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Posted by Dani on October 12, 2000 at 19:58:34:

Here it goes again! I'm back in the agonizing mode.
I sent my films off to a neurosurgeon in oregon (supposedly very well respected, but a cousin of my friend). He wrote me back saying that if I were his patient, he would do the discectomy (on l3-4..I already had one on l4-5) before trying the fusion.

My surgeon who did the first operation originally said we could try the discectomy first but, when I went back to see him he said if he were to operate he would rather take care of both levels (l3-5 fusion). So, originally I had decided.."Ok..I'm going to do the discectomy..I'll try anything before the fusion"....but then after about a month of thinking that I decided.."no, I think I will have the fusion..I don't think the discectomy would be the end of it, and I would rather take care of both levels and move on from there"

and, now, getting back the opinion of this neurosurgeon is putting me right back into indecision. I am seeing another ortho and a neuro next week..but I hate feeling unsettled. I'm also having another discogram in nov. to see really how bad each particular level is. any of you guys have an opinion??? Is the fusion so bad that it is worth trying a smaller surgery before doing it?

I would love to have this discectomy in dec. and have it really help and then I would not have to think about spending my summer and first year out of college recovering from the fusion. I just feel like I have a gut feeling that the discectomy won't take care of everything..but at the same time I don't know if that is just because the first one didn't work..and I'm having a bad attitude???

HELP anyone who has any pearls of wisdom? please please please!!! I think you guys know more than a lot of doctors!!


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