08-26-2008, 06:36 AM
So I got my test results from my neck mri. I guess c 3-5 are pretruding.... but c 6 & 7 are herniated. Now I also have a torn rotator cuff and tendonitis in my shoulder. My doc said this is a lot for a 33 year old with no injury. Can Lupus cause this? I know it can't cause torn muscles and stuff but can it attribute to this? One doctor seems to think so. I guess I am baffled. They are going to mri my entire spine, there is concern there is more damage. So I guess I am just curious can inflamation from Lupus cause this kind of damage, or is this something totally different than my Lupus? Again, I know Lupus will not cause tendons to tear but can it- I don't know what I am trying to ask- can it make tearing easier? Can it make disc problems happen more frequently? Does this even make sense? UGH!
08-26-2008, 10:17 AM
Your question is rather difficult to answer. Lupus is a disease that causes inflammation on all parts of the body. Inflammation can cause athritic like pain and damage, buttThe spine is generally spared from the inflammation of lupus. However, this damage can lead to several rheumatic conditions, such as Ankylosing Spondylitis. This is a form of chronic inflammation of the spine and the sacroiliac joints. The sacroiliac joints are located in the low back where the sacrum (the bone directly above the tailbone) meets the iliac bones (bones on either side of the upper buttocks). Chronic inflammation in these areas causes pain and stiffness in and around the spine. Over time, chronic spinal inflammation (spondylitis) can lead to a complete cementing together (fusion) of the vertebrae, a process referred to as ankylosis. Ankylosis leads to loss of mobility of the spine.
Also, a rare complication of lupus that involves inflammation of the spinal cord (transverse myelitis) can occur. a neurological disorder caused by inflammation across both sides of one level, or segment, of the spinal cord. The term myelitis refers to inflammation of the spinal cord; transverse simply describes the position of the inflammation, that is, across the width of the spinal cord. Attacks of inflammation can damage or destroy myelin, the fatty insulating substance that covers nerve cell fibers. This damage causes nervous system scars that interrupt communications between the nerves in the spinal cord and the rest of the body. Symptoms of transverse myelitis include a loss of spinal cord function over several hours to several weeks. What usually begins as a sudden onset of lower back pain, muscle weakness, or abnormal sensations in the toes and feet can rapidly progress to more severe symptoms, including paralysis, urinary retention, and loss of bowel control. The segment of the spinal cord at which the damage occurs determines which parts of the body are affected. Nerves in the cervical (neck) region control signals to the neck, arms, hands, and muscles of breathing (the diaphragm). Nerves in the thoracic (upper back) region relay signals to the torso and some parts of the arms. Nerves at the lumbar (mid-back) level control signals to the hips and legs. Finally, sacral nerves, located within the lowest segment of the spinal cord, relay signals to the groin, toes, and some parts of the legs. Damage at one segment will affect function at that segment and segments below it.
Again, Lupus is an immune disease that can attack many internal organs and tissues. The classic parts of the skeleton that can be affected by the inflammation of lupus are the peripheral joints (these are the joints away from the spine, such as the small joints of the hands and feet, the wrists, knees, elbows, ankles, and shoulders). Lupus commonly causes arthritis in these joints.
Lupus can cause neck and back pain, however, because muscles can become inflamed by lupus. Furthermore, the muscle pain syndrome called fibromyalgia that can cause pain in these areas is commonly associated with lupus. Moreover, cortisone medications that are frequently needed for lupus can weaken the bones of the spine, leading to breakage (fractures) of vertebrae.
Finally, neck and back pain most frequently result from injury or wear and tear (degenerative change with aging). This is true in the general population and is also true for patients with lupus. However, there are many causes of pains in these areas, ranging from organ disease (such as kidney problems and others) to disc herniations. It is not possible for me to know what the exact cause(s) of your particular back problems are attributed to or if Lupus made it easier for your back problems to occur.
I know this was not an answer to your question. But, as I said earlier, it is a very difficult question to answer. In any event, I do hope that you get some relief from your back problems and that you and your doctor are able to correct some of the issues.
Peace and Blessings
08-26-2008, 10:47 AM
I read your post and I agree with Saysusie. I also have Akylosing Spongilitis and degenerative disc disease with herniated and bulging discs all up and down my spine. I just had surgery on my lumbar area of my spine due to a seriously herniated and bulging disc. It is a very painful condition. I don't know what else to say.