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Degenerative Disc Disease
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Does anyone know of a correlation between celiac disease with Vitamin D deficiency and Degenerative Disc Disease?

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I would love to hear about this. I am 17 and I have 6 disc bulges just in my lumbar spine! It is ridiculous!

Kassandra

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I'm interested in any possible causes of degenerative disc disease. Kassandra, I agree it is ridiculous. I was also diagnosed with bulged discs and degenerative disc disease at a young age, when I was 18. The last MRI I had, when I was 24 (I'm 29 now) showed multiple herniations!

I seem to be one of those people who ruptures, heals, ruptures, heals on a cycle. The pain flares, becomes debilitating, where I actually can't walk... and my doc mentions surgery again, which I've repeatedly refused. I go on heavy painkillers so that I can take care of my kids, plus muscle relaxers and steroids. Gradually the pain lessen, slowly, slowly, until it's pretty much gone.

Then the cycle repeats in about 6-7 months. :( Not fun. This latest good spell has lasted longer than any I've had in years though. My last flare-up resolved about 9 months ago.

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I would love to hear about this. I am 17 and I have 6 disc bulges just in my lumbar spine! It is ridiculous!

Kassandra

My daughter is 21 years old and has had issues with back and neck pain for years---due to bulging disks also. Just wondered if you experience a great deal of pain with this and what if anything has been helpful that you have tried. We have been thru physical therapy, nerve blocks, epidural injections ---just to name a few of things we have tried. In addition to this she also suffers from severe problems with headaches. She went away to college for the first time this past year and we are now in the process of moving her home for the summer, but she ended up having to take a withdraw passing from her courses because she missed so many days due to increased pain. She is also seeing a chiropractor 3 times a week. Any information you may have to help us from your experiences would be very appreciated.

Thank you,

Michelle Terral

mterral@comcast.net

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I'd recommend two things; glucosamine, and methylcobalamin (B12). The glucosamine rebuilds the cushioning material between bones, and the B12 helps rebuild and maintain nerve cells. I started taking the glucosamine for TMJ, and it works wonders. You can get vegetarian versions if you have an allergy to shellfish. The one I get happens to also have MSM, but I don't know if that has any effect, and research on it is still forthcoming.

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I also was diagnosed with that and with osteoporosis a few years ago, prediagnosis, when I herniated a disk. I haven't had any issues at all since I went gluten-free. In my case a lot of my pain was due to inflammation from the celiac, once the inflammation was gone the pain went away. The only time I have problems with my discs now is if I do something stupid, like moving heavy furniture by myself.

I will add that I did go to a PT for quite a while to restrengthen my body after diagnosis. I think rebuilding core muscles whose only excercise for years was cramping D :blink: helped a great deal with my back issues also. If your doctor can give you a script for a few physical therapy sessions it might help a lot.

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Hi,

I am wondering about thistoo. I was about to post about it. I have had back, neck, and shoulder problems since 20. I am now 32. I have spent tons of money at the chiropractor and would be crippled without them. My PT says I have muscular caused scoliosis. My spine curve, ribs go out, and left shoulder goes out of place. I have had TMJ since childhood. My PT says my shoulder joint is fine. It sucks.

Since going 100% gluten free my sharp shoulder pain has gone away. That has been a miracle. I take a calcium, mag, vit D supplement. I also take aVit b12 supplement and eat fortified nutritional yeast.

I am concerned. Could I still be healing? Do I have other food intolerances? I am off all dairy. This is more then just pain, this is my skeleton not staying in place. I am afraid it is something else. I have been researching online.

I will start glucosamine. I have some here.

Mterral, I am so sorry about your daughter. I hope she finds relief soon.

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I also was diagnosed with that and with osteoporosis a few years ago, prediagnosis, when I herniated a disk. I haven't had any issues at all since I went gluten-free. In my case a lot of my pain was due to inflammation from the celiac, once the inflammation was gone the pain went away. The only time I have problems with my discs now is if I do something stupid, like moving heavy furniture by myself.

I will add that I did go to a PT for quite a while to restrengthen my body after diagnosis. I think rebuilding core muscles whose only excercise for years was cramping D :blink: helped a great deal with my back issues also. If your doctor can give you a script for a few physical therapy sessions it might help a lot.

When I was 29, I had a herniated cervical (neck) disc ( C 5/6) that ruptured and caused paralysis and foot drop. I had a C 5/6 discectomy and fusion surgery where they remove the disc and replace it with bone - in my case, from my hip, The bone then mends - like a broken bone- to fuse the neck and replace the disc. Major heavy-duty surgery. My doc said "BOY, you're young for this!"

I was also diagnosed with Degenerative Disc Disease (try saying that fast five times) in my lower back pre-celiac diagnosis. I was diagnosed with osteopenia at celiac disease diagnosis.

Just immediately prior to diagnosis, I had extreme neuropathy in my arms and my MRI showed 3-4 more "bulging" neck discs that my doc said would need surgery sooner or later.

After I went gluten-free, all my neck pain and extremity numbness went away, like overnight. So did my lower back DDD pain.

Also, I had what was diagnosed as plantar faciitis in both legs. I wore a night splint on one or both feet for over a year. At celiac disease diagnosis, I was in pain. A month later I realized, hey! No more plantar faciitis pain! And it hasn't come back since.

Ravenwoodglass (as normal) has a good point. Removing the inflammation may have been the key for me. I consider myself fortunate that the pain and neuropathy are all gone. I haven't had a repeat MRI but I am just hopeful that all my discs are happy and healthy now.

Michelle, I hope your daughter has similar experiences. Trying a really strict gluten-free diet for the next few months may get rid of the pain before school starts again in the fall!

~Laura

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I have this too and found Prolotherapy cured me. Its really great if you find a good Dr to do it. I was thinking of back surgery before this - so am glad I found an alternative.

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I haven't been on here in years, and I know this topic is very old, but I just wanted to bump it and mention the possibility of going overseas to get the discs fixed.  I am doing that this weekend.  I will be the first American to have six levels replaced in my spine all at once.

 

Don't suffer needlessly.

 

My theory is that the disc problems happened before our Dx of celiac.  I don't know that we can really reverse it, but we can get them replaced and get on with our lives.

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Good luck! :)

Thank you.  And now, because of this thread, I am having the celiac conversation with folks over at my spinal forum!  I am going to see if I can figure out how to get the site to email me if someone needs me.  I'm not on here but want to be avaible in case someone needs me.

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Thank you!  I just made sure I can get email notifications, so if anyone has an questions about disc replacement, feel free too pm me!

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    • I get these crazy cravings for some things I can not eat anymore. Not only am I diagnosed with celiac but I also have a allergy to corn, olives, sesame, peanuts, and intolerance to yeast, soy, dairy, and a very low tolerance for carbs/sugars, Top it off with I can not digest meats or egg yolks, they just give me the burps and come up later.
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    • After suffering pretty much all year with one illness after another I've finally managed to get a diagnosis and it turns out to be celiac. After my doctors consistently failing to even consider the possibility it might be that (as opposed to "IBS" or "stress") I kept pushing for the Iga TTg test and it was off the charts with a score of >128... may as well fail it in style I guess. So here I am at the start of what feels like the end of my life as I know it. Been doing nothing but reading for the past week and frankly it's terrifying. Here's a few things that are going round in my head and I'd really appreciate your thoughts with. Apologies if it's a bit of an essay  Diagnosis I'm still furious at my doctors for not even entertaining the thought that celiac could be the root cause of all my ills. Given the blood test is so simple it feels almost negligent that they don't run this right at the start to rule it out. Instead I got subjected to poisons like Omeprazole which made me even more ill, whilst being told the physical symptoms were all in my head. Just as well I knew better and kept hitting up Google until my self-diagnosis was proved correct... to think these people get paid highly to be so incompetent makes my blood boil. Does feel good having outwitted the so-called professionals though. Seems 9 months is comparatively quick from symptoms to diagnosis compared to some others that have gone years with the problems so could be worse I guess. Food and diet I'm male vegetarian (non-negotiable) which makes this even harder as so many of my protein sources are now ruled out. Seems many with celiac were having trouble losing weight whereas I'm in the opposite situation. Already lost best part of a stone in the past few weeks and it's becoming noticeable now. The MyFitnessPal app reckons I need 2600 calories a day to maintain \ gain weight - no idea where that's going to come from. On top of that I read sites like Gluten Dude where even the Gluten Free foods are seen as poisons and going on extreme diets like Paleo \ SCD are the only real way forward. Again being veggie makes that practically impossible and if I'm unlucky enough to end up with the dairy issues as well I'm well and truly stuffed. Right now I'm trying the gluten-free Quorn products to see how I go, as well as more eggs etc. Porridge has been my go-to breakfast in the mornings for a while after I cut out bread whilst self-diagnosing but depending on where you read even that's a potential problem (currently using gluten-free porridge oats and seeing how it goes) Seems many gluten-free people have to go right back to basics and cook everything from scratch. That's a problem for me as I'm utterly hopeless on that front and time doesn't permit waiting hours just to prepare one meal. Seems nigh-on impossible to do day-in, day-out. Health Rightly or wrongly right now I see this diagnosis as a death sentence long-term. Looks like it brings other associated illnesses with it and this particular article really scares me: http://scdlifestyle.com/2012/03/the-gluten-free-lie-why-most-celiacs-are-slowly-dying/ I've only really had noticeable symptoms for the past year or so but wonder how long this has been going on for and what damage has already been done. All seems to have started from when I turned 30 (knew I was dreading that age for a reason) and right now I wonder how long I'm going to last before the really bad stuff starts. One of the other illnesses I'd considered as a possibility before getting diagnosed was Hashimoto's Thyroiditis; now it seems that's closely linked with Celiac so may not be out of the woods with that yet either. Just seems to be one big list of illness all triggered from the same point One positive change I've noticed thus far since cutting out gluten is that bloating seems to have gone down and bowel movements are better. Still getting headaches and muscle twitching, which could be as much a withdrawal symptom from gluten as anything else.  Some sites were suggesting stopping exercise whilst withdrawing but I can't face that as it's the only thing keeping me going at present. Again will keep going as-was and see what happens. Then to top it off it sounds like the next step is the biopsy - I'm scared of being put out for the procedure as a member of family went into hospital a few years back for something supposedly routine and never came back out. From what I've been told it's important to have done though as it shows just how broken the villi are so another thing to worry about in the meantime. Social life Seems like despite there being some gluten free options in certain restaurants (granted better now than years ago) I'm going to be hugely limited in food options. Either sitting on the side looking on or just plain not able to go out much anymore. Already had the first hitting-home moment watching colleagues eating pastries that were brought in while I just have to look on... then it dawns that this is never going to get better... urghhh Family life I'm really struggling to accept this lifelong illness and loss of health and it's taking a toll on the people around me at the moment. They won't be going gluten-free so will have to take my chances with the mixed kitchen environment; already gone with split toasters etc. so can't do much more than that. Dating Basically seems game over on that front, unlike many who are diagnosed with understanding partners \ spouses I'm still in the dating game, which is judgemental enough as it is without all the complications that the gluten issues bring. I'm reading even kissing someone with lipstick \ make-up is apparently a big no-no... once any date hears that they won't be coming back... forever alone status confirmed is how it looks right now. Overall feelings I still can't quite figure out if this illness was in me all along and just hasn't flared up enough to notice until now or whether the extreme stress I've been under for the past year or so has triggered it. If the second scenario is correct I can't stop thinking about the events that all led up to this almost year-long bout of ill health and life-changing diagnosis. Can celiac be brought on by stress alone or realistically was I always a ticking timebomb just waiting to be set off? For every person I see that's had a positive change after cutting out gluten (and getting by with reasonably achievable adjustments) there seems to be 10 others with horrible side-effects and long-term complications. Right now the future feels rather bleak - like all hope just been taken away. Help???
    • It sounds like you're doing great. That's amazing that your anxiety has decreased like that. You're obviously doing something really good for your health. With the other things I'm sure they will get better in time. After I gave up gluten I had a bad year but overall it got better. Things like anxiety and insomnia massively improved over time with being gluten free. However, going Paleo (which you are on your way to with the no dairy too) really helped my anxiety, as did running and self-taught acupressure. In particular I found processed gluten free foods were awful for my mood. I know you have to find your own way but I really want to encourage you to see how you feel without that if you haven't already. I also can't afford therapy but when I did have it, that helped too but just being well, gives you the chance to sort your own thoughts and feelings out even without a therapist. Good luck
    • Thank you so much guys. Reading that last response and those from forum members who seemed to be mind-bogglingly sensitive to gluten at times helps me feel like less of a freak  Perhaps worse than the symptoms themselves was my fear that I'm the only person on earth who has gone through this and that if it continues, I will end up with all of my friends and family washing their hands of me because it would look to them like I'm the only one with this and so I must be crazy. It's really good to hear that the sensitivity can go down too. I've been holding onto this idea through the tough times, reminding myself that I also had really bad hayfever for a few years, and asthma at a different time and they both got better.  It has been a whole month since I had a bad reaction to gluten. It has also been two weeks since I even had a small reaction and I'm feeling SO much better. I'm still going to take every precaution I can but this feels worlds away from how it was. At my most risk averse, I had a day on holiday where I only ate bananas and avocados because I could eat them without them having been touched by human hands, even my own! (This was straight after getting sicker and sicker and hunting down what it was that made me ill. I found the refill bottles of soap in the house where I was staying and read that they had wheat in them - not an airborne reaction I imagine but when I washed my hands to prepare food it was probably contaminating my food. Plus because I didn't speak the language, I couldn't be sure the new soap I bought was gluten free.) Now, I am still avoiding environments with lots of gluten and staying clear of grains, but I have reintroduced rice using the food challenge method as directed by my dietician (since I understand that rice is, according to Dr Fasano, the lowest risk of gluten contamination of all the grains) and I am building my weight back up. My Paleo+Fasano diet has been assessed by a registered dietician to include every nutrient and micronutrient that I need so I guess having a really good diet is helping too. My husband has been able to see also that the last time he cooked gluten in the house was the last time I got ill. So it is reassuring for him to see that the sacrifice he is making is making such a difference to me. I also took the advice about new cooking utensils - thanks! I have my fingers crossed for me. I want this better health to continue but right now I'm happy to know that there is a break in the clouds and to know that I can feel like me again. A lot of the steps I have taken to avoid gluten would be seen by some as over the top but I can say that for me, when I introduced these steps, that's when I stopped getting reactions and it's all worth it. Good luck to everyone, sensitive or not, who gets into a bad place with managing their reactions. Hang on in there!        
    • Hello all  I have been living gluten free now for 6 months, as directed by my family doctor after a 6 week elimination diet revealed that I may be celiac or gluten sensitive. I was tested by blood work,  which showed nothing, and am awaiting a specialist to get a biopsy done. I am no where close to getting into see her as it is cased as a non emergency. I have been constantly having bowel problems, rashes all over my body, low iron, weight fluctuations, no energy, depression  and anxiety now for 6 years. Have been a huge nuisance(imo) to my doctor requiring constant antibiotics for this,  creams for this "mystery rash" and either laxatives for constipation that would sometimes go on for over a week to diarrhea that would keep my home- no in between . It hasn't been easy, especially whenever doctors are so quick to blame all symptoms as mental illness. Even though I have continuously told them I feel my issues are something simple...  not a mental illness. Anyways long story short, after going gluten free I have had somewhat Nnormal bowel functions, less rashes around my stomach, been able to cut back drastically on my depression medications and anxiety meds, and energy has taken a huge improvement  which all is great! But .... I am constantly HUngry have gained 20 lbs and can no longer fit into most of my clothes. This is really bothering me because I am afraid I am approaching a weight problem.  At only 5'5" weighing 165lbs is large to begin with. Especially whenever I have two children and have only EVER weighed this much while being pregnant with them. I am 26 years old and just tired of not being myself. I am physically healthy and just would like my body to act it. Any help would be greatly appreciated, as I said I am only 6 months into my journey and have definitely re exposed myself to gluten (accidently) many times in between. Much love. 
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