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Back surgery

I am 44 yrs old and started having moderate back pain on left side for about 3 weeks then one morning could not walk without severe back and leg pain. My boyfriend took me to the hospital and they gave me pain meds and did a MRI. Long story short they found a synovial cyst between my L4-L5 that has to be removed. Surgery is Friday with possible fusion. Is there anybody that has had this and what can I expect. I am nervous about this and have never had massive problems with my back before. Been out of work for 3 weeks now and the worst pain is in morning, I am 5'2 . Help
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Comments

  • hello, sherie1973!

    i have seen recent posts about the subject of synovial cysts, their removal, and recovery.  might i suggest you use the search feature in the upper right hand corner to locate posts/articles about synovial cysts? 

    gosh, you must feel like you've been spit out of a tornado into oz!!  although i did not have a synovial cyst, i did have a fusion from l4-s1, so i can speak to that part of your equation. did your surgeon give you any idea of how likely it is he/she will have to perform a fusion?  one of the things i had to consider--and sign off on--prior to my operation was allowing the surgeon to fix anything that wasn't part of the original surgical plan if he encountered additional problems during the surgery.  it was a wise decision in my case, as i had two broken bones that never showed up on any imaging studies.  goodness, i could not have imagined being woken up to find out i needed more surgery!!  yikes!!

    i'd like to welcome you to spine-health!  please click on the following link for some helpful information to get you started!

    welcome to spine-health
    Kimmy72, Spine-health Moderator
    Firm believer in PMA!
  • Hello Kimmy 72
    Thank you for where I could find more info. My Dr. stated it depended on a bone that keeps pushing out. No herniated discs but bulging and dehydrated, mild degenerative changes and no stenosis. He ordered a x-ray of my back and how my back bent. I am hearing a lot of people saying that if I don't have the fusion that the synovial cyst will return such means more problems. Kind of stuck in a conundrum. Should I have him do the fusion any ways or not and leave it to see what happens. I am very independent and am looking at that I can't be out of work for a year. Worse thing is I don't even feel like myself. Was very active and always working and doing things before this. I appreciate any advice. Thank you..
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  • Oh boy, can I relate to the change in activity level!  I think that worked more on me mentally than the actual pain!!

    It sounds like a lot depends on what your surgeon finds once he begins the surgery.  Have you completed all of the pre-surgical paperwork?  Was there an option in there like I mentioned above (giving surgeon permission to fix previously undetected issues)?  It's not too late to contact the person who planned your procedure if you have questions/concerns, or you want to change your surgical directives. 

    Although we're not permitted to advise anyone on a specific course of action (no medical professionals here!), we are able to offer support, encouragement, or just an understanding ear to members who are navigating the sometimes difficult terrain of having spinal issues.  I can personally attest that having this site as part of my support system has been an invaluable part of my recovery.

    Hang in there...
    Kimmy72, Spine-health Moderator
    Firm believer in PMA!
  • Thank you and calling surgeon today.
  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,467
    My first symptoms of problems was a synovial cyst in that exact same place...L4-5.  pinching nerves like crazy.  i lost almost all the use of my left leg along L4 and L5 nerve roots.  My surgeon had originally suggested a fusion but i ended up have much more severe problems that were underlying things.....make sure your surgeon does standing xrays-make sure that there is absolutely nothing else going on.  You can also ask him about synovial joint injections, some people get some good relief from having steroids injected (i did 2 rounds of these before my surgery and had good pain relief both times from the cysts).  the injections don't seem to be a cure though....at least not in my case, so....definitely explore all your options.  Hang in there, the pain from cysts is awful....sorry i can't help with your decisions etc, just please make sure that the cyst is the only thing going on-mine was a symptom of degeneration that they didn't see until doing a standing xray.  good luck!!! please keep in touch!!!!
    Kathy
    Veritas-Health Moderator
    ---------------------------------------------------------------
    Dec '16 T10-S2 fusion with pelvic fixation. Laminectomies L2, L3, L4, L5, facet removal, cages L4-5, L5-S1, severe scoliosis, arthritis and stenosis repair. 

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  • Thank you for posting. I had a standing X-Ray and have not heard anything from the surgeon. There were degenerative changes in the facet joints. Disc bulging and dehydrated. Surgeon explained only option to have surgery to remove cyst. 
  • Question does any body have any idea what things I will need at home?
  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,467
    if you had them already that's great!  you will need things at home to stop you from bending, lifting and twisting and leaning.  a reacher grabber tool is irreplaceable!  and get things up to your level NOW, don't wait till after!  put your clothes for the first few weeks up where you can get them!  and something to help get socks on is really advantageous....even just a wood pole with a hook in it.....put some dishes on the counter so you dont have to lift them out of a cupboard, etc etc.  there's lots of good information on this site if you search a bit around.  for me though, the reacher grabber thing has been a lifesaver. 
    Kathy
    Veritas-Health Moderator
    ---------------------------------------------------------------
    Dec '16 T10-S2 fusion with pelvic fixation. Laminectomies L2, L3, L4, L5, facet removal, cages L4-5, L5-S1, severe scoliosis, arthritis and stenosis repair. 

  • Thank you.. going to pick up some stuff today. I have someone staying with me for a couple of weeks. I think going to the bathroom and wiping will be my greatest triumph. Lol. I guess I can only laugh about my stuff instead of letting it get me down. Than you very much
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