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Disc Surgery,disectomey or complete w/rods

kyadog115kkyadog115 Posts: 266
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:22 AM in Lower Back Pain
I am a cervie, 3 level ACDF Plate and 8 screws however, I had a slight herniation according to my Neuro at L5. I lifted and air conditioner the other day and I felt it "blow out" I had an MRI done and the dr.Just informed me that it is completely shot. A piece has broken off the disc and it's flat. He claims the less invasive "discectomey" would be better to try initially,otherwise we're talking fusion...rods and screws. I have no left leg strength and he says if I do nothing my leg will worsen. Evidently,it's squeezing the S1 nerve root. He claims though that 1 in 3 will eventually need the rods and screws done. Should I do that now or opt for the lesser surgical procedure?


  • I'm the conservative type. A fusion is something that cannot be undone. So if there's a procedure now that will extend things for a few years, who knows what procedures will be available by then.

    The good thing about our bodies, is that if the less invasive discectomy doesn't quite do the trick, you'll know pretty much right away.

    Sorry to hear you blew out the lower back.

  • Definitely do the discectomy first because the fusion is severe and there is no going back.
    Jan 2009 L5-S1 ALIF
    May 2017 ALIF L4-L5 with PLF rods added L4-L5-S1
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  • I appreciate the advice

  • with C. I have had a radical discectomy. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
  • What kind of time frame is the recovery for a radical discectomy please. I am awiting to hear from my surgeon if hes doing that op or the fusion so Im trying to research all I can.

    Many thanks for any replies

    Danni xxx
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  • everyone is different but it does seem that docs understate what the recovery will be. I would have to say that the full recovery takes at least 3 months. But, I have read others posts that have been able to return to work in a couple of weeks after endoscopic microdiscectomy. Let us know what type of surgery you will have when you find out and we will do our best to prepare you.
    Also, the fact that mine was radical means that they removed most of my disc. You may not need radical.
  • I would definitely try the Microdiscectomy first. I have bad sciatica from DDD at L4-L5, and it worked for a week or so... Just got worse since, and they're going to do a fusion now, BUT I would never want to get a fusion without trying MD first... I know someone who's had it done and has no problems at all now!
  • Im now awaiting a micro discectomy on 4th September and my Spinal surgeon advised if it were to re-herniate they would recmmend a fusion next time. I have dehydrated discs at L4/L5 and L5 is herniated and subsequently pressing down on my sciatic nerve, I started with the pain in January this year when my 12 year old daughter jumped onto my back and got signed off work on May 20th (sit at a desk in a call centre all day). Im petrified but realise its not as invasive as a fusion of the spine. Apparently I will have approx a 1cm scar and the op takes from 3-5 hours. Im staying in for at least 2 nights then staying with a friend until Im mobile (hopefully just a week) The people I have met on here have been great, reassuring me and also making me reaslise there are other people who have been suffering more than I could imagine. Even down to pain meds and the different side effects people have. If you want to PM me your more than welcome. Keep us posted
  • I have had a few disc surgeries before my fusions and they never worked for me, It all depens on you and how bad your disc is. You need to ask how bd your disc is and if there is any chance that repairing it will acutally help. Some Dr.s just wanna do the disc surgery to say they tried but the fact of the matter is whats best for you.

    Hope you get the answers you are needing.

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