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hi! haha obviously im new here

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in New Member Introductions
Hey! Im 18 and planning on getting an L5-S1 fusion in a few months to repair spondylolysis on my L5 vertebrae and some slippage in the disc between L5 and S1. Ive had back pain since I was around 13 and the two fractures on my L5 vertebrae are moving further apart and showing no signs of healing. Im just looking to gain some new information and advice. The fusion is a step up from the repair my doctor originally recommended, and to tell you the truth it scares the crap out of me! Im a college student and although Ill have the summer to recuperate I have a feeling the HUGE uga campus is going to definitely test me...I figure the more info I get the better off Ill be!



  • Welcome to SH :H Sorry to hear about your back problems and you being so young. There are members here your age with similar problems and I hope that you don't feel so alone now. It is something rough to have going on esp. if you're just starting out in life and are trying to build a future. My problems weren't severe like yours, but I did come down with arthritis in my teen years and had it everywhere, including my back. Yes, it sucked.
    A spinal fusion is major surgery and I hope you have gotten a couple of second opinions just for peace of mind. It is painful and it may take up to 2 years to fully recover, and hopefully you'll be one of those who feel better right after. That is always an initial good sign. I don't have spondylolysis, but I did have retrolisthesis among other problems that had to be fixed by having a fusion of L4-S1.
    I hope you benefit from the wealth of information and advice on these forum and we're glad to have you onboard. Take care B)
  • You are definitely doing the right thing by trying to learn as much as possible about the surgery. You do have youth on your side and younger folks do tend to heal and recover quicker than older folks. Are you comfortable with your surgeon and have you researched him? Please check out the surgery section as there is a thread of things that you may need post op. The more prepared that you are the easier things will be for you. You may also want to check out the Treatment tab at the top of this page for more info. I wish you much luck with the surgery and please keep us posted with your progress.
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  • What other methods have you tried before considering surgery? I was just wondering because I didn't see it in your thread, although I've heard the docs like you to try atleast 6 months of conservative treatment before going through a fusion. Conservative treatment would be PT, injections, meds, physio, just about anything other than surgery. I did over 6 years of conservative treatment before L5/S1 fusion. I'm still having problems but it could be because I waited so long and the longer you wait the more permanent damage could be done on any nerves that may be impinged. I'm praying it's not permanent nerve damage as that's harder to treat. I will go find out at the end of this week.

    I wish you the best of luck and hope you find this site useful, resourceful & understanding. It really is great being with a group of people who really get it and understand how you feel. Everyone here is so compassionate, helpful and supportive.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,525

    for a spine-health site introduction, click on :

    welcome to spine-health

    if you have any questions, feel free to contact (pm) any one of the moderators here priestess , bruce , paulgla, dilauro

    the spine-health web site offers so much more than these member forums.
    check the various tabs at the top of the spine-health page and you will find so much that is offered here.

    please remember that all information you receive from members on this forum is not
    formal medical advise. you should always consult with your doctors.

    to get back to the forums, you can always click on forum home

    please feel free to contact me at rdilauro@gmail.com or send me a message
    i am glad that you found this web site and registered. this is probably the best web site that deals with so many aspects of the spine. the patient forum (what you are in now) provides you access to worldwide members, many sharing the same problems as you have. you can communicate with this members, finding someone who had the identical surgery and just have the ability in using this support system.
    i am sorry that you have been dealing with spinal problems and faced with a lumbar spinal fusion. no spinal surgery is a cake walk, but there has been so much progress over the years that the procedures are almost becoming common.
    i do have a few recommendations:

    1- research and learn as much as you can about the type of surgery you are going to have ,whats involved and what type of recovery period are you looking at and finally what are the long term implications.

    2- post surgery. it is so critical that you adhere to all the limits and restrictions placed on you by your doctor. you will hear about several fusion finals, back surgeries that didnt work, etc. its true that there can be problems, but so many times its because the patient did not pay attention to what should be done and what can not be done after surgery.

    3- the spine-health site offers so much more than the patient forums. there is a huge amount of information including videos that can help explain different conditions and treatments.

    good luck, please keep on posting and we will have you on our minds after surgery
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • You guys are so great you made my day! Ive been reading a lot through this site and its so amazing to hear about people going through the exact same things.

    painintheback- My surgeon EDITED is absolutely amazing, he sat down with me and went through all my options in more detail then I could ever have hoped for. He helped me contact people for second opinions and never once did I feel pressured into anything. haha i actually cornered on of the residents at one of the referrals who I had seen at my current surgeons office and asked him who he would choose for his surgeon, and he definitely confirmed my decision.

    Ming- I have pretty much exhausted all my nonsurgical options in the last few years! Ive been in a brace twice, done multiple cortisone shots,went to a chiropractor (bad idea!!) done radio frequency oblation, epidural shots, physical therapy, massage therapy, water therapy,and acupuncture. ive also been on lyrica and naproxen and dont even remember what else! I practically live on advil and the average hour i fall asleep at is 4 am!

    I also have sciatica and nerve issues, my doctors cant figure out where its coming from and their not sure the surgery will fix it. Good luck at the end of this week and I am praying that it is not permanent as well!

    This site is awesome!! Ive come across a a ton of helpful info. I even have a 2 page list of questions to ask my doctor :) Thanks so much for all your support!
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  • You sound like you have a lot of things in common with me. I hope I can offer some advice and support to you. I too started having back problems at a very young age so I understand what you are going through. I am only 31 but I feel so old already. I have a 13 year old daughter with the same name although it's spelled Kailee. Feel free to PM if you have any questions, comments or concerns.

    How did you hurt your back? I don't remember reading this? Do you have family history of these same issues you are having? I have it on both mother and father's side right down to grandparents on both sides. My brother is only 3 yrs older than me and also having issues in lumbar area. He also jumps out of helicopters in the army so I am sure that doesn't help either.
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