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I've been reading this forum on and off and figured I may as well register and introduce myself. I'm 39 M and have been living with back pain for about 12 years. Usually a few weeks of PT every fall would clear it up but the past few years it has been rough. I've had a couple of neuros tell me I'm a good candidate for surgery but have tried to avoid for years.
I have an assortment of disc herniations, osteophytes, stenosis etc through c4/5-c6/7 and the nerve is pinched at least at c5/6. I have numbness in the thumb and 2 fingers of my left hand, aching in my arm and a denervated serratus anterior.
I'm currently on naproxen, percoset, and occasionally soma to sleep, and getting the epidural injections about every 2 weeks. At first the injections had cleared everything up and I was in pt, but something happened and I ended up back in pain. Now I've got the orthopedic surgeon at the pain management center recommending endoscopic microdiscectomy. I had the MRI and x-ray last week and I'm seeing him again tomorrow. I had a look at the MRI and my guess is he'll want to do c4/5 and c5/6 but I'm not a doctor. It is neat that now instead of films the imaging center hands me a CD-Rom. Anybody want to see my MRI?
Anyway my doctors all say the same thing, that the shots either work, or have surgery, and since they're now all saying have the microdiscectomy, and if that doesn't work, I can always have fusion later, I'm leaning towards having it done. Would love to hear from people who have had similar, and whether it helped or not.