Hi, all. I'm new here and couldn't find a post for those of us having surgery in February 2009, so I thought I'd start one! I'm having a one-level fusion at L5-S1 for Grade II Spondylolisthesis.
I've been having lower back pain for at least the last 17 yrs, but it's never been debilitating or anything. Just annoying. I could relieve pain by bending forward from the waist until my lower back cracked. That would help for a while, then I'd do it again when the pain came back. I was mostly in pain after standing or walking for too long.
I finally saw a doctor for the pain in April 2005. At the time, he found Grade I Spondy...my L5 was slipped forward about 1/4 of an inch. I started getting some nerve involvement at the beginning of 2008 (lots of right hip pain, numb patches on my right shin, tingling right foot). When I went back to the doc, the MRI showed the slippage was now 1 inch. He'd told me in 2005 that he couldn't say whether or not the L5 would slip further...well it obviously has and will only continue to do so, he says, so it's time to just bite the bullet and have the fusion to put it back in place.
I'm 35, healthy and in decent shape. I'm not in great amounts of pain, not bedridden, not overly limited in daily activities. This is why it's taken me until now to decide to have the surgery! But he makes a good point...that I should get it overwith while I'm still young and will recover faster, and while I'm NOT in constant pain! I guess he's right, but I'm still not totally sure!
Oh, and I REALLY can't decide whether to do the bone graft from my hip or use the InFuse BMP...there are horror stories for each!!
Sorry so long...would love to hear from others who are in the February boat!