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Spinal Fusion....

Sep 09, 2015 10:11 AM

I've met a lot of people with spinal issues and some had fusions done. Not one single person said it was worth the pain. But if you have tried all other options, would you do the fusion surgery? If any of you have gone through this surgery, did you feel any better?

Also people whom had done micro disectomy, any difference ??

Sep 09, 2015 7:07 PM

I did the fusion surgery and I still feel the same with the numbness, tingling, restless legs. joint pain, headaches, difficult sleeping, and fatigue.

Sep 09, 2015 7:22 PM

I had spinal fusion twice it relieved pain but not completely. Have to work at pain management.

Sep 09, 2015 10:40 PM

Octobot, I had no choice when they fused my neck in '92 & '95, at C4-5 then added C6-7 with a titanium plate and screws. I was on the verge of being paralyzed. The release of three twisted nerves in the neck, which were being pinched off, brought immediate relief in pain and 60% symptoms abated. It took several years for a full recovery and I was stronger than before.

That was then, and this is now. I'm losing my strength in both hands and having feet symptoms too. I'd do it right now for the C2-3 & C7-T1-2, but it's too risky to get to the upper neck. All the docs say no, it's way too risky, because i could lose the ability to talk or swallow at the least & be paralyzed at the most. The surgery could do more harm than good, so we're just praying as the discs continue to collapse, they fall straight in place without pinching nerves off. Good luck & God bless whatever your need is to be. 🙏🌼

Sep 10, 2015 12:49 AM

Hi I had my first L4-S1 fusion in 2011, which didn't work due to pseudoarthrosis & metal work failure. This caused a larger collapse in the lumbar region so in 2014 I had a anterior/posterior L2/3-S2 fusion. I now have chronic Cauda equina syndrome, I've lost the ability to urinate and pass faeces, I now have poor mobility, having to use crutches permanently indoors and a wheelchair when out & about.
But I do know people for who fusion has worked well for.
Despite the outcome I would still choose a fusion again because it has helped reduce some of the pain (I also have chronic pain syndrome) and has delayed the deterioration of my spine.
Good luck with whatever happens, best wishes for the future.

Sep 10, 2015 1:05 AM

Have you exhausted all other methods? Everyone is different but for me, I have yet to have a surgery that left me with less pain. Sorry to report that. Now when it is an issue of spinal stenosis you have no choice the spinal column needs room to work properly. I truly wish you good luck

Sep 10, 2015 8:49 AM

My neck is like that. I have had laminotomies from C1-C5, I have wires in my neck that start at my brain stem and go all the way down my C-Spine. It was supposed to abate my pain but stopped working and I had 4 revisions. Due to the heavy scarring, pinched nerves and inflammation, there is nothing left to do without paralyzing me. My thoracic spine has scoliosis and the discs are rapidly collapsing and I'm none on bone. My lumbar spine has each and every disc herniated and I have moderate lordosis. So, at this point of my life, I'm starting to have cold fingers, tingling, weakness, pain in both my arms and just a mess. Along with everything else I've been diagnosed with, I'm not a happy clam. Someone told me try acupuncture and believe it or not,
I got migraines from it. Maybe I didn't use the right provider, who knows. I use supplement and dr prescribed meds but it only takes the edge off. At least I can get up and move some most days. Sending healing wishes and positive vibes for a good outcome. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers. 🌻🙏🏻

Sep 10, 2015 3:27 PM

Emzy, bless your heart! I have one doctor out of all of them who still believes I may have damage in the lumbosacral area that causes me to have symptoms of cauda equina. But because she's a chiropractor, the rest won't believe our even consider it. That's why I've been walking around nearly two years with incontinence. You have a strongness of will I can only hope for. Good bless you! 🙏🌼

Sep 10, 2015 3:50 PM

Flappyslady 81.
Please don't give up! It took my parents spotting a feature on the local news about CES & my mother interrogating my consultant to get him to admit I'd had it for at least a year & it had originally been misdiagnosed.
I recommend www.caudaequinauk.com they're really supportive and you can get load of advice from fellow sufferers.
I'd also recommend talking to your personal doctor about a second opinion from another spinal centre/ Spinal consultant. Bladder symptoms are considered 'Red Flag' for CES & therefore an emergency.
I really hope you get a diagnosis soon, then hopefully you'll get the right care from services such as the continence team, pain clinic, counsellors & rehabilitation specialists.
Best wishes & God bless you too

Sep 10, 2015 6:57 PM

Guys/gals I'm so greatful for your inputs. I've been asked to think about it before seeing my specialist at the end of this month, they said this could be a strong possibility. I've never done any open surgery before and I'm not quite sure I'm ready.

So far from what I have read, it seemed to have caused more problems than fix any problems. Although the pain did reduce your pain level, but sometimes even though I can be in a lot of pain, with the right meds, I feel ok. I know I still won't be able to do any heavy lifting as such but even after the spinal fusion, I don't think anyone else can do similar things.

There's one last option for me I think but I'm not sure whether my specialist is willing to do it for me. I know for a fact I do indeed have a disc bulge in L4/5 S1. There's this surgery where they use a really fine needle to suck up the bulging bit and hopefully that takes the pain away from the legs and possibly lessen the pain on the back area. Not sure any of you have heard about it. If you google metro pain clinic Melbourne, there's a list of surgery they do. They are my current pain specialist.

I'm really scared to have anymore surgery since that last nerve block surgery was so painful. It did resolve some issues, but the pain I get now is from a different area and definitely much more intense. I can't remember a day before the surgery where I felt worse.

I'm doing fine in a way with my meds. Just need to really take it routinely and on time. I'm just hoping they are able to give me a proper diagnose this time after a new scan than being called a patient with chronic back pain.

Many thanks for your good lucks and prayers. I hope God can guide me to the right decision at the end of the day.

Sep 10, 2015 10:07 PM

Octobot, whatever way you feel led in your decision, just know we are here to support you. Try and keep a positive outlook rather than letting your mind remind of the other painful procedure. And let the doctor know your fear about it ahead of time.

If they do what you described, you'll be out cold (if it's still done as it was when my neck was fused. And truth be told, when I woke up my neck didn't hurt at all. Both pelvic hip ridges did though, because that's where they got the bone to put in my neck. It took two weeks before I could tolerate standing straight up. I walked bumped over. Oh, I forgot, my brother in law (here's been dead 3+ years) had several discs fused in his lumbar area. It took a full year to recover where he could return to his job (moving houses and buildings, no small amount of exertion!), but he did really well after that.

You are in my thoughts and prayers. 🙏🌼

Sep 10, 2015 10:11 PM

Emzy, thank you so much for sharing that link. I will read it tomorrow and begin researching. I had one EMG several years back that showed damage to my S1 nerve root, but no one has addressed it. Maybe Mayo will see what needs to be addressed! Thanks again. 🙏🌼

Sep 10, 2015 10:13 PM

Good night, sweet dreams and may God bless with a restful sleep to you all! 🙏🌼

Jun 02, 2016 7:36 PM

I would do the XLIF FUSION not any other one though

Jun 02, 2016 7:39 PM

It's hard going through severe nerve pain everyday sucks ass no one wants to come over or hang out with you because you are in pain all the time . They have no clue what it's like to be on fire every day

Jun 02, 2016 10:34 PM

My neurosurg. says I will eventually have to have the surgery with fusion. They, two-of, just bubbled along with their big Doctor words telling me I would probably lose the use of my legs if I did not have it done. Considering that I Knew nothing when I went to that appt. and now I know a bit more , I should have asked so many questions that I didn't. That was my last appt. with them. Surgery or be gone. I have an appt for 3 months from now to see rheum.

Jun 03, 2016 7:51 AM

Silvrrry, I hope and pray that when you see the new rheumy he/she has better suggestions for you and that is able to put a plan of attack in place with a "plan B" just in case the first plan doesn't work out as planned. Sending you gentle {{{Hugs}}} and prayers that you don't have too much pain while waiting for this appointment.💕🙏🏻🌻😊

Jun 03, 2016 4:38 PM

Thank you so much, Always. It is so wonderful to just feel someone understands. It is like having a secret self that only feels safe here with you all. So many things i don't talk about with spouse or friends, I can almost see their eyes roll back in their heads should I bring up pain. I have felt my eyes fill with tears when I read messages here. Soft hug.

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