Herniated disc/nerve impingement.

Discussion in 'Surfing' started by Patrick Riley, Dec 1, 2019.

  1. Patrick Riley

    Patrick Riley Well-Known Member

    May 15, 2018
    Jacksonville Beach
    I herniated a disc in my neck C7-T1 with nerve impingement at a house fire a while back and I've been out of the water since Oct. I'm trying to be patient and hoping the physical therapy will work. I wasn't exactly smart and tried to do a quick fix with an epidural injection to get better before a surf trip to EL Salvador. It helped the first few days then I ended up just surfing through extreme pain which I realize wasn't smart.

    My physical therapist seems to think 4-6 weeks of therapy should help but says everyone is different. I am used to being very active w/ surfing, yoga, exercise and I've been relegated to desk duty and just stretches/exercises for PT.

    I searched others threads and found a book someone recommended, but it seems most was directed towards lower back.

    Anyone have any input on help with recovery or similar issue. Getting old sucks.
  2. Driftwood

    Driftwood Well-Known Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Oh man, good luck with this. You'll get there but be prepared to be patient and to explore your options with a good, or a couple of good doctors your trust.

    I'm assuming you have a good IRM and an EMG test. From there, adapted PT leading progressively to swimming with the right anti-inflammatories, etc. There's a lot on here from a while back.

    I ended up (three herniated discs and one majorly compressed one in the cervicals - it was wild to see the nerve compresson) taking the better part of three months before I could actively paddle again - and even with religious PT, careful diet, massages, etc, I ended up doing a cervical infiltration with anti-inflamatories and PRP. I can dig out my file if you'd like.

    Being in warm water helped, so we took of for Sardania and I spent a week floating and then swimming progressively more. Paddled an SUP on flatwater where I could keep my posture in check and my eyes rooted on the horizon line. Started with just a couple of hundred yards and slowly worked my way up to a couple of kilometers. Getting old does suck. But, as they say, it beats the alternative.

    But again, make really sure of what you are doing with a qualified and open-minded doc. Lots of opinions and lots of different treatment styles. Six months later, I think my neck and shoulder (shoulder had a torn rotary cuff, but was mostly due to nerve compression) are about back to before levels of functionality.

    Take care.
    Patrick Riley likes this.
  3. McQuad

    McQuad Active Member

    Dec 30, 2016
    Fernandina beach
    I feel for ya. I’ve had something going on with my neck for several years. When I paddle I can’t look back over my right shoulder without intense pain. So bad I almost took up paddleboards, but decided if that was going to happen I’d just quit.
    Patrick Riley likes this.
  4. Spritzer

    Spritzer Well-Known Member

    Apr 27, 2019
    Virginia Beach
    Not directly related to your current problem, but I have a few books (becoming a supple leopard, Waterman 2.0, deskbound) that are great for fixing specific body issues when they arise, general mobility, little cues to think of for certain things etc..
    There's also a website, thereadystate, with plenty of content, there is a fee, but they do offer a free week or two.

    Best of luck
    Patrick Riley likes this.
  5. Ricksurfin

    Ricksurfin Well-Known Member

    Jun 9, 2019
    San Clemente, CA
    Going through the same thing right now with C5/6, C6/7. Sucks, and out of the water for now.
    Patrick Riley likes this.
  6. dsquare

    dsquare Well-Known Member

    May 16, 2013
    USA Hawaii
    I'm doing PT and just had a facet rhizotomy last week. I can't take most anti-inflammatory meds anymore. Long term my pain management doc wants to look at radiofrequency ablation. Basically they install a little nerve stimulator that prevents pain signals from reaching the brain. Can be fully active but might not be able to dive below 50 feet. After nearly 30 years of dealing with L4/L5 back issues (Stenosis) I have found that pain management/back specialists are the most sympathetic and pro-active- don't put off asking for better care if you can.
  7. Ricksurfin

    Ricksurfin Well-Known Member

    Jun 9, 2019
    San Clemente, CA
    I have a Nevro neuro transmitter implanted after 7 lumbar surgeries and lumbar fusion from L3 all the way down to S1. Not a cure all from pain, but definitely makes it better. Allows me to be opiate free after being on them for approx 9 years. Now, the ocean is my drug of choice.
    If you’re a candidate, I say proceed with the trial and see how it works for you.
    dsquare likes this.
  8. Patrick Riley

    Patrick Riley Well-Known Member

    May 15, 2018
    Jacksonville Beach
    Thank you all for the replies. Just in the last few days I have started noticing some positive progress from PT. My nerve pain is centralizing back to my neck and not really radiating down my arm anymore. I have a newfound appreciation for pain and just taking for granted the ability to surf. @Spritzer I'll be sure to check out books and website.
    dsquare likes this.
  9. Artz

    Artz Well-Known Member

    Nov 22, 2018
    I have been dealing with back and shoulder problems for some time now. The surf has been pretty good here in central Florida the last few weeks Small fun waves. While surfing. My Lower back went out. Something is telling me my Surfing days might be over.
  10. Big D

    Big D Active Member

    Nov 4, 2009
    FYI - Wife just finished surgery on C7 to remove a herniated disc. Simple outpatient same-day surgery. Physical therapy didn't work and the nerve pain was running down her arm and was just short of complete dabilitation. She would wake up in extreme pain in the middle of the night and would be on the verge of tears throughout most of the day. After 6 month of dealing with it (took a shot as well that worked for 2 days) we went to a specialist (neuro-surgeon).

    They removed the herniated disc and replaced it with dummy disc. Pain was immediately gone when she woke up from surgery. It's been a few weeks now since surgery. Full mobility and almost brand new just after a few weeks.
    Artz likes this.

Share This Page