Words can't say how sorry I am about your cat. I am such a cat freak - if you only knew...I have 2 cats also - one is 9 and her son is 7, they are the only children I have left at home and they get treated better than my kids probably did - LOL
The walker: They will take you to your car in a wheelchair so no need to take it IN the hospital but you may want to place it in the trunk of the car it will help you get from the car to the house much easier. Did you get a rolling walker - one with wheels? It good you bought one - my ins would have covered mine but I would have had to pay like 10-15$ a month I had a client in the DME business and he sold me one at cost - looking back I never knew just how handy it would be - I bought it for my 1st surgery (what I had thought would be my ONLY surgery) - and now will use it on surgery # 3.
I have never had to wear a brace but will be in one this time, I am very curious to know WHICH one this Dr uses...will ask him next visit.
What I have done alltogether briefly: Lami L4/5, L5/S1 July 2001. 6 mo later reherniated L4/L5. Continued with conservative measures, shortened work week, esi's, trigger point injection, bed rest etc.. then when the sciatica and pain began to get unbearable I finally agreed to have 2nd surgery. I was fused @ L4/5, L5/S1 in September 2003. I had a noneventful surgery (for both) and in that I was very lucky - in the 1st surgery my L4/5 had literally blown apart the Dr told my husband - he spent over an hour just picking disc fragments out and due to all the manipulation of the spinal nerve and the length of time I put off surgery, I was left with major nerve damage
9mo after fusion Ortho began blowing me off when I continued to complain that something was NOT right. His only answer was, "Maybe a nerve is resting on one of your screws" duh.....got fed up, needed answers, when to see my GP whom I admire and feel very comfortable with - asked him to refer me to a PM doc. He said he would be my PM
- and so I was fine with that and went on with things for a few months with him. Pain became worse & worse - when I began to feel grinding and crushing pain - he referred me to a PM for evaluation for a intrathecal morphene pump. Luckily I was blessed with a wonderful PM Dr. She promised me we would find out WHY I was in so much pain ~ she did more ESI's, Facet blocks, lots more meds, still the pain became worse. She is who referred me to my current doc he is an NS. He did x-rays, new MRI, CT & Bone scan and Disco.
He said my L4/L5 was not connected at all on the top and not much on the bottom. So finally a diagnosis. Pseudoarthrosis. Failed fusion. My level above is now bulging but no herniations were seen, facets on a couple level are shot out now too. I am seeing him on the 26th and hopefully will know the extent of what he'll need to do while re-doing my level that has failed.
DDD, yes I have severe DDD throughout my lumbar spine. DDD is a degenerative disease and sadly the disc will continue to deteriorate. Doesn't necessarily mean they'll be problematic enough to need surgery, MANY people have DDD and no pain.
So that's my deal.