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goldclock15ggoldclock15 Posts: 2
Hello to all members. Unfortunately, I am suffering from chronic pain for the last 2 years. What started out as mild discomfort in my lower back, gradually move down buttocks and then down legs. My Dr. calls the symptoms neurogenic claudification; which fits well since I cannot walk more than 20 ft. without having to sit down. However, when I sit down most of the pain goes away.

I have tried all types of PT and seen many different chiropractors and 5 neurosurgeons. I have had 3 MRIs; 2 EMG/NCV and 3 X-Rays during this period.
My diagnosis is Spondlylosisthesis at L4/L5 with a sub-ligamentous herniation causing stenosis. 1st 3 surgeons in Charlotte only talk about fusion and they were not giving any other options. Fortunately, friends and family experienced with back pain suggested a laminectomy. Finally, went 1 hour away (Wake Forest) to find a dr. that would do a laminectomy at L4/5. I felt very comfortable with this doctor until I looked at the latest MRI and EMG/NCV reports. The MRI reported a moderate to marked constriction of the thecal sac at L5/S1 due to epidural fat and without mechanical compression. The EMG/NCV show severe bilateral ridiculopathy at L5/S1. I inquire of the surgeon, shouldn't we address the constriction at L5/S1; I did not want to have any chance of coming out of surgery with the same problems.

I was scheduled for the laminectomy on Mar. 13, 2015; however I objected to the responses from the neurosurgeon and cancelled just 2 days before the date of surgery. The responses I got from the surgeon were as follows:

During a office visit the dr., she said she was only cut off a piece of thicken flavin at L4/L5 that would release the constriction at both L4/5 and L5/S1. I asked what about the herniation; she said I may only have muscle spasms every couple months.
At a later office visit I did not understand how removing constriction in L4/5 would help L5/S1 since there was already marked constriction there. So I only asked that we go over the MRI at L5/S1 and see how the surgery would help that level.
The next response I got was that she did not see the marked constriction that was on the Radiologist's report and I should believe her. I said what about the EMG/NCV showing severe ridiculopathy at L5/S1. At this point she said I did not trust her and she would get me a 2nd Opinion.

Has anyone have any experiences like mine?

Thanks, Frank


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    Please take the time to read this post and refer to it when you have questions

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    Doug Hell

    Also working with us very closely is Allison Walsh from the Spine-Health company


    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
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