Hi! This is an awesome forum...i have already read so much good advice and other's experiences and it has helped a lot! thanks to all who share.
After a successful microdiscectomy 2 yrs ago, I recently re-injured my lower back (very, very active lifestyle...work involves lots of lifting,etc so probably overdid it over the years). This pain was debilitating..worse than 2 yrs ago. I tried aggressive, non-surgical treatment by my family Dr., and was doing very well...until last week. I did some lifting that I shouldn't have done, and ended up not being able to walk on it at all, and was in bed for days. Finally had to go to neurosurgeon.
The original MRI (Oct 20) said this:
1. nerve root contact L3-L4 left neural foramen.
2. Annular tear and diffuse disc bulge L4-L5.
3. L5-S1 mild diffuse disc bulge/slight protrusion like herniation right paracentral region.
Since I had gotten better then got real bad, NS ordered a new MRI. This is the report from this one (Dec 7)
1. Moderate degenerative spinal stenosis L3-L4. Deg. disc bulge toward left and posterior w/left intraforaminal protrusion.
2. mild to moderate symmetrical dege. spinal stenosis L4-L5.
3. deg. disc L5-S1 no bulge or stenosis.
My questions: why so much difference between the 2? The first one doesn't even mention stenosis. Can a spine change tthat much in 6 weeks?? Or is it that each radiologist sees or looks for different things?
Any clue what surgery would be best for this? Almost everything I see for stenosis is a laminectomy and discectomy on the bulged disc. My appt is for Tues but I am trying to prepare things at home/work/life for what might be coming. I recovered very well from surgery 2 yrs ago...what should I expect time-wise if laminectomy is performed?
thanks for any help!