I have had back pain for several years. The pain moved into my right leg, at first it was just the pins and needles feeling, but it has now advanced to severe pain when I walk. I had an MRI in October 07 and found out that I have DDD at I believe L4 of L5. The doctor at that time told me that injections and PT were all that I needed. Had three shots the first year I was diagnosed and they worked really well, kept me pain free for nearly a year. Pain and sciatica came back and tried injections again, this time they did not work. I have tried injections, PT, accupunture, massage and spinal decompression therapy. I have had it with pain. Went to a new neurosurgeon in October 08 and said that disc was nearly gone and that I had slippage of my vertebrae. He said that I needed a fusion surgery at only one level within 6 mos to a year. He said that if I put it off I would end up having to fuse more areas. I have tried to stay away from surgery, but finally gave in to the idea. Surgery is scheduled for April 17, 2009. Now I am scared to death! Almost everything I have read on these forums tell me to stay away from surgery, but hasn't it helped some people? I am afraid that something may go wrong with surgery, and hate the idea of being down for so long and of course the brace really bothers me. Any advice to this scared soul?