So, I have been trolling/reading this site for the past week or so. I am scheudled for TLIF L5 S1 fusion along with laminectomy. I have been dealing with back pain on and off for five years. I spent the last 20 years in the Air Force which made dealing with the back pain worse. I tried to get the military to take care of the issue but they refused to allow an MRI to be performed. Now, I'm retired, it was fairly easy to get the MRI now and as I suspected it wasn't good. I have done several years of PT and also a agonizing time of back traction. My PM sent me to get a few steriod injections, but they didn't even last a day. So here I sit waiting for the surgery. I'm scared out of my mind, there are so many great posts on this site, some great sucess stories some others evil bouts with pain. I'm hoping for the first of those options. I guess I'm scared that they would give me good pain meds for when I go home. I have been on and off percocets for years, I would intentionally get off of them for months at a time just to make sure their pain killing power still had some effect. I'm on tramadol now, which doesn't work nearly as well, but it gives some relief. I have built up some tolarance through out the years, even with being carful so I just hope the doc takes care of me with some stronger meds for the first couple weeks. I'll take my self off the hard stuff. If they don't, well then this might be a long ride. I feel so guilty talking about taking pain meds. I had a run in with the tramadal before. I promise you, it is adictive, I didn't know since no one told me, I stopped taking it when I ran out and man the withdrawls were bruttal. But now I know, the key is to respect the medication. That's why I feel guilty talking about pain meds. I know it wasn't my fault but I felt like such a drugy! Not fun, wish me luck for tomorrow!