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The Big File All issues not easily categorized in the above forums are here. Comments on general health, diet, "getting comfortable," and more are here.


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  #1  
Old 09-28-2005, 01:35 AM
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My Name is Mark ( 42 yrs).
This is a very good site and thanks to the individuals responsible for its existence.

I have had lower lumbar problems for the past 4 years and tried Chiro, Accu-P, Phys therapy and have been on various anti falamatory's and also lortab (beginning)and just recently moved up to oxycodone 3-5 times a day. I am in constant pain usually 3-5 scale and some times 5+ Fortunately I am still very active, work full-time, started a new business, finishing MBA married and a beautiful 2 yr girl. There are allot of things going and I want to do more, BUT I have this problem and looking for some good advice on what to do? Dr. recommends a 2 level ADR (chartie) L3-L5. I have talked to a few Dr.s and the ADR is a 50/50 and some recommend a fusion: confused: Dr's said if I start to loose bowel control or if I start heavier narcotic meds, that is when you know you need to have something done. Any recommendations or reality check would help. The doctor I am working with is Melanie Kinchen in Orange County, California and seems to be top notch any recommendations on how to see a Dr's success rate is? Thank you for all future responses

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L3-L4 Moderate disc degeneration-A posterior fissure is present. A 4 mm central disc protrusion is noted. Mild hypertrophy of the facet joints. Mild spinal stenosis present,

L4-L5 Severe disc degeneration-A posterior fissure is present. Right paracentral posterior measuring 5 mm. Moderate hypertrophy of the facet joints. Mild spinal stenosis present.

L5-S1 Mild disc degeneration-A right posterolateral fissure is present. Mild 2 mm posterior disc bulge.
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  #2  
Old 09-28-2005, 03:46 AM
Poncho Poncho is offline
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Mark,

It is a tough position to be in "limbo" in regards to making a decision like this.

I can only share with you the shoes I walked in prior to having ADR surgery. I worked full time for 2-3 years before surgery, and taking pain medications when I would get home from work. Not much of a life really. Basically, I kept a schedule of going to work in the morning, come home, fix supper, melt into the couch and go to bed just to get up and do it all over again. No social life what so ever and every minute of every day had to be planned out activity wise. Weekends were spent recouperating from the work week on the couch with some light house hold chores.

Eventually, the pain became so intolerable and crippling at times that I had to stop working and come up with a plan to get to the bottom of my problem. I made sure that I researched what was available regarding current technology with the spine, and researched my own spine issues. I obtained multiple opinions regarding my back and lots of diagnostic tests to find out where all the pain was coming from before I came to a decision to have ADR.

Once all of the diagnostic tests came back that the pain was discogenic in nature and multiple opinions suggested that ADR would work in my case - I eventually took that leap of faith.

You will find that spine surgeons will differ to a certain extent in opinion. I guess it relates to more on how they are trained. It can be frustrating at times figuring out what would be best for yourself. In my case, I too had one surgeon recommend fusion, however, the rest of my surgical opinions leaned toward ADR.

Unfortunately, I am unfamiliar with your surgeon mentioned above and can not provide any feedback. Hopefully, some of the other forum members will come along and provide some insights there.

I am a successful ADR recipient (Prodisc) and couldn't be more please with the result at this point. Am I completely pain free??? No - I mean sometimes I am pain free as if nothing had ever happened to my back and then other times, I get a few pings of sciatica and low back achiness - BUT I will take this any day over the life I was living just prior to ADR.

I know that fusion has had it successes too. However, with a fusion, once it is done - there is no going back. What I mean by this statement is that once fusion is done, and you are still having significant pain levels, you can not go back to surgery and have the fusion removed and have ADR in place of it.

HOWEVER - if you get ADR first and if it does not work out, you would have fusion as another option to draw from.

I hope this helps you.

Sy,
Poncho

PS Sorry for such a long post - I can get "windy" sometimes.
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Sincerely,
Poncho (aka Prodisc Poster Girl)
2 level ADR (Prodisc)
Dr. Bertagnoli May 22, 2004 Rudolfinerhaus Vienna, Austria.
Currently DRUG FREE and living life again!
Knowledge is Power!!!
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  #3  
Old 09-28-2005, 03:47 AM
Poncho Poncho is offline
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BTW - I am also back in school and just started an MBA program.
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Sincerely,
Poncho (aka Prodisc Poster Girl)
2 level ADR (Prodisc)
Dr. Bertagnoli May 22, 2004 Rudolfinerhaus Vienna, Austria.
Currently DRUG FREE and living life again!
Knowledge is Power!!!
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  #4  
Old 09-28-2005, 03:48 AM
mmglobal mmglobal is offline
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Mark,

What would your pain levels be without meds?

Do you have good disc height left?

Do you have a virgin spine? (any surgeries or other significant procedures?)

If you've got moderate facet problems, you need to be speaking to a very experienced ADR surgeon.... you'll be a borderline case and experience will be key.

Mark
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  #5  
Old 09-28-2005, 04:36 AM
Alastair Alastair is offline
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Hi Mark_SoCal,
I am further on than MM and I am on no meds at all
Best
Alastair
__________________
ADR Munich 26th July 2002 L5/S1. Aged 82 now
Your best asset is your health
My story is here
http://www.adrsupport.org/alastair.html
Thank goodness for Dr Zeegers I am painfree
I am here to help,I live in the UK


I now run the UK spine site and can be contacted at

www.adrsupportuk.com/
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  #6  
Old 09-28-2005, 04:36 AM
Alastair Alastair is offline
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Hi Mark_SoCal,
I ma further on than MM and I am on no meds at all
Best
Alastair
__________________
ADR Munich 26th July 2002 L5/S1. Aged 82 now
Your best asset is your health
My story is here
http://www.adrsupport.org/alastair.html
Thank goodness for Dr Zeegers I am painfree
I am here to help,I live in the UK


I now run the UK spine site and can be contacted at

www.adrsupportuk.com/
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  #7  
Old 09-28-2005, 01:47 PM
luvmysibe luvmysibe is offline
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Welcome Mark,

You are in the right forum to be gathering information. Aside from questions about insurance coverage, which ADR is right for you, you also need ot look at your quality of life. Are the risks and/or expenses of surgery going to outweigh your current issues? Because of my sudden and severe injury ADR was my obvious choice. It still didn't make the decision process or approval process any easier. Two months post-op, I am enjoying my new lease on life.

Continue your quest!
__________________
Crystal
L5/SI Charite
7/18/05 Dr. Howard
http://www.myspace.com/luvmysibe
http://www.xanga.com/luvmysibe
"A smile is contagious, be a carrier ."
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  #8  
Old 09-28-2005, 08:37 PM
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Hi thanks, for the response
I do not have a disc height to guote from, is it important factor in how long you have before a ADR? A bouy a year ago I had a Nucleopalsy done at the L5-S1, this area was chosen because of a discogram. It turned out to be the wrong disc , it did not get better after a few months. So I went back to Spine specialist and they ordered another discogram and this is where they found out the positive disc L4-L5 and confirmed with a CT scan... Also had 4 epidural injection over a period 3 years , the first worked for 2 months, the rest all failed. If I was not on meds I think I would be super miserable. What complications can come from facet hypertrophy?? Thank you for all your responses....

Mark

------------
L3-L4 Moderate disc degeneration-A posterior fissure is present. A 4 mm central disc protrusion is noted. Mild hypertrophy of the facet joints. Mild spinal stenosis present,

L4-L5 Severe disc degeneration-A posterior fissure is present. Right paracentral posterior measuring 5 mm. Moderate hypertrophy of the facet joints. Mild spinal stenosis present.

L5-S1 Mild disc degeneration-A right posterolateral fissure is present. Mild 2 mm posterior disc bulge
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  #9  
Old 09-28-2005, 09:02 PM
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Hi Mark,

When I was contemplating ADR, I found this forum and it has helped immensely. It is a great research aid as well as a place to communicate with people who have had ADR, people who have had fusion, people who are waiting...

Many of us had successful ADR surgeries. I had my Kineflex disc surgery in July and have taken no pain meds for about a month now. I do almost everything I did prior to surgery and prior to my back problems. I am pain free except for a bit of achiness at times, but I can always attribute that to my activity level. For example, I'm a bit sore today but that's because I returned to kick boxing yesterday. I am no worse than I would've been returning to any sport after a period of absence, even if I hadn't had surgery.

Good luck with your research and decision. There are many of us to support you, emotionally and intellectually.

Mars
L5-S1 Kineflex ADR 7/19/05
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  #10  
Old 09-30-2005, 03:05 AM
Poncho Poncho is offline
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Mark_SoCal,

If my mind serves me correctly at this time of night....Facet Hypertrophy can cause stenosis (narrowing) of the spinal canal and the nerve roots exiting the neural foramen at the level effected. Because the areas near and around the spine are a tight space to begin with - any enlargement (hypertrophy), herniation, scar tissue et al can cause impingement of the neural structures because there is hardly in room in there to expand.
__________________
Sincerely,
Poncho (aka Prodisc Poster Girl)
2 level ADR (Prodisc)
Dr. Bertagnoli May 22, 2004 Rudolfinerhaus Vienna, Austria.
Currently DRUG FREE and living life again!
Knowledge is Power!!!
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