Anyone with degenerative disc disease?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by IgotYou, Jul 31, 2003.

  1. IgotYou

    IgotYou New Member

    Looking back over my life, I now know I had FMS since at least high school, but it was low grade. But at age 34 I ruptured a disk in my lower back and, after surgery, learned I had degenerative disc disease (DDD) and two other herniated discs. Of course, the surgery caused the FMS to flare up and I became nearly non-employable until I discovered I also was gluten intolerant. That discovery improved my condition dramatically. Anyway, I've been wondering if the DDD was caused by the FMS or was a separate phenomenon. Or did the celiac sprue cause both? Any ideas? Is this a rare combination of problems? My rheumatologist calls my situation "complicated" and I'm sure we'll be having more discussions about it all as time goes on.
  2. Achy-shaky

    Achy-shaky New Member

    I also discovered my DDD when having MRI for ruptured disks but do not have gluten intolerence. DDD is very common with FM but then it is common with normals too. Hard to say which caused which and you can drive yourself nuts trying to figure it out. I know that many with FM do also have the gluten problem so maybe someone with it may be able to answer this for you.

  3. insomniac1

    insomniac1 New Member

    HI yes i have the same thing (not the gluten) but very much the DDD i am 36 and i have had 3 surgeries so far on my lower back and now i have been told that my whole back is getting really bad. my neck and upper back are really hurting lately. any ways just wanted to let you know i have it too,. kris
  4. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    and that pretty much everyone over 30 has it, though mine is a little more advanced than usual for my age.

    I also have gluten intolerance, woo hoo.

    Jen F
  5. Suekoo

    Suekoo New Member

    I was diagnosed with DDD about 7 years ago. When I told my boss about it she said, "if we live long enough, we'll all have it". Now I read the posts from others that we can expect it any time after 30. There must be millions of people with it then... I know one thing, it doesn't help the fibro any. Good luck !!
  6. ssMarilyn

    ssMarilyn New Member

    Everybody has's a natural wearing down of the spine from age and use. Some feel it as early as their 20's. Your chiropractor or MD will verify this.

    Marilyn :)
  7. Julygal

    Julygal New Member

    and hopefully will NOT have to have neck surgery. I meet with the neurosurgeon for the first time on Aug. 5th & have my CTScans & xrays of neck & back to take with me.
    I don't know how long my neck has been in such awful shape, but now I have a combo of numbness/pain/tingling in my left arm all the way down to the fingertips. I cannot sleep on either side & I hate sleeping on my back, but it's all I've been able to do for over a month.
    The information I'm transporting to the doctor says I have Grade I spondylolisthesis at C5-6 with moderate degenerative joint disease. Overall, I have mild degenerative changes, the report says.
    I feel like Tiny Tim in Scrooge...God bless us everyone!
    I haven't yet run across an "uncomplicated" patient where our diagnosed diseases are concerned!
    Love & prayers,
    [This Message was Edited on 08/01/2003]
  8. 99

    99 New Member

    I sure do have DDD! Had 2 cervical discs removed with a fusion 2 years ago. Now I have another cervical disc and 2 lumbarsacral discs that are herniated, but not enough, yet, to require surgery. Am full of arthritis from head to toe- even in my hands, and have calcific tendonitis of shoulder, calcific trochanteric bursitis of hips, bilateral heel spurs... probably a lot of stuff that hasn't even been checked. Although I don't have all the tender points for a difinitive diagnosis of FM, two rheumatologists felt I had it. Am on NSAID (Mobic 15 mg) and just started on Neurontin 100 mg 3X day. Caught in vicious cycle- exercise makes me hurt worse, so I gain more weight, then hurt more so I do less and less, and so on and so forth. The exhaustion from being in pain all the time and being unable to sleep leaves me with less and less tolerance or ability to cope with any of this. It all began 14 years ago; I am presently unable to work, out of money AND Medicaid, suffering also from depression, and filing for disability. When doctors tell me to quit smoking and lose weight, I want to strangle them!

    I am new to this site and open to any ideas or suggestions. I know stress plays a factor in FM, but I am unfamiliar with the Gluten Intolerence Theory, and would like to know more about it. This is certainly a hard disease to understand as so little is known about it, but it sure is debilitating!!!!!

    Appreciate any help. Thanks, Gail

  9. 99

    99 New Member

    Hi Julygal-

    I'm not a doctor, (although I am a retired RN,) but from having been there, the pain you describe going down your arm sure sounds like a pinched nerve- I had one on each side at different times, and it took a long time for those sensations (like a year and a half) to subside. What happens is that as the disc degenerates, the distance between the vertebra is decreased, and one may get bone spurs, which can then press on nerves... but I imagine there are other causes, too. It wasn't until I began losing the use of my arm due to disc herniation and compression of the spinal cord, that surgery was felt to be worth the risks, though. I would agree. It's a bitch of an ordeal!

    I wondered what pain you experienced when lying on your sides? I get numbness of my ring and pinky fingers bilaterally, and I figure that is because of the position of my neck while asleep on my sides, because it goes away as soon as I wake up and move. I try hard to position pillows to prevent this, with some success. By far the worst pain I felt side-lying was in my hips, and that was from bursitis. VERY BAD! Cortisone injections relieved that for me by about 50%. Although virtually NO position is comfortable to me, at least this has given me an option for brief periods of time.

    Good luck at your appt!
  10. littlesquawl

    littlesquawl New Member

    I must tell you about this DDD for along time now,And it's not pleasent,And yes this can cause fibromyalgia. and if you had any operations,this is very hard on your body.
    I'm having trouble with disc the are almost wore down to the bone,I'm now getting shots in my neck to help with the pain.They give them in a three at atime within 2to3 weeks apart.Now I'm on my last one of the series,Hopefully they will help you.I had 4 operation on my neck to my L4 and L5,
    Plus I got a lower fustion.It's hard to deal with.Just get good doctors to take care of you.well I must go can't type long .It starts to hurt to much.
    Good luck. littlesquawl
  11. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    The lady that arranges my homemaking is in her 60's or 70's and has DDD, which occasionally bothers her and so she might take some tylenol for it.

    For some of you, you have A LOT of pain and like with my pain recently, tylenol just doesn't cut it. At all....

    so, I have learned that DDD as a diagnosis in and of itself doesn't mean much. It's how advanced and severe, and what the other compounding factors or separate illnesses means to the person's pain.

    So, yes you can have DDD and have only a little pain and discomfort.

    or you can have DDD and be really really suffering.

    Good luck everyone with finding solutions for your pain.

    fun fun fun...