Discussions By Condition: Back conditions

Lower back pain with tingling in left arm and leg

Posted In: Back conditions 0 Replies
  • Posted By: gypsy714
  • August 30, 2007
  • 07:13 PM

I'm 44 years old, female, 220 lbs (have lost 30 lbs since May and continuing to lose at a rate of .50 to 1 lb per week via Weight Watchers), 40 hour per week job which requires me to sit at a desk, minimal exercise (1x per week walking 30 minutes @ 3.5mph; 40 minutes weight training), recently quit smoking (1/2 pack a day habit for 10+ years).

A couple of years ago, I was diagnosed with degenerative disc disease. From research, I know that this is neither degenerative nor is it a disease. I've also been diagnosed as having arthritis of the C spine.

Neither of these conditions give me problems on a regular basis. However, I do "put my back out" a few times a year. This time was exceptionally bad.

On August 20, I bent/twisted to get a can of soda out of a vending machine and upon standing up, had the electrified-knife-in-the-spine sensation followed by severe lower back pain.

Prior to this injury, I had been experiencing occasional episodes of a pins & needles sensation in my left leg and left arm for a few weeks. Nothing major, nothing crippling, not every day--just annoying.

When I first hurt my back during the soda machine incident, I left work and went to the chiropractor for an adjustment. I was off work for two additional days because of intense pain. I saw the chirpractor two more times for adjustments. The chiropractor suggested an MRI and physical therapy.

Saw my PCP on August 27, who said it was not a herniated disc and suggested I start physical therapy. She said I did not need an MRI. The only unusual thing to come out of that visit was my BP was low: 100/80.

I had 3 physical therapy sessions this week, and while I can see improvement in my level of discomfort, I'm still having the pins & needles sensations down my left arm and leg. Not like they're "asleep"...more like a spread-out tingly sensation. No pain...just the tingles. Mostly in the left leg.

Any idea what's up with that? Pinched nerve? Something worse? Should I go back to my PCP and demand the MRI?

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