Frustrated and depressed with back pain?

Imagine being in so much low back and butt pain that you can’t sit, if just for a few seconds.

The pain radiates from your low back to your butt and into the leg! Now, imagine all the therapy and stretching you tried didn’t work. Frustrating right!? Maybe pain medications will work? Nope, they don’t, even taking Advil 600 mg twice a day! If this seems scary it’s because it is. This is exactly what a patient had gone through before coming to Functional Spine and Sport.

It’s easy to say this patient was desperate, he wanted answers that no one could give him. He wanted to get out of pain but also move better. With each passing day he was noticing his function decrease dramatically. His back and butt pain were so bad it started to hurt when he rolled over in bed. He began to worry that he wouldn’t be able to take care of himself and depression began to set in.

Luckily, he found Dr. Nottoli who diagnosed him with a severe disc injury and significant adhesion in the soft-tissues that support that area. An MRI was ordered and the results showed a massive disc herniation that measured 1.4 cm (.55”) wide and 6 mm (.25”) deep. The herniation was so big that it was actually compressing the nearby nerve roots! On top of that there were massive amounts of adhesion sticking the muscles in the low back together and strangling the sciatic nerve. Fortunately, something could be done to help him get and stay out of pain.

What could possibly help him? Remove the adhesion and restore function.

By doing so, that allows the back to be more flexible, stronger, and decreases pain. This patient’s back was not flexing at all. Adhesion was sticking everything together. In fact, he only had 10% of his low back flexing like it should! Imagine a vice grip squeezing the spine. That’s what was happening to this patient every time he used his low back. By removing adhesion in the low back and sciatic nerve he noticed improvements after the 2nd visit.

At the 1 month mark he reported a 60% improvement in function with pain scores dropping from 9/10 to 3-4/10. He was able to sit for 45 minutes without pain as well. Treatment continued and he was consistently seeing improvement. At the time of final discharge the patient reported very infrequent pain rated 1-2/10 when noticed. He felt more confident to perform daily tasks and be more active. He even noted his feeling of depression had decreased. The adhesion was no longer a problem and completely eliminated. That meant all his functional tests were 100% while his low back test improved to 80% and stable. This means he is as healthy as he can possible be. This was all done from accurately diagnosing his problem, providing treatment that fixed the adhesion, and having the expertise to manage a massive disc herniation.

Picture on left is unhealthy lower back function. Picture on the right is healthy lower back function. The low back needs to flex to be healthy.

What was he able to avoid? Expensive and painful treatments like surgery and injections were not needed.

Continuing to live in pain can be detrimental to your long term physical and mental health. If you’ve had debilitating back pain or nerve pain with no help, there are doctors that have the answers you deserve. Those doctors are at Functional Spine and Sport.