I havent been on in a while becuase I just moved again but I need to post this......I saw my neuro yesterday, He's recommending either a fusion @ L-5 S-1 or he is offering me an implant device. A Neuro transmitter I believe it is. I havent yet watched the dvd he gave me to view but I dont care too much for the sound of it. He said its less invasive than fusion as it's implanted just under the skin.If i liked it after a week or so,they would then have to implant the battery for it. I'm going to elect the actual fusion but he scared me to death telling me all the things that COULD go wrong during the operation. I reaize they have to tell us this stuff but wow ! Anyway, he also said I MUST quit smoking and be nicotine free for 1 month prior to the surgery or he will not operate. I've been smoking 40 years and dont know if I can quit. I'd like to cuz it is killing me,not even to mention the cost in New York for cigs. can the detect nicotine in the bloodstream? I assume they can.Also, he claims recovery from fusion is about 3-6 weeks. Since I live alone he thought perhaps he'd send me to an inpatient recovery center for assistance. Will I need a lotta help afterwards and how bad is recovery...will I be able to do anything? I have some time yet to make a decision,but here I go again, buggin out and being scared...any thoughts?