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I have scheduled an artificial disk surgery for L4-L5 and L5-S1 for Sept 17th 2009

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:34 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hello, My name is Joseph

I have scheduled the ADR surgery with Dr Jack Ziggler for the levels L4-L5 and L5-S1 using ProDisk L discs. after this surgery I will have an XLIF type fusion at L2-L3.I had a prior L2-L3 disectomy lamenectomy and dissaction at L4 and L5 in Aug 2004 this did not fix my pain problem. Also I have had a fusion at C3-C4 in mar 2007 that worked wonderful. I would like some advice from people who have had fusions and Artificial disk replacement at L4-L5 and L5-S1. I would like to know what to expect and how your outcome was. I am a 42 yr old male 6'4" 236 lbs. I do not smoke I drink occassionaly I have stopped taking all pain medication ie morphine 3 weeeks ago because of colon problems caused from opiates. I have united healthcare which I think will not pay for this procedure so I am seeking pre determination also I am a veteran who goes to the VAMC in oklahoma city. I have finally got them to refer me out to see an orthopedic surgeon after giving them the Dr notes from Dr Jack Ziggler MRI reports and discogram reports. I have asked them to pay for the ADR surgery and subrogate with united health care since they cannot refuse to pay the VA hospital back because of federal rights to reimbursement. If this works out and the VA does this I will be the first veterean to get an ADR surgery they currently only do these for active duty soldiers. So my hopes are not to high except that maybe I will get lucky since they can force my insurance company to pay them back. otherwise they will probably want me to get a fusion also. I just want to make the right choice and get what is the best fix so I can live without drugs...

thanks for taking the time to read and respond



  • hello, i just want to comment on you having your surgery. i have both an artificial disk and a spinal fusion thanks to my EDITED DOCTOR. he put one of those disk in me and my spine spit it out and after that happened, i almost died due to his neglagence. it was sitting on top of my AORTA AND MY STOMACH.I WOULD THROW UP FOR NO REASON. he had no choice but to go in and leave the disk where it was>he should of taken it out< now i have nerve damage due to his surgery. i am still not out of pain and i hurt just as bad as i did before the surgery. his excuse was your bones are too soft. well if my bones are too soft wouldn't you think to check them before hand? i don't recommend the disk at all. get a fusion and be done with it. JUST WANT TO SAVE YOU THE HASSEL OF GETTING ANOTHER SURGERY. just FYI.
  • IF YOU HAVE united healthcare they will pay for it but they will raise your rates so high you will never be able to get coverage again!
  • where two level adr surgery is new in usa best you make sure surgeon is experienced with this procedure. i hope hes done a lot of them.....
  • DR Jack Ziggler with texas back institute performed the first prodisk ADR in the United States for the fda trials in 2000 he has also done more ADR with prodisk L than any other surgeon for the FDA trials he was recommended to me by a ortho surgeon in OKC that was trained by him quote " he would not let anyone else do one on him except him". as far as united healthcare paying thats a whole can of worms I went to the insurance commissioner office today and filed a complaint I was informed that my wifes employer is self insurred only using united healthcare to administer the policy so maybe I will get lucky. Also I stopped by the OKC VAMC and spoke with the administrator of orthopedics their he told me he will personally work on my request he was calling 2 different surgeons in OKC that do fee work for the VA hospital in okc. Maybe tomorrow I will know if he will send me out after talking with them about my condition I provided him with MRI's and discograms he did not even know anything about discograms the VA does all their spine surgeries with only MRI's thats why their failure rate is so high with back surgery's in my opinion. I had a crushed disc at C3 in 2007 that did not show up on the MRI I am so thankful I found a nuerosurgeon that time that ordered a discogram it showed the problem and today my neck is fine. My failed back surgery in 2004 was in my opinion caused by not doing a discogram prior ro surgery if one had been done then no surgeon would have done a disectomy and laminectomy at L2-L3 and dissacation at L4-L5 a fusion would have been performed.
  • surgeon is so experienced. a lot of people are going to get operated on by inexperienced surgeons with adr. hope you can get it. i wonder why va doesnt use other test methods...
  • I'm 25 years old and was diagnosed with DDD when I was 16 and I went through ADR on July 17th, 2009 for my L4-L5 and it was also using ProDisc L. Surgery was performed by Dr. Javier Garcia-Bengochea. www.lyerlyneuro.com They cut Vertically next to my belly button and the scar is about 6 inches long. I was walking my second day in the hospital, Discharged the 3 morning.

    I would say that its working in my favor. I've dealt with pain for almost 10 years now, and had to limit my movements in order to prevent pain for so many years. Now I'm still in some pain, but its because I'm trying to build back up the muscle strength and the flexibility that I had before my pain began. My Dr. has set me up for one month of physical therapy and feels very confident that the pain will stop completely once I get back to my "normal movements" I'm also out of work, and have been for a month before surgery as well, so I'm sure this has hampered some of my recovery.

    I trust my surgeon. I have a friend who has been to him many times for the same type of surgery, in their Cervical spine though, and felt very at ease knowing he was such a good surgeon.

    I think the hardest part healing on me is the stomach scar. I still have some pain when I wear jeans, but I was told that it can still be expected since I am still "fresh" from surgery....for the most part I guess.

    Wouldn't change it in the world. Again, Best of luck to you!!

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