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for anyone that's has ALIF surgey did you get a CAT scan

backache99backache99 Posts: 1,338
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:53 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
hi all
i am due for ALIF surgey in sept .but i am worried that there is something wrong with me in the abdominal area .i am not too sure could be anyhting .and i keep worrying about it so much so that i am hoping that before he operate that he will give me a CAT scan to make sure all well.i keep getting low abdominal aches and i dont know if its from my back or something new .also i have trouble peeing .i can take a few minutes for me to get started .and when i am woken up with back pain in the middle of the night my bladder is full to pain level .again its goes when i go to the toilet and ..says he rather embarrassed since the last operation i have not been able to get an erection so that no sex for over 5 years i was wondering as i am nearly 45 would that have any negative effects on my reproduction system ? io no sex therefore no sperm produced and i have no sex drive at all {i know that because of pain and drugs and the inability to physical have sex i wont have a sex drive } and its not the sex i am worried about ..it the equipment .like if you dont drive your car for a few weeks the batter goes flat! so what happens to you production of spear ..does it stop?? i dont know and dont feel comfortable talking to my family doctor about it we are too close ..it would be like talking to my dad! if anyone has any sensible advice i would welcome it .
1997 laminectomy
2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014


  • I would think that if there was anything wrong they would have seen it in your MRI or something. Whatever imaging study they did to determine that you need surgery.
    ALIF April 2011 but it turns out I broke before it barely fused.
    L4-L5 posterior fusion December 2013
  • If this is new not being able to pass urine I would let your Dr. know about this. He may want to do some tests to make sure your bladder is without infection or starting "cauda equine"symptoms just to make sure. My Dr. told me if I had trouble with retention of urine and/or loose bowels that should be checked out right away. I know taking narcotics can lower your Testosterone and your Dr. may want to check out your testosterone blood levels to see if you need a supplement. TC. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • There could be problems at so many levels - from kidney stones (alot of medicine spineys take can cause these), or slow voiding from pain medicines, or something totally unrelated - have you had your prostrate examined lately and a PSA level checked? Sometimes we can get so wrapped around our "back health" we forget about the rest of our body needing attention too...Since some of your questions are more detailed a urologist might be the best doctor to see for both the urinating & male sex issues.
  • See if your doctor will refer you to a urologist. There is testing they can do for you. I doubt that a CAT scan will show what's causing your low "T". Doctor's are learning more and more about erectile dysfunction and back surgery.

    I was fine with sex until my back surgery and now have all kinds of problems. Thankfully, medication (Viagra) helps. A Urologist can really help you with this.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • I would definately call your doctor Tony. They may even move up your surgery if it is starting to effect your bladder. You should also ask him about the erectile dysfunction. Myself, I have no sex drive, but that is because it increases pain. My gyn. says it's a mental thing. My mind won't allow my body to do anything that I know causes pain. Hoping my surgery relieves some of the pain because I would still like to participate like a normal human. I can't imagine celebacy would hurt anything. Priests and Monks do it for life. I'm still not a doctor so check with yours to make sure. Hope you feel better soon.
  • Seeing you've got a lot of good info already here, I will answer your topic question. NO I didn't have a CT scan of abdomen prior to my ALIF. But if you are having issues, you need to let surgeon know, sooner then later.

    My vascular surgeon did a full exam & history prior to my ALIF. It's important that they know of any issues you are experiencing. As you have said yourself, its not just spinal surgery you will be undergoing, but also abdominal surgery.

    On the bladder & ED issues you really should see a urologist prior to your upcoming surgery. I had post op bladder issues and it wasn't fun.

    Feel better!

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