I just wanted to respond the the question, "What is the most disheartening thing a doctor has told you about your symptoms?" I had to think about this, because doctors haven't really given me many definite or clear answers. Initially this was really frustrating, but in hindsight I'm kind of glad because I probably would have held on too tightly to any definite or structural diagnosis/label. It would probably just be a red herring! One discouraging thing was when the specialist told me that the nerve pain will take somewhere between nine months to five years to heal. I didn't want to wait five years! Then again, at least he didn't say "you will have this for the rest of your life". I also got discouraged after seeing an osteopath, as he indicated that I have a more difficult back than most people. He also pointed out that I have a longer neck than the average person, which could contribute to my pain issues. My specialist was pretty optimistic, and emphasised that I really need to get fit and strengthen my core muscles. Even though I don't agree that the pain is caused by weak muscles, at least he seemed positive and said I would get better. I'm also pleased that he didn't tell me to rest and stop moving - all of my doctors have encouraged me to exercise and be active, as much as possible.