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almost 3 years after my L5-S1 fusion - suffering constantly

BrentawBBrentaw Posts: 5
edited 10/22/2013 - 11:03 PM in Degenerative Disc Disease
In March 2010 I went for a 6 hour Spinal fusion at the L5-S1.
I had a one level fusion that was placed between my spine and pelvis.
The fusion all along was a failure.
The day I woke up from my surgery I had a numb right quad and a partial right numb foot which I never had before.
My right foot is hard to stand on as it feels very painful especially with socks and shoes on.
It is like the nerves are on fire.
The radicular pain shoots straight down my lower back to my large toe in my right foot.
I found out over a year later after being denied WCB, and they gave me my entire medical file to keep.
After reading my operative report, I found out the surgeon caused an accidental contusion on my right nerve root while he was installing the cage. During all my post operative surgeon visits, he never told me his accident to my right L5 nerve root.
Once I found this out, I contacted my surgeon via an email and I was not that pleasant to him from withholding this important information from me. My surgeon responded with getting an attorney to notify me never to contact my surgeon again.
The fact was when I first went into surgery I had a bulging left L5 nerve root that was impinging my left L5 disc. This was shooting a lot of pain down my left leg to my left foot.
When I woke up from my surgery, my left nerve root was fine but now my right L5 is causing extreme pain shooting down my right leg to my right foot. The numb quad and partial numb foot were since the operation.

I am deemed permanently disabled, and unable to work.
I can barely sit or stand before really suffering in pain.
I was approved by CPP disability for working for the last 28 years.
Since my failed spinal fusion, I have been spending 90 percent of my days lying in bed suffering.
I take a Percocet and a 20mg Oxycodone every 4 hours and at night I have to take two zopiclone 7.5mg sleeping pills to be able to sleep while the pain makes it tough to.

WCB treated my entire surgery like a success right from the beginning and they do not accept failures.
The last neurosurgeon I met with February 2013, he told me my fusion did not take, so I have a hole between my pelvis and spine with 4 surgical screws keeping me together.
If he operates on me that most likely would be a dual fusion and a 10 hour operation and most likely I would end up in a wheelchair for the rest of my life.
My other option is to continue to suffer with my pain but I will still be able to walk.

It sucks lying in bed for one year waiting for surgery and almost 3 years after surgery and because I have a hole between my S1-L5 exercising is almost impossible due to the major pain.

I had another doctor tell me that being 46 years old that if I continue to lie in bed for another 5 years, I will die!
I can't believe my situation I am left in.
I been tried calling an attorney to sue for medical malpractice and every high-end lawyer was connected someway with my surgeon so they were all refusing their services from a conflict of interest.
I feel these surgeons are above the law and for my surgeon to fix my left L5 disc and accidentally damage my right L5 nerve root, it sucks. Any suggestions for me?


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    Yes, the first suggestion you may not like but it is vitally important, get out of that bed!! It is by far the worst thing that you can be doing to yourself. There is no reason after a failed fusion to be spending all of your time laying in bed. Why is it that this second surgeon feels that you will wind up in a wheelchair? A failed fusion can be redone, and successfully fused, even after all of this time.
    The neuropathic pain can be treated, to reduce the amount of that type of pain that you are experiencing, and there are many medication options available for that. If those fail, the possibility of a spinal cord stimulator to reduce that neuropathic pain might be worth considering.
    If you are not seeing a physiatrist/rehab doctor, for both pain management and treatment, I suggest that you find one and discuss your options since there are many still available.
    Also you might want to check with several other surgeons at major hospitals in your area for ideas about undergoing and repairing the failed fusion.
    Physical therapy is most likely also necessary since you have been inactive for so long so it could take a while but there are options available for you to get back to some semblence of life.
    The one thing that you might want to consider is trying to reduce some of the amount of narcotics you are taking.......120 mg of oxycodone and percocet on top of that has your tolerance way up there and it might be worthwhile to see about using less medications since opiates don't treat neuropathic pain very well.
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