Long story short, my L5/S1 was fused with Ray Cages 10 years ago. I did great the first 4 years, the last 6 have been progressively declining. I've stayed in shape and am still as active as I can be. I treadmill 1 1/2 a day. Sometimes it hurts, sometimes it doesn't. Sitting and laying hurt worse. MRI and Discogram (pure torture! lol!) showed significant herniation and calcification of L4/5 and moderate herniation L3/4. They are doing an ALIF for L4/5 and a posterior stabilization of L3/4 in hopes of saving the disk and preventing further herniation. Pedicle screws scare me!!! I've read a lot of bad things... loose or broken screws, and fractured sacrum. I'm also concerned about healing from both an anterior and posterior approach. Has anyone gone through, or know of someone that has gone through a similar surgery? I'm 40. I can still function normally about 65% of the time (part of that is because I very purposely keep from doing things that hurt it). I could postpone it until my functional ability is significantly decreased... but I figured that I would heal faster at 40 than would at 45 or 50 - and I also know that it's not a matter if IF, but more a matter of WHEN.
ANY AND ALL advice or shared experiences are appreciated!!!!! Thank you!
PS- My surgeon originally wanted to do a two level Artificial Disc Replacement... my insurance company does not cover them