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    What causes memory loss and urinary incontinence while suffering from bulging discs?

Posted on Mon, 31 Jul 2017 in Brain and Spine
Question: I am trying to help find answers for my 40 year old son He is married w sm children. He has experienced severe back pain with bulging disk ex of L4 & 5 went to the laser spine institute and had surgery because the pain management Drs could not control his pain he had several back injections from them plus several different pain medication including morphing etc after over a year going to these Drs w no relief and increased pain he had the back surgery. The plan ride from XXXXXXX to Abq was a nightmare he passed out from the pain several times when he tryrd to stand up he would have fallen if his wife had not caught him. Once home pain was severe and he contacted the spine institute who referred him back to his pain specialists who offered more pain Meds which he wanted to be fixed not given pain Meds but he ended up taking the Meds to numb the pain His Dr also suggested canabus which helps some but does not fix the problemhe had several falls couldn't stand so he lost his job. Over the past year he has developed memory loss he doesn't remember what he or his family did the day before i.e. Trip to Disney land doesn't realize Trump is president -questions ask the day before-his wife and kids write down on a blackboard where they are at or need to go- he -has developed bladder inconstancy -can no longer drive because she passes out if the vehicle hits a bump causing his back to hurt. Trying to find a Dr or reach group that can dx his problem and fix it. He has no quality of life he is becoming depressed feeling of failure unable to work. He was 2 1/2 -3 years ago a import/export control expert on electrial devices used in space. He has been trying to get into the university neuron group sent them all his records and his wife keeps calling for appointments but he as yet has been unable to see him or get a appointment his primary Dr said she was out of ideas
Answered by Dr. Lekshmi Rita Venugopal 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
Possible Daignosis : Normal Pressure hydrocephalus(NPH)

Detailed Answer:
Thank you for trusting HealthcareMagic,

The memory loss and urinary incontinence may not be related to the L4/L5 spinal problems.

The triad of memory loss, urinary incontinence, and frequent falls raises the possibility of Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus(NPH). Here the cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain, causing excess pressure

NPH can be diagnosed by MRI brain, MRI CSF flow studies and spinal tapping.

Treatment of NPH is surgical by putting a shunt to drain out the excess CSF/fluid in the brain. NPH responds well to surgery.

Please be advised to follow up with a neurologist/ neurosurgeon for confirmation of diagnosis and appropriate management.

Hope this answers your question
Please feel free to address further questions here.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
Answered by
Dr. Lekshmi Rita Venugopal

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2012

Answered : 3186 Questions


The User accepted the expert's answer

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