Finally decided to join the message boards. I have been using these message boards since before my surgery for info on what to expect with my surgery as well as dealing with the after surgery issues.
I had a decompression with a spinal fusion on December 3, 2008. The reason for the surgery was a synovial cyst on my spine. The surgery went well with a few complications. It was supposed to take about 3 hours and ended up lasting almost 8 hours. When the surgeon went in he discovered the cyst was wrapped around my spine. I needed two additional blood tranfusions the day after surgery and on the third day my lungs collapsed, which was very frightening. I spent six days in the hospital.
Here is my story...I started having hip and leg pain starting in July of 2008. At first I thought I was dealing with bursitis of the hip since I had a similar problem in 2007. As it progressed the pain became unbearable and pain medication did little to help. After a number of steroid injections as well as aqua therapy with no relief, they finally did an MRI and discoverd the synovial cyst. My orthopedic surgeon wanted me to try spinal injections prior to surgery just in case they helped, although he figured surgery was my only option. I am 62 years old and he told me that I was a good candidate for surgery because I had no other health issues. I had two injections which did provide some relief but the unbearable pain returned.
My first follow-up visit is next Tuesday, 6 weeks post-op. Don't know what to expect but hope he will let me return to work at least part-time as well as reinstate my driving privileges. I do not know what the criteria is for returning to work. I work in an office environment and spend a good part of my day at my desk doing computer work.
I thank everyone for their posts. They have been so helpful in dealing with the aftermath of spine surgery and all the issues it brings.
Even though at times it has been difficult, I no longer have the excruiating pain caused by the synovial cyst pressing on the nerves and I know that each day brings me closer to a normal life.
To those who will be having surgery in the future, after my experience, I believe it is well worth it. There are difficult and frustrating days but once you are recovering you can look forward to the future when you will go back to your life as you knew it before you life was consumed with unbearable pain.