Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

The main site has all the formal medical articles and videos for you to research on.

What surgery?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:23 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hi there
I am a new member, and I am looking for some knowledge from the member here.
The following are the results form my CT scan.

L4-L5 Broad based posterior disc bulge and left foraminal disc protrusion in mild central canal stenosis and mild left sided neural forminal stenosis. The right neural foramen is patent.

L5-S1 there is a moderate broad-based posterior disc osteophyte complex. In addition to a focal left posterior paracentral extruded disc measuring 6x5x7mm which obliterates the left lateral recess exerting mass-effect on the exiting left S1 nerve root. Surgical opinion is required.

So what I am wanting to know is. What procedure or procedures will I have done for this? I am looking for the surgical names, So I may find info on these specific treatments. I would like to know success and failure rates. Will future surgeries be necessary after the initial surgery. Is fusion a must? Can that question even be answered? What should I know about this? Or what questions should I be asking. I would really like to hear from anyone who has already had this surgery or has performed the surgeries I might soon face. I am 32, have had back problems for some time, I've had a painful hamstring for 3 years which finally led to the CT scan. 16 days ago my left foot went numb and remains numb. No bladder or bowl issues. Could disc decompression therapy work for this diagnosis? or any other technique? Or is Surgery my only hope. Id say that the pain was 8 out of 10, but the Morphine would say otherwise. Feel free to ask any questions that might help you help me!

Thanks in advance



  • This is a good place for support. I have similar symptoms and I am not a candidate for surgery. My foot numbness is starting to be resolved after 7 months. They'll probably do a EMG to make sure no damage to foot and only inflammation. If it's severe I'm sure they would do surgery.... I'm going to a Pain clinic for injections so I'll be able to get off the morphine so they say. But everyone responds different to treatments. They may do physio or accupuncture also. I'm looking forward to healing spontaneously as one Doctor said may happen to me. It's hard to say what your treatment plan will be as only an MD can answer fully. I wish you well and keep us posted. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Hi and welcome to spine-health.
    There is a ton of wealth of information on here as you probably know by browsing the boards.
    We are not Drs and can only give our own personal experiences, not any diagnosis.
    The question your asking is only something a surgeon can answer.
    Your best bet would to make a appointment with a neurosurgeon or orthopedic surgeon who specilizes in spines as there are several types of these Drs.
    Then pretty much go from there on what their opinion is.
    Whether just treatments would work for you. Surgery is always a last option.
    When you do get an appointment make sure you have all the questions you just asked here so that you do not forget anything. The dr will tell you the best course of action for your problems with your back.

    Wish we could answer those for ya. But there is no way of doing that.

    There are a ton of postings on different procedures, treatment options, surgeries etc from patients including myslef who is on my 3rd spinal surgery.

    I wish you the best of luck. Get that appointment as sometimes it can take awhile depending on where you live, insurance issues etc.

    Keep us up to date.
    We are here to support you in anyway we can!!!!!
    Take care
    Terri ;)
  • advertisement
  • Yep - ditto to what Terri has said -

    I just wanted to really emphasize that surgery really is a last option - do all your research first and exhaust all your other options. Once you have surgery there is no going back and there is a lot of risk involved.

    Best of luck
  • I had a 7mm x 11mm extrusion at L4-5....had surgery 5 days after seeing neuro as the pain was just so severe and nothing else worked. Pain doc (saw him prior to neuro) told me right away that surgery was the only thing that was going to help. Neuro gave me an 80/20 chance of success with micro-d and laminectomy. Basically he told me something had to be done and let's start with the least invasive option as if I happen to be one of the 20% he'd just go ahead and fuse. I'm now 1 month post-op and i've been pain free! I feel very fortunate....best of luck to you.
  • Graham,
    Terri has put it well, as much as we might like to have a guess that is what it would be as only the durgeon can see what needs to be done if anything. And note here that too Surgeons often dont even look at reports as the same MRI would get a slightly different report from 20 different radiographers.
    A lot of Drs just prefer to see for themselves.

    When you see the Dr -either Neurosurgeon or orthosurgeon,, ask them about necessary surgery and how long it would take, recovery time, hospital time, time off work etc.
    RTake a notebook and pen in with you with a list of questions.
    Also explore other options such as physio, accupuncture, injections etc before going the surgical route. Eliminate every possibility of it healing itself first.

    Blessings Sara O:)
  • advertisement
  • Welcome to Spine Health. The cool thing these days about spine injuries, is that the answer isn't always "let's fuse it and be done with it". There are so many conservative treatments and so many different surgeries. It is all individual to the patient and the doc treating them. So hang in there long enough to actually let the doc take a look at your films and give you some ideas.

  • Well thanks to all who have replied. I guess I should have explained my situation better. I have had back problems since I was around 14 now 32. Over those 18 years I'd say I could count on some kind of back issue probably once every couple of months. You know the drill, bed rest, anti-inflamatories and a muscle relaxant. 3 years ago I, in my wisdom, decided to try a chiropractor. Well the very first visit seemed to cure me of all previous problems. But the new ones started very soon after. I began to feel a pinching in my left hamstring, It didn't really bother me and so I paid no attention to it, Mistake. Over the next and last 3 years the pain in my hamstring got worse and worse, to the point that my left hip would not rotate properly when walking. Kinda had to drag my left leg around. I continued to see the chiropractor on a regular basis, whin NO result to speak of. then last month I, again in my wisdom, decided to go to the chiropractor twice a week for a month, just to see If maybe I would get better results. Well the end result at the end of that month, was more pain, extreme pain in my hamstring, like someone was stabbing it with a knife, and then my left foot went numb. In addition to that my left calf muscle has also stopped working, My doctor told me its called drop foot, which is very accurate due to the fact that when i try standing on my tippy toes on the left foot only, my foot drops. I have already tried accupuncture, physio, yoga, rest, all the pills one would take with such a problem. I am seeing the mentioned Neurosurgeon or orthosurgeon next Thursday. I have no doubt in my mind he is goin to tell me surgery is my only option. I have not worked in 2 years because of this. I luckily live in Canada, so any surgery or treatment is covered under medicare. Storm Trooper, you give me hope. I am at the point now where I dont want to live like this another day. I have 3 boys under the age of 10, and my life is to busy to be laying on my ass all day every day. Every one here pretty much says surgery is the LAST option. Well I'm more then at the end of my rope. I cany beleive you could live with a numb foot for 7 months Charry, you are very strong. Why are you not a candidate for surgery I wonder?
    Thank you all again for your comments and ideas, it is very appreciated.
  • Another chiropractic victim. :O

    Ask things like
    -how/where will they enter the body
    -will any bone work be done
    -will any ligaments, tendons, or muscles be cut
    -if so, what will happen to them
    -how do the vertebrates look?
    -is there a contingency plan if once they are inside, they see it's different from what they figured
    -what is the risk to the nerves and surrounding dura/tissues
    -what are the permanent effects of the procedure
    -can a chain reaction be set off?

    those are off the top of my head, but I'm sure there are a million more.
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • The cool thing about medicine today, is that surgery IS NOT the last option. There are so many procedures and treatments, medications, pain pumps and neurostimulators available, that thinking "it's surgery or else", is flawed.

    I understand that in different countries, somethings aren't available, but it still doesn't "close the door".

Sign In or Register to comment.