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Ug, need some advice - please!



  • I so agree with the point above - you need to do some soul searching and ask yourself whwther you are at or nearly at the end of your rope? AND consider, if you wait longer (say 6-12 months) what will you look like then?
    That is something to discuss with your surgeon who will be juding this anyway.
    I am thinking you "may" be more debiliated and then longer term your recovery following a fusion is slower.

    IMHO Fusion surgery shouldn't be an option if you are not ready to give it 110% of Good attitude (I will get better stuff!) and ready for 2 years of a recovery / adapted life.

    The gains are HUGE however.

    Don't worry yourself silly cos it won't help you think straight.

    I personally ended up having pain 24/7 - nothing at all helped and it was eating my life. I have no regrets at all about the surgery.
    I finally feel I have turned a corner and whatever happens, I will settle the pain and find other ways of doing my life.

    I often wonder if I had had surgery a wee bit earlier, that my recovery may have been quicker but thinking like that is daft.

    Good Luck and try not to worry so much.

  • Emtlady,

    To have the surgery or not, is a decision between you and your surgeon. Nobody else can advise you on that. However, if you elect the surgery, there are lots of people with successful stories who can give you hope. I consider myself one of these lucky people. Five and a 1/2 months after three-level lumbar fusion I feel and look well. My old pain and numbness are gone, and most of the restrictions. I almost totally fused, and just began PT, where I hope to learn how I can pick up all my old activities without hurting myself. Foe two days after surgery I had a morphine pump, since then the only medication for pain I took was for my migraines that I had almost all my life.

    Good luck with making this very important decision.

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  • Emtlady, as others here have said, there certainly are a lot of successful surgery stories around, in fact the majority of surgeries are successful - it's just that most patients move on from this site and get on with their lives when they are better.

    I am not pro surgery - you should exhaust all conservative treatments first, but as haglandc pointed out there are actually two reasons for surgery: The first is to reduce/remove pain and the second (and often forgotten) is to stop the condition getting worse and causing complications such as permanent nerve damage and in the case of lower lumbar problems cauda equina syndrome.

    All the best... Bruce
    Keep positive!


    ...an old timer here and ex-moderator

  • I'm very pleased with my surgery! I had a level 2 fusion ALIF approach on September 25th and I don't regret it at all! Yes, surgery is a scarey thought, but in the long run it's so worth it. I've had all the tests done, all the PT, all the injections and after all was said and done and the pain was unbearable, I went for it!
    The recovery is slow, but each day I know I am getting better and better. I do have my ups and downs like anyone does, but I am sooo happy with my decision to have the surgery as well as my husband and kids are. I will be back to myself before I know it! I'm even in a wedding on November 8th and I plan to walk without my walker or cane and have a good time!
    Please consider all the other options that are given to you before you even consider a fusion, as a fusion is not the easiest way out! Try the injections and PT before too. You never know if one might help you out for a while, especially with the winter coming up!

    Take care!
  • Well, I moved my appointment up yesterday to next Tuesday to really go over this stuff. ~X( You all have been so wonderful and helpful. I had myself convinced last night that I was just going to stay on pain meds and the heck with surgery. That is until I woke up this morning and hobbled to the bathroom... :S At least I know there are some positive stories out there and it is not ALL bad. One thing I do know, I WILL get worse, they already told me that. I am struggling with waiting until that happens or just getting it over with now.
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  • wait and see what the surgeon says...

    You may find that his suggestions and explainations help you determin what to do.
    You know, once s/he explains or reviews your scans there may be a more /less pressing need for surgery or not, maybe.
    Plus a clear explaination of risks and possibilities.

    Whatever your fate, SH is here to support you!

    Good Luck
  • You have already done this, but make a list of all the questions for your doc, regardless how insignifficant or how small they seem ask. Ask also if there would be a good possability of future surgeries, I have read on here that maybe after fusion it causes the disc below and above to carry the load resuling in further surgerys, I may have read wrong. Have you had a discogram or MRI? Have you tried physical thearpy? Traction? Ice packs, Epidurals, selective nerve injections? By no means am I trying to talk you out of this, its just my nature to find out every detail and try and exhaust every option, weather is mine or my familys health, my dogs health, Travel, remolding, :D ...You name it I will question it until I feel Im making the right decision, because if I make the mistake I have to live with it. (BTW fusion surgery is the only thing I have really stressed over) #:S Good luck with your doctors appointment, >:D< keep us posted, Rose
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