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Insufficiency fractures of the sacrum after radiation

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Has anyone had insufficiency fractures of the sacrum after pelvic radiation? If so, did these fractures ever heal or new ones develop?

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 724
Joined: Sep 2011

Please explain what this is and maybe we can respond. I have several bone issues, but not sure I;ve heard of this. Best, debrajo

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 536
Joined: Jun 2012

I googled this but didn't find what I read very helpful.

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

Could it be calcium growth? Hubbie had this after younger years with a few knee surgeries. Eventually it had some calcium growth on sides of knee which looked like the bone....affected his movement and in the end, had knee replacement.

Could this be part of the growth?

Jan

kellyw314
Posts: 51
Joined: Jan 2007

I suffered an insufficiency fracture of my right sacrum about 1 year post surgery = awoke to a mild discomfort and treated with alleve - pain worsened for a week = spoke to primary care and she prescribed a muscle relaxer = after another week saw an ortho = diagnosed sciatic and prescribed heavier meds = saw gyn/onc about 6 weeks from onset = convinced I was having a recurrence = after exam he said he doubted anything to do with cancer, and sent me for a CAT - result: suggestive of fracture and recommended a MRI = this confirmed sacrum fracture = I was healing by now = had horrific pain whenever I walked or changed position for 8 weeks - have not had any further fractures and believe that radiation post-surgery weakened the sacrum

I still have pain in my right lower back after extended periods of walking or standing and it is now 6 years ago that I was diagnosed. Swimming has been a great relief as well as physical therapy. I have not followed through on stretching/bending exercises from PT -- my own stupidity -- PT did help and I am sure I would feel better if I continued the exercise routine. Have you been diagnosed with this condition?

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 724
Joined: Sep 2011

I have not...mine seems to be from massive new bone growth or bone spurs. I am having a time with spinal spurs in my neck and very low in both sides of my hips. They seem to be punching into the siatic nerve in my hips and down one leg. I did the six rounds of chemo and five internal radiation, no external and I am not quite 2 1/2 years out of chemo. Hope you feel better soon! For me, this has been a real pain in the butt!! Best, debrajo

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 536
Joined: Jun 2012

So is your problem related to ca treatment ?

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 536
Joined: Jun 2012

So is your problem related to ca treatment ?

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 724
Joined: Sep 2011

Connie, some people in my family do have a tendency to produce bone growth, but it seems mine has gone into over-drive! I assume the chemo had something to do with it or at least caused my body to over respond. I even have them in the long bone in my lower right leg to the point that they put me on hydrocodine for the worst of the pain. It also seems to have made what little arthritis I had a lot worse really quickly.All in all through,a small price to pay for being NED! Best, debrajo

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Kelly, thanks for your response. Yes, have insufficiency fractures. I finished radiation end of April and chemo end of August. Using a walker, on pain meds and a sacral belt since early October. How long did it take for the fracture to heal? I cannot get a straight answer from any of the docs. Did you have chemo in addition to the radiation? Have you been tested for osteoporosis which may be a result of radiation?

Good to hear that swimming helped.

Again, thanks.

Sara Zipora's picture
Sara Zipora
Posts: 227
Joined: Sep 2010

Sorry been outta touch.
Yes, last Pet showed 'stress fracture' contra lateral to pelvic side where I am now having third round of rad treatment. As if sword. Goes in on diagonal and comes out of back.
Some pain but bearable.
We're kinda in a War mode now (Israel) with sirens going off and about one and a half minutes to get to safety. All else seems minor, but going in to hospital 5x per wk for Rad Tx.
Everything pales to pain of seeing our and your children in such dire straits. We can only pray that God has a plan and we'll all get out of this mess, each his or her own, in safety and in peace.

Sara

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 724
Joined: Sep 2011

Dear Sara, praying for your health,recovery, and safety, and that of Israel. Best, debrajo

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

I didn't have insufficiency fractures in sacrum area, but did have chemo and external radiation to the pelvic area. I completed my treatments July '09 and by Dec '09 I was having lower back pain. Did speak with my oncologist who told me NOT CANCER, YOU'RE JUST GETTING OLD. Thanks doc!

Finally this year had an MRI done, which showed "bulging disk, in lowest part of back. Today doing fine as had chiropractic treatments.

What I can tell you, chemo and especially radiation to the spine simply dries up the joints and ligaments. If I ask my radiologist and chemo doc, neither will admit this, but lots of research showing otherwise and I'm proof with back issues....never had them before treatments. Lastly my DEXA showed "normal" last year, whereas 2 years prior showed thinning of the lower back or tip of hip area. As well no osteoporosis.

What helps -- weight bearing exercises such as walking, weights, running, etc. Suggest a consult with a qualified doctor prior to start of any of these movements, especially running, as very jolting to the body.

Best to you my friend,
Jan

kellyw314
Posts: 51
Joined: Jan 2007

Dear Test,

My sacrum healed within about 8 weeks, but it was most uncomfortable during that 8 week period = I found being in bed to be unbearable and had my greatest comfort when sitting in a recliner chair = actually slept in a recliner for several weeks even after healing as it was very tender to roll over in bed - once 8 weeks had passed I could move from a sitting position and walk without excruciating pain -- have had lingering back issues over 6 years as standing/walking for more than 30 minutes is uncomfortable == alleve does help

kellyw314
Posts: 51
Joined: Jan 2007

I had only 27 external pelvic radiation treatments - no chemo - did have bone density test after this issue and it was fine

sunflash's picture
sunflash
Posts: 142
Joined: Aug 2011

Sara,
Praying for you as well. Praying for peace and safety for you and your entire family. I can't even imagine having to deal with all of this stress and trauma while undergoing treatment. Praying for God's peace and guidance for Israel.

Sara Zipora's picture
Sara Zipora
Posts: 227
Joined: Sep 2010

Yup, got Sacral and pelvic stress fractures. most probably from rads.

As always y'all demonstrate such a wellspring of generosity of spirit! We are all in some 'boat' or other fighting so many of life's curve balls and yet you guys always find time and space to touch others. Thanks! Sara

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Kelly,

Thanks for your response. Please see my post questions on 12/19/12. Would appreciate your comments/experiences in response to my additional questions. Thanks.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Thank you for responding. Are you able to drive, grocery shop, and do errands, etc. If so, how long from time of fracture until you were able to do so. It has been 3 months and I am still on narcotics for the pain and unable to do much except sit in a recliner and go to doc appointments. It is very painful to sit so I cannot drive. Still using a walker.

Teresa 61's picture
Teresa 61
Posts: 84
Joined: Dec 2008

I rarely post but thought this would be a good subject for me to comment on. I was diagnosed with stage 2A, grade 3 endometrial uterine cancer Dec 2008.I had 3 chemos, 25 radiations, 1 36 hr internal radiation, then 2 more chemos,My treatments ended June 2009.
One month after treatments ended my back started hurting really bad and I could hardly walk upstairs. I had to lift my legs up with my hands to get clothing on or to even get in a car., by Sept. of 2009 the pain was worse and I could barely walk. My doctor gave me Hydro codene and ibuprophen 800 . I took them together and they eased the pain. Slowly but surely after about a year I was almost back to normal. When I get tired my back burns really bad, my stomach stays swollen and always feels uncomfortable. I had a pet scan in 2010... the doctor asked me if I had fractured my pelvic bones in a car accident.. I've never been in any accident.The only thing that could have caused my fractured pelvic bones was chemo and or radiation. Hope this info helps someone...Teresa

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa,

What did the pet scan indicate..why did the doc ask if you fractured your pelvic bones? Fractures are usually confirmed with an MRI? Are you able to drive and do shopping now? Thanks for your response.

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

What I've learned thru a few docs and research, the treatments such as chemo/radiation deplete our bones of calcium. This can cause breaks and fractures very easily. One thing I've beefed up, working out or more weight-bearing exercise. Movement helps keep our bones strong, less susceptible to breakage.

One thing you might want to add to your diet, vit D....had it checked lately? Helps build bones and good cancer preventative.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080714162515.htm

Best to you,
Jan

Teresa 61's picture
Teresa 61
Posts: 84
Joined: Dec 2008

pretty sure it was a ct pet scan, my obgyn ordered the scan as part of my post cancer check up in 2010 and noticed the fracures to my pelvic bones.I know how bad you are feeling but there is hope. Took along time, but I'am pretty much back to normal and do all my own shopping and housekeeping,plus I have a 38 year old daughter , she's in my picture, that Is totally handicapped from a brain injury and I'am her care giver. In the begining I took 1 hydrocodene and 1 ibuprophen800 as soon as I woke up and had to wait for it to work on me before I could move. After a few months I just took the ibuprophen800. I no longer take either medication. Teresa

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa, thanks again for the info. How long did it take to recover from the fractures, drive and run errands? Did you need to use crutches or a walker? Did you have pain when sitting? My pain is in the groin area and hips and worse when sitting. Again, good to hear you are doing well at this time. Are you pain free in regard to the fractures? Thank you.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa, thanks again for the info. How long did it take to recover from the fractures, drive and run errands? Did you need to use crutches or a walker? Did you have pain when sitting? My pain is in the groin area and hips and worse when sitting. Again, good to hear you are doing well at this time. Are you pain free in regard to the fractures? Thank you.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa, thanks again for the info. How long did it take to recover from the fractures, drive and run errands? Did you need to use crutches or a walker? Did you have pain when sitting? My pain is in the groin area and hips and worse when sitting. Again, good to hear you are doing well at this time. Are you pain free in regard to the fractures? Thank you.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa, thanks again for the info. How long did it take to recover from the fractures, drive and run errands? Did you need to use crutches or a walker? Did you have pain when sitting? My pain is in the groin area and hips and worse when sitting. Again, good to hear you are doing well at this time. Are you pain free in regard to the fractures? Thank you.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa, thanks again for the info. How long did it take to recover from the fractures, drive and run errands? Did you need to use crutches or a walker? Did you have pain when sitting? My pain is in the groin area and hips and worse when sitting. Again, good to hear you are doing well at this time. Are you pain free in regard to the fractures? Thank you.

Teresa 61's picture
Teresa 61
Posts: 84
Joined: Dec 2008

My pain was in my hips and groin also, it hurt when I walked, hurt at night in bed, could not roll over, pain would wake me up at night, can't remember if it hurt when I was sitting. Took about a year to feel okay without meds.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa,

Thanks so much for sharing your story with me. I fear recovery will never happen for me and the fractures will continue. It is good to hear from survivors who healed. Please continue to post.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa,

Did you have a bone density test? Do you have osteoporosis or are your bones in good shape...wondering if the radiation thinned your bones and mine. I am scheduling a scan. Thanks.

Test111
Posts: 21
Joined: Nov 2012

Teresa,

Have you had a bone density scan?  Did the radiation weaken your bones?  Do you have osteoporosis?  Thanks.

Ro10's picture
Ro10
Posts: 1356
Joined: Jan 2009

I have been wondering how you have been. We went through treatment about the same time. We both had the sandwich treatment. We both had the looong internal radiation. Mine was 28 hours. Then I followed the radiation with 3 more chemo treatments.

I remember you taking care of your daughter, and wondered how you managed. I am glad your back pain went away. I am so happy your cancer stayed away, too. Is that your daughter and a granddaughter in your picture? You look great.

Hope you continue to do well. Hope you keep us posted from time to time.. In peace and caring.

Teresa 61's picture
Teresa 61
Posts: 84
Joined: Dec 2008

I read posts quite often so I know whats happening with everyone, I just have a hard time writing down what I'am thinking. Lot's of brain fog, either from the treatments or age, not sure which one...LOL. I've read about all your cruises, sounds wonderful. Yes the picture is of my daughter Julie, me and my grandaughter Bryce.(my sons daughter)
My heart broke when I read about the sisters we lost. I think of Linda all the time... take care Ro.....Teresa

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