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Minimally invasive lumbar spinal fusion at surgical center. Am I nuts?

Started by 100000428557588... on 03/04/2015 8:16pm

For the last twenty six years I've been living with chronic back pain. My last MRI was the last straw for me. My lumbar disc are bone on bone. The word used by the person writing the diagnosis was Obliterated. I saw these MRI"s and they scared the crap out of me. I have to do something before I can't walk any more. Or get too old and can't have another surgery.

I've been through just about everything. Including a five and half hour L-3-L-4, L4-L5, L5-S1 open back Laminectomy. I was in the hospital for five days and I wound up with an infection. I thought I would die. The spasms from the physical therapy they gave me back then (1989-90) is something that they don't do anymore. I've had the injections, the bio-feedback, and even the trial stimulator that didn't do anything but make things worse.

The meds are the only thing that have given me quality of life. The pain pump has been pushed on me but I'm not comfortable with having a pump that could go haywire and kill me.

Since we will be moving to Florida by mid summer I started looking for Pain management. I had no idea that pharmacies aren't giving out pain meds in Florida. They had trouble with clinics and passed laws that need to be changed.

I came across Advanced orthopedic laser spine center. They and two others were the only offices that called me back. I then met with the head surgeon here in Jersey and he assured me he could and will give me relief.

He will have to do a lumbar spinal fusion. We've done all the research. And this seems like the only way for me to be able to live in Florida and have quality of life. I want to get off of the fentanyl and Norco. Yes I know I will never be pain free. That I will always have to take something. The arachnoiditis, and arthritis alone are very painful. But I have to try this.

So my question is has anyone had this L-3 to S-1 lumbar fusion done in an out patient surgical setting? My surgery is set for next week. March 12th 2015. If anyone can give me some advice I would so appreciate it.


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2 Responses


My best to you in your situation but the statement of a minimally invasive spinal fusion itself is confusing..since when is implanting surgical screws and Moss Miami cages, as part of fusion, minimally invasive..I had the identical fusion surgery and have had microdisectomy surgeries thereafter. Epidural shots, pain management..in other words the who shebang..

The minimally invasive part appears to me, as a patient, to be a commentary on the reduction, or lack thereof of 2 things..a large scar and a prelonged hospital visit. While I carry no water for any specific doctor or procedure, you have to ask yourself..why are they using that term and what am I getting out of having this procedure..I for one have found that 1 surgery has lead to another and my quality of life suffers..you can't keep taking the meds given the FL move apparently but I urge you to explore EVERY option short of a fusion surgery and my best wishes, hopes and prayers are with you should you decide to undergo the procedure


I totally understand your situation and your pain. I just went to Laser Spne Institute to have decompression at L2 after unsuccessful conventional surgery the prior year. After a weeks testing it was decided the procedure could be done, I would have minimal recovery time and have my daily pain level decreased. I could not have been happier. After 40 minutes in operating room I was awoken to be told that they could not pass the needle (due to scar tissue) I am devastated and feel hopeless. Please be careful and investigate all of your options. I learned the hard way to not get my hopes up anymore.