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airborne72airborne72 Posts: 245
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:01 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery

I am at the point of deciding upon a revision surgery (L4-S1) and yesterday my surgeon ordered a discogram for L3 and L2 to better define the origin of my pain. A recent MRI was not definitive. I am awaiting a call back for scheduling of the procedure, but I am "getting chicken."

I reviewed the SH files for info about this procedure, but would like input that is most current in regards to anesthesia, pain level, temporary debilitation, confidence/success in procedure, etc.

Last November I had an ESI X2 in my SI w/o any sedation and I swore I would never do that again. Am I facing the same or worse? If it is an insurance issue I will gladly lay down my wallet/credit card on the counter and pay for any anesthesia. To me, that was similar to having a cavity filled without any novacaine. Don't want to do that again, if possible.

Your thoughts / input?


  • I barely remember the two discos that I had. They put me under and also used local. When it was time for my responses, they "brought me out" of the sleep just enough for me to respond and then put me back under.

    I guess I was lucky; I too have read horror stories on here about no anesthesia being administered.

    For my ESI's, local was also used.

    Can you ask(demand) them them to give you some for the procedure?
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • If its a good dr discogram should not be so bad, Many say discogram was terible but i had them done and does not go on top of my list as the worst procedure i have had,

    The less a person worry about it going in to it the beter, Its short lived so not worth geting freaked out about it,

    Just pretend you going on a blind date, But then again i have seen some of these woman on a blind date who are painful to look at,

    Thats kind of like a discogram right?
    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
  • It's still the same test and you're still going to get the same answers. Anyone who did it the had way will tell you it's horrible. Like a blind date...

    I had 2 done. 1 the way Paul describes where they bring you in and out. They also give you Versed(sp) after. That makes you not remember.

    Second one was done by a doctor who thought that way made the patient too numb to answer correctly. He gave me a very minimal local. I felt that test quite a bit. I remember it well. As soon as he was done he doped me up with morphine to get the CAT Scan done. He was very thorough and provide my surgeon with excellent detail. At that point my surgeon was very comfortable with the diagnosis and had the testing to back it all up.

    Personally speaking. You're crazy to say no to a discogram. It's the acid test that backups or disputes an MRI. Together they paint a very good picture.
  • It was totally different for me. My discogram was done under no anestetic what so ever. I was told they wanted no sedation so they could get an accurate response as they checked each level. Everyone has different pain tolerences, but to tell you the truth, I was as nervous as you and read the horror stories and it wasn't that bad at all. Heck, i even drove home myself and went to the procedure myself. Maybe some do give you sedation now. Kevin
  • and thank G-d for it. I do remember the pain I felt, but it wasn't for very long at all because they injected anaesthetic straight away.

    When I came round afterwards, I was very surprised to learn that my surgeon knew I had found it painful. I thought I had experienced the pain quietly and very much to 'myself'. It seems not, everyone knew about it because the surgeon said I was shouting in pain! Ooops. Also, I do not remember ever having a conversation with the surgeon during this time, but he said we did. Very strange.

    I do think they give you something to help you forget the procedure, so don't worry about it. It's a necessary evil that gives a very clear indication of what's going on and it's over very quickly. With any luck, you won't remember it anyway!
    2 x Microdiscectomy 2005 / PLIFusion 2-level 2010 / revision surgery 2011 / NEVRO Senza spinal cord stimulator implanted February 2013. I WILL NOT GIVE IN / UP !!
  • must give sedation for a discogram now. This must make it a lot easier on patients. Like I said, I had my discogram done under nothing when they confirmed the 4 bad levels. Nice to hear they make it more comfortable. Kevin
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