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anterior/posterior Lumbar fusion and meds
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anterior/posterior Lumbar fusion and meds

I am having a anterior and posterior lumbar fusion on 4/19. i am currently on 60mg ms contin for pain. What will happen with surgery. My friend wasn't given enough medication and had to suffer for 2 days before her pain management doc came. Is this normal? I am having 2 surgeries within a day of each other. Has anybody else suffered like this and how do I prevent it.
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8 Comments Post a Comment
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82861_tn?1333457511
Is your surgeon the one prescribing the ms contin?  If so, that is the person to whom you should be asking this question.  If you are getting it from a pain management physician, that doctor should be in contact with the surgeon BEFORE your surgery to map out a post-op pain plan for you.  It should be no big deal to ask your pain doc to contact your surgeon, so don't worry about that part of it.

Since you've already got a tolerance to opiates, you are going to need something more than the typical patient for pain managment.  The thing to do is address this problem before you go into surgery so that everyone involved in your care is aware of your tolerance issues.  Just in case someone drops the ball, bring your meds with you to the hospital.  I assumue you have somebody to help you out for a few days while you're there?  I hope your surgery gets rid of your pain!
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,
  I'm bilevel spinal fusion 3/8, and I currently take 40mg of oxy.  My surgeon is aware that I'm on this drug, along with Celbrex, and muscle relaxers.  He said he will provide the nessesary drugs, and his PA told me to remind him the day of surgery.  After the pain becomes under control, they will slowly ween me off, which I have started doing myself.  I'm down to 20mg a day.  I thought about cutting the pills in half, but I read that that's not a good idea.  It make oxy go into your system more quickly.  Don't need that.
  But when this is all over, and if you like, I can tell you how they dealt with my post surgery pain both at the hopspital, and when they send me home?  Just let me know.  Email address is ***@****
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Avatar_n_tn
I am 1 mnth out of a posterior lumbar fusion along with several other complications that needed to be addressed during surgery.  My original surgery should have taken about 5 hours and ended up taking 8 1/2 hours.  I must be honest to everyone, the pain overall is not that terrible, its tolerable and does get better with every passing day.  I was taking a long acting Oxcycotin along with a quick relief oxcycodone and valium and I have since dropped down doses fast and my doctor order a bone growth stimulator that I wear once a day for the next 9 months.  I did end up having a second surgery about 3 weeks after my first surgery due to falling and luckly landing on my bed, but I have a fluid build up and it had to be removed.  I can honestly tell you just never let the pain get ahead of you, if the scripts tell you every 4 hours, I would take it every 3 1/2 hrs, just so the pain never gets out of control and the better you feel the more you will walk which I think is the key in getting better fast.  I was originally only going to have 2 cages in my spine, but ended up with 4 large screws, 2 bars and 2 cages.  I will admit that I am so glad that I had this surgery and that I am amazed that the same day of my surgery my original pain area had been completely fixed.  I think my doctor is the best, he is Dr. John Herzog of Saratoga Springs New York.  Good Luck to everyone, just keep moving.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am 7 weeks post-op for ALIF lumbar fusion L4/L5 and L5/S1. The L5/S1 was a do over from a posterior approach with rods/screws in 2004 which did not fuse. This time around they removed the discs from both levels and replaced with donor bone 'discs' for fusion of both levels.
I continue to have the same pain as before surgery (worst is in buttocks, outer thighs, legs, and feet) but I knew prior to the surgery that it might take months to have any improvement in pain. I've also read the same in other information about fusion outcomes.
I just wanted to know if someone from medhelp could comment on the long term recovery or outcomes of pain relief after the fusion. Also, I would really appreciate it if anyone who has had similar procedures and did not experience pain relief until several months post surgery could post a reply.
Thank you for any information you can share with me.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am currently 15 months post Lamendectomy with Fusion L4 L5 with scar tissue build up around a nerve on the left side of my lower back. Ever since the surgery my pain around the incision area has never gone away, It becomes painful along with my left leg. I am currently on Oxy IR 5mg 3 capsules every 6 hours and MS Contin 100 mg 2 tablets every 12hrs, And now they put me on "soma" (muscle relaxant).

I am still pretty much feeling the same, I can't walk for longer than 20 minutes without my back hurting, I can't stand or sit in a upright position without it hurting either. I have to sit in a reclining position in order to get some relief, My sleeping habbits are all messed up, My wife bought a very expensive mattress to aid me in my sleeping and I still can not lay down for more than 2 to 3 hours without some discomfort causing me to sit on the recliner, I can no longer do any maintenance work around the house due to limited bending etc., Then when I take my pain meds to aid me in my chores (The ones I can do) I get too tired and have to take a nap. I am also limited to driving a vehicle due to the narcotics when I do take them.

The reason I am sharing this with you is so that the ones who have not had the surgery yet, can have some type of knowledge as to what may or may not take place after your surgery, I dont wan't to scare anyone from having it because it did help with my original problem (Pain on lower back and right leg) But now I have new issues to deal with, Not to mention all the Narcotics that I'm taking.
The Physiologist suggested an Electro Pulse type Implant, But at this time I am declining.


Please be careful with the narcotics that they put you on as I have been on them for 3 years and I am very scared about the withdraws and everything else that I will have when hopefully this is all over, This injury changed my life, I spend less time with the family, I no longer go out, Maybe once a week, I can not return to my good paying  job because the union contract says you have to be 100% in order to return and perform you duties. Sad thing is I want to go back and they will not let me.

Good Luck !
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow. I thought I was the only one in this bad of shape. I am 12 months post fusion surgery and I am worse off than before. I have severe chronic stabbing pain in my lower back with shooting pain down my right leg. I am on Opana ER 40 mg every 12 hours. Hydrocodone 10/500 every 6 hours. Soma, neurontin, and cymbalta and klonopin for depression and to sleep at night. I have no fusion and my 3rd opinion surgeon says there is nothing else they can do. He said unfortunetly some people's bodies do not heal correctly and I happen to be in that percent. I lost my high paying job as well and try to stay positive even though it is getting more difficult buy the day. Keep me in your prayers and let me know your thoughts. God Bless.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi I am Karen, 35, 4weeks post-op.  I had an anterior/posterior fusion l3/l4 l4/l5 l5/s1...wow 6 and 1/2hour surgery 4 days in the hospital.  Anterior was cut 13inches and Posterior was 14inches.  The first week was ok being in the hospital for most of it, the 2nd and 3rd went by pretty quick and unremarkable...the 4th hit and wow depression and left side anterior pain that wont stop.  I am taking norco or percocet for pain, mucsle relaxant, promethazine (booster for pain) cymbalta (anxiety/depression) and klonipin (klonopin) (periodic limb momement).  I am trying to decide if I can attend a wedding in 5 months and trying to figure out what my future holds!!! Please provide any advise....***@****
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Avatar_f_tn
i had anterior and posterior fusion on my lower back on december 20 2006 and my left buttocks and left leg and all the way down to my foot and being how this was a workers comp injury, i can't get any treatment for anything, no pain management no nothing and my job fired me and i an losing my house but you know what keeps me going is that what goes around comes around and i can't wait. could someone tell me what i should be on or doing?
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been hurting for about 4 or 5 years i finally had the nerve to have a meylogram, plus i was hurting so bad i would of done anything. well ,the doc took me out of work , the pain was so bad from my rear to my foot. results he said i need a  lumbar discectomy fusion L-5 . Should i get a second opinion? I am so scared, what is the long outcome of this , will i need another.
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Avatar_f_tn
This is a VERY old post that you posted on, Please go back to the pain management forum and re post your question so that people will respond to you. They normally won't take the time to check the older posts.

Thanks :).......Sherry
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Avatar_f_tn
i am having a surgery anterior posterior lumbar fusion L5 S1  next week  has anyone had it..is it safe.Will i still be in pain.  getting scared in RI>>>>
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1322157_tn?1279660281
Why don't you start a new post with your question... This is an old post - and you have a great question.

Just click on the green POST A QUESTION link at the top of the page.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi bellapatricia, how did your surgery turn out? I am having the same exact surgery L5/S1 on 8/24 in Las Vegas and I too am scared?
How are you feeling?

Grecco123
***@****
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Grecco123 -

If you don't mind, please go up to the top of the page and click on the green button that says "Post a Question" and start a new Thread.  :)

This original thread is from 2007 and that's why there aren't many new posts on here.  You will get a lot of help IF you will start a new one as your Surgery is VERY important!!

Thank you and I look forward to seeing your "NEW" Post!!.......Sherry
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Avatar_f_tn
I have a few general question to those of you that have had multi level lumbar/thoracic fusions. 1)approx how long were you hospitalized and incapacitated after surgery? 2) if you were already taking rather large amounts of strong medications before surgery,did anything help with pain post op? And most importantly 3) with the multi level fusion,does the "hardware" in your back effect your ability to bend/move?  I am considering all my options as of now,but with 4 different surgeons telling me that multi level fusion is pretty much my only option other than continuing to consume large amounts of opiates on  a daily basis,I am running out of possibilities. But with 3 kids depending on me as their only provider and caretaker,I fear not only having a failed surgery,but also not being able to move "freely" post op. When I picture all that hardware holding my spine together,all I can imagine is a bunch of cages holding me straight up....like not even being able to bend. Is this really the case? Thanks in advance-KS
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Avatar_f_tn
One of my major concerns about having the multi level lumbar fusion that has been recommended is the pain control post op. I have been on soooo many pain medications and currently on Morphine,Norco,Soma,Tramadol,Neurontin and Cymbalta. I have had not one but three bad experiences in hospitals were I wasn't administered my medication as prescribed because the nurses felt "it didn't seem right" for me to be on so many strong meds.. I am absolutely TERRIFIED of having to go through this following back surgery! My question is ,has anyone who had a similar medication history had fusion surgery and if so,what was used to control your pain post op? I forgot to mention I have also been on Methadone and Fentanyl at various times before. I am just afraid that my tolerance is sooo high now,that nothing will be strong enough to relieve my post op pain.To make matters worse,I have panic attacks when I am in pain or sometimes even just thinking about being in pain... PLEASE HELP!!
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464048_tn?1206733921
I have had 4 lumbar surgeries since 1999 (3 since 6/08) and am scheduled for my 5th on 11/18/2011. Three of the surgeries were spinal fusions. Two posterior and 1 anterior. The original fusion (L5/S1) in 1999 was to repair spondylolisthesis caused by a fall. I suffered every day after the surgery but could not get either the original team or any others to take my case. I took myself to pain management and was on every opioid available. Morphine (IR & ER), dilaudin, Percocet, Vicoden and even had a Spinal Cord Stimulator implanted. Once I finally found a surgeon who was willing to help me, he made me get off the narcotics. My body did its best to fight the pain but it was over matched. During my exploratory surgery, it was discovered that the original fusion failed. The bone graft, taken from my hip, was mushy and 1 of the screws was out and another one was loose. I ended up having both posterior and anterior fusion with new rods & screws. After a few months the pain came back and was worse. Went back on narcotics to survive. A barrage of tests showed stenosis @ L4/L5. Had decompression surgery without fusion. Also had the instrumentation removed during that surgery. Two months after that, PAIN! More tests showed a facet synovial cyst due to instability @ L4/L5. Have gone back on Percocet to help control the pain. I am scheduled for a full decompression with fusion and instrumentation. I have decided to go no further than Percocet and hope that my own body can help relieve the pain. Bottom line is that drugs are just not good for you, both mentally & physically. Wishing you the best.
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464048_tn?1206733921
1) was in the hospital for 4 days after the fusion
2) my surgeon made me stop all meds 6 weeks prior to surgery. He explained that the anesthesia is difficult to administer as is post-op pain management if your body is on all the meds. It was difficult but well worth it
3) the basic rule after fusion is no BLT (bending, lifting, twisting). This is in effect as the fusion fuses as well as after as you can injure yourself. Doesn't mean that you are incapable of doing it. My next surgery scheduled for 11/18 is a result of twisting 3 years after fusion. You need to be aware of the limitations and be smart as to adhering to them.
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