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Having back surgery very nervous

jeniferinpsjjeniferinps Posts: 4
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:47 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I had a car accident in January pretty severe and have had severe R leg pain and low back pain.I was DX with 7-8mm disk bulge to L5 S1 and 2-3mm bulge to L4 L5 in April, I saw NS today and results from MRI is now a 10-11mm disk bulge to L5 S1 and 3mm to L4 L5 and he has suggested fusion to L5 S1 and ADR to L4 L5 and says he has to go in from the back and front thats 2 incision and honestly I'm kind of freaking out. I didnt expect that I thought it would be the front only. I'm a home health nurse and have taken care of plenty of post-op back surgeries but never seen this recovery for this surgery. I want to know what to expect and any suggestions for pre-op preperations. I'm reading posts of people that it hasnt worked and they were in pain and have to surgery again. I just turned 40 and have been very active up till January so I want to get back to that is it possible?


  • Hi jeniferinps,

    We're happy to welcome you to the Spine-Health support forum. You've come to the right place to find information and great support.

    First, let me say that a large majority of the posts you read are from people who have not had the surgical result they had been promised or had hoped for. The people who have had great results don't see a need to hang around a support forum and have moved on with their lives. So, don't be unduly swayed by the people who are discouraged--there's no reason to think you'll be one of them!

    I've had abominal surgery and I've had back surgery--am 3 weeks into recovery from 2-level posterior lumbar fusion. I've not had both at the same time so I can't speak to the recovery from a back surgery that uses both anterior and posterior approach but there are several members who have had both and you'll probably hear from some of them.


    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
  • The proposed action seems pretty aggressive.
    Have you had any other professional opinions? How about a discogram?
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • I ve had three back surgery. two fusion of l4 l5 s1 and a hardware removal and in all surgerys my doctor only cut me thru the back .make sure you get a second opinion. the recovery is painful and slow. but everybody is different.ask him why does he needs to go to the front too
  • I'm worried about the ADR part - research this one.

    I also HIGHLY recommend more than one opinion!!! This is serious stuff, you are stuck with what they do to you. You need to have total confidence in your surgeon and how can you if you've only ever seen one of them and can't compare. Do your research.

    I also had a car accident and then a subsequent 2-level fusion (S1-L4).

    I was 39 when the accident happened (5 years ago now). Also used to be very active and since my surgeries and hardware removal am getting back to some of that (no downhill skiing anymore though).

    My NS only went in through the back, no front. Most the abdominals seem to have less pain, but possible bowel issues. Don't take my word on that, I'm just trying to recall people that have posted here.

    I do know that I am very glad I ahd my surgery. I cannot imagine where I'd be if I'd continued that pain and the CES stuff I was experiencing. All the lightning pain down my leg has gone. All the CES has been gone. I do have backaches now, but nothing like it used to be. The removal helped a lot of that too.

    Good luck
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    I also worry about the combo ADR and fusion. Another opinion with another Orthopedic Spine Surgeon and/or Neurosurgeon might be a good idea.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • Thanks so much for your info it really helps. I really hope your recovery conts to go well!
  • I also worry about the severity of the surgical intervention. I think a second option is a great idea. Thank you all for the great advice.
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