have to have L-5:S-1 fused and riding is my great joy in life. Doc says should be good in 6mos but I would like to hear from any real world experiences.
The first thing i wanted was a disc replacement. A ProDisc,its called. I went to Payton Mannings surgeon in Indianapolis. He said neck is great success for disc replacement, but lumbar blows out and he would not touch it except to to discectomy and fusion (both at once). He wanted go anterior, thru my gut, move all those nerves that control my dick function, do the work and move 'em back. I decided I didnt want my dick nerves touched, and got a second opinion in Louisville, closer to home. They wanted to do a 4inch incision going posterior thru my lower back. Much better. Still directed to get disc cut out and fusion/bone/screws in to stabilize everything. Said it would stabilize vertebrae so I could go crazy again with my active lifestyle after i heal up 6-9months. 3 months for fusion to work but no going crazy for 6-9months. I actually went to a neurologist and he picked out his surgeon buddy to do the work while he assists. I like that idea a lot.Soon I expect to hear from the Doc - dunno if they will try discectomy or a fusion. To the original poster - in your case what led to a fusion vs first trying a discectomy?
I'm headin' towards the same room with a view.....Best of luck with your surgery. I may be facing similar in the near future.
5 years ago I ruptured (herniated... what ever the proper term is when you blow the stuffing out as my Doc said I did!) a disc at L5/S1. PT did me fine for just short of 2 years, but I still had pain. I did get back in shape, dropped weight etc. and suffered through it, and was back in top form for racing (enduro). A torn ACL from a crash then set me back big time.
Now 5 years after the initial back injury (which by the way happened on a mellow bicycle ride..nothing gnarly happened at all - not even a crash...nothing...but that ride is the moment that blew it) I am generally back where the pain keeps me from doing much. I have some good days, but more bad. Sometimes, i find it hard to walk or stand for even a few minutes. Unfortunately, my weight has ballooned back up (I was 180 the day I tore the ACL, now at 215), as I simply cant find the way to stay working out and stay motivated when it hurts!
I recently went through a series of 3 cortizone injections. First one was like a miracle...basically pain free for over a month. Second, likewise for maybe 2 weeks ...then the pain started up again. Third, mild relief, but nothing noteworthy, then back to full tilt hurting. Doc says its time for the next step.
I had a MRI on Friday - based on my rather uneducated, uninformed comparison of the disc now vs when first injured, if anything, it appears more flattened out to me! That sucker is at most 1/2 the apparent thickness of the ones above it. (I am shorter now!)
Soon I expect to hear from the Doc - dunno if they will try discectomy or a fusion. To the original poster - in your case what led to a fusion vs first trying a discectomy?
i have only pain, no numb or loss of foot strength. Am trying to avoid nerve damage by getting this done now. Thats funny, or not funny, abt the missionary as sex is a big part of the call but i dont see a forum for that so its difficult to get info. Thats the main reason i got a second opinion tho', dont want nobody touchin' those nerves (was the neurosurgeon's advice). Thanks for the post!I had L4-L5-S1 fusion done April, 2013. Cut in from the back, six screws and two plastic rods. Everything still works but the stiff back at the lower level is very noticeable, (missionary position is the worst :furious
I was able to do our annual dual sport ride over labor day in Colorado with 4 back to back 200+ mile days over dirt and paved passes. I didn't have any problems with the ride, just sore at the end of the day.
I still have leg pain and numbness every night, it doesn't matter if I just sat at work all day or rode my bikes. Had to do it all over, I would pass on the surgery. I put this off for too many years and probably have permanent nerve damage. Doc follow ups with new MRI doesnt show any nerve impingement, he says I will get what I get in 12 to 18 months. He also said no brace after three months, it would allow your muscles to weaken with its continued use.
Good luck on your surgery, stabilize your fuel and be ready for early spring ride.