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Hello I am 22, suffered from a basketball injury and I have 2 herniated discs (bulging disc) L4-L5, L5-S1 since 1. November 2012. The MRI report also indicated Spondyl Arithritis. The pain in the back/sciatic area is virtually gone except for some positions/activities. However my back still has limited movement range and feels very fragile. The main issue is the weakness in my knees. I don't know how to explain it other than that in the center of the knees i get this feeling that they can't carry any weight. It is constantly there but much worse in the morning. My perscribed physio-therapy is over. 2 questions: 1. How do I carry on from here? What is the best exercise to help heal my discs? 2. Could you please recommend a sleeping position/mattress that helps? I mean I've gotten contradicting tips. Is softer better? Harder ? Memory foam? - I also got contradicting opinions about swimming, does it help or hurt? Thank you
I would recommend the memory foam as a good option with regard to your back.
Sleep positions usually helpful ( these reduce tension of the nerves between the legs and back) would include lying on back with knees bent and 1 to 2 pillows under the knees. ( lying completely flat on your back would tend to exaggerate the arch of the back and may cause some pain and discomfort) Lying on your side with a pillow between the knees tends to help. This helps because without a pillow between your knees you would naturally be uncomfortable to knock your knees together >> we tend then to scissor apart the knees and this will place the pelvis and lower back into a twist position... this is not as good for the back as being in alignment.. the pillow between the knees helps to you to keep this position alignment more comfortably...
I think it fine for you to swim. (Avoid diving of course!!!) Any exercise that causes an increase in pain I would advise caution and to back down from... listen to your body... walking on a flat surface tends to help strengthen the posture muscles of the back.. so walking on level surface tends to help.
I advise the donkey kick as a helpful exercise usually for the back>> this one you assume a stance on hands and knees and raise one leg backwards >> steadily and as far as you can comfortably>> repeat several reps ( 10 and then repeat times for total of 3 sets if your back is essentially well)
I would think that this and/or other exercises would have been a part of your physio program. It is generally the plan to have you continue a home program of the same exercises once you return home or to normal routine... So I would advise that you resume the exercises that were done with your PT as being most helpful to you.
I hope that this information helps! Let me know if you have further questions or concerns and I will be happy to get back with you!! If my answer has been helpful and to your satisfaction then please remember to leave positive feedback. That would be very much appreciated! Thank you and Best Regards,
Anthony Bray MD
Thank you for your answer,so what I gather:1. continue doing "therapy" at home2. contact sport are a no, running/cycling/swimming are ok?How long should I give the knees ? another 6 months?
thank you for the prompt replyYea from November to March I had electric shocks going from my sciatic area to my knee until the ankles in both legs. This is almost gone now, except for this knee sensation. Yea on bad days going up the stairs is difficult; this is the issue I mean by my knees. If i could describe it, imagine a sneeze that aborted and the feeling you get around your nose. That similar feeling is inside the knees.The MRI report says: 2 herniated discs in the form of a bulging disc L4-L5 and L5-S1 with moderate compression of the nerve root. Spondyl arthritis evident (translated from German).