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Should I see another Dr.?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
I'm very new to the forum, but have used the site frequently. I have an extruding disc @ S1-L5 5mm and a fragment. Not sure if that means anything--I have had 6 different injections in my spine, piriformis, and ischial tuberosity area w/ no relief. I have had pain for a year and a half now-started with a chiro.,then to massage, accupuncture, PT. My nuero said the only thing left to offer me is discectomy.

My question is do I need to get another surgeons opinion? Also, I have read that discectomy is not as successful the longer you've had the pain. Is there anyone who has had the typical 'sciatica' pain for a 1 1/2 years and seen success with discectomy--or know how the odds decrease?


  • hi and welcome to the forum! we are here to offer you support and answer what questions we can. check out the side of the forum under "Forum Navigation" and look at pain topics A-Z.look up discectomy and get a good read of the procedure and what it is about. :? by all means you need atleast a second if not a third opinion. :T the more information you have confirmed the better. you need to have all the facts and be sure a surgical procedure is warranted. :D please have a look around and make yourself at home. good luck with your future pain treatments! Jenny :)
  • I am a big believer in getting several opinions, from doctors in different practices. I also think it is a good idea to go to an orthopedic spinal specialist if you've already seen a neurosurgeon, or vice versa.

    I had a lumbar fusion a year ago, after suffering with sciatic pain for over 3 years.(I kept thinking I wasn't "bad enough" to undergo fusion...and kept hoping someone would invent a newer procedure!!) I did not have any permanent nerve damage.

    Nerve damage is something that is almost impossible to predict. The best a doc can do is give you general statistics based on research and on his personal experience. If you don't have foot drop, if you can still raise up onto your toes (even a little), and can "walk" on your heels, regardless of how numb you are, there probably isn't permanent damage. That isn't to say that you won't experience some nerve pain after surgery. The nerve is compressed by the ruptured disc and it may take awhile for it to come back. Nerves heal very slowly...so don't be surprised if you still have some nerve pain if you decide to have surgery. As your body heals, it should continue to improve. Others have immediate relief and can tell a huge difference immediately after surgery. I was never that lucky!!
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  • I asked because I have tried everything I know and the doctors seem exhausted. At this point (after PT, chiro, inject., etc.) why help could another doctor give?
  • Eyes and ideas. We all get into the habit of using and doing and validating from a certain set of guidelines and experiences. Doctors are the same way.

    My opinion is that if you are questioning whether or not to see another doctor ... then see another doctor. If nothing else it will take away the feeling of doubt and wonder that you have at the moment.

  • I would get a 2nd opinion while waiting for surgery. Your PCP will find another Dr. and that should help you have no doubt that surgery is right for you. Good luck. 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
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  • O.K.--I'll make another appointment. I am confident that this is the last hope (discectomy)-besides to live with it. However, everyone here says get another opinion-and I KNOW you all know more than me. Thank you! I'll post what my other docs say. Wish me luck.
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