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Damage to the spinal cord, an information superhighway that originates in the brain, is a very devastating injury that can lead to paralysis. Most people have heard of traumatic spinal cord injuries because the sudden tragedies grab headlines from time to time. But, few people have heard of spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the tube which shelters the spinal cord called the spinal canal (See Spine Anatomy 101 ). As the space tightens like a noose, this slow strangulation of the nerves in the spine can disrupt anyone’s life. Sara turned 68 years old last month. She has enjoyed good health and has been an avid golfer. But, lately she has noticed an aching pain in her legs that occurs when she is walking or standing. This new problem has really slowed her golf game down and has made it difficult for her to even do her own grocery shopping. The only way she can make it up and down the aisles is by leaning on the shopping cart because that eases her pain. Frustrated, she calls to ...
Learning to live with MS on the long haul is a bit like growing pains within a new relationship. You may be familiar with little MS symptoms and be able to ignore them for the most part, but sometimes something small and insignificant may arise to bite you in the butt and drive you absolutely crazy.
For the past day or two, I’ve had a collection of muscles around my hip and at the top of my thigh which have been causing a great deal of pain and a lopsided limp. At first, I thought that maybe pushing a REALLY heavy grocery cart, even for only a fraction of the time around the grocery store on Wednesday, may have caused an avalanche of spasticity.
Thursday morning, my leg and hip were so painful that I finally filled a prescription my nurse practitioner had given me in April (for diazepam) to combat painful muscle spasms . I’ve tried it and so far, it has made little difference. But each day has gotten a bit better as long as I limit how much I stand a...
Every painful spine has a pattern. Do you know your pattern? By knowing when it hurts and when it feels better, you can then figure out how to control your spine pain better. Most spines fit into one of two patterns. Pain that is triggered by extension or pain that is triggered by flexion. Let’s break it down into more detail
Extension-triggered pain presents itself in a variety of ways depending on which part of the spine hurts. If the neck is sensitive to extension, then activities like looking up at a ceiling, the sky or looking through the bottom portion of a bifocal lenses will cause the pain to get worse. This type of pain in the neck is usually related to arthritis in the facet joints of the cervical spine. Improving extension-triggered neck pain is accomplished by tucking the chin closer to the chest, strengthening the anterior neck flexor muscles and avoiding looking up.
Extension-triggered pain in the low back usually feels worse when walking or standing....
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