Have you ever complained about your back and quick as a flash the response was, ‘…Go see my back guy, he’s the best…’ Well, I’ve experienced this many times. In fact, if I had a pound every time I heard this, I’d probably be around £94 better off.
I first suffered a slipped disc at the age of 16, but I actually chose to ignore it. I simply thought it was a ‘growing pain’ and my GP was oblivious to my symptoms and dosed me up on ibuprofen. As I eventually became immune to them I began to seek others means to cure this bizarre hot searing pain venturing down the back of my leg.
As a junior hairstylist working in Hampstead, I was never short of clients eager to help me with recommendations to see their ‘back guy/girl’. I eventually had a huge pile of business cards ranging from acupuncturists, healers, osteopaths, physiotherapist and something I later discovered to be known as cupping. Gwyneth Paltrow made it popular – don’t you know!? I was so desperate I tried them all at huge expense to my wallet. Nothing seemed to work until one day it would all eventually change.
It was whilst I was styling a new clients hair and I began to moan about this pain in my leg. She asked me to describe the symptoms, and once I did, she told me it sounded like a back problem and I should go see a back consultant and insist on an MRI.
An MRI? What’s that? I’d never heard of it. She explained it’s a very detailed scan that would be able to determine what’s causing the pain. You have to realise that it was 1997 when I had this discussion, and MRI’s were not as widely used at the time due to their expensive running costs.
Virgo Health – Lower Back Problem
Nevertheless, I managed to have the scan and it revealed a major herniated disc at L4/5. (Very common apparently) My consultant suggested he should operate immediately because nothing else would solve the pain due to the fact it slipped 4 years prior.
Imagine my relief when finally after spending hundreds if not thousands of pounds on alternative therapies to discover what the problem was I now had a definite answer. The downside of course was that I had to have the slipped disc removed with surgery. I had the operation the following week, and all went well for about 18 months when I slipped the disc above (L3/4) whilst at the gym. Had surgery, fixed it and then slipped the original disc (L4/5) 2 years after that.
As you can see I haven’t had much Virgo health luck with my back but I did discover yet another back relieving therapy to add to my list. Pilates. I love it, and is actually great for making the back stronger.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to go Pilates as much as I should have in the last couple of years, and after 10 years of living without a herniated disc I managed to slip the original disc (L4/5) yet AGAIN!
In February this year I had my third back op by my surgeon whom I’ve known for 10 years. I’m in the pool 3 times a week by 6 in the morning, and with the help of my awesome physio who looks like Cate Blanchett I’m well on the way to a full recovery.
Therefore, as you can see from the above, if someone said to me they’ve got a bad back, with the experiences I’ve had, I’d be one of those annoying people that would say, ‘…Go see my back guy, he’s the best…’