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L4-S1 Hardware Removal To Repair S1 Nerve Damage

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hi everyone last July I had a 2 level fusion L4-S1 due to a powerlifting accident. I was recently injured at work and had a myelogram which revealed that a piece of bone had broken off and displaced the S1 nerve root. My NS said that I need surgery now to repair the damage and therefore has scheduled me for surgery on Thursday morning. He said that he will be removing the hardware to gain access to the new injury. I am wondering what they do to fix the nerve and what my recovery will be like for something like this? I appeciate any and all advice anyone may have for me.

PLIF L4-S1 July-2008


  • I cannot tell you specifically what the surgeon has in mind for you. Usually all they can do is whatever is necessary to free up the nerve. In your case, I imagine the surgeon will go in with a plan, but it may change depending on what he finds. If you are fused, he will take out the hardware, and do what he can to free up the nerve.

    If you are not fused, he may free up the nerve and then use some sort of hardware to open up the space so the nerve will not become compressed.

    Regarding the injury to the nerve itself, at this point in time, if the nerve is injured (which is not certain) there is nothing a doctor can do to repair it. He will treat it as gently as possible, freeing it up from the bone, etc. and then you will just have to let it recover.

    In case your fusion was too new for you to learn about nerves, they take a LONG time to heal...even up to a year...some docs even say two. So don't be discouraged if you still feel nerve pain after your surgery.

    I would think this surgery will be quite a bit easier than your fusion. At least I hope it will be.

    Let us know how it goes on Thursday. Your Spiney friends on the board will be sending positive thoughts your way!

    xx Gwennie
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