I'm new to this forum and am looking, like many, for some others experiences with Lumbar issues. Fusion surgery specifically.
I had a herniation at L5 S1 which progressed to rupture and required a discectomy in 01/03. I recovered ok, but have been living with chronic lower back pain ever since. I never have a pain-free day, but I have habituated to it and continue to function. In 01/08 I noticed more and more pain. I had a set of facet injections (which didn't help) and then an epidural and PT (which did). In 01/09 I noticed more pain again and had a 2nd epidural which gave me no relief this time. My pain Doc sent me to the surgeon to evaluate me as a candidate for disc replacement. I had a discogram which determined that although it IS the degenerated disc causing the pain (duh!!) my facet joints are bad and disqualify me from replacement. It's looking like fusion is in my future.
I'm still doing ok as far as daily life and work are concerned. I take Aleve and 1-2 vicodin 1-2 times a day and that seems to be ok. I'm only 29. I feel like I'm too young for a fusion. Do I do it now and get it over with if it's inevitable or do I wait til things get worse? Any thoughts?