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Newbie 3 operations and petrified of it happening again!!!

Hi I am a 28 year old female. My back problems started in 2008 I had been getting lower back pain for a couple of days nothing major just like period pains, I then sneezed one day and the pain I got in my legs was horrendous. I went to the doctors who said I had sciactica. A few days later I was getting ready to go out when I stood up and something popped I couldn't move was in terrible pain and had shooting tingling pains down my right leg, I was taken to hospital and had an MRI which showed a herniated disc can't remember which level! I also developed caudia equina and was rushed down for an emergency op,I recovered well and just had bouts of back ache. In 2010 the same thing happened and again was rushed to hospital for an operation.In June of this year I woke one day to the same tingly feelings in my legs and lots of pain, I also had weakness and numbness in my foot an MRI showed the disc they had operated on the second time had reherniated and was pressing down on the spinal cord but I didn't need to be rushed in for an operation even though the pains were the worse the have ever been, I was taken over 20 tablets a day, tried accupuncture but nothing touched the pain, I was in and out of hospital when the pain got really bad, as I could hardly walk my life was altered in a big way and I became depressed. The pains and symptoms finally got that bad that I was operated on again and this happened 2 weeks ago tomorrow. I am recovering well and all the pains have gone. I do get different sensations in my legs and foot and I am in pain in a morning as I get really stiff but I feel mostly "normal" again. I'm just so scared of it happening again as this time round it really took it out of me and I don't want to go back there!! I was advised that if it happened again I would need a spinal fusion I don't know too much on this and have read up but just keep finding horror stories, I am on my own with a 9 yr old so cleaning shopping etc is down to me so don't have much opportunity to "rest"
I was just wondering if anyone could give me any advise on how to sleep,sit etc whats the best exercise to do and foods to eat to help, and what else I could do to try strengthen my back also or if there is anyone who has gone through the same thing and has any advise I would be grateful
I don't work at the moment but need to be as I can't afford to live on benefits,plus being in the house al the time is killing me, but im scared of what jobs to apply for as don't want to anything that's gonna make it worse.
Thank you


  • Welcome here.

    The consensus of many posts is to engage a physiatrist to help prevent a reoccurrence. what you've had is quite enough. (See my history of what you don't want). Physiatrist (see FAQ for definition of terms) is professional doctor that has specialised into this area.

    There are many posts here that also give people's experience, good and bad. Lots of good articles as well. Feel free to check them out.

    There is a great post about weight loss that covers your question on healthy eating. Good body mass helps the back.

    Knowledgable patient is a more successful patient.
  • Have you been sent to physical therapy? They will be able to show you exercises that will help you strengthen your back. Not everyone's experience with a fusion is a horror story. I have had two successful fusions and there many more on this website that have found success with their fusions as well. This website is full of info, I am sure if don't see the answers to your question already posted, you can post a question and someone will answer or at least have a suggestion.

    Discectomies 05/08 and 04/11, fusions L4-5 Feb 9,2012 and L3-L4 June 28,2012, Staph infection washout 3/2/2012, Bulged L5-S1. SCS trial on January 17th, 2014, which was a success! Permanent SCS on February 20th.
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