pulled a muscle so I went for a massage, and another and another. No help. The pain then seemed to move down into my right lower back and all the way down my leg. It became debilitating. Lying down didn't help, I could never get comfortable, Percocet did little for the discomfort and stretching felt good in the moment but once I stopped the pain took over again.

Many doctors and many tests later, I have an MRI report that states small left paracentral T6-7 disk herniation mildly deforming the ventral cord surface. I did several morphine shots when the pain got so bad but truthfully they offered little relief. I was scheduled for an epidural but chickened out. Did yours help? I have not done PT yet, no doc prescribed it, can you believe that, but am seeking it out now 8 painful months later, on my own. What kind of doctor is treating you?

I just wanted to know what or where you are at in your treatment as yours is the closest I have come to seeing a similar situation and someone to relate to. All the months of discomfort have caused additional problems. I stand, sit and sleep funny, contorting my body to alleviate the pressure into positions that are not normal, which has in turn caused neck pain, foot pain, knee pain. A one-time rock climbing, weight lifting, lifeguard I have become so weak from being sedentary that my muscles can barely hold me up with out tiring quickly. In desperation I turned to acupuncture and it has actually helped more than any of the drugs I've taken but it is in no way a permanent solution. The other day I realized that I can't remember what it was like not to hurt so bad.

I must sound very sorry for myself, and I know you are not a doctor but maybe your experience can help lead me in a direction as I am feeling adrift in the medical sea, frustrated and discouraged.

Hoping the best for you, and me, both.
Abby
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Unread 11-06-2009, 01:02 PM   #4
Jo*mar
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Have either of you considered getting an evaluation by an expert & skilled chiropractor?
Some will do PT style modalities along with regular treatment.
{ultrasound, Electric stim, low level laser, some massage or trigger point type stuff}

Chiropractic care info- a good one can help with many symptoms:
http://www.upcspine.com/self.htm
http://www.uppercervical.org/subpag...b/about_faq.php
http://www.spineuniverse.com/index.html
http://www.coloradochiropractic.org/.../glossary.html

maybe some of these will be helpful too-
Postural work/info
http://www.egoscue.com/global/where_pain.php
http://www.somaticsplus.com/ws2.html
http://www.om-rehab.com/treatments.htm
http://www.sportsinjurybulletin.com/...acic-spine.htm
http://www.body-awareness.com/index.htm

But these injuries can affect how you use your body and that can make for bad changes in the long term, if not treated.
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Last edited by Jo*mar; 11-06-2009 at 11:15 PM. Reason: typo
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Unread 11-06-2009, 09:59 PM   #5
Sheri_TOS
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No answers but I have similar issues in the T4-T6 and T12-L1. At first, I just had muscle spasms and pain wrapping around the chest; but lately, I've developed tingling and now the sharp nerve pain. I have been referred to a physiatrist so I know an MRI is in my future. My aunt has had 5-7 levels of her thoracic spine fused. I have a 3 year old so I can relate to your situation.

I haven't had epidural shots in the thoracic spine but have had the shots on the cervical and lumbar spine. In both cases, the shots brought relief. I have tried chiropractor help (6 plus years now) but haven't had success with that lately. I started seeing a naturopath earlier this year who takes a whole body approach rather than addressing one specific segment that has helped me tremendously when I'm having the flares.

Your arm pins/numbness/tingling: Maybe a cervical issue or peripheral issues - Do you notice a specific distribution?
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Unread 11-07-2009, 05:11 PM   #6
BrokenArrows
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My wife has herniations in the thoracic area. They are rare. Before doing anything like chiropractic, I would see a pain specialist (a good one) and get a few epidural shots. My wife's pain doc recommended against chiropractic in this area (although he's all for it in the lumbar spine) because it's such a sensitive area.

The symptoms you have are classic thoracic herniation pain symptoms. I would get this taken care of before they take root. My wife waited and lived to regret it -- she now has chronic pain. As for whether impingement will cause serious problems, have a pain doc look at your MRIs and tell you what he thinks. Some herntaions are worse than others; some heal on their own over time. But a doc can check MRIs a month or two apart and tell you how your progress is going.

Come to think of it, before you start ANY home remedy treatment, go to a pain doc. This is a sensitive area and cannot be messed with. This is not the lumbar spine, where there is lots of room and herniations are common.

If you're in the DC-Baltimore area, I can recommend a few great pain docs. If they use a floroscope (which allows them to see where they're injecting) the epidural injections are very safe.
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Unread 04-02-2010, 07:30 PM   #7
thoracic disc extru
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Default I too have a similar problem i feel off a ladder and extruded t7 t8 always in pain.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clp2442 View Post
Hello all. I'm a 32 year old mother of two (10 months and 3.5 years). On the first of the year I fell on a wet tile floor, my feet went out from under me and I landed smack on my tailbone. I developed pain in my mid-back and had a MRI which revealed the herniations. I've been through physical therapy with no improvment and am slated for epidural steroid injections.

Has anyone dealt with herniations here? I hear they are quite rare and cannot find much information about them on the internet. Does the spinal cord impingement pose an issue? I have read it isn't good and an emergency surgery could be necessary at any time. I have pins/needles/numbness in my left arm. My worst pain is in the form of muscle spasms across my back in the T4 - T6 range, and pain that wraps around my chest.

Any insight or advice would be great.

Thanks.
I can relate, i have been told not to have surgery, but they really leave you hanging in pain and confusion. My t7 t8 disc is extruded and flattened the cord. I have been to so many doctors trying to get answers. The surgery is horrible, dangerous and can cause much worse problems after. I have taken vicodin, muscle relaxors, ambian, antidepressants, naids, PT, and nothing really works. My mri's remain unchanged, no shrinking of the extrusion. How are u doing? I'm going to the mayo clinic in minnasota, as I don't know where else to turn.
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Unread 04-05-2010, 07:09 AM   #8
rfei57
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Default T-Spine

Quote:
Originally Posted by clp2442 View Post
Hello all. I'm a 32 year old mother of two (10 months and 3.5 years). On the first of the year I fell on a wet tile floor, my feet went out from under me and I landed smack on my tailbone. I developed pain in my mid-back and had a MRI which revealed the herniations. I've been through physical therapy with no improvment and am slated for epidural steroid injections.

Has anyone dealt with herniations here? I hear they are quite rare and cannot find much information about them on the internet. Does the spinal cord impingement pose an issue? I have read it isn't good and an emergency surgery could be necessary at any time. I have pins/needles/numbness in my left arm. My worst pain is in the form of muscle spasms across my back in the T4 - T6 range, and pain that wraps around my chest.

Any insight or advice would be great.

Thanks.
I have alot of problems in my T-spine also and the Drs I have seen will not do anything until it is real bad because of the surgery is a bad one.
Here is my MRI


A very minimal conave deformity of the inderior endplate of T7 which ia chronic and benign. There are disc degenerative changes noted at T7-T8 where there is loss of disc space height and disc desiccation observed. Disc degenerative changes anteriorly at T8-T9 with marrow endplate changes are notedas well.A posterior desiccated disc extrusion centrally is noted at T7-T8 with mild dural sac compression and no direct cord impingement. a small left paracentral extrusion is present at T10-T11 without cord impingement. At T11-T12 a right paracentral extrusion is noted. This desiccated extrusion extend slightly above the disc space measuring 2 to 3 mm in size with mild right dural sac compression and mild anterior right cord flattening without canal stenosis
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Unread 05-27-2012, 01:00 PM   #9
RoxAnn
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Default Have just started to feel the same pain in the left shoulder and left arm

Quote:
Originally Posted by DownLowNY View Post
I am also a 32 year old female, no kids but I work in bars & restaurants, so I am on my feet, reaching and carrying things on 12hr shifts, which I imagine is similar to keeping up with toddlers, complete with whining and complaining.

This past March I started having the most awful, unusual pain in my left shoulder blade area. It would move around under my arm by the end of the day and eventually got so bad that I couldn't put a shirt on over my head. i thought maybe I pulled a muscle so I went for a massage, and another and another. No help. The pain then seemed to move down into my right lower back and all the way down my leg. It became debilitating. Lying down didn't help, I could never get comfortable, Percocet did little for the discomfort and stretching felt good in the moment but once I stopped the pain took over again.

Many doctors and many tests later, I have an MRI report that states small left paracentral T6-7 disk herniation mildly deforming the ventral cord surface. I did several morphine shots when the pain got so bad but truthfully they offered little relief. I was scheduled for an epidural but chickened out. Did yours help? I have not done PT yet, no doc prescribed it, can you believe that, but am seeking it out now 8 painful months later, on my own. What kind of doctor is treating you?

I just wanted to know what or where you are at in your treatment as yours is the closest I have come to seeing a similar situation and someone to relate to. All the months of discomfort have caused additional problems. I stand, sit and sleep funny, contorting my body to alleviate the pressure into positions that are not normal, which has in turn caused neck pain, foot pain, knee pain. A one-time rock climbing, weight lifting, lifeguard I have become so weak from being sedentary that my muscles can barely hold me up with out tiring quickly. In desperation I turned to acupuncture and it has actually helped more than any of the drugs I've taken but it is in no way a permanent solution. The other day I realized that I can't remember what it was like not to hurt so bad.

I must sound very sorry for myself, and I know you are not a doctor but maybe your experience can help lead me in a direction as I am feeling adrift in the medical sea, frustrated and discouraged.

Hoping the best for you, and me, both.
Abby
I have recently started to experience the same kind of pain from my left shoulder and progressing down my left arm, I have herniation of the T6-7 with mild compression of the cord, I am allergic to opiate based narcotics so must rely on muscle relaxers for both the pain and spasms which occur with increasing frequency. My doctors just seem to give me test after test with no satisfying results...I feel like I'm losing my mind, my family are so tired of living with my constant inability to join in the simplest tasks. Add this injury to 5 avulsion fractures of the hip, pelvis and right leg with severe mucsle damage and I have to use a walker/wheelchair...so frustrated!
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Unread 05-27-2012, 01:50 PM   #10
ginnie
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Default Hello Clp

Welcome to Neuro Talk. Please do seek another opinion before you decide on any course of action, that includes any surgery. Epidurals can and do work. The word "mild" herniation may indicate you might not have to have this surgery right this minute. when the MRI states "Serious" than I would become a liitle more assertive in seeking care. Saying this however, I know that any nerve compression in the spinal cord, to impinge on the nerves is not good, and sometimes a surgerical solution is necessary. Others can help to understand your MRI better than I can. Seek the very best physicians you can, and get other opinions. I have had two cervial fusions, last one C3-7. I had exhausted all other forms of therapy before I submitted to surgery. I did have a good outcome, but it took two surgeries in my particuar case to bring relief. I do wish you all the best as you move forward with finding solutions. take care. ginnie
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