I send SueD a private message last week asking her for her advice regarding my situation. She responded with a detailed message, and she also recommended that I post this question to the Forum.
I had a TLIF (L4-S1) in Jan 11. For a couple of months it was a great improvement, but then I began to develop pain in my legs and lower back. It has continued and worsened (controlled by Percocet 10/325). MRI, CT and Xray show bone growth. EMG detected minimal nerve damage. PT did nothing. At my 1 year anniversay appointment last Thursday with my surgeon he listened to my symptoms and then stated that I most likely did not fuse and that he recommended another surgery to perhaps replace some existing hardware and to insert more. I asked for another 60 days of healing time. He ordered me an external BGS to wear during this time.
In March I see him again and must make a decision, one that some of you have made - defer or submit to surgery. By the way, I trust my surgeon. He has been very communicative and loyal (has yet to release me).
Here's my questions: 1) Was your revision surgery as brutal as the original (pain, hospital stay, limitations, etc.)? 2) Did your insurance company balk on the "revision" procedure? 3) As a veteran of these types of surgeries, did you struggle with mental acceptance/preparation? 4) What did your surgeon say about the revision procedure that offered any higher level of confidence of success than was stated prior to the original fusion surgery? 5) Did you seek second opinion or did you use the same surgeon?