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synovial cyst on L5-S1 nerve root

Hello everyone - I am hoping to get some input here on my condition.

I have a synovial cyst pressing on dorsal ramus of R L5-S1 nerve root. The Doctor said he wants to see if the anethesiologist will consider giving me a steroid shot in that area, but he said that there are risks involved, and that he is not even sure that the anesthesiologist will agree to it, as where mine is located is in a very hard to get to area. Then he said the next option would be surgery to have it removed. Which, to be honest, scared the heck out of me...because he said it was an open surgery, that it could not be an orthroscopic surgery....and that I would have to go to a spine surgeon. Having it removed, sounded like the best plan, as the shot is not guaranteed to work and I am dying to get this pain to go away. However, as with any surgery, there are risks involved...and with spine surgery..YIPES!

My pain has been increasing lately. Every time the weather changes the slightest bit, my pain jumps to around a 9. I have nothing that helps the pain. My body does not do well with narcotics, so I lay here in pain and stay up all night. I am trying to get this taken care of as soon as possible, but the doctors over here take their time getting the referrals to me.

I have been deal with this since November. I am beyond ready to have it gone.

Has anyone else had a synovial cyst in the L5-S1 removed? If so, how was it? How long was the recovery? How long was the hospital stay?

Thank you in advance for any help!


  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
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  • My synovial cyst arose from the facet joint L4/5 associated with degenerative changes.I experienced increasingly severe sciatica caused by the pressure on the nerve root. My surgeon explained that simply dissecting away the cyst would not be sufficient because the instability in the joint meant that the cyst would recur. I therefore underwent X-LIF (extreme lateral interbody fusion), which is a minimally invasive procedure, plus pedicle screws and rods to immobilise the joint. The cyst was dissected away from the nerve root at the same op. This was nearly 6weeks ago. I was immediately free of the sciatica (caused by pressure on the nerve root) and have just the expected operation pain to deal with. This has been quite minimal but I have been very tired. Feel stronger day by day. I am nearly 68, a normally very active woman who had walked nearly 500 miles on the Camino de Santiago the 2 previous years. I felt I had no alternative to surgery but I did ensure that the surgeon I chose had extensive experience with this type of keyhole surgery.
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