I signed up here to ask you readers for your opinion regarding my condition. I am beginning to think that surgery may be something I should consider.
I've had spondylolisthesis since I was 16. I'm 26 now. It was not too much of a problem for most of my life. I was a good athlete and lived a very active lifestyle. However, two years ago, I forced my spondy to slip while playing ice hockey. It was my L4/L5. It bulged quite a lot...probobly between a grade 2 or 3 slip. I was in a lot of pain for about a year. I was afraid of surgery and wanted to heal naturally.
I did a lot of physical therapy, pushing through the pain. Today, the bulge is much smaller and I'm in much less pain. My chief complaint, however, is that I no longer can play sports...I feel awkward/uncomfortable...I am weak...It's difficult to drive long distances...I can't sit upright without being very uncomfortable. Sometimes it feels like my life revolves aren't surviving work, going to the gym and then resting my back until the next day.
I've had xrays done, and have been evaluated by Dr. EDITED He was conservative in his recommendations...we discussed surgery, but I think he wanted to see how I'd do without it. He said that what he'd do is a bone graft and fuse the two vertebrae, along with adding more space between the vertebrae.
I'm not sure what to do. EDITED said that he sees people return to sports/running after the surgery. I'd love to do that. I'm afraid that the surgery will make things worse. I've made a lot of progress in the past two years...but I wonder if I'd be better off just having the surgery done, rather than postponing it and struggling with this for my entire life. At the gym, I typically walk for an hour on the treadmill. Sometimes I jump rope, jumping jacks, mountain climbers. I do core exercises on the swiss ball and planks. It's coming along, but the vertebrae always feel too compressed/weak for me to run or do anything very strenuous.
Can anyone advise me? I'd really appreciate it.
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