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Sciatica & Arthritis

Jun 20, 2019

Jean: [00:00:15] Hello again and welcome to podcast dx. This show that brings you interviews with people just like you whose lives were forever changed by a medical diagnosis. [00:00:23][8.1]

Lita: [00:00:24] I'm Lita. [00:00:25][0.3]

Ron: [00:00:25] I'm Ron. [00:00:26][0.2]

Jean: [00:00:26] And I'm Jean Marie. [00:00:27][0.4]

Lita: [00:00:27] Collectively we are the hosts of podcast dx. This podcast is not intended to be a substitute for a professional medical advice diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have heard on this podcast. [00:00:59][31.5]

Jean: [00:01:01] Attica. Attica. [00:01:01][0.0]

Lita: [00:01:02] What are you yelling about. [00:01:04][1.3]

Jean: [00:01:04] Today's show about Attica. [00:01:05][0.9]

Lita: [00:01:06] WHAT THE SHOW IS ABOUT THE FILM. OH IT'S NOT ABOUT THE FILM. Dog Day Afternoon. Nor is it about the Attica prison riots. It's about sciatica. You know numbness and pain in the lower back and legs. It's the result of pressure and the sciatic nerve. [00:01:22][16.5]

Jean: [00:01:23] Oh so it's not. It has nothing to do with Al Pacino or the Al Pacino movie. [00:01:27][3.1]

Lita: [00:01:27] No no no. [00:01:28][0.6]

Jean: [00:01:28] Then I'm out. [00:01:28][0.3]

Ron: [00:01:30] What was that all about? [00:01:32][2.2]

Lita: [00:01:33] Nothing Ron. Don't worry about it Jean. Jean. Excuse me Ron Why don't you introduce today's guest. [00:01:40][6.7]

Ron: [00:01:40] Certainly on today's show we are interviewing Mary W.. She's an octogenarian a cookie baker. And yes she is an Al Pacino fan. [00:01:49][8.9]

Jean: [00:01:50] Awesome. [00:01:50][0.0]

Lita: [00:01:51] Yes. Hello and thank you for joining our show. And for the sake of our audience let me also introduce Mary as my Aunt may I call you Auntie? [00:02:00][9.1]

Mary: [00:02:01] Thank you for having me. Yes you may call me Auntie. [00:02:04][2.8]

Jean: [00:02:06] And Mary is also my great aunt. So I will be referring her to her is auntie as well. Hello auntie. Isn't this exciting. You are on the air. [00:02:15][9.0]

Mary: [00:02:16] Never thought I would be on the air. Well my star be added to the Walk of Fame? [00:02:21][4.9]

Lita: [00:02:22] And I'm not sure about the Walk of Fame. But you're always a star in our book. [00:02:26][4.0]

Jean: [00:02:26] Absolutely. [00:02:26][0.0]

Ron: [00:02:27] Since everyone else here is calling you auntie. Do you mind if I call you auntie as well? [00:02:31][3.5]

Mary: [00:02:32] That's fine. [00:02:32][0.3]

Ron: [00:02:33] OK. Auntie.. Please tell us a little bit about your problem when it first started. If you can remember. [00:02:38][4.9]

Mary: [00:02:40] I don't know exactly, but in the family vacation in North Carolina about five or six years ago I noticed my upper leg was tingling and I thought I had blockage like the blood wasn't flowing through. [00:02:51][11.4]

Lita: [00:02:52] Well that must have been scary. [00:02:53][0.8]

Mary: [00:02:54] Yes I was very nervous. I thought it might be something serious. I never had that before so I didn't know what it was. [00:03:00][6.2]

Jean: [00:03:02] Were there any other symptoms at that time. [00:03:03][1.3]

Mary: [00:03:04] No. But what I was standing for long periods of time it would affect me more. [00:03:08][4.2]

Ron: [00:03:09] Well what did you do about it at the time. [00:03:11][1.3]

Mary: [00:03:12] Nothing. I sat around, I just tried to rest since I was away from home. I knew I would have to be checked when I got back to Chicago. [00:03:19][6.9]

Jean: [00:03:20] So when you got home you saw your doctor. [00:03:22][1.7]

Mary: [00:03:23] I did end up going to the chiropractor. Lita probably suggested that go, since I haven't been there before. [00:03:28][5.0]

Lita: [00:03:29] I vaguely remember that, it certainly sounds like something I would do. [00:03:33][3.5]

Jean: [00:03:34] Did the chiropractor help at all. [00:03:35][1.6]

Mary: [00:03:36] No not really. They told me to do my exercises and I didn't have to go back. I did one exercise for a while and it didn't seem to help. So I just stopped. [00:03:47][10.8]

Ron: [00:03:48] So it just continued to bother you. [00:03:50][2.3]

Mary: [00:03:52] Yes the pain wasn't bad. It was really just annoying numbness. But not really excruciating pain. So, and so I dealt with it. [00:04:00][8.4]

Lita: [00:04:01] Well I could understand that, I guess if it's just annoying, and it's not really painful then you just deal with it, Now, that was a long time ago. The five or six years, can you bring us up to speed on what's going on now? [00:04:12][10.9]

Mary: [00:04:13] Within the past six months or so my symptoms changed and now on top of the numbness the right leg I have pain on the lower back on hips I end up going to my GP who ordered x rays on my hips and I was worried that I might need hip surgery. The pain has been pretty bad, even keeping me from parties and socializing. It hurts to sit or stand so I end up spending a lot of time on the couch with a heating pad. [00:04:38][25.7]

Jean: [00:04:40] I'm so sorry to hear that. What did the X-rays show, when you had those X-rays done? [00:04:44][4.5]

Mary: [00:04:45] My doctor called me and he said that the hips were fine. It was just that I had sciatica. [00:04:49][4.1]

Ron: [00:04:51] Well I bet that was a relief to you. [00:04:52][1.4]

Mary: [00:04:53] Yeah she told me to, I should get on my back and do some exercises and then I told her. "Are you going to come over to help me up?". [00:05:00][7.8]

Lita: [00:05:02] Well yeah I think I recommended that you do the exercises in bed. [00:05:05][3.8]

Mary: [00:05:06] That is what I have been doing. It has been helping. [00:05:09][2.5]

Ron: [00:05:10] Well what kind of exercises are these that you're doing in bed. [00:05:12][2.6]

Jean: [00:05:13] I don't think she's gonna be showing you what she does in bed Ron. [00:05:15][2.4]

Lita: [00:05:16] Oh. hhooohooo hoo [00:05:17][1.1]

Jean: [00:05:17] Sorry. [00:05:17][0.0]

Ron: [00:05:18] (Laughing) [00:05:18][0.0]

Mary: [00:05:19] Several stretching moves. I have pictures. [00:05:21][2.0]

Lita: [00:05:22] Well I'm gonna post those pictures, of those exercizes [00:05:24][1.7]

Jean: [00:05:23] oh boy [00:05:23][0.0]

Ron: [00:05:24] (laughter.) [00:05:24][0.0]

Lita: [00:05:24] no, not of auntie, just generic exercises on the website for everybody to see. There are very typical physical therapy movements. [00:05:34][9.4]

Jean: [00:05:34] Oh ok well Aunty I'm glad that it wasn't your hips because I know that hip replacement can be, you know it's rather common, but it's kind of extreme and anytime you can avoid surgery you're better off. [00:05:45][10.7]

Mary: [00:05:46] Yes indeed I hope sharing this information can help someone else that has sciatica. I heard a lot of people have this. [00:05:52][6.5]

Lita: [00:05:53] Oh they absolutely do. There are more people than you would think that suffer from sciatica. Six percent of the general population have complained about this problem. Most of them get it when they're in their 40s or 50s. And the first time it was ever mentioned in medical literature was in the 14 hundreds. [00:06:12][18.9]

Ron: [00:06:13] Yeah that was a few years before my time. [00:06:14][1.5]

Jean: [00:06:15] Before all of our times- but it is a bit of a relief knowing that it's not uncommon. I would like to read the definition for sciatica. About 90 percent of the time sciatica is due to a spinal disc herniation pressing on one of the lumbar or sacral nerve roots and it is a medical condition characterized by pain going down the leg from the lower back and the pain might go down the back outside of or front of the leg and Ansett is often sudden following activities like heavy lifting though you might also have gradual onset and typically the symptoms are on only one side of the body but in certain cases you might have pain on both side and lower back pain is sometimes but not always present and weakness or numbness may occur in various parts of the affected leg. So it's probably just best to see your doctor. [00:07:05][49.2]

Ron: [00:07:06] After meeting with your doctor you found out that stretching exercise would help. I have also heard strengthening the core, you know the abdomen, is a good way to keep the spine safe from injury. I guess we should all take a lesson from this and keep our core strong. There are some tips and equipment that might just help do that. [00:07:24][18.0]

Lita: [00:07:24] Exactly auntie, you're in good company. Olivia Newton John recently went through treatment for sciatica and JFK had terrible back pain throughout his life. I'm glad that you found out what was the actual problem and now you can have it treated. We want to thank you again for sharing your story with us today. We all hope that those stretches can help you find relief. [00:07:47][22.7]

Mary: [00:07:48] Thank you for having me. [00:07:49][1.1]

Ron: [00:07:51] It was great having your Aunt Mary here to talk with us about sciatica. I think we should discuss the relationship between sciatica and arthritis. [00:07:58][7.6]

Lita: [00:07:59] That's a good idea again especially since next week's topic will be covering arthritis. This will act as a good lead in to the topic. The sciatic nerve happens to be the longest and largest nerve in the body. It starts in the lumbar region of the lower back and it works its way under the gluteus muscles in your butt and down the thigh and leg. [00:08:24][24.3]

Jean: [00:08:25] Yes and any irritation of that nerve will cause the pain that Auntie Mary was talking about with her sciatica. According to the Arthritis Foundation osteoarthritis can involve the lumbar spine by the formation of osteophytes or bone spurs forming on the vertebra. The facet joints on the sides of the spine or even on the inside of the spinal canal. [00:08:51][25.6]

Lita: [00:08:51] Right and I will post more detailed pictures on the page of our website dedicated to this topic. But to try to give you a visual right now about what we're talking about and osteophyte looks like a ragged edge of the bone rather than the smooth edges that we're born with that ragged edge causes the pain as it puts pressure or irritation on the nerves near that edge. [00:09:16][24.8]

Ron: [00:09:17] That is probably a great idea. I could post pictures. It's hard to imagine all of these body parts in your mind with the asked the advice that occur on each side of the spine or within the spinal canal itself. The sciatic nerve has a good chance of being irritated. Isn't that right. [00:09:34][16.2]

Lita: [00:09:34] Yes Ron. And that's what they call spinal stenosis or a narrowing of the nerve pathways. Because of these asked your fights. [00:09:43][8.6]

Ron: [00:09:44] Well that makes sense. Is this something that just happened with age or how do you avoid it. [00:09:51][6.5]

Lita: [00:09:51] No it doesn't necessarily only happen with old age. It's not really an old age disease though the incidence does increase with age. Young people that have repetitive injuries in sports can develop it hemophiliacs that have bleeding disorders can have it due to a lack of oxygen rich blood supply and death of the bone tissue and certain occupations that require a kneeling or squatting climbing stairs that can also cause osteoarthritis. But as we age over time you may have wear and tear on different joints which can also cause it. [00:10:28][36.7]

Ron: [00:10:29] That does mean taking care of yourself as you go through life staying fit and healthy is always a good idea. [00:10:34][5.2]

Jean: [00:10:36] Exactly. Everything in moderation avoid putting too much stress on any one joint or set of joints and avoid repetitive activities that only use one set of joints such as kneeling as far as sciatica pain goes or sciatic pain there are simple things you can do at home such as using cold compresses or heat whichever works for you. Usually the acute phase of symptom usually during the acute phase of symptoms cold compresses on the affected buttock for 10 to 15 minutes. Three to four times a day seems to work best. You can even use a bag of frozen peas wrapped in Chapel heat such as warm compresses may be preferred by some patients especially if used a couple of days after the initial episode of course always ask your doctor and see your doctor if you start having it any unusual pain in any joint. And if the pain does not resolve in a day or so. [00:11:31][55.3]

Ron: [00:11:32] Well since we're going to cover arthritis more in depth next week. Maybe she just read this up now. [00:11:38][5.4]

Jean: [00:11:38] . I second the motion. [00:11:39][1.1]

Lita: [00:11:39] Okay I can take a hint. If you have any questions or comments related to today's show you can contact us at podcast D X at Yahoo dot com through our Web site podcast D X dot com or on our Facebook page Twitter or Instagram. [00:11:55][15.7]

Ron: [00:11:57] And if you have a moment to spare please give us a five star review all on the item and podcast app. [00:12:02][5.6]

Jean: [00:12:03] Till next time. I'm Jean Marie. [00:12:05][1.3]

Ron: [00:12:06] I'm Ron. [00:12:06][0.2]

Lita: [00:12:06] . I'm Lita. [00:12:06][0.0]