View Full Version : Compressed Disk

26th February 2009, 20:54
Been having some pretty bad pain lately.
Can't sit on the bike for more than about 20 minutes.

Doc says I have a compressed disk between S1 and L5 that is also pinching some nerves. Apparently I've had this for years (possible from a bike wreck about 13 years ago) and it finally degenerated to the point that the pain kicked in.

Bike setup is 11.5" progressives and the old stock seat.
Been looking at a more comfortable seat anyway. Think I'll have to ditch the shocks and go back to standard height? Or is the old Sportster a little too much for it?

I'm currently seeing a chiropractor and doing some PT to try and get things back in order.

Anyone with a similar experience, never really had a back issue before so not familiar with this.

27th February 2009, 03:33
I think I know whereof you speak, Kent.;)

My L5 disc is "desiccated" according to my orthopedist. From a 30 year old bike wreck, it is shriveled up and gone. In an MRI it's just a black void where the disc should be.:(

From physical therapy I got a stretch routine that keeps me going. Most of the time it doesn't hurt bad at all. Today is not a good day though.:o

Anyway, what I do is back stretches laying flat on my stomach I alternate 1 min flat, then 1 min lifting up on my elbows arching my back at the point of L5. I do this a couple of times, then switch to lifting by putting my hands down instead of the elbows. Don't lift too high, just a bit higher than the elbow lift level. I do a couple of each and not all that often either, just when it hurts bad. I did my 3 ibuprofen today and the stretches already. I musta pissed off my back somehow today. I guess I moved wrong.

Good luck, and if your physical therpaist hasn't had you try this routine ask him/her about it.

27th February 2009, 03:36
I'm currently seeing a chiropractor...

Best thing you can do. I have a herniated disc between L5 and S1. Just about the time that the sciatic pain dissipated and I was getting back to normal, I reinjured it doing something stupid. I started seeing a chiropracter and it was not long at all for the pain to leave.

I have never been happier with any other medical decision I have ever made.

27th February 2009, 04:37
I don't have a herniated disk but I did have a motorcycle accident in '95. I injured my back bad enough to keep me out of work for 2 years. I returned to the work force in '97, only to re injure it after 1 1/2 years. In '99 i returned to work, and the back was getting progressively worse.
Between '95 and 2004 I have seen 10 doctors and had 4 MRI's. Finally, the last Dr. said I have spinal stenosis, along with a bulged disk at L4-S1. In '04 he sent me to a neurosurgeon, had surgery done, no more pain. I still watch what I do with my back though.
I would like to customize my sporty like my old ironhead was, however I don't think I could do a hardtail. So I'm going to figure out how to make it a softail using the stock frame.

95 sporty
27th February 2009, 05:44
Look into decompression.I walk my dog 1 hour a day and there is a 4" pipe gate that crosses a levy to blockcars from a set of railroad tracks on the route.I started hanging over it at my waist using my legs as a counterbalance.This allowed me to stretch my low back hanging upside down and I could really feel the tender area that has caused me pain since the 80's.I then bought a Teeter Hangups Dex II which is a decompression device where you hang from the waist area.They have ones where you hang from your ankles .I tried one of these years ago and I felt like all the pressure was on my ankles and knees so I went with the Dex II.Anyway my back feels like its getting better.I used to hurt so much in the mornings that I could barely walk.That has all gone away.I have had MRI's that showed 7 bulging discs in my back after I took a 30ft. fall from a roof.I was rated at 65% disabled from workmans comp.I have seen Chiropractors since the 80's with not much success.Stretching and decompression is working for me and I hope to be pain free soon.Good luck.

27th February 2009, 06:14
What do you mean by compressed? Herniated or degenerated? If the disc is gone then there isn't much you can do. What has personally worked for me is joint supplements. People debate their usefulness, but personally they have saved me from surgery twice. Another thing to look into is spinal decompression. So far I have liked that better than the doctor recommended path which is anti-inflammatories -> pain killers -> surgery (either spinal fusion or disc replacement).

27th February 2009, 17:15
Not sure..
All they told me was it was compressed.
There is still some disk but something has been preventing enough fluid from getting in.
Looks like the Chiropractor is helping.

Still can't ride at the moment. Kinda sucks.. Wanted to run up PCH this weekend too.

Since all of you are on Sportsters any seat recommendations? Right now still with the 13 year old stock seat.

el jinete fantasma
27th February 2009, 18:05
Sorry to hear about the pain, man. :(
I definitely empathize, after what I went through last summer (pinched nerve). The chiropractor definitely helped a lot. I had about 20 sessions. Sometimes three a week at the beginning. I've gotten into the habit of stretching every morning.
I don't have any suggestions regarding the bike. Even after I'd recovered, I was "aware" of the injury after long rides on the Sporty. This doesn't happen with by Dyna, which stretches me out a bit more, even with mids.

27th February 2009, 22:38
Yeah, funny thing to..
First chiro visit I aparently had a pinched nerve for who knows how many years and she opened that up.
Kinda strange to have feeling in a part of my leg that I haven't had in over 10 years.

Mine is setup much like your old nightster as well so that worries me a bit.

el jinete fantasma
27th February 2009, 23:27
Yeah, funny thing to..
First chiro visit I aparently had a pinched nerve for who knows how many years and she opened that up.
Kinda strange to have feeling in a part of my leg that I haven't had in over 10 years.

Mine is setup much like your old nightster as well so that worries me a bit.
I forgot what your bike looks like, but yeah, I would have had to make changes has I kept the bike. The dealer put it on the sales flood a couple weeks ago, so I was able to sit on it for old time's sake. What a revelation! After not riding it for a month and a half, but felt like I being folded up into a suitcase! A more upright seating position and a tall Mustang seat would be a start.
It was about six months before I had feeling back in my left shin... weird.

28th February 2009, 04:27
Mine's an older solid mount but it's pretty much setup like a nightster except with forward controls and drag bars.

Hey.. I was Nightster cool before it was popular :)

Only been in treatment for a couple weeks now so we'll see what happens. Been talking to Road Chick as well about softail suspension too. Pretty much getting the same answer.

Who knows, just might be time for a change after all.

Might try a new seat first though.

30th April 2009, 03:40
hey, I know what your going through, I fell 18 ft out on a oil rig in the gulf of mexico in 1987. they removed the disc and took bone graffs from both hips while they had me open and put those where the disc used to be then put two bars 5 in long 1/2 wide 1/4 thick and 4 2in screws,into the vetebrate. took two years to learn to walk again.lots of drugs to much to often, with the help of a higher power whom I call god, lots of work on myself i can tell ya that i count my blessins for there are plenty of other peaple out there like sevice men (kids realy) leaveing their limbs in the sand for me to be able to ride 1 more day on my scoot. I like the big boys for the long rides 08 streetglide went out west last year for 10 days sd wy mt ask the man for some help it works if ya work it.

1st May 2009, 15:16
I have the same problem, a couple herniated disk, degenerative disk disease, all that good stuff, you deff become more aware of your posture, all i have changed on my bike so far is the seat cause im poor, but one of the exercises they told me to do was to lay on my back and pull my legs up to my chest. and also do the superman thing where you lay on your stomach on the floor, arms out above your head, lift your left arm and your right leg up, mostly stuff to strengthen my core muscles to keep it all inlign.

1st May 2009, 17:17
I have had two surgeries (laminectomy), one at L5-S1 and one at L4-L5. When you say you have pain is it in your back or your leg from the pinched nerve. The laminectomy will relieve the pain in your leg. As far as the back is concerned, when mine goes out on me every once and awhile and I am bent like a pretzel and in tremendous pain, I was given a steroid pill (Dexamethasone). It is an anti-inflammatory which is taken in stages (a pill pack). In all the years of suffering when my back goes into spasm this drug has helped me tremendously. In the past I would be laid up for two to three weeks at a time. Since I have been given this drug my spasm's last only a couple of days at the most. Ask your doctor about it and get him to at least let you try it when you need to.