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How many people had more discs degenerate after a fusion or other spine surgery?

LumbarLynneLLumbarLynne Posts: 67
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:33 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I was talking to my SIL and she was afraid of getting a discectomy because she thought then she might need future back surgeries. However, she told that in addition to a herniation, her disc was degenerating. I told her that she may do the discectomy and only find that 2-5 years down the road the disc does fully degenerates and she needs a fusion.

My doctor said that the fusion puts added stress on my other discs and already saw a tiny bit of degeneration in L4/L5, so I wonder if I will need another fusion down the road too. I also broke L1 and now that disc is at risk.

So, I am curious as to how many people had to get another fusion due to a different disc degenerating or because they got something like a discectomy on a disc that was degenerating anyway?


  • for me, and I really don't want to think about it. I think it's very true for folks who are showing signs of DDD and have a microdiscectomy. They will eventually need more surgery, most likely a fusion. I was told by a couple of surgeons not to have my back fused (3-levels) because it would put too much pressure on the other discs and I would most assuredly need more surgery later on. I'm doing everything I can to make that not so. At any rate, I am pleased that I can walk without holding onto walls, without fear of the next jarring lightning bolt blast to hit me and nearly bring me to my knees. I guess we have to take what we have while we have it.


    3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.
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