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B52BB52 Posts: 247
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:52 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hey y'all! My doc has decided to do a discogram on my L3-4 disc. Doesn't sound pleasant reading about it. Is it quite painful? Reckon I'll be able to drive myself home afterward? Not long ago I had a myelogram (which sucked); how is the discogram by comparison?

Peace out :)


  • I had a discogram about 2 years ago and it was a horrible experience, and then come to find out it wasn't even needed. You will feel a sharp pain when they inject the die into your discs. It's like getting stabbed in the back.
  • Thanks for your honesty, MLH. Not exactly what I hoped to hear, but not unexpected either. I guess that any time someone sticks needles in your spine it's going to be a bit painful. Drat, I was kinda wanting to ride my bike to that test..guess not! Super duper.... :/

  • The test will only be painful if your disc is the pain generator. It is painful, but not the worst thing ever. The worst pain is only for a few moments and then it eases up a bit, like I said if the disc is the problem. I have had three, only the discs that were torn were the worst, and the discs that are normal, you cant feel any pain. How can you ride a bike? And you will have to have a driver to even have to test. Good Luck! It was the only test that showed what my problem was, no MRI or Ct or anything showed anything. It definetly showed the diseased disc and led me to the fusions. I am finally getting my life back!!!
  • Not gonna lie it hurt like he** but it only last for a lil bit and they keep you well medicated ...its not as bad as you think its gonna be best of luck
  • Thanks Jeannie...if they offer medication, I'm going to take them up on it. I got nervous and almost fainted during that last myelogram, so I'm jumpy already

    Robin - I'll be sure and have a chauffeur to pick me up from the test. I can ride the bike because it's one of the few things that doesn't make me hurt. Plus, after this next fusion, I'm not sure when or if I'll be riding again. So, I wanna scoot while I can :)

    Have a groovy day, y'all
  • I will be thinking of you, and do ride like the wind while you can! Take care, and you will soon have it behind you and hopefully get the info you need, like I did!
  • I will never lie about this test! It is not meant not to hurt, they want you to feel pain to make sure that is INDEED the disk that is causing the problem :)
    I cried a lot when I had mine. I am just honest :)
  • I had a discogram last August and it wasn't fun, but it was definitive that my L5-S1 was the problem and the test replicated my nerve pain. Three discs are injected - the test is considered positive if there is a distinct difference between the affected disc and the others. Pressure measurements are made to verify reactions. My doc made it as easy as possible. I was well medicated and treated with great care. You will be given time to recover and should be required to have a driver.
    For my surgeon, having a positive discogram in hand when I presented to him clenched the decision that my only option was an ALIF. I'm 6 weeks tomorrow post op and doing well.
    Good luck,
    Pat Gibson
    L5S1 ALIF 2-22-11
    Now L4 Retrolisthisis
  • I'm happy to hear that you're doing well and on your road to recovery from fusion! I have arranged for a ride after the test (sure was wanting to ride my bike, but after reading all the responses here I reconsidered)! The hospital is about 3hrs 15min drive for me, so fuel savings alone made the bike trip attractive.

    I'm pretty sure my L5S1 disc isn't the problem, since they've already taken that out :) In my case, they're trying to decide between a two or three level 360 fusion.

    Good luck on your continued healing...aloha!
  • I've had 2 and they both hurt. And I only had 1 level that is bad. You have 2 or 3 levels in question. Yeah, it's gonna hurt a lot. You won't be in any shape to drive home.

    As for the pain meds. Depends on the guy giving the test. 1st one I had done they numbed me up just enough and tested. The 2nd one the guy didn't believe in that theory. It's supposed to hurt, that's the whole point. If it doesn't. All your discs are not pain generators. That would be good news. The 2nd guy only gave me pain meds after the test. A good shot of morphine. So I would stay still for a CT Scan.

    I had a myelogram done too. I thought that was worse for pressure pain. The discogram is more painful in general. You may or may not be very sore after. Depends on your body really. Most complain it hurts for days. I felt better a day later.
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