It has been recommended that I have surgery. Four levels. Anterior interbody fusion L2-3 L3-4 L4-5 and L5-S1. Then a Posterior spinal fusion with instrumentation from L2-S1. I have moderate stenosis with narrowing of L5-S1, DDD of L2-3 L3-4, L4-5 and L5-S1. MRI also showed 3 or 4 of these discs herniated.
I am having trouble understanding all of this and it's overwelming. I could use all the information I can get. I have searched and see a lot of 2 level fusions but not any 4 level. I have tried Chiropractor, Physical Thearpy, epidural steroid injections with only short term temporary relief if any. The Chiropractor wanted to start the SpineMED disc decompression treatment but it was expensive and insurance won't cover it. I don't really know how successful that treatment is. The spine center I'm going to does not believe decompression treatment will help and the Chiropractor and SpineMed (company that makes the machine) claims a high success rate. Why would insurance pay for a $150,000 surgery but not cover a non-invasive non-surgical treatment?
Right now I'm on short term disability waiting on a surgery date which won't be some time in January. I hate the thought of going through this surgery and a 4 level fusion sounds like it will take away a lot of flexability. I understand that disc replacement is not very viable and the FDA has only approved a one disc replacement. I know other countries are doing more. My favorite hobbies are Tennis and jogging which sounds like are over for me. I also understand that after having a fusion it puts more pressure on the other discs. I really hate going through this at only 49. Any encouragement, advice and information would be appreciated.