I had an L5-S1 fusion last yr when I was 18 yrs old after suffering from back pain for 4 yrs for spondylolisthesis w/ pinched nerves. I have been told now that it did not fuse.
Now I am in just as severe, if not more pain that is radiating down my right side. I had a discogram last week at L4-L5 & am trying to understand the results. If you can help me, or enlighten me about treatment options, it would be greatly appreciated.
...L5-S1: the interbody cage is partially incorporated with a small amount of intact interbody fusion bone at the posterior aspect of the disc space. On the current examination, there is no definite solid fusion noted posterolaterally.
L4-L5: There is a large annular tear at the six o'clock position with contrast extending into a central to right disc protrusion which contacts the anterior aspect of the thecal sac as well as the proximal right L5 nerve root and may minimally contact the proximal left S1 nerve root. The facet joints remain patent & no lucency is noted along the pedicle screws.
Thank you!! Just trying to feel better so I can continue college without pain:)
One needs a CT scan to really come close to diagnosing if you have a non-union or not. From what you say – and I’m not sure it’s an MRI or CT – there’s no definite conclusion that I can hear.
But say it is not fused, then it most likely is the source of the pain largely. As far as L45, discograms are notoriously inaccurate for predicting anything. Although it could be an additional source of pain, as to whether that needs to be included in the re-fusion, or more likely needs either just a discectomy or nothing, would have to be determined by correlating your precise symptoms and clinical exam of strength loss or sensory loss, etc to know.
Charles Rosen, MD
Clinical Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
University of California, Irvine, College of Medicine
Founding Director, UCI Spine Center
Copyright 1994-2018MedHelp.All rights reserved. MedHelp is a division of Vitals Consumer Services, LLC.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. MedHelp is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.