I had a TLIF fusion at l5 s1 in January 2011 for severe DDD. After the surgical pain had subsided I was still having alot of severe back pain. It's 7 months out from surgery and the back pain is just as bad, yet worse than b4 surgery. The leg pain from b4 the operation has subsided approx 40%, yet does flare up pretty often. I have had flexion x rays at the 3 month and 6 month and some union is taken place, which is good. In the last 4-5 weeks my back is still killing me but now the pain is also up higher than it's ever been. The pain goes into my buttocks but then continues just below the knee on the front of my leg, side of my calf and into the top of my foot on my big toe and second toe. It;s a stabbing pain in my back and in my leg however the pain below the knee is burning also.. These pains don't go away but get excruciating at times. What could be causing these new pains? Could the disc at l4-l5 above the fusion? I am just concerned and afraid I may have caused a problem somewhere else. Any insight would be appreciated..
unfortunately few neurosurgeons all over the world have enough orthopedic dynamic imagination. In general, what you are describing is a typical image of surgery falure.
My advice to you is a re-surgery ASAP (to prevent further damage or subsequently a drop foot for example).
Now all what an experienced neurosurgeon can do is to liberate the compressed nerve root asateral as he he can reach, and to assess in situ the mobilty of the L5/S1 joint to fuse with 4 pedicular screws after distraction!
P.S: if he can remove the TLIF it could be fine if not.. No problem
and that is the only method to have peace of mind for the rest of your life.
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