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Stiff tendons, ligaments or muscles with back pain

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Click#7, Sep 16, 2017.


knee and ligament stiffness ?

  1. yes

  2. yes

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  1. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    Does anyone experience a stiffness in the lower legs and feet with back pain ? I feel it around my ankles and the front of my foot. It doesn't hurt but it's a strange sensation. Since I was making progress with my TMS, the back pain went down, but the stiffness remains in addition to pain & clicking in my knee. Never had this in my knee before. Strange. Any comments would be appreciated.
  2. Lunarlass66

    Lunarlass66 Well known member

    Hi Click..
    Just wanted to weigh in and say yes, ironically enough I am experiencing problems with my knee while dealing with chronic low back and right leg pain.. And of course, it's my right knee... Almost all my pain is on the right side... Been diagnosed with all the usual maladies, plantar fasciitis (foot pain) degenerative disc disease, borderline stenosis, bulged discs.. Blah, blah, blah.. I've grown weary of the fight... Whether my issues are structural, psychological or a combination of both, plus throw in being over 50(hard to convince myself these issues are not age related to some degree at least...)
    Currently, it's my inner right knee, sharp pain and general soreness. I have a bilevel home and am of course blaming the repetitive up amd down stairs for my condition..but then why only one knee? Then again, it's on my "bad side"... Aghhh, I drive myself nuts trying to answer the question why....
    I sympathize with you... Pain is AWFUL no matter what the cause. Riding it out and hoping it rights itself.. :(
    Click#7 likes this.
  3. Lunarlass66

    Lunarlass66 Well known member

    P. S... Wishing you the BEST and hoping you feel better soon!! :)
  4. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    Hey LL66...yes it's inner knee pain with clicking. I ran up and down stairs at a hotel last week and this started. I am hoping it goes away with some Motrin. I did have back surgery, but these leg and foot symptoms are not consistent with all that. It's not painful just stiff. I am hoping this all subsides with time. SteveO (read his book) said it took him over 2 years to get over TMS. I know some folks are cured in weeks or months. I have been working on it for a few months now and it's eased up enough to sit in a car and go places and actually increase my activities. Age means nothing . I have a 95 year old aunt whose back MRI/CAT scan looks like a train off the tracks and she has NO pain. She gets out and has fun with her friends. If she does have pain for like a knee her doc gave her tramadol and she will take a 1/2. I am facing my fears head on and journal talk daily. Take care my friend I do not believe the body was designed for chronic pain...just ask Walt who is 80+ and pain free.
    Lunarlass66 likes this.
  5. Lunarlass66

    Lunarlass66 Well known member

    Hey Click..
    And thanks a million for the encouraging words. You'd be amazed at the way a kind word can totally change one's mindset... Much gratitude to you... And good for your aunt!! I always imagined I would be one of those "spry" old gals with little change in my energy and activity level... But, it's getting harder to hang on to that idea! :(
    The strange thing about my knee is how it came on pretty gradually and got very sore at night only at first.. It felt like a Charlie horse in my knee and wouldn't let up until I flexed it back and forth a few times... Stairs definitely aggravate/ cause(?) it??
    We seem to have some stuff in common.. I had back surgery also.. Many yrs ago though.. In 1995....done to repair a disc and a laminectomy on L4/5...beginning to regret it, if I had known 20 some odd yrs later, I'd be in this state... Then again, not sure any of this is due to surgery... The surgeon told me I'd have arthritis as a result of procedure.. But at the time, I was only 28 and wanted to ris myself of the recalcitrant sciatica and get back to living, I was so young and knew about TMS even then, but was sold on the structural diagnosis... Those doctors, while well meaning I'm sure really, REALLY plant the seed of fear... Fear of physical activity of reinjury, fear of aging... Fear, fear and more fear!!!
    I wish science could PROVE TMS was real, as real as structural diagnosis once and for all!!
    Click#7 likes this.
  6. FredAmir

    FredAmir Well known member

    Subconscious can be quite devious. As soon as you think you got TMS under control, it will try something else to see if you will pay attention to its new show (clicking, stiffness, etc.) and get worried, scared, overwhelmed, frustrated, and so on.

    Any parents out there? Have you seen how a little child in need of attention will do anything, including bad stuff, to get your attention. In fact, if you do not pay attention, she or he will keep turning things up a notch or two until you finally do.

    So if you get used to back pain, ignore it, or no longer pay attention to it, your subconscious will make your leg muscles stiff. If that's not bothering you enough, it will add a clicking sound to it. If that does not do it, it will make your feet feel heavy. Until you pay attention!

    That's how my back pain turned into sciatica in the right leg. Once I got used to it, I woke up to sciatica in my left leg. After that both knees. Then arms and hands, and more. All kinds of weird sounds and feeling associated with different parts of my body. Very very scary.

    Once I learned it was all due to reduction of blood flow and it was all the doing of my subconscious mind, I went from scared to fearless. I told him, "I am now in charge!" The same way a parent takes charge of a misbehaving child.

    After that if was a quick trip to pain-free vacation land. Lol.

    So don't give up, don't give in, and don't despair,
    intense50, hyperdub808, Goldy and 3 others like this.
  7. Lunarlass66

    Lunarlass66 Well known member

    This all certainly sounds plausible and encouraging but what about the never ending debate of oxygen deprivation vs. Learned neural pathways?
    All these differing theories make building confidence (for those of us who question everything) in the TMS diagnosis stall and waver...
    Any thoughts?
  8. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    Science has proved what stress can do....heart attacks, stomach ulcers, tendonitis, and something as simple as a "blush" all caused by the autonomic nervous system (Sarno's TMS equivalents)....but conventional medicine refuses to connect the dots. I hope you will read some of Steve Ozanich's books. I am making some progress and believe the new knee pain is a new distraction because I am beginning to understand what the cause of my pain is. I don't know exactly, but I understand my personality and that will lead me to the truth. Try not to heal yourself..try to understand why (or cause) of the pain. We all have issues or we wouldn't be human. I bet you are a good person that puts everyone first before yourself. You and I are alike. I don't believe the surgery hurt you...you aren't paralyzed. Dr. Sarno treated many people with back surgery that were cured & "Helen" comes to mind. She underwent 2 spine surgeries. The reason started this thread was to just find out if folks had similar TMS symptoms. I am not doubting the diagnosis. Hang in there...we will get better in time if we believe...my mantra is this "I believe for every drop of rain that falls...a flower grows." Thank you for reaching out to me lady flower.
    Lunarlass66 likes this.
  9. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    Thanks Fred....we all need reminders about the "little child" inside of all of us......I know SteveO mentions you in his book how you helped him as a former pain sufferer so your words and quick response is awesome. My back pain will decrease only to go from one butt cheek to the other--->left ankle and right foot pain and sensations to now a left knee. Crazy stuff.
    FredAmir likes this.
  10. FredAmir

    FredAmir Well known member

    I believe in the explanation that empowers me and helps me live the life I want to live. It's that simple.

    Once you do, the rest begin to fall in place.
    MindBodyPT, plum and Click#7 like this.
  11. FredAmir

    FredAmir Well known member

    Yes, crazy stuff to make you crazy. Lol.

    Just observe and laugh at it.
    Click#7 likes this.
  12. Gigalos

    Gigalos Beloved Grand Eagle

    When my father in his late 70's stands up, the first second you hear several clicks and pops in his joints. My left knee starts to click, pop and grind when muscles in my upper or lower leg are in trouble, because of TMS or simply from working out hard. The same with my shoulders, which are also a renowned for clicking and grinding when muscles surrounding it are in trouble. Every honest PT will say to you that clicking joints are absolutely normal and benign. I say they are the result of painful and tight muscles and not the cause.
    MindBodyPT likes this.
  13. Lunarlass66

    Lunarlass66 Well known member

    When you say your muscles are "in trouble".. What do you mean? Sore from a workout? Stiff? Or a physical injury? Just curious.. :)
  14. Gigalos

    Gigalos Beloved Grand Eagle

    in trouble = painful and tight/stiff!
    TMS can cause that. Soreness from a workout too, but that should resolve in a matter of days.
    The thing is that soreness is also related to TMS. The higher my stress, the sorer I seem to get.
  15. Lunarlass66

    Lunarlass66 Well known member

    Well, I can totally relate to that.. It seems the general consensus is that repressed emotions are the catalyst to the development of chronic pain.. And I suppose for many sufferers, that is the case, but for me personally, I've found that current stress or upsetting events affect my level of pain and the development of new or moving pains rather than repression.
    It seems that stress causes your pain as well? I certainly sympathize... I wish I was less sensitive and could "take stress" like the "average joe"... :(
  16. Gigalos

    Gigalos Beloved Grand Eagle

    You can become much less sensitive, so don't despair. You are in a state where your brain is on high alert and fearful of everything, be it events/situations in the past, present or future, including any (TMS) symptoms and any emotions that it feels need repression. Recovery may take time, I needed it but eventually I got where I wanted to be. You can too.
    Click#7 likes this.
  17. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi all,

    A couple thoughts from this post that come to mind- first, in my experience I believe clicking and popping joints to be CORRELATED with pain but definitely NOT the CAUSE of it. Plenty of people including myself (much younger than 70!) have clicks and pops in their body that do not accompany pain. I have a ton of clicking joints, always have since I was a teenager, and they never go with pain. Some of my patients have clicking joints that also hurt but I think this is more a result of stiffness and TMS due to the nocebo effect and feeling fearful of the clicking.

    In terms of stress causing pain- yes I believe this to be true and have certainly experienced this myself. We spoke about this in the class I took from Dr. Schubiner and Alan Gordon. Stress is a generic term and could be defined as life situations causing difficult/negative emotions in a person. Repressed emotions are certainly one cause of TMS pain but even fear and knowledge of those known emotions could also contribute to neural pathway pain. Dr. Sarno's theory centers around repression, but at this point in time, other TMS professionals acknowledge that emotions that are known to you can also contribute to pain.

    One last thought- I think I mentioned this in another post, but I think a lot of us on here would be categorized as "highly sensitive people." In fact there is a whole subset of research and writing on us! Many "HSP's" are prone to TMS because of our sensitivity. But don't despair, it's not a bad thing! Just a personality trait that can be helpful or difficult depending on different things. There is a book I read called "The Highly Sensitive Person" by Dr. Elaine Aron, I found it interesting and helpful to understand my temperament.
    Click#7, Gigalos and FredAmir like this.
  18. FredAmir

    FredAmir Well known member

    Being sensitive to stress is a mental habit developed since childhood or over many years in most cases.

    Just like other mental habits (worrying, negative thought patterns, pessimism, and so on) can be transformed to good, empowering mental habits.

    So take heart that being sensitive to stress is not permanent but rather a habit you can change. And once you do, you will be happier and TMS shows up a lot less frequently.
  19. Click#7

    Click#7 Well known member

    Since you are a PT....maybe you can answer my question. After trying to fix myself with 2 back surgeries of L4-L5 (had a synovial cyst severe stenosis and spondy) things never got better, I had to retire. I also had pain on the bottoms of my feet (not too bad), & stiffness in one ankle and down the shin of the other leg started after the last surgery. Now I have popping in the left knee with pain and this is when I was making progress with my back pain ? I do have to take a pain med 3 times a day otherwise life would be terrible. But I have cut back on what I used to take with the acceptance of a TMS diagnosis. I also have tinnitus, cardiac palpitations, anxiety and white coat syndrome. I am totally convinced that TMS is the problem. Figured this out 3 months ago because I never knew about TMS. Post op x-rays and a MRI are fine. Could this knee problem be structural or TMS...just got thru a hurricane and had to walk steps at a hotel but never had knee problems ever. Most of my pain from my back is on the left side --->hip--->foot and now knee pain with cracking. My unconscious brain is pretty devious because as a nurse it plays a sly hand to try to convince me all is structural. What are your thoughts MBPT ?
  20. karinabrown

    karinabrown Well known member

    Does anyone experience a stiffness in the lower legs and feet with back pain ?

    O yes i do!
    in fact that was the beginning of my troubles with pain
    first i had back pain sciatica type, next while still working on that the foot and lowerleg started
    now its reversed : just the foot problems : backpain is over
    i spend 2 years believing my foot hurt because of my back (also because doctors assumed that)
    now i know that was not the case
    now have extra other problems. which confinces me more and more that stress and worrying
    are art te root of all this
    seems like there is always something physical i am worrying about
    sometimes i wonder what i would do if i did not have something the be worried about
    i probablly would be worrying over that....
    Goldy and Lunarlass66 like this.

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