Using discogram as an effective diagnostic technique for disectomy
I have had lower back problems since lifting a very heavy object many years ago.. I am now 62 years old. During this extremely painful ordeal, I have had to learn to not only live with chronic pain but also work with it as a carpenter. I have now retired. I have been on methadone 5mg twice a day for at least 8 years due to another painful injury. My question revolves around this issue of using the discogram results in diagnosing the level of disc injury, as well as replicating extreme pain I was having as positive, conclusive for not only having surgery, but successful surgery, if all other avenues of rehabilitation, injections, physical therapy, time, etc, have failed to correct the pain?
I have seen many doctors over this time period and it appears that some agree on surgery and some don't. The disc level involved is L5 S1 which also shows degenerative condition, but nothing that would suggest a needed fusion, which I would never have. My biggest question to anyone who may have experienced this same issue is that the L5 S1 has definitely ruptured on left side, as discogram produced extreme pain on injection. Legs ache but no nerve involvement as far as numbness or tingling. I will not go back on pain meds and surgery is my only option but not sure and not sure who to go to. Any suggestions on best surgeon? Is the discogram effective as diagnosing the need for surgery if positive at L5 S1 level? Can this disc be mended by any means without taking out if rupture is not impinging on nerve, but is definitely irritating it? And yes I have read and seen the doctor who injects some type of "healing" compound in disc level to increase mass of disc,, sealing up all cracks and holes, and heal it, but I am not convinced this works at a high rate of success and is not covered by any insurance.