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getting a second opinion

TracyLynneTTracyLynne Posts: 598
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:51 AM in Spinal Stenosis
next week i am off to see another neurosurgeon for his opinion on possible surgery....i feel as if my whole life revolves around surgeries at the moment! (i had right shoulder surgery done last year and my left shoulder done two weeks ago.)

for those of you who have had surgery for stenosis, what made you decide it was time? i have trouble with sitting, standing and walking, but not all the time. i do have a constant pain on the outside of my right ankle that feels like it's going to rip open. the butt and leg pain can be unbearable, then settle down to where it's okay. when i get the gnawing low back pain, there is often nothing i can do about it, but then i wake up a day or two later and things have calmed down again.

i am not new to back pain, by any means....i suppose i'm weighing the pros and cons and, in the back of my mind, wondering if i'll end up with worse pain afterwards.

just thinking out loud, but i'd welcome your feedback.



  • the n/s i'm scheduled to see has absolutely NO personality or social skills, but has a very good reputation "out there". i saw him about six years ago for other issues, and had trouble getting him to tell me anything at all, other than "there are too many issues. there is nothing i can do for you." things have progressed since then, so we'll see.....
  • Tracy,

    All you can do is go in armed with all the questions. I know your good with asking, but check out the link in the FAQ section, on preparing to meet with a surgeon. Maybe if you are prepared with all the questions you can force the answers out of him, hopefully. I did surgery when my quality of life just wasn't existing really. You seem to be a go getter in spite of it all, so I think you know your not doing that right now. But of course is just my guess, you need to take a look at your situation and decide. If your good for a day then spending two days feeling like dirt says a lot as that is not how we are intended to live, or I don't think so anyway. Hopefully you will get more information out of him this go around. Be sure to ask open ended questions to force the conversation. Good luck keep us posted.
  • Hi
    You don't say what surgery you are proposing but I can tell you as a 2 week post op l5 fusion patient that you need two good arms/shoulders to rely on when standing as the balance is a little suspect - I would do nothing until your shoulder has healed - unless the pain is unbearable as you need to be able to hold on doing stairs etc.
    Just my 2c worth - keep us posted.
  • tamtam, i'm gathering questions and info now, and will take my hubby in with me to ask anything i forget to ask.

    adrian, my other surgeon talked to me right after a rhizotomy in october when i was just coming out of the anaesthetic. he had just read the ct that was done and said my stenosis had progressed significantly and he wanted me to come and see him again to discuss options for "fixing it". he didn't say which surgery, and i really wanted to see someone else and hear their take on it.

    i think there is at least a one year wait, possibly even two, for non-urgent surgery. don't worry...i can't even consider another surgery at the moment, but i figured it would be best to get an idea of what i may be looking at in the future.

    i'll be sure to keep you posted.

  • the n/s feels like i do...the symptoms aren't severe enough yet to warrant any kind of surgery, but something will have to be done in the future. he seemed to think i was expecting him to be able to get rid if all the "other" back pain, but i told him i know that's not possible. he isn't big on rhizotomies, but said that in my case, he'd suggest i continue with them because i do get good relief, generally for several months.

    that was a much better visit than i expected, so i felt good when i left.

    on the down side, the transmission in our car died as we limped into town (190 miles from here!), and we ended up buying a new car, due to all the circumstances... :shocked:
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