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Husband having his 3rd lumbar surgery

Started by 1354993567@facebook on 09/25/2011 2:21pm



TECHNIQUE: Contiguous axial images of the lumbar spine were acquired using 1.25
mm collimation. Reformatted images in sagittal and coronal planes were created
by the technologist per physician protocol. The current examination was
performed post discography. Discography was performed at the L1-L2, L2-L3, L3-L4
and L4-L5 disc space levels.

COMPARISON: July 1, 2011.

FINDINGS: Postsurgical changes involving the lower lumbar spine are identified.
There are interpedicular screws at the L5 and S1 levels with posterior fusion
bars. Cage device is seen at the L5-S1 level. There appears to be sclerosis and
calcification within the L5-S1 disc space. Postoperative laminectomy defect is
seen at the L5-S1 level.

The lumbar spinal alignment appears normal. The vertebral body heights appear

T12-L1: No focal disc herniation is seen. No central spinal stenosis is

L1-L2: Contrast is distributed within the central aspect of the disc space. No
definite annular tear is seen. No focal disc abnormality is seen. No central
spinal stenosis is dentified.

L2-L3: Contrast is distributed within the central aspect of the disc space. No
definite annular tear is seen. There appears to be a small Schmorl's node
involving the superior endplate of L3. Subtle diffuse disc bulge is seen causing
slight flattening of the anterior aspect of the dural sac. AP diameter of the
central spinal canal remains over 10 mm.

L3-L4: Contrast is in the central aspect of the disc space. No definite annular
tear is identified. Subtle diffuse disc bulging is seen causing slight
flattening of the anterior aspect of the dural sac. AP diameter of the central
spinal canal remains over 10 mm.

L4-L5: Disc space narrowing is seen at the L4-L5 level. Extensive tear of the
annulus is identified. There appears to be a component of free extravasation of
contrast consistent with a Dallas IV classification. Compression of the anterior
aspect of the dural sac is seen. There is loss of the epidural fat planes. The
central canal appears to be greater than 10 mm. Mild bilateral neural foraminal
narrowing is seen. Mild bilateral facet joint prominence is identified. There
appears to be mild diastases of the right and left L4-L5 facet joint.

L5-S1: Narrowing the disc space is identified. No central spinal stenosis is
identified. No focal disc abnormality is seen. The neural foramen appear patent.
Postoperative laminectomy changes are identified. There is bilateral facet
joint fusion.

1. Degenerative disc disease at the L4-L5 level with what appears to be
extensive annular tear with free extension of the contrast into the central
spinal canal. There is loss of the epidural fat planes at the L4-L5 level and a
mild degree of central spinal stenosis.
2. At the L4-L5 level, there appears to be facet joint widening with air in the
right L4-L5 facet joint

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3 Responses


can anyone explain to me what this all means. I know he needs a fushion for the L4-L5 he said he wasn't taking out the disc so just dont' understand why they wouldn't or how will this relieve the severe stingy pain he gets in his back travels down his hip and legs. Especially on the right side but now it is down both at times. Worst on the right. Waiting for the surgeon office to call back to set up his surgery. He is 49 yrs old and had the L5-s1 done twice one from the back and the other thru his stomach we almost lost him then that surgeon had a general surgeon open him and move his organs out of the way but he nick his main artery to his heart and had to mend it back together so instead of a 2 hour surgery it was a 7 hour and nobody told me until they were finish. So he is afraid to have surgery again especially thru the stomach. His new surgeron said he will not go thru the front because of the risk and alot of scar tissue will be there as well. He says he alot of scar tissue around his last 2 surgerie so maybe that is why they take out the disc. So what do they do for anual tear?
We spent the whole summer going for injections even injection in his hardware. And all summer nothing but test and then in August they told us nothing they can do for him but take out the screws or put in electric stim. Then he sent a request to his pain management dr to see what he want to do so wrote on the paper work disogram vs electric stim or hardware removal. A week later get a call to set up his discogram and so darn happy that we had it now we have answers of where his pain coming from. They had to stop the test in the L4-L5 it was to painful for him and guess he had leaks out of that one. They barely got up to 40 percent of pressure. The others had no problem with some bulging but the L1-2 was the normal disc so they use as there tester. He said it felt like he went thru surgery after this procedure and still in so much pain.He falls alot and has a walker with seat. but doesn't use it all the time when he should yesterday he had to hold onto the counter said hurry get my walker. I hate seeing him in so much pain. He been disabled for years and it bothers him that he can't work he hasnt' work in years. I know he won't be cured from this surgery that he will have some relief. The neurosurgeon said he will have a 50/50 percent chance that it will work or get better. That is better than where is now hard to function anymore. He is having trouble getting up to walk first thing in the morning. Even sitting to long makes it hurt more as well. If it take his pain away down his hip and legs I think he would be happy with that. And the stingy type pain. This is first time having a neurosurgeon do it. He always had a orthopedic surgeon do it. So we went to see this doctor he was very through his old one sent us to a pain management dr for injections and gave him neurontin which neither help him. He didn't order any test we had the mri done by his family dr but he wouldnt' do further testing. So glad we got our family dr to refer us to the neurosurgeon. But seem to take a long time to get to this point. he even did 3 months of phsyical therapy which she call his family dr and told him she is hurting him more than helping him and she suggest an mri and after that was told it was the L4-L5 but no surgeon thought it was bad enough to warrant surgery. But after the discogram boom its surgery time. I know the surgeon didnt' want to put him thru any more surgeries he said he was to young and he rather not do surgery because he has had several and the more you have surgery the risk of other disc going to bad over years. Which is true as he had them in 2001 and 2005 so it is like a few years boom another disc goes. He has the degentative disc disease. and he is prone to these problems. I am glad I push to find out answers I kept telling him that I can't sit here and watch my husband be in so much pain and just miserable. We need answers not to put a bandaid on the problem. Maybe in the future he may need this elect stim but glad he isn't because of the bad disc it needs to be fix first. Well sorry for such the long post got alot of my mind. His anxiety is high he has bipolar, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholestrol and asthma so got alot on his plate.


Robin from Wisconsin
Hubby 49 yrs old
had cervical fushion in Aug 2011 C5-C6, C6-C7
lumbar fushion Dec 2011 L5-S1
anterior lumbar fushion Feb 2005 L5-S1
Currently having severe back pain with stingy pain that goes in the back down his hip and legs worst on the right side


His surgery is set for Oct 24th at 730 am got to be there at 5 am he having a posterior lumbar decompression and fushion L4-L5 possible interbody body cage. Now got to do his pre op physical on Oct 20th earliest he could get in otherwise he could of had his surgery on Oct 10, 17 or 31st so took the 24th. So next monday got to donate 1 pint of his blood then a week later got to donate another pint of blood for his surgery. surgeon never even told us we had to do this and just get a call yesterday that he need to donate his own blood for his surgery. I know back in 2001 he had to but other surgeries he did not. weird


He in surgery been almost 2 hours