Case Stories Mark’s story – dealing with chronic back pain
Back Pain Pilates

Living with chronic back pain can be awful and Mark’s story shows that it can be search to find a solution.

Read below how Mark (46) managed to deal with his back issues (and yes, Pilates was part of the solution!):

“I’ve had back issues since I was 21 years old. It was just mild back pain at the time, which I could manage quite well with some physio exercises. But then when I was 41, I missed the bottom step of the ladder when coming down and I was in instant agony.

So I went to the GP and I managed to get a referral to Back Specialist, which thankfully put me on the right track.

I had epidural cortisone injections after the MRI scan pinpointed my facet joints had come out of place and pushed out on the sciatic nerve. After the first set of injections, I had a few physio sessions which helped, but I didn’t keep it up at home.

As the pain came back, I took painkillers to cope. Unfortunately, as my body got used to the painkillers, they became less effective, and I found myself getting addicted, taking more and more tablets to ease the pain.

The lowest point was when I tried a morphine patch together with the other painkillers, which helped me get to sleep that evening, but in the morning it caused me to collapse. I ended up in an ambulance due to an overdose on painkillers.

Fortunately, my Back Specialist then recommended a second set of epidural and facet injections, which made life a lot better. I had two weeks of physio after that, which was really helpful, but again after the initial two weeks,
I didn’t keep it up at home. As my pain came back, I had to have more injections.

I knew I had to find a more sustainable way of dealing with my back issues without relying on regular injections. Then, through a friend, I tried a Pilates class with Sarah and after 3 to 4 months, I was pretty much pain-free.

Just 1 hour a week of Pilates has made a huge difference. I haven’t had injections now for 2 years and my flexibility, core strength and balance has improved dramatically, which has kept serious back issues at bay.

Living with chronic back pain is simply awful. Having found a way of keeping my back pain under control has had such a positive effect on my life. I’m no longer being held back by pain, which is a huge relief.”