hi, my name is nessa and obviously i am new to these boards. i am a bit concerned because i have been ghost reading here for a few months and finally decided i needed to post as a newbie as i'm seeking information i've not yet found, but first a bit about myself.
i am a 52-year-old retired therapist. i have grown kids, a dog and a cat and a spouse. i have multiple issues with my back but suffice to say the biggest one is spondolosis involving three levels. before i became a pain patient i tried every kind of alternative medicine i could find. i have never had a back surgery as they scare the crap outta me. that said, yep i'm scared outta my mind about this upcoming surgery in august. i currently have a medtronic pain pump in upper buttock/hip area and that has worked very effectively for several years. i like how the pain meds in it bypass my brain and leave me feeling clear headed. that said, recent x-rays and mri has shown progressive degeneration beyond what anyone expected. i've almost a grade three spondolosis and absolutely no curve left in my back. so, i will be having anterior and posterior incisions, with cages put in the front with donated and synthetic bone packed into the cages, and then in the back incisions i will be having more packing of the donated bone matters and rods put in for either two or three levels. i guess that's to be determined at surgery.
i haven't read much on here from people who have had to have the 360 degree fusion that sounds similar to mine in that no one else has had a pain pump implanted at the time of surgery and been able to speak about their experience with pain management post surgery of the incisions and muscle pain being harder to treat (so says the surgeon) because of the high level of opiates in my pain pump. i guess i did not think about that because i do not feel the medication as it bypasses the brain and therefore i figured that would help me but nope. i also have the usual pain down the leg and across the buttock and OA. so if anyone can give me any hints on how they handled their fusions, be it a 360 degree or not i'd appreciate it. im also trying to figure out how much im to not twist, bend, etc. because my neurosurgeon does not use a brace after surgery. he stated that if a brace is used he believes a bigger surgery was needed. i am also curious if anyone has any ideas for dealing with the extra degree of long term isolation i will be dealing with. activities are really minimized for six months to a year depending on what the activity is. i'm already frustrated and bored after six years of chronic pain and the inability to plan anything and count on doing it. there is lots more to say but i have sat here as long as i can. i hope to hear from someone, anyone... peace and out: nessa