Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sleep apnea and back pain

One of the reasons that I have sleep apnea is my history of back pain. I know that it is a little bit of a stretch saying that back pain has caused my sleep apnea but let me explain.

In 1986, I felt a numbing then sharp pain in my lower back. I didn’t go to the doctor right away because I had back problems before and they eventually went away. But this one didn’t, in fact it got worse, a whole lot worse. Not only was my lower back pain hurting I also felt the pain go from my hip down to my ankle. The first thing that I thought of was my family history of poor circulation. My father had poor circulation and so did his brothers. (My father also had sleep apnea)

I went to a specialist and he sent me to get a MRI. The MRI showed that I had a disc that was flattened and that was irritating a nerve in my lower back. The doctor gave me a shot in the back to block the nerve. After one month my back was without pain.

I was back to my normal self more or less. The only thing that changed was how I slept. Before the back problem I slept on my stomach, which is not a good position to sleep in. After the nerve blocking shot the only way that I could sleep was on my back. Of course flat on my back meant that my mouth was wide open and all the loose tissue in my mouth and my large tongue fell back in my mouth blocking my airway.

And that is why I blame my sleep apnea on my previous back problem. It didn’t help that my tongue was enlarged or that my face is extremely full either.

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1 comment:

  1. Hey that a very informative article i like that article so much. I get that the habbit of sleeping can creat the problem of back pain. So i will try to no sleep more thanks for inform me. For the more information visit www(dot)snoringisboring(dot)com.