I had a L-4-5-S-1 360 lumbar fusion on 11,11, 2016 (anterior) and on 11,14 (posterior). My orthopedic surgeon is very concervative and plans on keeping me in my back brace for 6 months. The constant use of my knees is causing me quite a bit of pain. He is aware of my situation and has only allowed another series of Supartz Injections (I had a series last March). My OS will not permit me to have antiinflammatories of any kind to relieve the inflammation caused by the bilateral knee OA and medial anserine bursitis. He feels it will interfere with my fusion. I am being treated by my regular Rheumatologist and the only suggestions were , besides changing my medications to ones I already have tried and can't tolerate, OTC lidocaine patches and cold packs. My insurance will not cover Lidoderm. The OTC patches are not helping that much. I use them at night.
I apologise for my lengthy story.. I am very frustrated because walking, climbing stairs and bending my knees causes alot of knee pain. Wearing the back brace very painful if I sit too long or do too much. I am very depressed because by the time I am allowed to have PT, what kind of shape will I be in? I am a 63 year old woman who already has had ACDF C5-7 in 2013 and arthroscopic surgery on my right knee in 2014. There was another surgery in 2012 but, not related to this topic. Many years ago I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia but, surprise I have arthritis and it's moving along!
I realized that I should be more grateful because many of you have been suffering with so much more and for a longer time than me.
Maybe someone would share their thoughts or experiences with me. I don't know anyone who has been through a multilevel 360 lumbar fusion. I have been reading as much information, much of it was on Spine-health, as possible before and after my surgery.
Is there anyone who has had a similar experience ,with OA of the knees, as I have and found some non medical ways to help ease their situation until their brace was removed? I would greatly appreciate any information or sharing your experience would be helpful.