I am (used) to be a CNA. I hurt my back working one night, doing way more than my fair share of work. Basically I got 45 people out of bed and into the hall way in 20 minutes when the tornado sirens were going off. One of the joys of living in Oklahoma. I also had to put all of them back to bed by myself afterwards because the only other CNA on duty refused to do anything. So for the past year I have been fighting workers comp. I have endured the physical therapy that didn't help, and had about 7 epidural injections that last about a week. Now finally I am approved for surgery, a TLIF at the L5-S1 for DDD and bulging disc. Since the injury I have experienced very little back pain but horrible sciatic pain. It radiates down both legs and goes all the way down to my toes. It usually hurts more in my feet where it literally feels like someone is driving a nail through the bottom of my foot. I have also experienced numbness/tingling, and that raw feeling like I have a really bad sunburn. Surgery is on March 31 and the closer I get the more my anxiety levels climb. I know it is normal to have anxiety before any surgery but I worry because I am so young, I am only 27 and need major spine surgery. I guess I am hoping to hear some success stories from people that have had a fusion surgery. All I can find is horror stories. My mom had this same surgery about 2 years ago and it was not very successful. Her story is a little different than mine. She is a smoker and waited about 20 years to have it done.