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Decision on surgery

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,322
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:31 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am having to decide between a laminectomy for three level (L2-3,L3-4,L4-5)and fusion at L4-5 OR an Xstop. My diagnosis is spinal stenosis at all 3 levels but worse at L4-5 where I also have spondylolisthesis (grade 1 or 2 depending on who is looking at the scans). I have cauda equina symptoms, sciatic pain down to toes on left side and lower back pain...this has been going on for 25 years but in the last five years, the tingling, numbness, etc. has started in the saddle area.

I have other health problems and am old (73 with heart disease-stents now and diabetes and chronic fatigue syndrome for many years). So any surgery is risky but have to do something and I am not getting very clear direction from the neurosurgeon.

Any thoughts? Have had a recent upright MRI in London and am thinking on what to do next.


  • I had neck surgery, so I wouldn't be much help to you, but wanted to welcome you and say hi. These boards can be a wonderful source of support.

    I know how nerve-wracking the decision to have surgery can be. I am fairly young and healthy, and I did a ton of research and talked to many people before making a decision.

    One word of advice...it's always a good idea to get a second opinion! Making this decision is a big one. And if you're not getting the right kind of support from your neuro, then maybe it's time to find one who will help you with your decision and who you feel comfortable with.

    Hang in there...hopefully some other answers will be more helpful for you!

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