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Got an ache or pain? Have a question about a prescription or over-the-counter drug? Looking for some FREE medical advice?
Question:
i have hurrniated disc L5-S1 pinching the S1 nerve root causing numbness to my left foot and back pain with shooting pain down my legs i was wondering how helpful is physical therapy and should i consider the surgery also i have osteophyte at T2 and smaller ones at other upper levels causing pain in my upper back and left arm how common is this and should i have them removed iam 32 yearsold and feel as if iam 90.
sb 
Answer:
An accurate answer to your question is not possible without us seeing your X-rays and MRI. The initial approach is low back pain always 'conservative' i.e. take a break from the activities that make the pain worse (usually sports), use NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen) to reduce the pain, and, sometimes, the expert physiotherapy (this is not the same as 'therapeutic massage') may help significantly. That said, if you have symptoms and / or signs of nerve compression surgery may be needed as a last resort especially when the condition is painful enough to interfere with daily life. Surgery usually involves at least excising the disc thus relieving any nerve compression present and at most fusing the adjacent bones so that there is no instability. These are highly expert procedures and should only be recommended and carried out by an experienced orthopedic surgeon. We recommend you make an appointment to see one of our doctors and bring with you the results of your past investigations, as without firsthand knowledge of your history and this other information it's not possible to make a recommendation. Disclaimer: These comments are made for the purpose of discussion and should NOT be used as recommendations for or against therapies or other treatments. An individual patient is always advised to consult their own physician.
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