I met with the 2nd opinion NS today. She thought I would be a simple case until she loaded the MRI. She said I am a highly unusual patient. She had never seen anyone with as many disc protrusions on the thoracic spine. She had read some notes from the nurse and thought for sure this would be lumbar... until the MRI changed her mind.
She said she would first like to see my ESI notes and possibly do one more -just to make sure we are at the right level (either facets or disk depending on the injections notes from my PM). After that cinched it up (thinks T7/8) is my worst problem. She would then do a XLIF (extreme lateral interbody fusion). She uses this method a lot. They go in from a spot on the side about 1-2 inches (very minimally invasive) and remove the old disc, then place a peek cage filled with BMP and no hardware (T spine is supposed to be more stable so no hardware). She would only do the one level.
I will be seeing my NS on the 26th of September and discuss what he would do again. He said before it would be thoracotamy (collapsed lung/rib resection/hardware etc) how many levels is the big question.
Since I think I am having symptoms from multiple levels I wonder if they can do multilevel XLIF? The new NS said they use this method alot to add a level in the lumbar area....
I have a lot to think about and research. I don't want to rush anyting but the right leg started with myelopathy on Tuesday. She also said I had a lot of end plate edema at the worst level (think it is 7/8 but it could be another level).
That is it in a nutshell