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Structural Abnormality

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Linda12, Apr 18, 2023.

  1. Linda12

    Linda12 New Member

    I regularly read Sarno's 12 daily reminders. Recently, the first reminder "the pain is due to TMS, not to a structural abnormality" got me thinking (probably too much). Does this mean if you have a tipped or slipped disc that it is considered to be a structural abnormality? Or not? I was initially diagnosed in 2006 with degenerative disc disease. The osteopath (who specialized in back issues) told me he didn't understand why I was experiencing so much pain and briefly touched on emotions. He basically said DDD is a normal sign of aging - everyone has some form of degeneration starting in their 20's. To alleviate pain, he suggested that I just needed to bend over like golfer's do (rear leg raised) so as not to put a strain on my lower back. I went on my way, fairly disappointed that he couldn't fix this problem. On the other hand, his comment about emotions made an impact on me. That's when I discovered Sarno and TMS.

    I've read plenty of stories and testimonials about people with spondylosis (a further diagnosis by same doctor - mine is anterior at L4-L5) and felt that I could alleviate this pain on my own. Depending on activities, etc. the pain would come and go, sometimes being severe and put me out for a couple of days or more (still having pain but able to move around). Well, managing it on my own is no longer working, despite doing my "TMS" homework. This past year it has become unbearable, so much so that I went to see 2 neurosurgeons to see if something had changed. X-rays showed the "slipped disc" and spine arthritis. Ironically, when the doctor said this, I almost laughed out loud as on another TMS page, I read where there is really no such thing as a "slipped disc". Anyway ..... I am stuck on the terminology now and need some advice please. Thank you.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi @Linda12 and welcome to the forum.

    I get lower back pain sometimes which I learned to associate with stress "after Sarno" - but I've never had it examined, so I can't offer any specific comparisons. Although I am recalling that I think Dr. Sarno also used the phrase "normal abnormalities". Maybe his first reminder should be rewritten to replace "structural" with "normal"!

    Let's talk instead about doing the work. When you say your "TMS homework" what are you referring to? Did you ever do a TMS program, such as our SEP (Structured Educational Program on the main tmswiki.org site) or Alan Gordon's Pain Recovery Program here on the forum? Other professionals have created programs via workbooks (Drs Schunbiner and Schecter) or online (Nicole Sachs LCSW, and the PPD Association, among many others) or via app (Curable).

    The SEP and Alan's program are free and don't require any kind of registration or signup. Alan's new Pain Reprocessing Therapy is another option (I would recommend reading his book The Way Out, then check out the new PRT wiki and forum).

    Nicole Sachs LCSW had such a severe case of spondylolisthesis when she was a child that she was told she would never have a normal active life, and that she could never bear children. She proved the experts wrong on both counts. If you don't know her story, her book is The Meaning of Truth, and her podcast is The Cure For Chronic Pain with Nicole Sachs. She mentions her childhood diagnosis quite often, but if you don't know about it or about her, the best introduction is her first few podcast episodes (Season 1 started way back in 2018, which can be a bit challenging to find in your podcast app or on audioboom where she is hosted - but it can be done!)

    Also, Nicole had a great episode some weeks ago: March 3, 2023 - S3, E27, titled "A Deep Dive Into the Symptom Imperative". Also available in all of the normal podcast apps, or this link:
    https://audioboom.com/posts/8245738-a-deep-dive-into-the-symptom-imperative?playlist_direction=forward (The Cure for Chronic Pain with Nicole Sachs, LCSW / A Deep Dive Into The Symptom Imperative)
    This is a repeat from sometime last year because so many people are reporting relapses due to the world-wide existential mental health crisis (thank you world so-called leaders). It's well worth listening to if you are one of them (and obviously you are!)


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