Does microdiscectomy (and laminectomy) relieve back pain? If yes, to what extent?
Should I go for neck surgery first or lower back surgery first?
I have been suffering with lower back pain + right leg pain (upper leg laterally, above knees + left foot) and right neck and upper right back + shoulder burning & tingling pains for several years(more than 10 years).
My MRI reports show disc herniations with L5-S1 annular tear, c4-c5, c5-c6, c6-c7 disc bulges.
1. Multilevel spondylosis in the cervical spine more pronounced on the left at c4-c5 and on the right at c5-c6 with possible
nerve encroachment bilaterally
2. Levoconvex curvature of the lumbar spine with apex at L4
3. Spondylosis at L4-L5 and L5-S1 most pronounced on the right L5-S1 with right facet bony hypertrophy contributing
to moderate right foraminal stenosis at L5-S1 with concern for nerve encroachment
I have taken diagnostic lumbar and cervical steroid injections (Rigth C4, C5, C6, C7 MBB Facet, Righ C7-T1 Epidural,
R L4-5, L5-S1 IAB Facet, R L5 Transforaminal Epidural) twice, with no pain relief.
Taken several tests: discogram, mylogram, CT scans and EMG. Discogram could not reproduce the pain during the test and EMG is negative. Been through Minimally invasive L5-S1 discectomy with no change in the disc bulges or the pain.
All my alternative options and therapies proved no help and I stand at a point to make decision on my surgery. After meeting several doctors, I'm down to 2 spine surgeons who have contradicting opinions on the surgeries.
First doctor does not want to perform any surgery on the lower back since discogram was negative and I have all the motion (bending), but recommended 1 level ADR c5-c6 on the neck.
Second doctor advised to go for L5-S1 microdiscectomy (with laminectomy) and 2 level fusion (c4-c5 and c5-c6) on the neck.
I'm confused which surgery to choose first as both lower back and neck+shoulder are equally painful. Moreover, the
first doctor said that after microdiscectomy, I may not get any relief. For neck, even though my pain symptoms are only to the right, left C4-c5 disc bulge is more than right C5-C6. Should I address both discs or just go for 1 level ADR? 2 level ADR or 2 level fusion?
Those who faced these or similar kind of issues or who had any improvement on the back pain with the discectomy,
please speak out and give us your valuable advice. I understand that this forum is not responsible for any medical advice, but your experiences are very helpful. Thank you.