Back, Spine & Neck Surgery Forum
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Avatar universal

To fuse or not to fuse?

I'm 20 years old and have been told that I have got degenerative discs with instability of my lower spine and a suspected herniated/slipped disc. I have had this back problem since I was 17 and have now been told that I may need a fusion to stabilise my spine and also surgery to free my trapped nerve causing my sciatica down my leg and to my foot and toes.

Would you recommend I go ahead with this fusion and surgery or would you recommend other types of treatments?  

18 Responses
517190 tn?1211642908
Dear Drahn,
There is not enough details for me to answer.  Sorry.

Dr. Rosen

Charles Rosen, MD
Clinical Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Spine Surgery
University of California, Irvine, College of Medicine
Founding Director, UCI Spine Center  
Orange, California
Avatar universal
Could you please tell me what information you need?

Avatar universal
DO NOT GET SPINAL FUSION SURGERY! It is awful man. I went through it, my leg felt better instantly yet after a few months the pain and the instability became 1000000 times worse than before surgery.. it is an awful, awful awful thing.. don't do it!
562599 tn?1217011725
I am still having back pain and trouble walking and my whole lumbar spine has been surgically fused.
562599 tn?1217011725
I am still having problems with pain and pressure in my lumbar spine.  My legs still bother me tremendously.   I had major surgery in October 2007 T-11 to L-3 with rods, screws and cages.   When I try to walk even a block, it feels like someone is trying to hold me back in my legs when walking.   I have increased pressure in the area of the surgery.  I have just recently been able to sleep in my bed again.    This has been nine months post op now.    It hurts to turn over in bed.  Hurts when I lay on my side in bed and try to get up.   I have an upcoming appt at the end of this month, versus ending of November to see the neurosurgeon again.  Also, I have a ripping feeling in my surgery scar area when wiping after going (I have to lean to the left) to restroom and that is the side that the graft was taken from my hip.

I don't see how my neurosurgeon thinks I am able to work with all of this pain.

Avatar universal
Thanks for sharing your experiences, jenka and Judy1961, I really appreciate it as no one else seems to be answering my questions here at the moment. :)

I'm probably not going the fusion route now as I have heard a lot of unsuccessful outcomes in a lot of places. I feel sorry for both of you, jenka and Judy1961 and thank you kindly for posing your experiences.    
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