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7 week post spinal fusion S1 through l3
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7 week post spinal fusion S1 through l3

Since my surgery I have been experiencing numbness from the hips down on both sides with it more extensive on the left side.  Prior to my surgery I had sciatic pain on the right side which went down the leg and numbness in my right foot.  Now my numbness is in my private area; the numbness then generates down my left leg (scale 6) and even worse in my foot (scale 10). On the right side its not as bad as the left but noticeable (scale of 2)  It feels as if someone has taken a Tourniquet and left it on my leg.  Nothing makes it better.  I have complained about this since shortly after the initial surgery. After 4 weeks, my orthopedic did an MRI to find fluid built up around the spinal cord.  He took me back into surgery a week later for what he said was dibridement.  It was very apparent immediately after my second surgery that there was no relief.  I'm told pretty much oh well, I just have to live with it.  Why do I continue to have this extent of numbness.  The numbness gets so bad that it is painful to walk on my left foot and experience pain in the lower back as well.  The pain is not the same as prior to my initial surgery but a new pain which I'm not sure I can live with   The numbness makes it impossible to wear shoes and the bottom of the foot is so numb I can't deal with walking barefooted.  I cant sit for more than 30 minutes with the numbness getting worse (its there no matter what but gets worse) on the left and right side; laying down on my back after 20 minutes makes it worse, standing or walking 10-15 minutes causes it to get worse.  

I need help understanding what is going on.  Should I get a second opinion.  Is there anything else further I can do so I can have a normal recovery?  Please help!!!
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1083596_tn?1313398276
Dear Friend,
Well i would say there is something grossly wrong, that has happened in the original surgery. Also there must be some considerable CSF leakage as well as chances of infections.
Would request you to please consult a good neurosurgeon / orthopaediican who specializes in spine, so as to have a frank and correct second opinion.
Meanwhile continue to take all the advices as prescribed the present doctor.
Feel free to discuss more....but before that please take second opinion.

Regards
7 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
I would definitely go for a second opinion. It sounds like your ortho doesnt want to face the fact that it might have been a failed back surgery. you cant do P/T if you cant walk and you are in a lot of pain and need pain mgt. maybe go back to the ortho first, and insist he investigates, is it possible the sciatic nerves have been bruised and will improve, or damaged and won't, or any other reason that would cause this. if you do not get answers, maybe try a neuro for 2nd opinion.
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Avatar_f_tn
I go for my follow up appt.  I'm not finding much information for CSF involving the lower spine; all I find is involving the brain.  What are the symptoms?  What tests should I ask my physician to run.  They drained fluid in the second surgery which they indicated was not infection.  What else could the fluid be?  Should I tell him I'm considering a second opinion?  What treatment is involved with the CSF; does it require additional surgery?  What happens if they don't do anything; what happens to me?

Thank you
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Avatar_f_tn
Went for my follow up appt today. They act puzzled with my complaints/symptoms. They are ordered another mri (this will be the second since my initial surgery).  The x-ray today showes the hardware where it should be and fusing from what he tells me.  So why another MRI in less than a month.  While sitting there I mentioned I was having numbness all the time on the left side but if sitting more than maybe 15 minutes the toes on the other foot start to go to sleep; why could that be?  I tried contacting another physician but was told they would not see me if I was already being treated by this physician.  So what do I do now?  
Prior to my initial surgery I was told I had spinal stenosis; could this be the reason for the numbness now; did I wait too long to have the initial surgery.  Also, he kept asking me if I'd been diagnosed with Fibromalgia; why would he ask that.  What does that have to do with numbness.
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