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Alexis1984
Last Activity:
Mar 20, 2017
Joined:
Jan 3, 2017
Messages:
9
Likes Received:
10
Trophy Points:
6
Gender:
Female
Birthday:
December 14
Location:
Cleveland
Occupation:
Administrator, Lawyer

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Alexis1984

New Member, Female, from Cleveland

Alexis1984 was last seen:
Mar 20, 2017
  • My Story

    I have had lower back pain since around age 12. I would have a "stiff back" and it would be hard to bend forward. I was told it was because I developed early and was overweight. It would come and go. Around age 16 I decided I would work on my posture to deal with what was then moderate stiffness. I did and never thought about it again. The pain never interfered with daily living and only seemed noticeable in quiet moments.

    Around age 20 I began having debilitating panic attacks. They were worse when I was quiet and things were peaceful, thus causing doctors to look into every avenue including a 4 day stay on the cardiac floor of a leading hospital. Soon the attacks would happen 3-5 times a day, including horrible digestion issues, and so many things set them off. Eventually I was told it was all rooted in anxiety and my brother, a doctor, told me I needed to use mantras and a little Ativan to break the cycle of panic attacks. Basically, he told me to face things that triggered them, including being alone, driving on the highway, leaving my neighborhood and going to class, as often as I could tolerate and take a little anti-anxiety if that was what I needed to get there but I had to desensitize myself. He also has crippling anxiety, and he is a doctor, so I trusted him.

    I went on to (gratefully) travel around the world, get married, and have a baby. When my son was born, I would get a stiff back from time to time, but a wram wrap and a day or two and I'd be fine again. I never even took Advil. I carried him in an Ergo carrier until he was nearly three, nursed him until 2.5, boxed, rowed, ran and would never have more than a "sore back" from time to time.

    In December of 2014, my father confessed he was facing serious legal trouble and could be facing prison time, loss of his professional license and public humiliation. He had been having some vague physical problems as well. In January of 2015, I got food poisoning and was in bed for a few days. I got up and my back was very painful. I was told it was from vomiting and if I still had bad pain in a few weeks to see a doctor. After 8 weeks I saw a DO because the pain was very, very bad and I could barely bend or care for the house. The DO took x-rays and told me, with a sad face, that my L5-s1 disc was very thin. I needed to do a few adjustments, never bend in certain ways, and do some vague exercises. The pain seemed to calm down for a while, I took Aleve which worked very well for me, and tried to move on with my life.

    In May of 2015 my father was then diagnosed with terminal cancer. He and I were always incredibly close. He was my best friend in the world and I was suddenly in the role of caring for him and my son. The high-stress time seemed to not aggravate the pain and I spent a good amount of time pushing him in a wheel chair and helping to care for him.

    In May of 2016 my father was going into hospice. He was going to die. I took a morning off of work to jog and relax and my back had the worse spasm I had ever experienced. He died 7 days later. I seemed to recover well enough, but I was still stiff after standing or sitting for too long. His funeral was scheduled for mid June. I had another spasm 5 days before that.

    I finally got an MRI and that revealed a great deal of detail about my spine. It looked bad but not end of the world bad. I was told I was not going to need surgery because I had no radiating pain. A lot of very kind, responsible doctors seemed puzzled and compassionate but had no good answers - just limiting orders, stop rowing, stop running, stop Pilates, stop picking up your son, stop bending and finally STOP WALKING. The chiropractor seemed to be a miracle worker... but she was also the only one who said "I can fix this" and truly seemed interested in my life feeling good to me again. I even began to think of getting pregnant again because the pain had become manageable.

    Suddenly, right after Thanksgiving (the first without my dad) my back spasmed again. This time, I went full force with every practitioner. DO's, sports med, chiropractor, massage therapist, physical therapist, pain management, functional movement trainer - I was scheduled to go to NYC to be with family for the holidays 10 days later. I was going to do it. I managed to get the pain under control and spent 2 weeks in NYC with my family feeling, if not perfect, really good. Happy. Comfortable. I even drove home saw my chiropractor who said I was barely off balance - my muscles had continued to loosen up. I did not backslide despite sitting around most of the time, eating inflammatory food, and exercising at the gym. I finally started to think that there was a mental/emotional piece.

    LUCKILY I stumbled on TMS. I talked with my brother, three surgeon friends and a trainer at my gym who happened to also read Dr. Sarnos book and healed himself of back problems - they all agreed it was sound. The surgeons all said "oh yeah, never get back surgery" -- one is even an orthopedist!

    I am early in my journey but this feels like the time I flew to Amsterdam after my horrible panic attacks were finally under control. I know I am susceptible to manifestations of anxiety in my body now, whether they are cardiac or pain, and I feel so free. My back still aches a little and stiffens up, but I know and accept now that it is just muscles tensing and becoming cut off from oxygen. I know that I need to leave a job I dislike and really grieve my dad's death.

    I am so grateful to have found this theory of pain, although a bit foolish that I didn't put together my anxious nature earlier.
    1. Tennis Tom
      Tennis Tom
      "I am so grateful to have found this theory of pain, although a bit foolish that I didn't put together my anxious nature earlier."

      Everything conspires against finding Dr. Sarno, no one finds him first.
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  • My Story

    Gender:
    Female
    Birthday:
    December 14
    Location:
    Cleveland
    Occupation:
    Administrator, Lawyer
    Introduction:
    Mom with LBP, anxiety
    Diagnoses:
    L5/S1 "moderate-severe degeneration", herniation at L3-L4, bulging disc at L4-L5, Anxiety, misalignment of hips, SI dysfunction
    I have had lower back pain since around age 12. I would have a "stiff back" and it would be hard to bend forward. I was told it was because I developed early and was overweight. It would come and go. Around age 16 I decided I would work on my posture to deal with what was then moderate stiffness. I did and never thought about it again. The pain never interfered with daily living and only seemed noticeable in quiet moments.

    Around age 20 I began having debilitating panic attacks. They were worse when I was quiet and things were peaceful, thus causing doctors to look into every avenue including a 4 day stay on the cardiac floor of a leading hospital. Soon the attacks would happen 3-5 times a day, including horrible digestion issues, and so many things set them off. Eventually I was told it was all rooted in anxiety and my brother, a doctor, told me I needed to use mantras and a little Ativan to break the cycle of panic attacks. Basically, he told me to face things that triggered them, including being alone, driving on the highway, leaving my neighborhood and going to class, as often as I could tolerate and take a little anti-anxiety if that was what I needed to get there but I had to desensitize myself. He also has crippling anxiety, and he is a doctor, so I trusted him.

    I went on to (gratefully) travel around the world, get married, and have a baby. When my son was born, I would get a stiff back from time to time, but a wram wrap and a day or two and I'd be fine again. I never even took Advil. I carried him in an Ergo carrier until he was nearly three, nursed him until 2.5, boxed, rowed, ran and would never have more than a "sore back" from time to time.

    In December of 2014, my father confessed he was facing serious legal trouble and could be facing prison time, loss of his professional license and public humiliation. He had been having some vague physical problems as well. In January of 2015, I got food poisoning and was in bed for a few days. I got up and my back was very painful. I was told it was from vomiting and if I still had bad pain in a few weeks to see a doctor. After 8 weeks I saw a DO because the pain was very, very bad and I could barely bend or care for the house. The DO took x-rays and told me, with a sad face, that my L5-s1 disc was very thin. I needed to do a few adjustments, never bend in certain ways, and do some vague exercises. The pain seemed to calm down for a while, I took Aleve which worked very well for me, and tried to move on with my life.

    In May of 2015 my father was then diagnosed with terminal cancer. He and I were always incredibly close. He was my best friend in the world and I was suddenly in the role of caring for him and my son. The high-stress time seemed to not aggravate the pain and I spent a good amount of time pushing him in a wheel chair and helping to care for him.

    In May of 2016 my father was going into hospice. He was going to die. I took a morning off of work to jog and relax and my back had the worse spasm I had ever experienced. He died 7 days later. I seemed to recover well enough, but I was still stiff after standing or sitting for too long. His funeral was scheduled for mid June. I had another spasm 5 days before that.

    I finally got an MRI and that revealed a great deal of detail about my spine. It looked bad but not end of the world bad. I was told I was not going to need surgery because I had no radiating pain. A lot of very kind, responsible doctors seemed puzzled and compassionate but had no good answers - just limiting orders, stop rowing, stop running, stop Pilates, stop picking up your son, stop bending and finally STOP WALKING. The chiropractor seemed to be a miracle worker... but she was also the only one who said "I can fix this" and truly seemed interested in my life feeling good to me again. I even began to think of getting pregnant again because the pain had become manageable.

    Suddenly, right after Thanksgiving (the first without my dad) my back spasmed again. This time, I went full force with every practitioner. DO's, sports med, chiropractor, massage therapist, physical therapist, pain management, functional movement trainer - I was scheduled to go to NYC to be with family for the holidays 10 days later. I was going to do it. I managed to get the pain under control and spent 2 weeks in NYC with my family feeling, if not perfect, really good. Happy. Comfortable. I even drove home saw my chiropractor who said I was barely off balance - my muscles had continued to loosen up. I did not backslide despite sitting around most of the time, eating inflammatory food, and exercising at the gym. I finally started to think that there was a mental/emotional piece.

    LUCKILY I stumbled on TMS. I talked with my brother, three surgeon friends and a trainer at my gym who happened to also read Dr. Sarnos book and healed himself of back problems - they all agreed it was sound. The surgeons all said "oh yeah, never get back surgery" -- one is even an orthopedist!

    I am early in my journey but this feels like the time I flew to Amsterdam after my horrible panic attacks were finally under control. I know I am susceptible to manifestations of anxiety in my body now, whether they are cardiac or pain, and I feel so free. My back still aches a little and stiffens up, but I know and accept now that it is just muscles tensing and becoming cut off from oxygen. I know that I need to leave a job I dislike and really grieve my dad's death.

    I am so grateful to have found this theory of pain, although a bit foolish that I didn't put together my anxious nature earlier.