i'm posting this just to get some opinions from people that may have been through the same. I know im the only person who can make this decision, but im just interested in hearing the opinions of people who have been through simialr and their result, and a few questions.
im currently 41
** brief history
injured back in fall on concrete about 15 years ago
ct/myleogram showed probelms at l4/l5 l5/s1
had open discectomy at l4/l5 after year of pain and chiro, pt etc etc
helped a lot but still had ongoing issues
about 2 years ago l5/s1 went
open discectomy at l5/s1 (herniation) and l4/l5 (remove scar tissues that had bled over from first op - looked like an extrusion on mdi but was scar tissue).
on mri recurrent/remnant (?) 7mm herniation at same l5/s1 site.
frequent discomfort, nerve pain in toes n calf on side of last discectomy. very limited in what i can do without aggravating it - i can walk, sitting is difficult, walking too far aggravates it, a car drive into the city is an epic ordeal (if not during it, the next day etc). life in general is difficult (more so than normal:))
while i know its not as painful as before the discectomies, i feel very limited.
very little sex inclination due to general soreness in the area (much to the chagrin of girlfriend - not entirely sure why she hangs around, shes quite a girl).
in short its really limiting my life and I cant push myself in anything physical at all. my 65 year old mum carries the groceries in as ill be suffering either then or the next day.
after 15 years of back problems , im pretty much over it. ive been to some dark places in my mind, get moody quickly. my job options are very limited ( i certainly cant sit at a desk all day in a tech IT job - which was my degree), cant sit in a car commutting for 1.5 hrs to the city etc.
ive put my current mri on my profile pic, but my surgeon is recommending a 2 level ALIF and im considering it but am wary.
he said *no more surgeries from the rear* as they are too destructive and scar tissue can be a big issue (as i found).
he feels im not eligible for ADR because of previous discectomies and facet joint condition.
some things about the alif that scare me (well all of it really) but some specific things -
* retrograde ejaculation - im told this is rare but if it is a result - does it hurt? what is the mental impact of this?
* can you feel the titanium plates etc inside you?
i sweat just thinking of the catheter again (ha) but would like to hear peoples opinions.
1994 - herniated disc l4/l5 l5/s1 - sciatica - l4/l5 discectomy
2011 - l4/l5/ l5/s1 herniated disc/scar tissue - sciatica - discectomy
now - recurrent disc protrusion l5/s1, lots of back pain, considering fusion/adr