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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 31330
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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I have tried lidocaine patches and TENS units with miserable

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I have tried lidocaine patches and TENS units with miserable results. Currently, I take neurontin 300mg tid, Morphine 30mg ER q 12 hrs, Hydrocodone 7.5/325 for breakthrough pain, tizanidine 2mg take 1-2 tabs q 6 hrs prn, trazadone 150mg q hs, cymbalta 30 mg q.d., and sertraline 200mg q.d.
I'm not too convinced about the glucosamine, as I have read conflicting reports on the efficacy of that.
I do use a cane when I need it, as well as a back support when I need it. Assuming that I follow all of your suggestions, and remain diligent about exercise, etc - what is to prevent the foramen from narowing further? Am I just delaying the inevitable?

Hello and welcome,

Physical therapy significantly retards the progressive foraminal narrowing and associated pressure on the nerves, apart from relieving the existent pain. As you know, there is a variation in the response in individuals, but physical therapy is worth trying. Many times, symptoms do get better by these collective measures and surgery can be avoided and there is no further progression of the symptoms. With the severity of your symptoms, you may need surgery. But even after surgery, mild physical therapy is necessary to prevent the failed back surgery syndrome (reappearance of the symptoms sometime after the surgery). Please read about it;


Trying the conservative treatment for 6-12 weeks is advised before opting for the surgery.

It is privilege assisting you.

Please let me know if you have further queries and need to discuss it further.

Dr. Arun

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