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Post Spinal Fusion

diannelddiannel Posts: 1
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:53 AM in New Member Introductions
I am getting desperate. Fell 2 years ago causing protrusion on L4/5 disc.A year later after depleting all options and debilitaing sciatic pain and back pain, I had Discectomy (12 months ago) ...immediate relief was heaven from sciatic pain, but short lived as felt something "pop"6 weeks later...all epidurals etc failed to give pain relief, couldn't work, barely walk around the house.Had Spinal Fusion with lamminectomy and bone graft 9 months ago.Relief from sciatica pretty good, but back pain, that started out as bearable, turned really bad about 6 weeks ago(post op. 7-8 months)Now am basically unable to do anything for more than about 15 mins.....walk/ sit/ stand/ lying on back also painful.My only relief was lying on my side, but that too is getting harder.Have been doing Physio, hydrotherapy, accupuncture since about 3 months.All to no avail.Neurosurgeon says it should be better than this at this stage but also to give it more time(do not want another op. unless there is something that they can fix)MRI says all looks as it should. Pain tells me otherwise.Severe lower back pain, hips, groins and sciatic pain returned to both sides this time.Have TENs Machine and heat pack, but offer little relief.Pain meds. not of any help at all. Interested to know from others re your experiences after this proceedure and how long you took to get some relief as I seem to have gone forward, then now going backwards.Am a Registered Nurse (for 40 years)so have seen many people come in far too many times for repeat surgeries with little success.Would love to hear something positive this far down the track. Others I have spoken to here (Sydney Australia) have success stories and pain free in a few months....good for them but depressing for me. So.......is there any hope that things will get better, or should I let them go back in and see if they can find a reason for the pain.....and hence probably cause even more problems. Anxiously awaiting a response......thank you.....Dianel


  • I do not believe you have run out of options at all.There diffenatly seems to be an on-going problem for you.But obviously it still needs to be discovered.The worst thing you could do,is suffer in silence.Its the squeaky wheel that gets given the oil first.So,jump & shout if need be untill you are satisfied with the advice & care being given to you by your surgeon & doctors.
    When was your last scan?What meds are you on?
    If need be get second & third opinions.But sometimes it is just a matter of waiting for signs of improvement.I have had to wait for periods of 5-6 months etc to confirm fusion success etc.But I would rather take meds,even opiates -rather than suffer pain incessantly.
    Keep us posted on your progress,thou we aren't doc's we do have a lot of combined experience on here.You are not alone in this.What country/state etc.
  • hi and welcome to the forum! :H we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. i am sorry you are now suffering from two failed surgeries.. you must be more than disappointed!! i would of course advise you to get more than one opinion with any surgery you are considering.. the more confirmation you have, the better possibility of good results..other than that, it is a very personal decision and one which you must consider long and hard now.. after two failed, there is alot to consider! i hope speaking with others in much the same situations will help lead you on the right path.. the best of luck to you! i hope you are able to find some pain relief soon! stop by the forum anytime! Jenny :)
  • Welcome to our forum. :))) I'm from Perth and it's good to have another Aussie here.

    Don't suffer in silence and as Mike recommended, get one or more opinions. Perhaps your meds need to be changed.

    Is the nerve pain in the legs in the same place as before with L4-5? It could be that you're now having a problem with a different level/s ?? Has the MRI confirmed fusion?

    My fusion of L4-5 was successful, and I was told at the time of surgery that the adjacent levels weren't much good, but the surgeon didn't want to do further surgery at the time. Pre-surgery, I was having pain in different parts of the legs as well as the back, especially at the L5-S1 level. I'm 19 months out, and L3-4 and L5-S1 are letting me know that they're not happy and I'm having a lot more back pain with some leg pain, but in a different part of the legs. Even though I feel that these levels are deteriorating more, I'm very happy that the L4-5 fusion has relieved that soul destroying nerve pain.

    Hope you can get help soon.


    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
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