Off colour for several weeks – at the end of my tether and in tears in the consulting rooms – off I go for a CT scan on my Lumbar Spine.
‘So we can see whats really going on’ says the GP.
Then you see words like:
Spondylosis with anterior osteophyte formation
Reduction in dimensions of thecal sac
Significant spinal stenosis
And you wonder
What does it all mean??
Basically Osteoarthritis of the Spine can be a pain – literally – thats when I get angry and the self pity party erupts. What did I do to deserve it – ‘what did I do this time’ when the joints become inflammed. Its all very well saying many people develop osteophytes (bony spurs) its the ones I have that are causing me grief!
The other pain (as in nuisance) is the way the little things have been suffering – sitting on a chair can be awkward as it squashes the spine, standing at the sink washing the dishes sees you lifting one leg then the other as you try to relieve the pressure in your back, not being able to move comfortably at Yoga, having a leg and foot that occasionally tingles then goes numb can be down right scary ( luckily it only happens when I’m walking and not driving) – those sorts of things. There are more. They aren’t life threatening – just inconvenient.
I do know what the medical terms mean – its the effect they will have on my life I’m wondering about. Now it’s there in black and white will I let the big words influence how I feel and live? Do I eckers like – Not bl…..dy likely!!
At the moment things have calmed down – in fact I find it quite amusing that here I am two weeks after the scan almost pain free. You know how when you lose something, you go and buy a new one and then find the lost one – well its almost like that. Intolerable pain – scan to find out how severe the findings are – within a few days pain goes away.
‘We’ll continue managing it conservatively’ says the GP ‘See the chiropractor when you feel the need, keep up the exercise and try to lose a little more weight, if you feel they help take your vitamins, fish oil and glucosamine.’ This visit he did however offer me a script – an anti inflammatory – ‘for when you feel you really need it’.
In other words, there’s no magic wand available, learn to live with it – its not going to go away.