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Hi - new to the site! lumbar spinal fusions surgeries...

joolyajjoolya Posts: 5
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:23 AM in New Member Introductions
Hello all,

I'm new to the site - and to looking for help generally! Bit of a typical "type a" trying to please everyone and pretending that everything is ok. Had anterior and posterior L5/S1 fusions (just after having recovered from many years of non-spinal related leg-lengthening operations - and then had an accident at work requiring spinal surgery!).

Just from the little I've seen of the site so far, it sounds like so many people have been through some terrible things, and I'm hoping to seek a bit of help and understanding from those having been through it - and if I can to give a bit of advice to anyone starting out on this particular journey....
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Comments

  • welcome to spine-health...
  • thanks for the welcome :)

    how are you?
  • joolya said:
    thanks for the welcome :)

    how are you?
    I am doing ok,my rhizotomy has worn off,ihad it done a year ago so i might have to have it done again...
  • sorry to be ignorant - but what is a rhizotomy - is it a form of spinal injection?

    sometimes it's the difference between english and american medical terms that throws me!
  • :) hi and welcome to the forum! :H we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. i don't have your problem but we do have pain in common. i am sorry to hear you have had so many surgeries. make yourself at home. good luck with your recovery! Jenny :)
  • Thanks Jenny :)

    It's been one of those random weeks where I thought I was coping, and then had a really stressful time at work with colleagues who just don't understand what effect unreasonable levels of stress have on my back problems and so I seized up and could hardly make it through. I'm sure it's something that pretty much everyone can relate to - but it's got me so down - much more so than usual - and I tried to talk to some friends, but I see their eyes glaze over and I know that they're thinking that I should be 'better' by now...and I'd been thinking about looking into getting some support from people who are going through similar things, and heard some good things about this website so i logged on for the first time. I know I'm about to be really pathetic (if I haven't been already!) and rant but I need to let it out! I'm just exhausted from pretending to friends and family that everything is ok, when in reality I feel like I'm spiralling into depression again.

    I've had two major fusions in the past 3 years - with many injections and much physio prior - and I feel like my body has been through so much that it's taking a frustratingly long time to feel anything like 'normal' again...and I worry so much that I'll never be able to cope with the stresses and strains of work and life that everyone has to deal with.

    I even feel guilty for complaining on this site when there are people who've been through so much worse than I ever have.

    I just appreciate that there are people here who are willing to listen to me go on - and I really hope that I can do some little thing in return for people who have concerns about going through some of the stuff that I've been through :)
  • a rhizotomy is another term for radio frequency ablation.
    a needle is inserted, an impulse is sent to be sure they are going to "burn" a sensory nerve as opposed to a motor nerve. Then radio frequency is given through that needle that heats up the area, destroys the myelin sheath over the nerve so that pain impulses cannot pass through. Eventually the myelin sheath grows back, some people get 6 months, some a few years. I would be happy with 6 months relief.
    A note on stress, it can really flare up back pain. I am working with a psychologist on many issues, including relaxation. It is tough and most people do not understand. Only in places like this.
    OZ
  • thanks for letting me know what that is. I had some nerve tests with a needle and that wasn't fun - but a rhizotomy sounds hard to deal with - i hope that you guys manage to get some pain relief following them if you need more procedures.

    I'm trying hard with the relaxation exercises - but wind myself up when they don't work - and then it becomes a vicious cycle! we're our own worst enemies at times.
  • I have had at least 7-8 radio frequency ablations within the past 5 years and none of them gave me any pain relief. Aug 14 I had 3 fusions (L3-4, L4-5, L5-S1). Was doing ok with the recovery. They said it would be several month recovery for such a big surgery. 3 weeks post op I got an infection in my low back incision. MRSA. So needless to say my recovery has been pushed back about 2 more months! I understand how co-workers who don't have back pain don't understand what we go thru. Nothing has to happen for us to has a 'bad day' with pain. Hang in there. I didn't mean to get off on my problems. So keep your chin up. Hollar at me any time and we'll chat. :H
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