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Fusion L5/S1

Started by Tweet on 02/01/2017 6:00pm

51 yr old female in auto accident may 2016. Was stiff and having pain the pain continued to get worse by Aug 2016 I was having so much problems I could hardly stand the pain and it was effecting my left leg down to my foot. I went to ortho specialist Aug they said L3/L4 was slipped and L5 /S1 was in worse shape with hardly no disk left. They shot L3/L4 in hopes that was help my problem but, it didn't so I went for MRI they said I need to have L5/S1 fused that would hopefully help with the leg situation. They did the fusion Sept 20, 2016 I did everything the dr said to do loved the Aqua therapy. Well during my healing time I noticed every time I would be up walking say more then a half hour I felt like someone was putting a 100 lb weight on my shoulders and compressing my spine and back with this if I continue to walk I then start to wobble because my lower back and hips hurt from walking. Dr said they really did a lot to straighten my spine and repair it before screwing it together. I am now 4 months out and returned to my job I am 3 days in and in so much pain after a 8 hr shift. I wear my corset while I'm up and at work. Dr said that my L 3/ L 4 has slipped 2cm / 2 mm since fusion of lower disk. I will have to end up later on in life having the 3 above my now fusion done also. The only mess I take and are giving is Tramadol .5 mg and it does not even cut the pain is anyone else having issues like this? I don't know how long I can continue to do my job it's standing and I decorate cakes. He has me on a trail bases at work.

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2 Responses


Hello, and thanks for sharing your story! We are sorry to hear that you're still in pain after your lumbar fusion, and it sounds like you've done an excellent job following your postop care plan.

Outside of your doctor saying you will likely need another surgery at a later date, did he or she offer any other pain management recommendations for you? You mention success with aqua therapy-do you still do that? Do you find that your pain is worse at work then when you're at home?

Everyone's spine surgery recovery experience is so unique. While some postoperative pain is expected, we encourage you to go with your gut and continue to bring your pain to your doctor's attention. You shouldn't have to endure excruciating back pain, especially after you've taken the right steps to get treatment. We wish you the very best of luck and hope your back pain subsides soon!


No my Dr does not have me on pain management. I am in my 4th day back to work and every day I come home in pain I get in the jacuzzi and now I'm using heat pads. I feel like the back fusion was such not helpful and is putting strain on my other disc.