Hi I'm new to the board and have some question about lumbar fusion.
To give you some background, in January I fell on some ice and hernitated the disc at L4/L5. This is the second MRI confirmed herniation at that level. Since then I have had a lumbar epdifural injection, a microdiscectomy and a sacral epidural. I now have slight sciatica and weakness in the right leg and back pain - lots of it. The surgeon sent me to a specialist physiotherapist and said "if that doesn't work we are looking at more surgery"! Well the physio has just said that as there has been no improvement I need to go back to the surgeon. I believe that the surgery on the table is spinal fusion as the discs (L4/L5 and L5/S1)are quite degenerated and there is some damage to the vertebrae.
So that I can go into my appointment knowing as much as I can, I'm hoping that some of you can answer some of my questions or suggest questions I should be answering my surgeon.
1)I have two young kids (5 & 8) so realistically how long will I be unable to do the school run - roughly a 5 minute drive.
2) Likewise what is a realistic time frame to be getting back to cooking, feeding the dogs, picking things up off the floor
3) I currently am unable to make twisting movements of my back (think picking something up off the seat next to you), how much will fusion prevent that sort of movement (in the long term, I know twisting is bad during recovery)
4) What sort of things cause a fusion to fail?
I'm trying to go into this with open eyes, especially as everyone and their neighbours aunt says don't have the op, but I have been in constant pain for 10 months and can't carry on much longer