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Need help please advise

Started by Brandigirl1724 on 08/15/2010 5:17pm

I've been following discussions on here for a while now and am scared and confused as to what to do. I have a degenerative disk, L4, and was born without my L5/S1. I am scheduled for spinal fusion surgery September 17th but after reading so many post-op stories on here that were not successful I really don't think I want to go through with it. The docs are afraid that they are going to hit my nerve with the screws and cause leg pain for life because I have "tiny bones" and it is causing a big risk for shooting the screw right through the bone. I don't know what to do. My husband thinks I should just keep taking my hydrocodone and put off the surgery indefinitely. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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Hello, I have been a nurse for 33 years and one of the most biggest problems with back surgery is many times it does not work. Of course everyone is different but I know my surgery made things 10 times worse. First you have to trust and have faith in your doctor, ask him what the chances are for a full recovery. If he is not comfortable with the surgery then I would not have it. I definitely would wait until it is Absolutely Necessary. If your pain is managed by medication or nerve blocks I would wait. But this is a personal decision you have to make. One very important thing is if you are going to have surgery, go into it with positive thoughts. Know it is going to take time to rehab yourself so be patient. I wish you the very best of luck .

Mary

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Hi Mary, thank you for your advice. My docs had me go through a diskogram and it is definitely my L4 giving me the problem so they are confident that the surgery will work for me, providing they don't hit the nerve with the screws. I do have arthritis in my L3 so I will not ever be 100% pain free but because of my age and being physically fit they feel I should have a good recovery. So I may still put it off since most of the time I can still function even without meds. The blocks did not work for me, they actually made it worse! Thanks again for your advice.

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Brandi? try other procedures first, there are a few out there before going under the knife, I had my fustion L-3 L-5 3 years ago and my life is worse now than it was before, I came out with sever nerve damage and can't walk most days, i have had everything done out there but the spinal cord stimulater that I'm told is best for leg and feet pain, I'm going in for that my self soon just for some relef. also i have been on lyrica or 3 years and it does work but depresion is a side affect. so be careful. surgey is only a chance you take, But the best advice i can give you is start small and if all else fales try the big one, surgery. even if you have to live on pain meds if they work for you theres your fix, it is a sucky life but at least thats something you can take back, once you have the surgery it's there forever. Good luck and best wishes. and to your husband, Your are her rock and I give you a big credit for being there for youe wife, It's hard I know. Bless you both.

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Interview and be super selective on your surgeon. Trust that he/she will do their best and is experienced with your situation. Do not "settle". The leg pain is can be worse but if you do nothing, it will not get better. Also, after being on heavy narcotics for 10 years now..the damage that is done to our organs is almost as bad or worse than the pain. Go with your gut on it and don't worry. Think positive and don't worry about what you cannot control. Staying on drugs to dull the pain will only become a habit and require stronger doses, TRUST ME, you do not want that. It's an awful feeling being a functional addict due to pain. Best of luck and let everyone know what you decide and how it turns out.

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