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Has anyone had back surgery 5 times at same level?

As of right now I've had 4 back surgeries at L4/L5 L5/S1. One microdisc and 3 laminectomies to clean out scar tissue. My latest MRI not only shows a large amount of scar tissue but also a 6mm cyst compressing L4/L5 L5/S1 that needs to be removed based on the neurological symptoms I'm having. We discussed a lami/fusion and just a straight laminectomy which he is leaning towards, but also told me based on my MRI that I am likely to require a fusion in the next 2 years even if the cyst doesn't reappear. I can not find anyone that's had 5 at the same level, let alone 6. I'm also having a real hard time agreeing to just a laminectomy when I know that eventually I'm going to need a 2 level fusion, and the likelihood is sooner rather than later. Did I mention that this has been within 3 years. I can't tell you how tired I am of sitting on my couch not able to do anything, and I live in Alaska. On the one hand if the laminectomy was successful I'd be able to do things that I haven't been able to do for years. Any support, advice and encouragement is appreciated. Thanks
Microdiscectomy/Laminectomy/Foraminalectoy L4/L5/S1 Oct 2009, Mar 2012
Laminectomy L4/L5/S1 Dec 2009, Oct 2012, Dec 2012
Microdiscectomy and Synovial Cyst removal Feb 2013
St Jude Spinal Cord Stimulator implanted January 2014



  • I'm gearing up for #4, and honestly I think if there ever was a #5 it would send me over the edge, so I do feel for you. I agree with you that you might as well do the fusion. I've only had fusions, never any of the others.... and if you are going to have to have one anyways, might as well do it now and get it behind you. Sitting on the couch is no fun. And I live in warm sunny Florida.... I don't think my spine would survive Alaska, though I've always wanted to visit.
    33yo mom of two. My surgical history...preadolescence scoliosis, kyphosis, and a hot mess.... 5 spine surgeries and lots of items added I wasn't born with (titanium, peek, surgical steel). Guess cremation is out. TSA loves me.
  • I have had 5 surgeries now to address problems at L4/L5/S1, check out my story at


    Wishing you the very best of luck, keep your chin up as I know all to well that repeat surgeries are disheartening however my own experience showed me that keeping the faith pays off.
    Take care
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