So i've been down every road thus far.
Every pain med you can think of. (currently on fentanyl patch)
I see a very well known Albany Med NS and he recommended a double 360 L4 to S1 fusion. I had my wife with me. After he got done describing how the vascular surgeons will move everything out of the way, and how I already have fins removed from 2 prior surgeries (discectomy and laminectomies) her jaw was on floor and she was white as a sheet of paper. He wants me to think this over hard before committing to anything. She asked me to please try to exercise first.... i'm not exactly out of shape, i'm 6' and 205. I plan on having this surgery late spring, early summer anyway. So the worst that can happen is I get in much better shape for my recovery after surgery. With any miracle I can build some core muscle strength and forget the surgery but my l5/s1 is gone and its bone on bone. For some reason i'm not really over terrified. I guess once you get this pain in your back your willing to do anything to rid yourself. He gave me a 70/30% chance of getting better with the surgery. I know nothing is 100% and he is one of the most well known surgeon's up in Albany Med and I put full trust into this man. His waiting room is constantly full. My appointment was 2 hours late. He takes his time and explains EVERYTHING.
My question is what are real world expectations for a 360 double fusion recovery time? He said I could drive after a month, go back to my store and push buttons on my cash register after 1 month. 6 months in a brace and 6 months to a year for full recovery. He recommended BMP even with the bad press and say's he has excellent results. I would have hardware on both sides.
Going today to join planet fitness and give it heck for a couple months. Figure with my Fentanyl patch, it doesn't hurt much anyway so I won't know if I'm damaging it any further. I guess it really doesn't matter at this point. In my mind, i'm going to the gym to prepare for the storm about to hit come this summer.
He must have some excellent results/techniques because he say's by time I get to leave hospital (5 day stay) most of his patients are good to go on tylenol #3 which I can't really believe without living through it. Tylenol#3 right now would be a waste of meds and wouldn't scratch the surface of my current pain.
Weird to say but happy I have options