It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Back Problems Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-28-2011, 07:42 PM   #1
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Gaithersburg, Maryland USA
Posts: 11
notreadyyet HB User
To ALIF or Not to ALIF, That is the question

Well friends, it's been a while since I last posted and it's still not time to change my username (Notreadyyet). I met with my NS/OSS a few weeks ago for a yearly follow-up; had another CT/Myelo (oh what fun), but at least I didn't end up with a major full-blown CSF leak (Spinal headache) like the last one. Anyway, the CT was not tremendously definitive again. Just another confirmation of DDD (Degen. Disk Disease) as supported by the Provocative Discography from last year (fun again). L4-L5 is the major area of pain. No numbness and a little pain down the right leg but nothing significant. Doc is VERY ultra conservative and says it's entirely up to me, and that there's nothing urgent necessitating surgery at this time (loss of bladder function, loss of strength due to nerve damage, etc. etc.) I appreciate his perspective and all, but I'm still in a lot of pain 24/7. I've read here on the blogs that lumbar fusion isn't really the answer if leg pain is not involved. Is that true? Doc says it's not Spondy, just DDD. So what's the answer? Still not ready.

 
Old 03-28-2011, 08:41 PM   #2
Junior Member
(female)
 
jeanniebugs71's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: madison wi
Posts: 39
jeanniebugs71 HB Userjeanniebugs71 HB User
Re: To ALIF or Not to ALIF, That is the question

[QUOTE=notreadyyet;4717835]Well friends, it's been a while since I last posted and it's still not time to change my username (Notreadyyet). I met with my NS/OSS a few weeks ago for a yearly follow-up; had another CT/Myelo (oh what fun), but at least I didn't end up with a major full-blown CSF leak (Spinal headache) like the last one. Anyway, the CT was not tremendously definitive again. Just another confirmation of DDD (Degen. Disk Disease) as supported by the Provocative Discography from last year (fun again). L4-L5 is the major area of pain. No numbness and a little pain down the right leg but nothing significant. Doc is VERY ultra conservative and says it's entirely up to me, and that there's nothing urgent necessitating surgery at this time (loss of bladder function, loss of strength due to nerve damage, etc. etc.) I appreciate his perspective and all, but I'm still in a lot of pain 24/7. I've read here on the blogs that lumbar fusion isn't really the answer if leg pain is not involved. Is that true? Doc says it's not Spondy, just DDD. So what's the answer? Still not ready. [/QUOTE]

WHO ever is ready for that i had alif on nov 1 2010 and its been a slow process but lil by lil im getting a lil better i had numbness and pain in legs its gone from right leg but not left so it was worth having surgery done the pain in my back is still there but not like it was and i can manage that and would do alif again
__________________
This Is My Life NOT MY PAINS!! I Will Not Let You Take It!!

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 03-28-2011, 11:33 PM   #3
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 6,450
teteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB User
Re: To ALIF or Not to ALIF, That is the question

Obviously I am not familiar with your particular details...but I just wanted to mention that many insurance companies are no longer authorizing payment for a spinal fusion if the only diagnosis is DDD. There needs to be proof of spinal instability, or evidence of nerve compression. Performing surgery for pain relief is no longer considered an acceptable condition.

In a way this makes sense as various studies have shown than fusion is not statistically successful when a patient's major pain is in the back. It can help some people, but the percentage is not high. It is much more effective when the patient's primary pain is in one or both legs (often the result of nerve compression).

I think we all struggle over the decision of whether to have spine surgery, or not. Very seldom is surgery ever an emergency (except for the reasons you mentioned.) So there is usually plenty of time to agonize over the decision. I know I did. Most people will tell you that you'll know when the time has come...and probably that thresh-hold is different for each of us.

I met a fellow spiney in the lobby of an alternate therapies clinic one day. We started chatting...I was wearing my back brace and had recently had a 3 level fusion. I told her that my world had become so small that I was basically housebound....she looked at me incredulously and asked why I hadn't purchased a wheelchair so I could go do the things I had told her I had wanted to do, but had not been able to do....She said she would never have surgery as long as she had someone to push her around. Obviously, my time for surgery was different from hers!

My point is that this is such an individual decision. Only you will be able to decide when the time has come...if it comes at all. I have read that DDD actually improves as the patient ages...so if you don't develop any bad nerve compression, perhaps you will be able to avoid it altogether, OR, you can wait until technology comes up with something better.

You should try to figure out exactly what you would accomplish by having a fusion, what can be done to control you pain if you do not have surgery, and whether you can live with things the way they are.

 
The Following User Says Thank You to teteri66 For This Useful Post:
notreadyyet (03-29-2011)
Closed Thread

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
Fellow ALIF patients, can you help me? Pandorasback Back Problems 36 09-22-2011 06:18 AM
ALIF Surgery in 10 days Kazearymir Back Problems 8 05-02-2011 04:44 AM
Alif and recovery/ how long off work kgiberso Back Problems 1 09-23-2010 07:18 AM
3 weeks post ALIF pain(discomfort)question?? fedupfor Back Problems 12 08-30-2010 07:36 PM
11 Weeks Post ALIF - still have back/leg pain - is this normal? healthyfocus Back Problems 5 03-23-2008 05:26 PM




Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is Off
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Join Our Newsletter

Stay healthy through tips curated by our health experts.

Whoops,

There was a problem adding your email Try again

Thank You

Your email has been added




Top 10 Drugs Discussed on this Board.
(Go to DrugTalk.com for complete list)
Ibuprofen
Lyrica
Morphine
Neurontin
Oxycontin
  Percocet
Soma Tylenol
Valium
Vicodin




TOP THANKED CONTRIBUTORS



teteri66 (1119), gmak (131), SweetPeainSF (78), maltluver (71), twohands (64), pebblebeach3 (63), cheryl1213 (51), Moldova (46), ibake&pray (41), workinmom572 (40)

Site Wide Totals

teteri66 (1177), MSJayhawk (1004), Apollo123 (903), Titchou (847), janewhite1 (823), Gabriel (758), ladybud (753), sammy64 (668), midwest1 (668), BlueSkies14 (610)



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:15 PM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!