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Please not AGAIN!!

jayhawkjjayhawk Posts: 1,032
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:55 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I so wish I still wasn't on this spinal roller coaster. 2 months after my L4-5 fusion I blew out L3-4. Now 14 months later the EMG shows chronic nerve damage right leg worse than the left, it is difficult to find a reflex in my right leg and my quads and hamstrings are also very weak. My leg will just start shaking when I bear too much weight on it and I have fallen a few times.

I am being referred back to my surgeon to determine the need for L3-4 to be fused.

I can't imagine doing this all over again,but this time I will be a single mom going thru this.

I am trying to stay faithful but I am terrified!


  • Sorry to hear you may need surgery on the other level. With losing strength in your leg and shaking and falling sounds concerning. Can you use a cane so you won't fall while waiting to see the Surgeon. I hope the wait isn't too long though. Praying for you. 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
  • May I ask how L3-L4 blew out and did it have previous issues?
    And how is your L5-S1?

    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • Hi Jayhawk,

    So sorry to hear you're going through this. Please keep us posted as to what the plan is!

    Keep your chin up :-)

  • I heniated L3-4 2 months after my L4-5 fusion in PT. The PT didn't do anything wrong. It's unknown whether it was weakened after my fusion or if it was just one of those things.

    I kept a pain journal to justify the use of meds and it turned out that is what lead my surgeon to order and immediate MRI at my 3 month follow up.

    Since Oct., I have had multiple injections to L3-4, the facets and my SI joints.

    I do have some issues with the facets at L5-S1. After my fusion, the doc said the facets at L4-5 were bone on bone, so I'm guessing L5-S1 ins't much different.

    This is such a long journey.....
  • Wow. So sorry,, Surgery is like a gift that keeps on giving it seems. And you cant even re wrap it and giive it away,, Best wishes.
    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
  • Sorry to hear this as well. Seems like after the first surgery that most people start down the slope of more surgeries.

    Were your facet injections really painful? I had some 3 weeks ago and I doubt I'll ever do that again it was that painfull. It has helped a bunch though.

  • Sorry to hear about your new issues with your spine. Haven't seen posts from you in a while, thought that was a good sign, that you were doing well.

    I agree with Charry, Have you tried using a cane? I now use one, and feel much safer, just having it with me.

    Wishing you all the best at your appointment. Let us know how everything goes.

    >:D< Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • Shari,

    Very sorry to hear this, you have had more issues than one person deserves. I have not been active here for awhile, but just wanted to express my concern and praying for the best for you :)

  • Hi, I have had 3 fusions in 4 years. My spine was pretty degenerated from an accident so it wasn't surprising that I needed the 2nd one to keep my spine from collapsing in on itself. I started out with a laminectomy at L4/L5, then fusion, then L1-L5 then this march L5/S1. In the first and 3rd fusions the vertebrae were slipping and causing pain and weakness in my back and leg. Fusions were very successful to fix problems. I was devastated that I had to go thru 3 when I never expected the first one to ever happen. Its long recoveries but I would I do it again. Yes. Like I said I no longer had the problems that were causing the problems the fusions fixed. Good luck, and let us know how it goes.

    L4/L5 laminectomy, L4/L5 360 fusion with instrumentation, L1 to L5 fusion, L5/S1 fusion w/ disc replacement, left and right SI joints fused.
  • Hi, and so sorry you are facing this again, and this time your symptons are worse with nerve damage.
    Has this been on-going or did you go back to work to early, and possibility reinjured yourself by doing to much to soon.

    Sorry also that you might be facing another surgery, with out the help of your husband.
    But we know your daughter will be there to help you as much as she can.

    I wish you the best, and keep us posted on the doctors findings, and hoping that you can avoid another surgery.

    My best to ya, and dont stay away as long.
  • as I don't spend so much time on here these days.

    Have you got a date for surgery or is this appointment to see what the surgeon recommends?

    I know that you have been struggling since this disc herniated.

    David (Bkins) is right, it does seem to be the case that some people after spinal surgery, just seem to keep getting worse and need others. It is one of the things that I worried about before my surgery, but I would still have had it. I think that the surgery didn't cause the problems I am having now. They would have appeared anyway. Some of us just seem to have degenerative spines.

    You are not alone Shari. You have given so much care and support to others here in the past. Now it is our turn to care for and support you. >:D< >:D< >:D<

  • Thank you all! This all seems to be as a result of herniating L3-4. My second surgery was from L3-S1. Followed by L4-5 fusion. So L3-4 was already weakened.

    Then my "lucky" day came 2 months after my fusion when I blew L3-4. It has been hard to tell the pain source whether it was post fusion, L3-4, facets or SI.

    So I have had injections to all. But this spring I started noticing that my right leg shakes when I put all my weight on it, ie lifting my left leg to shave it and balancing on my right! :)

    So I mentioned it to my PM doc and the rest is history. The pain isn't as bad as it was for L4-5, but both of my legs show chronic compression to L3-4.

    My surgeon is on vacation so my appointment isn't until 8/20. I am planning to call my PM today to see if he will refer me to someone to get another opinion while I am waiting. I will also call my PT who has be with me throughout the years to see who she would recommend. I figure, I will get a second opinion anyway, might as well begin while I am waiting for my surgeon.

    I just don't think there is any other answer at this point but to get the pressure off my nerve. It's been 14 months since I herniated L3-4.....

    I have my church for support and they are all keeping me in their prayers. I'm just praying there is a way to do this and not have to sell my house.

    But for now, I am counting the days until the weekend when I will head to the beach and try to stop thinking about all of this.....

    I won't stay gone as long! I think of you all often. Just going through a divorce and recovery from the fusion took it out of me!

    Wishing a pain-free/lessened day to all my spiney friends!
  • Hang in there - we are thinking about you and hoping for the best, we are here if you need us!
  • Shari,

    Life is so unfair, yet we try not to be. Why is that?

    I understand some of what you are feeling and going through. I found this as I lay on the couch feeling sorry for myself still recovering from my third back surgery and wondering when it all ends.

    There are days I get up and get going refusing to let it get me down. Then I pay! Then along come the days I want to just not move for fear of doing more damage.

    I say that to remind you I have no real answers for you but want you to know, no matter how alone you may feel you are not alone.

    Keep us posted and if ever you want to just chat or rant drop me a line!!!

  • Oh my friend Frog~ thank you! You brought tears to my eyes!

    I just found out a week ago, and Wed I was so angry! Angry, angry, angry!!! Angry at life, angry at God, angry at anyone and everyone that I could think of! Not proud of it, but angry!!!!

    The anger didn't last long. I guess I have known for awhile this day was coming....I can't read MRI's at all! But even I could see the herniation on my own.

    Before it has always been my ankles/calves with foot drop....triping a lot etc. This time it is my quads, which is the stability of your lower body. So if I stand for too long, a minute or two, my legs shake....I can try to lock my knees but that only works for so long. I work with special needs babies, and babies are on the floor. I am having a hard time getting up off the floor, and out of my SUV also, which I have to do on an average of 16 times each work day.

    Thank you for being here for me.....I can't imagine going through this, divorced.....I couldn't do the basic things in the beginning.....maybe I can be sent to rehab for a week or two....I just can't believe I am going thru this yet again.....

    OK, this pity party is coming to an end!! Thanks for the cyper hug!! Boy do I need it!!

    Hugs to y'all!! Shari

  • I hope that you are fast asleep as I type this. I)

    I hope that tomorrow will be a better day for you and that you will feel the support of your many friends on Spine Health and be aware of divine strengthening.

    You can do this Shari, not in your own strength, but with help you can do this.

    There are many good times and lovely people in the future for you.

    Blessings and gentle hugs
    >:D< >:D< >:D< O:)

  • Well, tomorrow I have a consultation with a neurosurgeon that my PM referred me to.....

    I'm nervous.

    I just pray for whatever is best long term....

    Please pray for strength and peace. I am going by myself.

    Thank you my spiney friends!

  • Saying a prayer for you. Will be thinking of you tomorrow. Glad to see that you were able to get in for a second opinion before you go to your other appointment on the 20th.

    You may be going to your appointment alone, but we will be with you in spirit

    Please let us know how you make out tomorrow, when you are able.

    >:D< and prayers, Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • I had my appointment with the new neurosurgeon. I like him.

    Just like last time, he suspects something neurological is going on. He wanted all the same tests my other surgeon wanted, MRI's of the brain, cervical, thoracic.

    I have had them all and they all came back normal.

    He referred me for a myelogram. I grasped and he reassured me that they are much different than in the 90's when I last had one.

    Ugh.....I have it scheduled for Monday at 7:30 am with a follow up appointment with the neurosugeon next surgeon.

    I had terrible complications after my last myelogram. I sneezed 2 days after and leaked CSF, requiring a blood patch.

    I just feel like this is the same dance just a differnt song.

    It's one thing to have spinal issues, it is another to a neurological concerns.

    Hope ya'll are hanging in there! Thanks for your support!
  • Hope your myelogram goes better than the last one.

    Your new NS sounds very thorough and I hope he'll be able to help you.

    Hang in there


    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
  • like you have a great neuro, sending you for all the testing to see exactly what is going on.

    Will be thinking of you tomorrow. All the best Shari!

    >:D< Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
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