Having back surgery can be incredibly scary so I wanted to share my success story. In October 2008 I experienced incredibly painful sciatic pain for the first time in my life. By December the pain was so bad I was crawling around my house as walking made the pain worse. By mid-December I was diagnosed with L5/SI Isthmic Spondylolisthesis and had an L5 pinched nerve. Three days later I had an anterior/posterior lumbar fusion, including an anterior endoskeleton cage and 4 pedicle screws. My neurosurgeon, Dr. David Dewitt from the NeuroSpine Center in Appleton, assured me that I would feel better almost immediately post-op. As absurd as that sounded, he was absolutely right! I spent one night in the hospital, took 3 weeks off of work, and returned to a nearly normal life. I completed about 6 physical therapy sessions in February-March 2009 and continue to improve weekly. While I am not completely back to "normal" yet, I feel great! I'm 6 months post-op and my only complaints are difficulty sleeping on my back and occasional back spasms and stiffness. I'm anticipating that I should feel like my normal self by the end of summer. At 37 I never would have guessed I would have back surgery. I am extremely thankful to Dr. DeWitt for his surgical talents and great patient care.