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Discectomy Advise

so over itsso over it Posts: 51
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:24 AM in Degenerative Disc Disease

I have been dealing with back pain for 12 years and the last four have been the toughest. I am "So Over It". I was scheduled for surgery today (Posterior Lumbar Fusion) and my insurance denied it and gave an alternative for a Discectomy..Currently my L4/L5 disc is torn which is the root cause of my pain. I am inquiring to see who can share info on the Discectomy experience. Specifically:

Local or General Anethesia
Inpatient or Outpatient

Any and all information would be greatly appreciated.

Thank for listening.


  • answers for you in order general anethesia , at the most just an overnight sometimes you can go home that day,it's about 1 week huting pretty good by 3-4 your good but still limited Bending Lifting Twisting .my advice would be take it easy don't rush recovery DO NOT LIFT till you are cleared it can cause big problems.On another hand from what i've read that a disectomy longer than 6 months after the injury is not as effective .
  • Is what I had. Outpatient. Twilight (yeah right, I felt most everything). Recovery was he**! I was unprepared for the recovery aspect of it. You can not BLT. Mine was radical (removed most of the disc) so it is not always such a tough recovery. For most people this weakens the disc and makes it more likely that the disc will rupture in the future. My surgery was in Dec 07 and I have not had it re-rupture but I also have arthritis in my facet joints which has gotten worse.It did however stop my sciatica. Good luck and keep us posted.
    BTW- Fusions are not always successful either and sometimes cause more problems.
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  • When I was recommended to have surgery, my surgeon decided to go with a discectomy after contemplating a fusion. I don't know if my insurance had anything to do with his decision, but he is known for being conservative and thought it was best for me at the time.
    This year I'm recovering from a 2 level fusion with hardware. My spouse thought that the doc should have done the fusion in the first place. My other surgeon said it was a sound decision at the time. I think when it comes to backs, to go conservative, from my experience. Fusions are major surgeries with a lot of risk and expense. And there is no full guarantee that it will take your pain away. Some patients do great, some not, some get worse. I went along with this last fusion because I developed more problems after the discectomy that needed to be fixed. It was a chance that I took to get better. I hold on to hope that I will.
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