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July Surgery

backpaingirlbbackpaingirl Posts: 5
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:03 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hi I'm new!
I'm having surgery in July L4-L5 XLIF, L5-S1 TLIF with PSF. I've been livinging with and around my back and leg pain for the last 10 years. So I finally gave in and decided to have surgery, which I know is the only way I can get back to doing the things I love to do (playing golf)etc. I'm scared, really scared. Which I know I shouldn't be, since I've been reading the forum's on here for the last two weeks, and everyone has survived and lived through it, whether the end results are different are not.
I'm still scared and just knowing that there are so many wonderful people out there who have gone through or are going through the same things I am helps. The closer is gets the more anxious I get, so I thought if I could just write and get out that I'm scared it would help, reading all the different posts on here has helped too. No matter how supporative the people around me are, they don't understand. So anyone who has gone through this type of surgery, or is scared or has been scared I would appreciate any kind of feedback.


  • I'll know Friday when mine will be and I want it over with as soon as possible and my doctor told me he would 'pencil me in' back in early May when I agreed to try an epidural, so I'm hoping he did. I don't know what XLIF and all the rest stand for and I'll be getting better details Friday. But from what I know, the surgery is several hours, I have to stay 3-4 days, and he will be trimming discs L2-5, removing bone spurs, cleaning out nerve roots (my thecal sac is only 7mm) and then said he'd probably use rods and screws (to hold me together is my thought!). Like you, I know it's my chance to get rid of the pain, and looks like everyone survived no matter how it ended, but even though you want to get it done, it is hard not to be scared!

    Maybe ours will be close to the same time and we can share our progess, etc.

    If it wasn't for all the support groups online - shoot, just think how different it would be with no internet - I don't know what I'd do any. I'm always researching and reading and looking for people's experiences on different types of treatments everywhere I can find the info!

    Good luck!!
    I am who I am!
  • Thank you so much for responding!!
    I do hope you have surgery at the same time so we can share our progress. It's nice to have someone to talk too!! I mean if you have to have surgery why not have a confidante...:)
    XLIF means: Lateral lumbar interbody fusion (XLIF) is a minimally invasive surgical procedure performed through the patient's side to avoid major back muscles.
    It's suppose to be easier on the patient and minimally invasive. It's a fairly new procedure. You only stay in the hospital one night and the recovery is suppose to be shorter.
    TLIF means: Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion (TLIF) is a spinal fusion procedure that fuses the front and back section of the spine through a posterior approach.
    I too am always researching and reading and looking for people's experiences on different types of treatments everywhere I can find the info also! It helps doens't it?

    Thanks again for responding and Good Luck to you too!!!!

  • having minimal essavise (two 8 inch cuts and two 2 inch cuts) or they cutting you from bottom to upper back? It's ok to be a little scared or nervous. You will be fine. I felt the same way all four of mine. You will be fine and can't wait to hear your pain relief success story. Good Luck.
  • Eric I will find out details tomorrow, hopefully. All I know is that he said it could take up to 6 hours and he'll work on 4 levels trimming discs, removing bone spurs, cleaning out the nerve root spaces and then will probably put in rods and screws. Then I spend 3-4 days in the hospital. I have no idea what the incisions will be!

    If my hubby has surgery, his is supposed to be about an inch and a half long incision and he can go home either that day or next morning.
    I am who I am!
  • the two 8in cuts and the two 2in cuts. Thanks for the encourgement. Everyday that is gets closer the more scared and nervous I get. But it helps talking about it. Like I said in my post my family and friends are supportative, but don't really understand what I'm going through. I've lived with it for ten years and was pretty good at hiding it. But then it got where my bad days out weighed my good days, I couldn't hide it anymore. I'm tired of living this way....
  • Yours sound either way. I have had both done and didn't leave the hospital for 4 days on both. I was so ready to go it wasn't funny. I pray that you dont have to stay in that hospital that long and that you have quick recovery.
  • I had a pretty big female surgery about 10 years ago. They didn't know if it was going to be the little kind with a laproscope or they'd have to make a big incision - ended up they had to make the big incision and they said if they did I'd be in a few days. I went home the morning after surgery. There was another time I did that too. I can suffer at home much more comfortably than I can at a hospital!
    I am who I am!
  • I'll take my wheelchair ride out of there early singing 'I Did it My Way.' Lord knows that's the way I roll!
    I am who I am!
  • is suppose to be both ways. But still supppose to be a one day stay in the hospital. And I'm with ouchy-head-neck. .
    "I can suffer at home much more comfortably than I can at a hospital!"

  • I asked him how big my incision would be and he showed us with his fingers - hubby and I agree it looked like about 3 inches, maybe less. I know I'm not allowed to do ANYTHING for 2 weeks. And that reminds me, I've had a lot of very good, well meaning advice about what to do after I come home and I know everyone who did that did it b/c they cared. But what my doctor told me in his exact words were "I'm going to need you to do nothing for the 2 weeks following surgery, then I will see you and we'll go from there". Please even with the best sounding advice, make sure that whatever it is you are going to do, your doctor okays it! That's for our own good, and everyone is different.
    This back stuff is NOT a one size fits all type of thing. So listen to your doctor! I'm going to do my best and my husband intends to make sure I do, because I can be impatient and sometimes my want to do takes over the 'I'm supposed to do'.

    Good luck to all, talk to you soon backpaingirl! Will let you know how it goes soon as I can. Hubby will be posting about me, but he's not on here as far as forums. Can't seem to talk him into it and he can't believe that I do. Talk to you when I can!
    I am who I am!
  • and I'm praying for you...Just let me know you are ok when you can..
  • Had no idea the restrictions would be for a full 8 weeks, but at almost 4 weeks into, now I understand. Yesterday silly me tries to push a cardboard box down inside another one that had paper in it - tall skinny box at waist height. And it hurt and scared me!

    Backpaingirl anxiously awaiting to hear that you are home and doing okay!
    I am who I am!
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