I've been visiting these forums on and off for about a year now, and your stories have all been really helpful for me while I've been in surgery limbo and recovery world. Thanks!
My back surgery story is a fairly lengthy one - at 14 I had a spinal fusion (lumbar), which involved the removal of a verterbrate (I was born with a spare), and restored my ability to walk, stand, etc etc. 18 months later, I was back in hospital with two broken rods, which were promptly replaced.
For a good 10-15ish years this all went pretty well - I recovered well, I've had an active and physical life where I've participated in lots of activities and sports, and whilst I've had pain, it's not been a predominant characteristic of my life, until the last couple of years.
Over the last couple of years, pain has slowly but surely been creeping up on me, and by the time I could get a doctor to take it seriously and not just shrug it off as inevitable pain associated with my previous surgery, I was almost back to where I started, not being able to stand long or walk far, and being in constant discomfort. Turned out I had a pretty large bone spur pressing on the nerve, and the solution ended up being fusion #2, which was performed a bit over 6 months ago.
Surgically, this fusion has been a success, and symptoms are certainly relieved to an extent. But, recovery has taken far far longer than I anticipated - my surgeon originally told me 3 months total recovery, but here I am over six months later with substantial pain if I commit to more than one or two activities within the same day. I've been committed to a strong rehab program, involving a lot of hydro and walking etc, and apparently the fusion itself has healed really well - the outstanding problem now is simply that I have damage to the nerve from the bone spur affecting it so long. Now I'm playing the waiting game to see how much (and if) this damage will heal, and work out what kind of level of disability I'm stuck with for the rest of my life.
It's pretty tedious!
Does anyone else have a problem like this, where permanent nerve damage has become a problem?