This case study involves a 18 year old male who came into our clinic with severe back pain. It had begun 2 years prior, when he hurt his back while playing sports. The back pain was intense and nearly non-stop, and soon began traveling down his leg as well (Sciatica). He had been to many doctors but nothing they tried had done any good. He knew the pain and Sciatica were only going to get worse as time passed and he was desperate to find some relief. Fortunately for him, a friend told him about the Illinois Back Institute.
When the patient first came into our clinic, he was in so much pain that he was having difficulty just walking normally. He stated that his pain level was at an 8 on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst pain possible. His goal in coming to see us was to relieve his back pain enough to be able to get back to leading a normal life. As he explained it, ever since he injured his back he hadn't been able to do many of the things his friends were all doing, and that caused him to feel left out and depressed. He was too young to have his life ruled by his back pain, and he wanted to get his life back.
Before coming to see us, the patient had been to three doctors and had tried several options to try and relieve his pain. These included:
- Traditional Physical Therapy
- Pain medications
- Prescription and Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medications
- NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory pain relievers)
None of those options worked for long, if at all, and he was worried about trying stronger medications. He also knew that with the level of pain he was experiencing, his doctors would soon be suggesting surgery as an option. But he definitely didn't want that either. His Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), which is an indicator used to determine a patient's level of disability, was already at a 42 (on a scale of 0 to 100) which is considered severely disabled.
The patient came into our clinic for a consultation, and we were able to review his history and MRI to figure out what was causing all of his problems. It was obvious that he was suffering from Sciatica, because he had pain that traveled down his leg to his knee. But there are several causes of Sciatica, and we needed to find out which ones specifically were causing it and his other back pain. The most common causes of Sciatica include:
- Herniated Disc
- Bulging Disc
- Degenerated Disc
- Spinal Stenosis
It was found that the patient's spine had a Herniated Disc and a Degenerated Disc which also showed the beginnings of Degenerated Disc Disease. With this information our doctors formulated a plan of treatment that would best eliminate the problems. The patient began treatment at our clinic, and after just four weeks his ODI was at a 14 and his pain was down to a 2! After 8 weeks his Sciatica was gone. By the end of his treatments, his pain level was a 1, his ODI was a 2, and his back pain was completely resolved!
After first hurting his back when he was only 16, our patient thought things would never be normal again. But he came to see us, we were able to get his back pain and Sciatica completely resolved, and he was able to get his life back. If you are suffering with Sciatica or Back Pain of any kind, we can help you!
At the Illinois Back Institute we strive to educate everyone as much as possible about their back pain and sciatica, because it is proven that the more people know about their problem the more likely they are to eliminate it!
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