Stallion Spotlight


Real Estate Spotlight

  • Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums’ policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Degenerative Discs in Lumbar Spine

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Degenerative Discs in Lumbar Spine

    Hail COTH!

    I have been riddled with back issues for as long as I can remember. I ended up having surgery a little over a year ago to clean up a herniated disc. The doctor didn't find what he was expecting during the surgery...and alas my symptoms continued. I recently had a checkup round of x-rays and was told all of my discs in my lumbar spine are degenerating. I'm only in my mid 30s. I haven't ridden since prior to my back surgery because of the pain, but plan on saddling up here shortly.

    Anyone with experience have any tips for riding? I already do a ton of stretching and exercises. My doctor advised against back braces due to them weakening the muscles in the back (by becoming dependent on the brace).

  • #2
    I have a more minor problem, but my doctor did prescribe a back brace for occasional use. I use it when I am doing something that might aggravate my back. Vacuuming was a big one for me - nothing more aggravating than hurting yourself doing a disliked chore! I have used it for other chores that are on the edge of my tolerance to help prevent a flare up. I too was warned about dependence if used too often. It has really worked well for me in its limited use.


    • #3

      What type of doctor are you seeing?

      Have you had a second opinion?

      What diagnostic studies have you had other than x-rays?
      Your life is made of 2 dates and a dash; make the most of the dash.


      • Original Poster

        I have had an MRI and Xrays. This doctor is a family doctor, but I have seen a neurologist and rheumatologist. The neurologist gave me the same story on the back brace after he had given me the clear after my last surgery.


        • #5
          MRI - check

          Second opinions - check

          What type of doctor did your first surgery? What did they find the first time that they didn't expect?

          Herniated disks can sometimes heal themselves. Degenerating disks usually don't.

          Only reason I'm asking is that I have had back surgery to address multiple issues including no disks (bone on bone). A bit of a BTDT.
          Your life is made of 2 dates and a dash; make the most of the dash.


          • Original Poster

            I was in physical therapy prior to surgery. A neurologist surgeon did the surgery. When they went in for the surgery, the herniation was much improved and he was surprised I was still as symptomatic as I was with little to no herniation. It was only one disc at the time, but it is now seen that the disc degeneration has progressed along all discs - the worst being the one that was previously herniated.

            I did ride for the first time today since my surgery! It was a bareback walk around the neighborhood, but still looking between the ears! Very little pain afterwards also. They have me on meloxicam (which helps a ton) as well as lidocaine patches as needed.


            • #7
              FWIW, and this is a very personal decision... both neurosurgeons and orthopedic surgeons can do surgery on the spine (neurologist don't do surgery usually, neurosurgeons do).

              If you troll the internet, each believe they are most well qualified to do spine surgery.

              I had my spinal surgery done by an orthopedic surgeon who did only spinal surgery. Maybe ask for a second opinion from an orthopedic surgeon as well as the plan from the neurosurgeon.

              Thanks for answering my questions (not trying to be nosy, seeing what I can say that would make sense remembering that I am *not* a doctor but a patient who's had spine surgery).

              It seems that often herniated discs do, over time, "fix" themselves. The continued degeneration has got to be concerning for all parties involved.

              Glad you enjoyed your ride!

              What are your plans going forward? Disc replacement? Leave things as they are?

              A friend of mine told me once that in her opinion all back surgery was elective (with the exception of traumatic injury). At some point, you may elect to have that surgery over the quality of life that you are experiencing at the time. I get that completely as I postponed surgery for close to 10 years until quality of life was just not what I wanted and I was willing to take the leap into the unknown. Took over a year from that point to find my surgeon and do all the steps needed to do the surgery. I am intentionally not telling you my outcome as I don't want it to influence your choices
              Your life is made of 2 dates and a dash; make the most of the dash.


              • #8
                take a look at the McKenzie Method for handling back problems. It's a series of special exercises and gadgets that treat back issue mechanically, not surgically. It's helped me tolerate back pain for decades. IMO, back surgery is a risk benefit question, and is indicated only when the benefits outweigh the risks by a considerable amount.

                Robin McKenzie was a New Zealand physiotherapist whose method has been spread worldwide and, IMO, is very effective and the first place to start when back problems crop up.

                Also, I believe firmly that all riders will develop back problems over time, thanks to falls.
                "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                Thread killer Extraordinaire


                • #9
                  I had a lamectomy/discotomy (spelling??) more than 10 years ago. I did every kind of PT known to help me before deciding on surgery. I use a fabulous Orthopedic group for all my injuries (and they are numerous!) but my surgery was performed by a neurologist. I was also seen by a back ortho surgeon in the same practice during and after this episode.

                  Have you had any injections done? I did and they helped immensely, though not permanently. I'd definitely ask about them, as well as more PT and a consult with a second ortho or neurologist.

                  Since my surgery I've worked very hard on developing a strong core and keeping it. If I don't my back hurts. My PT refers to this as "PODS" or pissed off disc syndrome (yeah, it's made up...but quite descriptive) when my back flares up after doing something stupid like lifting wrong or bending over too much gardening.
                  Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


                  • Original Poster

                    I am planning on putting any further surgeries off indefinitely until it becomes a quality of life issue. Recovering from the surgery I had was awful, and I do not want to go through it any time soon, especially if at this point in time, it won't do anything to actually help. For now, I am moderately comfortable with the regimen I am on. I have ridden over the past couple of days (nothing more than a walk) and have had no pain that could be directly related to that is a bonus for sure.

                    Doctor did say the next step may be to try injections, but I don't think the pain is enough at this point to warrant taking that leap.

                    Thank you everyone for your input, and I will check out the aforementioned McKenzie method.


                    • #11
                      Discoteka, I think a very decent strategy.

                      What kept me off the table was Feldenkrais Functional Integration. I would explore "alternative" therapies if you can... Feldenkrais, Alexander Technique (both body work modalities).

                      Research and really talk to your Dr about injections. In my personal journey, they were not recommended and it was felt they may make things worse than they already were.

                      As I said, it is elective surgery and only you know if and when you will choose to elect surgery over your current quality of life.
                      Your life is made of 2 dates and a dash; make the most of the dash.


                      • #12
                        Here's a link to the US McKenzie Institute:
                        "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                        Thread killer Extraordinaire


                        • #13
                          I'm sorry to hear about your back especially being so young. It sucks!

                          I'm ready to try injections! Until then, I also use the lidocaine patches, gabapentin, and Tylenol prn as I can't use NSAIDs due to my stomach. I have meloxicam and it does work well though I try to avoid it. Heating pads help as do the occasional chiro and massage..Also muscle relaxers! It's tiresome to be stiff and sore and some relief with injections would be nice!


                          • #14
                            I was diagnosed with a ruptured disc at age 12 after getting thrown from my horse. I didn't ride again till I was an adult. I would periodically have severe episodes of pain, once landing in the hospital; I did physical therapy and injections. When I was in my 30s I happened upon the book Healing Back Pain- The Mind Body Connection by Dr. John Sarno. I am extremely skeptical of gimmicky sounding stuff and yet... just reading the book made my severe pain episode subside. I never had an episode that bad again. I no longer have sciatica, which I had constantly. I have run 8 marathons and ridden for many years now. Occasionally I will feel my back start to "tweak" a bit and I use a Back on Track brace to relax the muscles. That's it. It doesn't hurt to try the book... And oddly, I read another book of his and found it unhelpful. But the first one changed my life.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Where'sMyWhite View Post

                              What type of doctor are you seeing?

                              Have you had a second opinion?

                              What diagnostic studies have you had other than x-rays?
                              Good questions, OP.

                              20-odd years ago I ruptured the 3rd lumbar disk in my back. In the city where I lived at the time the doctors were still talking surgery for this sort of injury. STILL -- and that was 20 years ago! Meanwhile -- and this was the early days of the Internet -- I researched and learned that a surgeon in Miami had stopped doing surgery in many cases because he had learned that the therapy he did with patients before planned back surgery helped them so much that they didn't have to have the surgery.

                              So now it's 20-something years later, and you are 30-some years younger than I am! See a different doctor and get a second opinion (I didn't have the surgery, BTW).
                              Rack on!


                              • #16
                                Totally agree w/ Vineyridge. The McKenzie Method has saved me. I got the recommedation from another COTHer. What a lifesaver. I too have a herniated disc that happened a while back, and am prone to SI pain and spasms. The surgeon told me to pick something else I liked to do. No way in H3** was I giving up riding or running. The McKenzie Method was a huge game changer. Good Luck. I am no spring chicken either-55!


                                • #17
                                  I also credit the MacKenzie method with helping manage back pain.