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Bulging Disc Treatment?

I have 3 Bulging Disc L3 L4 L5. I am pretty much shot when it comes to weightlifting. It seems like it takes away my strength. I cannot tense up without having pain and thats with all exercise, and I can forget about squatting and deadlifting. I have been going to a Chiroprator for 8 months. I have been using decompression. It was taking the pain away but I couldn’t do nothing. Once I became active again the pain came right back.

Who has had bulging disc? Did you get over them?

I feel your pain! I wish I knew the answer; I’ve been having bad pains in my left calve & ham any time I stand. I finally went to the ortho, turns out I have a slipped disk at S1 and my vertebrae there doesn�??t line up anymore. Never thought I would EVER consider having surgery on my back but that’s how bad the pain gets sometimes. Gym performance has only been affected on certain exercises, though I’m in pain most of the time I’m in there. Incline bench hurts bad; flats hurt too but not as much. The strange thing is, about the only time I feel relief is when I’m down “in the hole” during squats or after deadlifts. I use ice and was prescribed high dose Aleve and have been concentrating on strengthen my abdominals. It’s a long slow road though…

My advice would be to stop squatting for a while and switch to leg pressing. A lot of people might disagree, but the simple fact is, that you CAN build strong, muscular legs on a press. A lot of back problems are caused by weak abdominals, but I would rely on a professional (i.e. not me) for treatment advice.

What do you mean the pain came back when you became active? Is that walking around, playing sport, or lifting heavy weights above your head?

I’d get an MRI and see a good ortho doc and go from there. Consider surgery only after exhausting all other avenues.
You may try purchasing an inversion table for pain relief.
Strengthen the abs. Use static movements if that’s all you can do.
Stretch the hip flexors, they’re tight in the vast majority.
You should consider epidural steroid injections if you’re in serious pain. Until then, use Motrin, ice/heat, traction, etc for minor palliation.
I have herniated discs at C5/6/7 and L5/S1. I can squat and deadlift SPARINGLY. I even compete once per year in PL comps. Unless the nucleus of the disc has burst, the discs will eventuallly recede and eventually become dessicated, essentially fusing themselves.
Good luck.

I tried to switch to leg presses. That is actually the worst pain for me. My right leg I cannot fully extend or I get a very sharp pain in the lower back. I cannot even lay on my back and try a hamstring stretch. When I lift and lower my right leg there is a loud “clunk” noise that comes in the lower back.

I was squatting throught the pain but now I haven’t squatted since November. When I say become active is when I start to lift weights with a little heavier weight. When I walk I usually become sore and tight in the lower back.

Also no chiropractor has addressed that I lean to my right neck and all. When I stand straight up and look at my abdominal section at the left side if you were to look directly at me you would see a “C” shape around the obliques and up to my ribs. On the right side it is straight.

I don’t want surgery because I have read it doesn’t always work and it is not permanent either.

I can address chainsaw1 and lizard king, yeah, lucky me

Find a way to strengthen everything in the area so to help you skeletal system out. This may require a real change in some of what you are currently doing. Experiment with light weight first. You may find, as I have with time, that heavy for few reps is better than lighter with many BUT this is after you have strengthened the area and are comfortable with the weight. Some movements you may have to give up/use sparingly.

Chainsaw1–you may have to learn to lift a bit differently, focus the contraction in the associated muscle and out of your traps/neck. Its tough and can be a long row to hoe. How old are you?

[quote]chainsaw1 wrote:
I tried to switch to leg presses. That is actually the worst pain for me. My right leg I cannot fully extend or I get a very sharp pain in the lower back. I cannot even lay on my back and try a hamstring stretch. When I lift and lower my right leg there is a loud “clunk” noise that comes in the lower back.

I was squatting throught the pain but now I haven’t squatted since November. When I say become active is when I start to lift weights with a little heavier weight. When I walk I usually become sore and tight in the lower back.

Also no chiropractor has addressed that I lean to my right neck and all. When I stand straight up and look at my abdominal section at the left side if you were to look directly at me you would see a “C” shape around the obliques and up to my ribs. On the right side it is straight.

I don’t want surgery because I have read it doesn’t always work and it is not permanent either.

                 [/quote]

Leg press can make it worse. How are you when it comes to lunges and one leg pistol squats?

Some may laugh but I was lucky enough to find a pilates instructor with a bodybuilding background and she was very helpful in getting my torso realigned–not manipulated like a chiro, but using stretches and muscle development. There are articles on ‘corrective’ exercises on this site. Best bet would be to find somebody. Let them know that you intend to body build. If they are fine with that, good, if not, move on.

25

When you guys say strength the are I am assuming you are reffering to the abs and lower back. I do machine crunches cable crunches, back extentions. Like I said earlier it is hard to do these exercises because I pull to the right. I do my back extentions in front of the mirror and when I bend down I am leaning more to my right side instead of staying square and in a straight line. I mean I always feel that way, when I am driving I lean to the right and when I sleep I feel like I am always crooked my wife thinks I am nuts.

By the way, thanks for the help guys

[quote]Tex Ag wrote:
chainsaw1 wrote:
I tried to switch to leg presses. That is actually the worst pain for me. My right leg I cannot fully extend or I get a very sharp pain in the lower back. I cannot even lay on my back and try a hamstring stretch. When I lift and lower my right leg there is a loud “clunk” noise that comes in the lower back.

I was squatting throught the pain but now I haven’t squatted since November. When I say become active is when I start to lift weights with a little heavier weight. When I walk I usually become sore and tight in the lower back.

Also no chiropractor has addressed that I lean to my right neck and all. When I stand straight up and look at my abdominal section at the left side if you were to look directly at me you would see a “C” shape around the obliques and up to my ribs. On the right side it is straight.

I don’t want surgery because I have read it doesn’t always work and it is not permanent either.

Leg press can make it worse. How are you when it comes to lunges and one leg pistol squats?

Some may laugh but I was lucky enough to find a pilates instructor with a bodybuilding background and she was very helpful in getting my torso realigned–not manipulated like a chiro, but using stretches and muscle development. There are articles on ‘corrective’ exercises on this site. Best bet would be to find somebody. Let them know that you intend to body build. If they are fine with that, good, if not, move on.[/quote]

I have always been strong with lunges in comparison to my squat. For instance before I was injured I could squat 405x6 but I could do lunges with 315x4.

I did notice that lunges were alot more comfortable for me than squating. Also I could deadlift 135lbs while I was injured, but I could do hack squats with the barbell at 315x6. It is very weird. I am 6’3 and have the long thin frame.

Also what exactly do you mean when you say contracting the traps and neck? When I bench that is the standard routine right pinch the shoulders back and flare the lats keeping your traps tight.

[quote]chainsaw1 wrote:
25

When you guys say strength the are I am assuming you are reffering to the abs and lower back. I do machine crunches cable crunches, back extentions. Like I said earlier it is hard to do these exercises because I pull to the right. I do my back extentions in front of the mirror and when I bend down I am leaning more to my right side instead of staying square and in a straight line. I mean I always feel that way, when I am driving I lean to the right and when I sleep I feel like I am always crooked my wife thinks I am nuts.

By the way, thanks for the help guys[/quote]

Try stuff that is more than straight forward or straight back. If you can do Bikram Yoga, I would. Hey, Dan John likes it! Basically I am suggesting activities that develop a greater range of motion and flexibility.

Oh, if you sit on your wallet, stop.

[quote]chainsaw1 wrote:
Tex Ag wrote:
chainsaw1 wrote:

Also what exactly do you mean when you say contracting the traps and neck? When I bench that is the standard routine right pinch the shoulders back and flare the lats keeping your traps tight.
[/quote]

Sorry, I saw ‘neck’ and wrote that. Meant to delete.

[quote]Tex Ag wrote:
chainsaw1 wrote:
25

When you guys say strength the are I am assuming you are reffering to the abs and lower back. I do machine crunches cable crunches, back extentions. Like I said earlier it is hard to do these exercises because I pull to the right. I do my back extentions in front of the mirror and when I bend down I am leaning more to my right side instead of staying square and in a straight line. I mean I always feel that way, when I am driving I lean to the right and when I sleep I feel like I am always crooked my wife thinks I am nuts.

By the way, thanks for the help guys

Try stuff that is more than straight forward or straight back. If you can do Bikram Yoga, I would. Hey, Dan John likes it! Basically I am suggesting activities that develop a greater range of motion and flexibility.

Oh, if you sit on your wallet, stop.[/quote]

I don’t have a wallet my chiropractor took all my money!

Exercises that are more straight foward or back. Seated cable rows kill my lower back anything that has me laying on the floor where my body makes a 90 degree angle is dreadful. I really don’t know of any exercise that would be other than straight foward or back. I try to keep alot of weight off my lower back so I do alot of machines now I will look into the Bikram Yoga.

[quote]chainsaw1 wrote:
Tex Ag wrote:
chainsaw1 wrote:
25

When you guys say strength the are I am assuming you are reffering to the abs and lower back. I do machine crunches cable crunches, back extentions. Like I said earlier it is hard to do these exercises because I pull to the right. I do my back extentions in front of the mirror and when I bend down I am leaning more to my right side instead of staying square and in a straight line. I mean I always feel that way, when I am driving I lean to the right and when I sleep I feel like I am always crooked my wife thinks I am nuts.

By the way, thanks for the help guys

Try stuff that is more than straight forward or straight back. If you can do Bikram Yoga, I would. Hey, Dan John likes it! Basically I am suggesting activities that develop a greater range of motion and flexibility.

Oh, if you sit on your wallet, stop.

I don’t have a wallet my chiropractor took all my money!

Exercises that are more straight foward or back. Seated cable rows kill my lower back anything that has me laying on the floor where my body makes a 90 degree angle is dreadful. I really don’t know of any exercise that would be other than straight foward or back. I try to keep alot of weight off my lower back so I do alot of machines now I will look into the Bikram Yoga.
[/quote]

You misread. I said more THAN. Basically, what I am suggesting is flexibility and bw strength work around the core with more than front and back motions. But I am suggesting this where you get guidance from someone who is knowledgeable. I have had luck with yoga and pilates when I need to get stretched out or sometimes when rehabing. Good luck.

PS–I got back to squatting but only after loosening my hips, paying a load of attention to form, and easing my way down. This all took time. I go lower on light weight, not as low on heavier weight. Your mechanics will dictate some of this. My ROM on squats is better than leg press so that is why I stick with them.

[quote]chainsaw1 wrote:
I have 3 Bulging Disc L3 L4 L5. I am pretty much shot when it comes to weightlifting. It seems like it takes away my strength. I cannot tense up without having pain and thats with all exercise, and I can forget about squatting and deadlifting. I have been going to a Chiroprator for 8 months. I have been using decompression. It was taking the pain away but I couldn’t do nothing. Once I became active again the pain came right back.

Who has had bulging disc? Did you get over them? [/quote]

I have a bulging disc, and can relate to your situation. Here are my suggestions:

Do a “Search” on this site and pull up every article on the topic and print it off. Read all these article and start putting the concepts you learned into practice.

Second, go have ART (Active Release Techniques) on your back from therapist. You can find a local ART therapist via the web.

I hope this helps. Good luck.

ART sucked for my back. I was expecting a miracle, and after a month, nothing felt better for my herniated lumbar disc.

In all honesty, building the efficient athlete dvds helped me the most. When I fixed my anterior tilt and my left/right imbalances, my problems began to disappear. That and laying off of anything that caused any type of pain. This is not the time to push through the pain. This is your back; it has to last the rest of your life. Chronic pain would f’in suck and will mess up your training. Let your back take priority for a bit.

That’s my 2 cents at least

I’ve got ruptured L5 and seriously bulging L3 & L4 discs. I lucked out with getting relief with spinal epidurals (cortozone shots) and didn’t have to have surgery. As a rule I don’t squat or deadlift - not worth the chance of re-injury. I can leg press if I am careful. Pistols don’t work for me but Bulgarian Split Squats do. I do chin/pull ups, push ups, db rows, pullovers, db bench (can’t arch to set up properly for flat bb bench plus my shoulders dont like bb bench).

My back lets me know when I’ve done too much or something it doesn’t like. I actually feel it in my foot, and I avoid whatever it was that irritated my back.

GET AN APPOINTMENT WITH A NEURO/ORTHO M.D.!!! Someone who is a BACK SPECIALIST M.D. DOCTOR. You need to get it properly treated or you will have problems for the rest of your life.

Chiro/ART works for some things and people. And the M.D. may choose to treat you that way, but find out for sure.

My $0.02. Your mileage my vary.

Fred

Thanks guys all your info is great. I went to see an Ortho per the advice I recieved on here. He says yes you have 3 bulging discs but it shouldn’t be causing you as much pain as you are experiencing.

He wanted to talk about the “clunk” sound in my hip. He said it is a Sacroiliac Joint and it is messed up possible inflammation. I am getting an MRI on my pelvis soon to find out what is exactly wrong with it.

He explained to me that is why I cannot straighten out my right leg. He said if it was back pain you could not straighten out both legs.

So onto how to rehab a Sacroiliac Joint and is it recommended to have a chiropractor work directly on that?

Once again guys thanks, I would have never thought to go to an Ortho.