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How bad is this?

Mtown99MMtown99 Posts: 2
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:59 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I don't know much other than my MRI results show that I have a narrowing of the L5/S1 disc tissue. The ortho hasn't called me to explain anymore about this yet and I am worried. Does anyone know how bad this possibly is? Is it fixable? Possible to have a normal, healthy back again?


  • Mtown - Hi :wave: & welcome to SH.

    First I have to say we are not allowed to give you medical advice or read tests results etc. Nor SHOULD we as we are not drs. :)

    However having said that I will tell you what I know from my own personal experiences.

    Many any yrs ago I started off just as you are with the same diagnose. I was told to be kind to my back.

    I ignored that advice. My whole world changed about 8 yrs ago and I will never be able to go back to the life I had.

    I did not have a major accident like many people do. I tripped over a elec cord and fell down on a cement floor and like dominoes my disks blew out!

    The blow out came from not being kind to my back for many years before my fall.

    Be VERY kind to your back!!!! Maybe talk to a PT and learn the correct ways to lift, bend etc. Don't assume you know - Most of us don't. ;)
    Ask your Dr if wearing a back brace will help you. Sometimes they don't help as your back muscles get weak from using one.

    The best thing I did do after my fall was I learned SAFE exercises to build my back muscles up. I have lasted a lot longer & better as of those muscles.

    Of course follow up with a Dr to get a full understanding of what this means and what is right specifically for you.

    Please keep us updated :)

    L1 - S2 "gone" useless in 1 way or another. DDD. RA. Bone Spurs. Tons of nerve damage/issues. Stenosis. Both knees replaced. 50 yrs old. I had a great fall (hence my user name) at age 41 and it has been a domino effect every since.
  • There were some emerging attempts at injecting man-made nucleus material into the center of the disc by one of the partners at a spine institute in Santa Monica (SoCal).

    The idea was to inject this material into the center of the disc in the hopes of regaining lost height and stability among other things.

    I don't know whatever became of that.

    Other ideas in other places by other people included inserting a spacer device called the "x-stop" in between the vertebrates. I haven't heard too much about it.
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • Thank you for the welcome and the replies! I am going to follow up with the ortho to see what the exact diagnosis is, but I wanted to get an idea of what I was up against. I am hoping it doesn't prevent me from working out like I want to but I will have to take it slow and I will definitely take your advice and treat my back with care! I think there is a nerve being pinched somewhere as well because I think I have mild sciatica. I have a minor, dull pain in my right flute and lower back, but no numbness, tingling, shooting pain etc.
  • Just for example, My MRI says severe narrowing of the L5/S1 disc space w/granulation tissue. This is AFTER 2 surgeries. Laminectomy and discectomy x2. In the past 2 months I have had over 10 cortisone shots in various levels including SI joint blocks. None have worked. I'm scheduled for a discussion with my NS on 3/21 up at Albany Med to talk about the different options I have for the various fusion procedures he does. He want's to do a double level which scares the hell out of me.

    Ok the Positive....

    I am blessed with a fantastic understanding family Doctor. Any and ALL pain pills I have taken in the past barely helped with the pain at all. I'm talking heavy duty meds.

    This past week I finally broke down and asked him what was left on the menu I have not tried yet.. He gave me a script for Fentanyl patches. And I have to say up to this point I have been darn near pain free. They are wonderful. No tylenol and they stick to your skin without worry of them falling off. They are extremely powerful so if you don't have a tolerance built up I don't recommend taking them as you will be in lala land for days LOL.
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