I have annular tears at L4/L5 and L5/S1 confirmed by a positive discography and CT scan. The pain I am experiencing is concordant with the tears. I am taking Neurontin for the leg pain, Norco when needed for back pain, and am wearing a back brace until further notice.
I have been seeing an orthopedic spine surgeon since March. We've done an MRI and EMG and I failed 2 epidurals, with the last making things worse as a nerve was hit. This surgeon says the only option he can offer me is a double fusion, but because I am only 23, would like me to try minimally invasive options first. He mentioned ADR, as well, but said there is a lack of information on its effectiveness.
The minimally invasive spine surgeon wants to do a chemonucleolysis procedure on both discs, which basically involves injecting an enzyme that is designed to dissolve the gel inside of the disc. I have read this procedure is rarely done in the United States anymore, so I am mainly looking to see if anyone has ever had the procedure with success. This surgeon is from Russia and chemonucleolysis is very popular in Europe.
Thanks in advance!
10/28/13 - ALIF, PSF, decompression at L4/L5 and L5/S1