Jodi_SoCalJune 15, 2012

Growing old sucks. I have so many health issues that sometimes I'm shocked I manage to get out of bed every day and hold down a demanding job with impossibly long hours. ugh.

Anyhow ... I have been suffering from sciatica in my right leg for the last three years. Been on Predisone twice which helped for a short while. Last week it started in my left leg. double ugh.

My lower back on each side (not the center of my back) has been locking up (spasms I guess) for a few weeks. It will hit with no warning whatsoever and totally debilitate me for about 20 mins.

I've decided to try acupuncture to see if it will relieve the sciatica and lower back pain.

I also have severe spinal stenosis in my neck and recently suffered hearing loss in my right ear, which I think is from bone spurs pressing on some aural nerve. A work up from an ENT could not explain the loss, but a couple hearing tests indicated I did indeed lose some of my hearing. At first it was about 80% loss but has slowly come back and I'd estimate I have only a 20% loss now.

I've had two acupuncture appointments this week. Both went well but the I felt a lot more discomfort during the second session. I had 20 needles in me at the first appt and 30, the second. I'm scheduled to go again next Thursday.

Has anyone tried acupuncture?


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hi Jodi, I'm sorry you are experiencing so many health issues. I have not tried acupuncture, but I would in the future if I develop some of your issues. We have someone local now. Years ago when I could have used it, no one locally offered it. My brother is have surgery next week due to spinal stenosis. We are quite concerned.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You should have lots of opportunities for a good acupuncture experience in California. Here in PA, the situation is quite different. There may be a good practitioner here, but I haven't found him/her yet.

My one experience with acupuncture was with an MD, a board-certified internist who had just learned the art. Only in his hands, it wasn't an art. He hooked the needles up to electricity, and did some lasting damage to one of my hands. Looking back, I should have sued. I liked him personally, but he really didn't know what he was doing.

I was thinking about you and your sciatica just this morning, Jodi. I thought I've been suffering from it, but I think I was wrong. My problem is more likely sacroiliac joint dysfunction, caused by my scoliosis and the slight imbalance in my leg lengths.

I've been getting the spasms, too--unrelated to the sacroiliac, I think--but only on the left side. This is the same side as the painful sacroiliac, and the same side as the shorter leg. A yoga chair stretch used to help, but no longer. I'll probably start a thread about my aches and pains myself. Meanwhile, I wish you good luck with yours.

I agree: growing old sucks. But remember the alternative is far worse. :-)

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yep, it sucks, but as they say, at least we're still above ground!! Lol

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I've been wanting to try it for my shoulder but still have not. I heard good things about it from my massage therapist. Let us know if it helps you.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ravencajun Zone 8b TX

I can tell you about what worked miracles for me. Non Invasive Spinal Decompression, it is a table you lay down on they attach a belt like thing around you and the machine pulls and lossens, it is a form of traction. You are on it for about 20 minutes, it is truly amazing how much it has helped me. I had to go about 3 or 4 days in a row when I first started but I was so bad I couldn't get up or walk and had numbness down both legs. I now go once every few months when I start to feel a twinge.
I can not speak highly enough of how wonderful this treatment is if it had not happened to me I would probably not believe it.
I have found the spinal decompression machines at specialty chiropractic clinics and at some physical therapy facilities. I am going to a wonderful clinic that does both.
The Dr I started with, I call him my miracle worker, was a chiropractor with specialty in neurology.
He had me back up, walking, no pain in 3 days of decompression.
Do your self a favor look into non invasive spinal decompression.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Raven, what condition did the decompression treat you for? I'm intrigued!

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I've successfully used acupuncture treatments for maladies that western medicine couldn't touch. I'm a HUGE proponent of it and will always seek out acupuncture treatments to avoid introducing manmade chemicals to my body.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 4:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ravencajun Zone 8b TX

I had a lower back problem including the pinching of nerve bundles that caused the numbness down both legs to the knees, I was scheduled to have back surgery on the Monday, I was in horrible pain, I couldn't stand, sit, lay in any position, I was given vicoden and muscle relaxers nothing helped, my back doctor had me scheduled for surgery, I really didn't want to go that route because there were no guarantees. I was at home crying on the Friday I picked up the phone book and it fell it was open to a page for the Dr's office that had spinal decompression in the information. I read it, picked up the phone and called, he answered the hone himself because he was closing. I was crying, he said tell me what is happening, I told him. He asked if I had an mri or xrays I had both he said he would stay there till I could get there. I had to call my husband to come drive me because I couldn't sit I had to lay in the back seat.
He looked at the mri and stuff and said he felt sure SD could help. We started right then. He said with in about an hour after I got home I will start to feel it. My husband who was extremely skeptical timed it. He was dead on. But I was still in a lot of pain, Dr had me come in on Saturday and Sunday, he actually went to his office after church to do this for me, he wanted to get me as many treatments as possible before the scheduled surgery.
By Monday morning I was up, driving myself to his clinic for the next session and had canceled the surgery. It was amazing, my husband still can't believe it. I now go for maintenance treatment, my current dr wants me to do it once a month but I don't always go, but the minute I feel any different I go.
I have recommended it to several people who did go and each one feels as passionate about it as I do.
I personally feel like that phone book fell open to that page for a reason.
I know it saved me from having a major surgery that may not have been as successful as this simple non invasive treatment was

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 5:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi, I am a big fan of acupuncture. It has helped me with fibromyagia, sciatica, sinus issues, frozen shoulder. Lots of things. DH had it for Plantar fasciatis, and his sinuses. He used to have several terrible sinus infections every year, but after having acupuncture, he has not had an infection in six years.
I have five herniated disks in my back. My dear friend, and also my acupuncturist, moved to NY, so i have not had treatments in a while. I have had some success with x-ray guided nerve blocks though.
I highly recommend acupuncture.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 5:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ravencajun Zone 8b TX

Alisande this link probably describes the process better than I do.

Here is a link that might be useful: Link

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 5:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I went to the acupuncturist on Wednesday for neck pain which has gotten progressively worse. I have spinal stenosis and arthritic changes in my neck but mostly my pain is muscular in nature......
Anyway, I am surprised how much better my neck in since treatment. I have another appointment on Monday.
I was told it usually takes up to four treatments to notice a difference and she explained the different modalities she can use with acupuncture.
I had acupuncture many years ago for neck pain and it really helped then, too even though I had made up my mind it wouldn't.
I wish you well....keep us updated, please.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 6:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Wow Jodi!!! You look fantastic anytime I see your pics. Would never know you have any discomfort.

I had acupuncture in my hand and elbow because of tendonitis. I also had steroid needles in the fleshy part of my palm, at the base of my fingers. THAT hurt.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 6:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I haven't tried it yet but so many of my friends swear by it. I would do it in a second. Let us know how it goes.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yes, it has helped me and my husband goes regularly for various issues.
The trick really is to find one that know what he/she is doing.
Acupuncture should not hurt. It has even helped my husband lower his blood pressure. (Combined with exercise and diet.)
I don't know how to say this in a polically correct way so I will just say that in my experience, the Chinese trained doctors seemed to work for us.
I am sure that there are American trained docotrs that are great,we just have not had a successful experience with one.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks, Raven. Very interesting!

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 9:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I've not had it done to me, but my dog did. :-) I'm serious. Her recovery from a terrible back strain was incredible. I won't hesitate to undergo treatment if (when) I suffer from something that could benefit from it.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 12:32AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Something over 30 years ago, a female parishioner suffered mightily from cancer - don`t recall the variety. She was in such pain that she could barely tolerate someone touching her bed.

Daughter was married to son of an older doctor who had some interest in acupuncture, but hadn`t been trained. He suggested to some of the younger colleagues in their practice that they get some training in it, but there was little interest, so he took such training himself.

He treated his son`s mother-in-law ... I don`t recall how many treatments, but am pretty sure that it was more than once.

It alleviated the pain greatly, but did not dispense with it entirely.

I don`t recall how long she survived, but think that it may have been most of a year, after that/those treatment(s).

ole joyful

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 1:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I've had acupuncture and agree with Ellen, the skill of the practitioner will make a difference.

I'd do it again if the need arose, and I did find it helpful. It should not hurt, you shouldn't experience discomfort if its being done correctly. The whole experience should be calming, centering and leave you with a better sense of well being even if you don't find the immediate relief you were hoping for - that can take time.

My cousin (sadly too far to see regularly) has retired from her chemists career and has gotten her acupuncturists license, manages to stay quite busy. Last year she was performing acupuncture for her sister who was undergoing 24 weeks chemo before mastectomy, and my guess is that it really did help with the side effects of the chemo drugs, she missed very few (and only half days on the bad days at that) work over the 24 weeks, went into the surgery strong and with continued good nutrition.

Most insurance companies cover it these days - don't be afraid to try it!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 1:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

A little update. It's great to read such positive comments about acupuncture. I hurt in several places where the needle was placed after my last treatment. It was a very mild, but obvious pain.

I don't know where this acupuncturist trained but I do know that she's European not Asian. So I've decided to continue my search for a good acupuncturist. My (Taiwanese) boss has been trying to get me to her China-trained acupuncturist for over a year now. When I discovered that there is no $30 co-pay like my current acupuncturist charges, I decided to seek relief with my bosses' practitioner.

Thanks Jasdip, you're too kind. :-)

Ravencajun ... I am searching our area for a clinic that offers Non Invasive Spinal Decompression. We had a health fair at work today so I asked a couple vendors if they offered non-invasive spinal decompression. One said no, the other said yes. I went to their web site and there is no evidence they have the NISD machine but I'll later to verify. I also found a back clinic that was not at today's fair that definitely advertises that they offer non-invasive spinal decompression.

By the way, anyone ever get home from an acupuncture appointment and find a needle still in them? I did last Thursday. My very own little, tiny, hair-thin souvenir. :-)


    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 4:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Rhizo, a friend was telling us of her girlfriend who's Chinese Crested dog had terrible time with his back and walking and couldn't go to the washroom.

She found an alternative medicine vet and carried him in. He did acupuncture and the dog was running around her and happy as a lark. When he got home he "peed like a man" and has been great ever since.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 4:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi, you found a needle? Please, change practitioners! The one you have isn't even beginning to concentrate on you as a patient, her/his mind is elsewhere.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 5:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yep, I found a needle. She did do two searches in my hair before she was done and didn't find anything. It was an incredibly thin needle and when I found it, it didn't surprise me that she missed it.


    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 9:43AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ravencajun Zone 8b TX

Jodi I hope you can find someone that is able to provide you with the SD I just can not say enough good things about what it has done for me. Even now with my other various health problems it helps me so much when I go have my sessions, just sitting in my wheelchair for long periods will get my lower back flaring. I am in tune enough now I know when to get my self over there! All of my specialist are very happy that I am doing SD and told me to continue.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 12:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi, I don't know anything about acupunture but I do want to mention something about hearing loss. I few weeks ago my husband started to lose his hearing, he went to the ear dr., dr. told him it was a wax buildup. He cleans out his ear and hearing was restored. The buildup was because he recently started to use ear plugs because I had the TV up too loud, Of course I got blamed for the whole thing. LOL!!!


    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 2:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Jodi, I went to one of those "decompression' clinics in Santa Clara maybe 9-10 years ago. Yes, I did feel lots better, but I was driving from Merced County 100+ miles (one way) a day for 30 days....and when they wanted me to go for another 30 day 5 day a week....I just couldn't handle it. Driving, itself, is very hard on the spine. I would drive for one hour, stop and walk for 20 min in the Gilroy shops, drive another hour. With a back brace....made for very long days. There are many more places that do the decompression thing perhaps, so I wish you luck in finding one.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 3:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

OOPs...why was I thinking you were in San Jose. Sorry.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 4:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Nanny, even though I've been in Southern California for 39 years, I grew up in San Jose/Saratoga. Perhaps I mentioned that once in a post.

Elaine, I wish it were so simple but a thorough exam from an ENT showed no fluid or wax build up. I yearn for my ear to 'pop' so I can hear out of it properly again. Gosh, it's always something.


    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 5:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

A follow-up to this post regarding my sciatica, cervical spinal stenosis and sudden hearing loss last March in my right ear.

I've been on medical leave since July 23rd. In the last six weeks I've seen a GP, ENT, Audiologist, Gyn, Cardiologist, Urologist, Spinal surgeon and Neurologist. I've had imaging (MRI, x-rays and ultrasounds) of every part of my body except my brain, that is next week.

I'll be getting an epidural next week for my sciatica. The pain has been just incredible, so I hope it works.

I'm currently undergoing physical therapy for the spinal stenosis in my neck with an epidural there if the PT doesn't work. If the epidural doesn't do the trick and I say I've had enough, the doctor will perform surgery on my neck.

The sudden hearing loss has been such a mystery. My GP, ENT and audiologist are all scratching their collective heads. My spine doctor finally referred me to a Neurologist who after a lengthy assessment concluded I suffered a stroke back on March 14th when in the middle of my work day, while sitting at my desk, with no warning, the hearing in my right ear was reduced to about 10%. After 5.5 months, massage therapy, acupuncture, decongestants, and Predinisone, I have about 90% of my hearing back with it still feels like I am up in the mountains and my ear needs to pop. Trying to do so the conventional way (gum and closing off the nose while blowing) has not done a thing to improve it.

I go in for a brain MRI next week. Hope they don't find anything else wrong... ugh

By the way, found an excellent team of acupuncturists who also do massage therapy and it drove them crazy they could not fix my hearing problem. They did however significantly improved my neck pain. They are all Chinese born and educated, barely speak English and hard as heck to understand but they hold regular conferences in the examining room figuring out new approaches to try. They really care about the patient in ways I've never seen before.


    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 4:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Sorry that your journey has so many bumps in the road. Just keep trying....I have taken that long journey )12+years) and today I feel better than I have in soooo many years. Check out this young man ( he saved my back and another really young Rheumatologist has got my knees pain free, at least for a time. Your team of acupuncturists sound really interested in helping you and I do hope you get some relief. There is help out there....finding it is what sucks.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 6:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks Nanny. I just got an email telling me the epidural for my sciatica is Wed at 7am. The MRI to see what damage the stroke did to my brain is Tues afternoon. Geez, being on medical leave is a full-time job. LOL


    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 11:52AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I will be sending my very best wishes for success. DH had one a year or so ago, and did not take advantage of having the 2 that 'could' follow. His worked for a short time and he is again considering having it again. I will be thinking of you on Wed.(Did I miss that you had a stroke? Hoping for good news there, as well).

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 4:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Sudden loss of hearing in one ear can be a symptom of an acoustic neuroma, a non- malignant brain stem tumor. An MRI with contrast is the definitive way to diagnose it. Having been down this road with my husband, I wanted to throw that out in case it hasn't been considered.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 4:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Nanny, yes, I was told by a Neurologist yesterday that she thinks I suffered a stroke. Which makes a little bit of sense since I have missed details in my recent work day and cannot remember things like I used to. She didn't think it was a TIA because after 5.5 months it has not resolved itself.

The MRI, as far as I can tell by the doctor's orders does not call for contrast. But tumor, Mandy, was the first thing I thought of (certainly not stroke) when the ear problem didn't go away. Guess we'll find out something on Wed.


    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 5:32PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Drapes, 84 or 98?
Do you prefer your drapes hung near the ceiling (98)...
"Medicare Demystified"
A few minutes ago I saw a post on the Health forum...
Trying to give up diet soda.
Do y'all have any suggestions what I can replace those...
Cat spay and a belly bulge.
My daughter's 1 y/o cat was spayed 2 weeks ago. It...
What's for Dinner ... Friday?
It certainly doesn't feel like spring here in my part...
Sponsored Products
Ariel Shower Enclosures WS-9090K 36 in. x 36 in. x 87 in. Steam Shower
Home Depot
Ariel Shower Enclosures 56 in. x 38 in. x 85 in. Steam Shower Enclosure Kit in
Home Depot
Enchanted Home Pet Magnapetic Magnet Pad - CO2462-13
$19.99 | Hayneedle
WS-084 Whirlpool Bathtub
Ariel Shower Units 39.4 in. x 35.4 in. x 89.2 in. Steam Shower Enclosure Kit in
Home Depot
Ariel Shower Enclosures SS-902A 36 in. x 36 in. x 83 in. Steam Shower Enclosure
Home Depot
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™