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doodlesnoopddoodlesnoop Posts: 4
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:47 AM in Lower Back Pain
I am scheduled to have fusion surgery of L5-S1 on September 29th and I'm so scared. I think this is a great forum and like reading the posts because you all understand the pain that I have been dealing with for the past 3 years. I have 3 fractures in the spine and pain that goes down my right leg and into my foot. Every day the pain is about a 6 and sometimes gets up to a 10. I read so many postings that say don't get the surgery, it's a big mistake and other ones that say it was the best thing they ever did....it's so confusing! I really feel like I don't have a choice and can't live with the pain any more.


  • He had come to the conclusion that he no longer could live with the horrible pain and being told that he would be in a wheelchair within the year. So we did our research, picked the best surgeon we could find and put our faith in him and in God that the surgery would be successful. And it has been. He no longer has pain and that is the biggest blessing of all. While he was apprehensive before surgery, he never doubted that this was the only way to go and I think that has sustained him. And, to be really honest, while it was no picnic, I thought it would be much worse.
  • Hi Doodles,

    Welcome to Spine-Health! You've come to the right place for information and support. :)

    We are both scheduled for lumbar fusion on Sept 29! I do understand your fear. I'm waffling, myself, simply because of the long recovery period. I don't have excruciating pain but do have nerve impingement causing numbness and pain. If I don't get this fixed fairly soon, the nerves may never recover. From reading what most people say, it seems like I should be at my wits end with pain before submitting to a fusion but I choose to trust my highly recommended spine surgeon.

    Are you also having a PLIF? (posterior fusion)

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • this is the BEST forum on the net so you are in the right place .i am also due a fusion {depending on the results on my discography] so i understand how you feel .its taken me over a year to make my mind up i have already had 2 surgeries .and have been in pain for many years .you are right some will say dont have surgery and some say it the best ..my advice is to find {by recommendation } a top surgeon {if you are in the uk i can give you my surgeons name } dont rush in to anything without getting at least 3 opinions .if done right a fusion or ADR is very good but if done wrong then its hell a good friend of mine {on here } has had her fusion gone wrong and she is in a bad way but i have another friend that's doing very well .so do your homework ..and good luck
  • Welcome to Spine-Health. You can find a lot of great articles on this site that will help you understand exactly what the surgeons are going to do during your surgery and what you might expect post-op.

    I had a TLIF in January and was not in excruciating pain. But my spine was unstable at L4/5 and the stenosis was not going to go away on its own, so I also decided to trust my surgeon and have the surgery.

    I'm so much better now than I was pre-op and am very glad I had it done. My surgeon gave me medicine pre-op to help calm my nerves (xanax) so maybe that's something you could investigate.

    The thing with reading the posts here is that many members who have had a successful surgery go on about their lives and no longer find it necessary to post here because they don't need support any longer. That's why you might find more bad stories than good here. But there are those who continue to post after a successful surgery to help other members.

    I wish you luck on your surgery and hope that it gives you the relief you need. Take care, and feel free to ask any questions you might have.

  • Hi, I'm not familiar with your condition so I can't say much but ask you if you've exhausted all other means of pain relief and have you done your due diligence? Have you consulted with doctors who treat backpain by using non surgical techniques?
    Typically a sport med doctor who treats backpain without surgery should be consulted.
    Maybe Accupuncture will help? Have you consulted several surgeons? Fusion is a big step and although your in pain I think that you need to be confident in your decision and if you're scared and posting here then maybe it's time to rethink your decision and at least get more opinions.
    Good Luck,
  • Surgery is natural to be scared of and have doubts. The best of my knowledge says that everyone has different out comes with the surgery. But when the pain consumes every part of your life, as beaver said you hae to put faith in someone and go with the plan. Unfortunately there is never a guarantee with surgery, but keep in mind those whom have had successful surgeries are out living normal busy lives and not posting any longer.

    You situation is a bit different when you add in the fractures, and it just not a matter of nerve impingements. Sometimes the only way to deal with fractures is to do the surgery and stabilize the back up.

    But here is the good thing you will find many people whom have gone through the surgery and will be your cheering team as you face all of this, so you won't be alone. We all get the level of pain your living in daily.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health. Take care for now.
  • Thank you all so much for your support and understanding. Yes, I have tried everything from physical therapy, medication, steroid injections and nothing has worked. I have some nerve damage in my leg, but hopefully the pain will be a lot less after the surgery. I am so glad I found this website!
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