My Dr. referred me to a surgeon who has ordered a discogram to determine if my L4/L5 degenerated-torn disc is the one causing me so much pain.
If so, he wants to do ADR. But, is only giving a 60-70% chance of major pain relief.
I am awating scheduling on the discogram, I hear it is VERY painful. If the disc proves to be the offending one, I am "terrified" of having surgery on my back. I have an aunt who had many problems all her life due to poorly executed back surgerys.
WWYD? I am only 34 and want to be able to play sports w/ my DD and enjoy time w/ DH without worrying about making my back pain worse.
Last edited by Vuitton70; 01-12-2005 at 10:01 PM.
Surgery has come a long way in the last 20 years. Take it from somebody who had surgery 15 years ago and played sport after it just the same. I had a l4/5/ l5/s1 fusion when I was 23 and played cricket, went water skiing (that was not smart) and did a range of other sports as well as rode a road bike (gsxr 750). the key to succesful surgery is adhering to post op routine as directed (physio, exercise and having the patients to let your body heal - not forcing the issue)
While I have never had a discogram i hear from the healthboard that it can be painful (temporarily). Its the only way of knowing if **** the offending disc. I would have thought your succes rate stats were a little low but would need to check that. Others may be able to clarrify that for you
The discogram is painful, but the pain doesn't last forever. They give you pain meds immediately to help control it, and many docs send you home with some. It is definitely worth having the test done. If I hadn't had mine done, I would have had just one level fused, and left with pain from the other level that was damaged.
I did not have any other surgeries before my fusion, just "conservative therapy", including the epidural steroid injections. My dr told me that any less involved surgeries would likey fail, due to the mess in my back (my l4-l5 disc was destroyed and the vertebre was collapsing, the nerves were all tangled up). My doctor estimated a TLIF fusion success rate was around 80+% - and that sounded awfully good to me.
We did not even discuss ADR - not sure why, but my dr had such a long experience with the fusion (TLIF) procedures I don't think I'd have been comfortable with something "new". I know they've been doing ADR a long time in Europe, but I really know very little about the proceedure. And if the success rate is so much lower, what is the advantage to it over the regular fusion?? I'm just curious
Best wishes for a speedy recovery.
StMishl Failed Bk Fusion, facet joint/hip issues & RA -Wish I could Jump like him!
I had a discogram with sedation and don't remember a thing. Ask your doctor if they do it under anesthesia. I was asleep and then they brought me out of it to test my discs and then I went back to sleep. Because my discs were so full of holes, pressure couldn't build up and I didn't have any pain afterward. They also did a CT scan immediatly so the discs would show up while the dye was still in them.
Trina, I've had three discograms before my fusion in Jan 05. Make sure that the Doc possibly gives you at least one 10 mg Valium, with two percocets, which will really help you to relax. Don't let him give you too much pain killer, as it will numb your sensations too much, and you won't get the accurate reading. It's a pain provocation test designed to search for the problematic disk, and you will feel the pain if its the problem disk--tell him everthing you feel, and don't hold back. Best to you!
Betty, I had three discogram in 2003: the first one I was given too much painkiller and the test was considered non-concordant for pain;which was a lie. I was tortured on the second one, and it to was considered noncordant for the supposed problem disk, with pain in all the others. The third and final, finally showed the truth, and I really had to push to get them approved.
Betty, I flew to Vienna, Austria, and self paid $39,000 for the surgury because I didn't want a fusion. Also, my facets were wearing down quickly, so it was now or never. I couldn't wait for three level Prodisc approval.