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  #1  
Old 04-08-2009, 11:59 PM
bellyrm bellyrm is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 17
Post New here not sure If ADR, Discectomy or fusion will help? Pls give me ur opinion

Hello everybody,

My name is Arabella, 29 years old 5.5 feet 128 pounds this is my story please read it and give me your opinions and or advice( this will be greatly appreciate it J)

I went for a ski trip and fell down millions of times on the ice 4 months before of date of my injury, 2-3 months before date of injury I started lifting weights running dancing and being more active one day I felt super sore after working out and thought “Oh well I over did it this will go away” and then I bend to pick up a toy from the floor and felt that something moved in my lower back, the pain was absolutely terrible (pain went from my lower right side buttock area until my right foot) I thought this will go away but it never did …. I tried physical therapy 3 times without success (pain used to get worse when trying this specially on right leg) and had 3 epidural shots plus a nerve block shot that instead of giving me relief made my pain worse … I haven’t been able to sleep at night because of the pain … Pain doctor prescribed a pain killer muscle relaxant pill called amrix which I’ve been taking for the past 3 weeks and helped at the beginning with the pain but now is making me nervous depress and feeling like here but not here … Can’t sleep well wake up dizzy with blurry vision … I’m feeling helpless sad and very bad …

My life has changed I am not longer working or driving or walking more than 5-10 minutes … Pain is the worst when sitting specially on lower back right side pain radiates to the leg on and off … I have been in pain for the past 10 months … Last doctor told me I need surgery he mentioned a discectomy will help and didn’t think a fusion was necessary because according to him I have a disc herniation L5 S1 but went to get a second opinion from a very well know surgeon and he mentioned that I need a fusion because I have DDD on L5 S1 which will cost $30,000 out of pocket since I do not have health insurance and or a disc replacement which will be for free because the company that makes this disc will be paying for the study, they are starting a clinical trial with the freedom and the prodisc disc replacements here in Georgia to see which disc is better …. For all of you out there:

Has anyone had a microdiscetomy? Did it help? Did you need another one in time?

Which surgery do you recommend for someone with pain on the lower back right side and on the back and front upper tight and buttock ( pain sometimes goes to the leg toes ankle and foot specially at night pain and it is on and off)?

Would you recommend a fusion or disc replacement?

For how long is the disc replacement lasts? And the fusion?

I am very confused and as I have never had a back problem or any major health problem Im very concerned about my condition… I have no family in the country and I feel so alone going through this since I have got 2 different opinions from these 2 surgeons I am not sure of what to do …. Any comments and or advices are really appreciate it …. Hope to hear soon from you…

Thank you for reading and for all of us that are in pain hope we get out of pain soon....

Kind regards

Arabella

Last edited by bellyrm; 04-09-2009 at 12:24 AM.
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  #2  
Old 04-09-2009, 12:48 AM
rhatzy rhatzy is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 112
Default !

Hi,

I had a discectomy at age 38 and I was great for 11 years ubtil the disc above it herniated. I also discovered that the previos disc was even worse. I was looking at a 2 level fusion which was a no no for me. I ended up with a two level ADR and am now back at work.

There are many ways you can go with this and it is up to you. A discectomy could very well be good for you and a fusion at L5-S1 is the only level I would ever consider fusing. However, for me, ADR was the only way to go. I wish it was avalable 13 years ago. Also, there are many other minimally invasive procedures but I believe it just delays the inevitable. Peruse this site and talk with as many people as you can. Getting an ADR free in one the trials isn't a bad idea tho.

Mark
__________________
L4-5 discectomy 1996
L3-4 discectomy 2007
Maverick L3-4, L4-5 January 08 Stenum
Multiple facet blocks and epidurals
L5-S1 annular tear 8-08 lased with ELD
October 08 back to work
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  #3  
Old 04-09-2009, 02:29 PM
treefrog treefrog is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 65
Default

None of us are doctors, or know enough to tell you what you should do. You need to make that decision for yourself. But in order to make the decision, you need to have information, and that is where we can help.

Read this forum and other sites, to learn as much as you can about your condition, and about the options. I would also recommend getting another opinion.

Have you had x-ray's, mri or other diagnostic tests done?

Sorry you are having this pain. We all understand, and hope that you can find the right option for you.
__________________
Cathy
MRI 12/07
L4-5 Mild-moderate disc degeneration with dessication.
L5-S1 Mild disc degeneration with dessication, minimal disc bulging.

PT/medication/acupuncture/ESI's/facet injection

Discogram 12/3/08 confirmed L4/L5 & L5/S1 as pain generators.
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  #4  
Old 04-09-2009, 02:53 PM
bellyrm bellyrm is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 17
Default

Hello guys,
Since both doctors have different opinions I'm not sure if a Discetomy or an ADR will help me so yes I'm going to get another opinion this friday Cathy thanks for your message... I'm wondering though for how long a disc replacement lasts? I have read that the revision surgery and or to take out the old implant and put another one is suppossed to be a very threatening surgery? I'm reading and finding out that some people is in a lot of pain after the surgery and take months to recover while others are ok within weeks (this makes my decision to go for it more difficult)... How did you feel after your surgery Mark?After hong long did you pain go away? Why would you only recommend fusion at level L5/S1?
Thanks for your comments .... trying to take a decision based on your real life stories ... Can't be in pain any longer need to fix problem ...
Any advice is really appreciate it
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  #5  
Old 04-09-2009, 07:20 PM
Maddie Maddie is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 138
Default

You need a third and/or fourth opinion. Seriously. I got two very different opinions from different doctors as well, not long ago.

I saw a third who offered a treatment somewhere in between, and it made sense to me. I'm just trying to sort out funding now.

I wish I could help more with the question about the trials. I believe some here have done that..but I don't know the results. Maybe some will chime in here, or maybe start another thread with that specific question.

You are in a very good group of people here...lots of information from so many who have been at it for a long time. I've been trying to get an answer for three years, not to scare you. I think I finally have the answer. Dig hard and deep, and don't take no for an answer. You are already on the right track by asking lots of questions.
__________________
C3/4-5/6- Mod. ant., severe posterior bulging w. nerve root compression. Sev. narrowing of spinal canal with cord compression.

L4/5/S1- Mod. narrowing, bulging disc, significant hypertrophy of flava lig.

Highly allergic to all metals.

NEW: 3/16/2010: Successful surgery in Brazil w. Dr. Pimenta; Nuvasive NeoDisc at C5/6, and XLIF & ALIF at L4/5/S1 w. PEEK cages. No rods, screws, plates. Non-metal lumbar ADR not available at present time, so went with fusion.
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  #6  
Old 04-10-2009, 01:32 AM
rhatzy rhatzy is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 112
Default !

Arabella,

I was in a lot of pain after my surgery. I was able to control it with percocet but I started having new pain. I couldn't sit because it felt like I was sitting on glass. It was the same with my feet. I later discovered I had some annular tears at L5-S1. I had a doctor who inserted a tiny scope into my spinal canal and he was able to lase the tears. About a month after that, I was totally pain free. It took a total of about 7 months before I was able to return to work as a captain for american airlines. Getting the ADR's took care of the back pain and the leg pain.

Every one i s different. One guy had L5-S1 replaced and needed no pain meds and was pretty much pain free in a week. I guess it all depends on what you go in with. The ADR I have will last me a lifetime. Also about fusing L5-S1, since it doesn't do as much as the other lumbar discs, some people think that fusing this level won't make any difference.

Anyway, you need to find out if your discs are causing your pain by way of a discogram and also if you have any facet problems that are causing pain. This can be done with a block of the nerve into the facet that will relieve your pain for a few hours if they are the cause.


Mark
__________________
L4-5 discectomy 1996
L3-4 discectomy 2007
Maverick L3-4, L4-5 January 08 Stenum
Multiple facet blocks and epidurals
L5-S1 annular tear 8-08 lased with ELD
October 08 back to work
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  #7  
Old 04-10-2009, 01:42 PM
treefrog treefrog is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 65
Default

Good advice rhatzy.

As far as how long disc replacements last, no one can really say for sure. I think that the first person to have one implanted, about 22+ years ago, is still going strong. But the clinical trials have not been long term yet, you will only see results for 2-5 years. Now, the manufacturers say that since they are using similar materials to what has been used in knee and hip replacements, and these have been shown to last for a very long time, that the disc replacements should be the same (I don't know how long those are though).

That is something that you should ask the doctors though.

There are conflicting opinions on the benefit of ADR for L5/S1 disc. I don't know what to tell you, that is something that you are going to have to decide, along with your doctor.

But rhatzy has made some good suggestions. You need to determine if your pain is discogenic, if you have scoliosis, if your facets joints are in good shape. All these kinds of things will either point you toward ADR or be contraindicated for ADR.
__________________
Cathy
MRI 12/07
L4-5 Mild-moderate disc degeneration with dessication.
L5-S1 Mild disc degeneration with dessication, minimal disc bulging.

PT/medication/acupuncture/ESI's/facet injection

Discogram 12/3/08 confirmed L4/L5 & L5/S1 as pain generators.
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  #8  
Old 04-10-2009, 09:54 PM
steelskyway steelskyway is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 181
Default What to do

Arabella,

After reading your post I noticed there was a real jump to non conservative treatment. I did not see how the conclusion was made on a disc herniation. Did you have an MRI? What were the results? You were given ESI's but to no avail. I am more into questioning the process used to get to the results for which you are experiencing pain. If you have no coverage for medical procedures how did the doctors allow these conclusions.

Based on your age only I would be looking at the most conservative option after you have some conclusive results from diagnostic testing. If you have diagnostic results share them and then expect a plethora of information from many who visit this site.

Paul
__________________
MVA on 20AUG07 at work
L4/L5 Annular Tear
One failed epidural 12OCT08
Discogram 10FEB08
ADR Prodisc L 10JUN08
Discogram 08APR09 for gnawing 3+ pain when sitting results negative
Facet injection L4/5 upcoming 03JUN09 Cancelled because pain is subsiding
Follow up on 01JUL09 with Dr. D
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  #9  
Old 04-12-2009, 01:30 PM
bellyrm bellyrm is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 17
Default

Thank you so much for all your comments, and advices.... I had an a MRI done 6 months ago showing according to doctor then a disc herniation L5 S1. Did therapy for 3 months or more with no success ( everytime I tried therapy my pain increased specially on right leg foot toes) Tried also the traction machine that made my pain horrible the first time and the other times didn't make any difference at all ... Had 2 epidurals the first one didn't help but made my pain worse the second one helped for 3 or 4 days so after this doctor told me that he thinks I need surgery ( he wasn't a surgeon but a non surgeon orthopedist).

Had a Electrodiagnostics taken showing no damage in any nerve but a normal electrodiagnostic study telling me in the conclusion to consider pain management... Went to see pain doctor non surgeon he put a 3rd epidural shot and a nerve block shot which was the most painful thing evers my pain increase from 1 to 10 to 20 I couldn't sleep because of the pain and he gave me Amrix and prescribed Hydrocone and told me he thinks I need surgery a Microdiscetomy ... Went to see a surgeon he told me I need a fusion $30,000 out of pocket ( I do no have insurance) or ADR which will be free because there is a new clinical trial between the Brand New Freedom Disc and Prodisc to see which disc is better ( trial will be for 2 group of patients you won't know which disc you will get) ...

Went to see another surgeon couldn't talk to him but talked to his PA he said I have a small disc herniation L5 S1 and I also have DDD and that I need an anterior fusion and doesn't recommend ADR at all ... The Anterior Fusion is very expensive $80,000 but they might be able to reduce price $20,000 or less because I have no insurance and right now Im not working ... What are your thoughts about this?

Paul did you get the ADR here in the USA? How was your surgery and recovery? Would you recommned Pro Disc ? Do you happen to know for how long Pro Disc will last?

Thanks so much for reading...

Arabella.
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corpectomy, disc herniation, discectomy, fusion, herniation, lumbar adr, lumbar disc arthroplasty, lumbar fusion, microdiscectomy

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