I am new to this site. Polly told me to switch to this site because we have the same problem. My back problem DDD started in 2003 and I had laminectomy. In 2004 I had fusion in neck and it has done good. My problem now is at the same place in lower back. L4-L5 has deteriorated and L5-S1 has collapsed and bone spurs. I have lived with this almost one year and it has gotten to the point that I cannot do much without lot of pain. My dr. has always left it up to me about when to do surgery and I told him 2 weeks ago I was ready. Now I am so scared. The surgery will involve removing the disc, cage, rods and screws. it just sounds awful. It is set for August 11. Has anyone had this with good success. Thank you for your advice. I have been taking demerol as needed and I am scared they will not give me strong meds because the demoral I take at home does not do much.