My operation was March 5th for the L4/5 level only. I had central spinal stenosis. I only stayed one night in the hospital because they said I could go home if I wanted, so I did. I knew my daughter would be there and take care of me. I don't really remember much about my hospital stay other than the short time I was there I got 5 shots of Demerol for pain and was released with Hydrocodone 5/325 - 2 every 4 hours. I think I was in surgery for 1-1/2 to 2 hours. My pain was enough that I took the pain meds as directed for the first 3 weeks. I am now trying to cut the doseage in half. I can still feel pain when I sit too long. I have a desk job and have just returned back to work for 4 hours a day after being off for 3 weeks and 2 days. I have worked for this company for 35 years so I can get up and walk around whenever needed. Right now I don't think I could handle 8 hours a day but next week I'm going to try it.
If you are thinking about having this surgery don't worry too much about it, it will be over before you even realize it. When I was in the surgery holding area I told them to just hurry up and knock me out (I was a nervous wreck). They took me to surgery right after I said that and knocked me out. I'm glad its all over but the healing inside. The outside is healed.