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Anyone have a good story to tell about fusion?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:26 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hello all helpless here again.

I'm 28 and just got approved for fusion on my L4 and L5. I have a herinated disk, annular tear, DDD and nerve damage at the S1. My sugery is on the 23rd of Feb. I have read a lot of story and worried about having this done. I'm just looking for someone that may have had this done and is not in pain or still in recovery 2 years later. I guess I'm just looking for a reason to not back out of this surgery. If everyone has a bad reaction to this surgery than why do they do this?? Please let their be someone who has had this who's life has improved. Thank you for taking the time to read this.


  • hey
    i am four months post c1 c2 fusion. so far so good. i am now actually hoping to go back to work slowly. fusion surgery is generally successful but anything can happen.

    i suggest that u follow post op directions from your doc. the recovery process is a long road but u can do it. many people have.

    this site is great for support and learning.
  • My best friend had the same surgery and was walking quite a distance within 2 weeks after her surgery and off all pain medication within days. She says she's sore now. Hasn't described any real pain except for one day that she spent sitting in a chair tying bows for Christmas presents at a charitable event. But keep in mind everybody's recovery is different. I hope yours goes like hers.
    She got over her back surgery much quicker than I've gotten over my cervical surgery. She amazed me! 3 months later and I'm still taking pain meds.
  • I had a fusion 15 years ago L4/L5/S1 (following three failed laminectomnys). Prior to the fusion I was bed bound literally for almost a year and had been in a rehab hospital twice for two months at a time with no improvement. Even though it was a very long recovery time to get back to working full time, it was a quality of life saver - and for the past 15 years I have had only minor back pain and have led a completely normal life (except for maybe sky-diving, bungee jummping, skiing, etc). I am only now starting to have problems with sciatica again where it is starting to interfere with my life again - am SO GRATEFUL I HAD THE OP. and remember mine was done a very long time ago and they have come leaps and bounds since then!
    Just don't put too much stress on yourself to recover by a certain date or in a certain way - everyone recovers differently and do it in your own time. Your body will let you know what you can and can't do. Try and enjoy the recovery time if you can - best of luck! (BTW - swimming was extremely helpful to me in my recovery - started out at about 5 minutes in the pool and continued from there) -

    I know how you feel, I have been wrestling with another surgery myself (just cancelled my re-fusion for 1/12th because of nerves)and probably reading some of the stuff on this website which is predominately bad news - its very scary and its not an easy surgery but the results can be very dramatic (at least mine was!) Went from no quality of life to a normal life for a very very long time.
  • Thank you to all of you. This makes me feel so much better. I love the support.
    Melissa aka helpless
  • I had my surgery about 18 months ago and i'm doing just fine. I had suffered for a long time before having the surgery. I was afraid just like everyone else and i'm so glad it worked.

    Had PLIF in 2008 and a Laminectomy. One level fusion, L4-L5.
  • Hello Helpless,

    I have a good one for you (actually I wrote about this under the "Casual Conversations: Good News" thread). Eight months after a three-level (L3-S1) lumbar fusion, yesterday I went back to my regular exercise class for muscle toning. I could only do about 1/2 of the exercises without the possibility of putting too much stress on my back, but for the rest of the exercises I either did a modified version (like I never twisted my upper body) or substituted something I learned at PT. I expected to be in pain today, but in fact, I feel great! Even walking across the room six times while lunging did not cause my muscles to ache like it usually does. I guess all that walking during the pat eight months had paid off.

    Good luck to you, and remember, there is life after fusion.

  • I had 3 level fusion in March of 2008. Although it has been slow going, I am pain free about 95% of the time. Prior to the surgery I had chronic severe pain for about 2 years 24/7. It has taken a while for the bones to fuse but that was to be expected. I have also had an issue with adhesions but I fully expect the nerve pain in my feet to disappear with the Lysis that I am having tomorrow. I had a very skilled surgical team and think they did an excellent job. The hardest thing is to be patient, and walk, walk and walk. I can walk about 4 miles every other day. Please don't put too much stress on yourself to be recovered by a certain time. That was probably the most difficult thing I have had to learn. Good luck! >:D<
  • I'm doing great, couldn't be better. I'm almost off all my pain meds (taking one Flexeril a night before bed). All I can say is follow all your doctors orders after surgery and everything will be fine, just as long as you have a good surgeon. Good Luck!
  • Had my 360 fusion with hardwear and ADR 11/10/08 and feel great. I went home the next day and only had incisional pain that was controlled. I was using my laptop 2 days after surgery and was walking more each day. The first 2-3 days were the worst but it gets better each day. I cannot believe it was this easy, I know I have had great results. I feel for those who don't fare as well as I have. Some people with great results don't post because they are back at their lives and don't have time for this. Look into KIN's Good News spot, good things do happen.
    Best Wishes to you.
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