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Old 07-04-2003, 01:55 PM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: U.K
Posts: 5

Hi, my name's Mike. I had spinal fusion in February of this year following a burst wedge fracture of L1 sustained in a road accident. I was in surgery for a total of 8 hours and my surgeon used a thoraco-abdominal approach with anterior cage fixation followed by posterior stablisation with titanium cage, rods and screws. I am worried that 5 months down the line I am still in a lot of pain - despite the fact that I am taking morphine 60 mgs morning and 60 mgs at night (slow release). I also take Neurontin (for nerve damage I am told), Imipramine (muscle relaxant) and Tramadol for breakthrough pain. Nothing really seems to have improved - in fact some of my problems seem to be worse than before I had the surgery. To boot, I have an incisional hernia which will need to be operated on at a later stage. Has anyone else had similar experience - or am I just expecting too much too soon?

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Old 07-04-2003, 03:22 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Indiana
Posts: 1,186
jdlfmc HB Userjdlfmc HB User

Mike,Hi and welcome to the boards I'm afraid most are out celebrating the holiday right now but I'm sure when they check in you will get a lot of answers I have found everyone here to be supportive and knowledgeable.In the meantime you might put the spinal fusion in the search box and you'll probably get swamped with post referring to your question,I'm sorry I can't help I haven't had work really done on my back as of yet,I know from the post that I read about your condition your symptons are the same as others I have read and that recovery time can be long and eventful,the meds I know are close to what most of us are on with back problems I really wish I could be more helpful I didn't want to leave you hanging out there I know how hard it is to wait when you are in pain and unaware of what is going on in your body.I wish youluck in getting answers and try the search if you want to compare notes while waiting for replys.I wish you a speedy recovery and painfree days ahead.


Old 07-04-2003, 06:09 PM   #3
Junior Member
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Canada
Posts: 10
Panda74 HB User

Hi Mike: I had a lumbar fusion with all the hardware. Before the surgery the surgeon told me I would be back to work at 12 weeks. That was over a year ago and I am not back. I still need to use painkillers, pain continues to limit my activities, and I experience constant high levels of fatigue. I met a friend-of-a-friend who is 2 years post-fusion, told the same thing by her surgeon, and still not back to work... so my opinion is that this recovery takes a long time, and the medical personnel who have not gone through it themselves don't "get it".
Hang in there, I know its tough.
- injured at 15
- conservative management for 10+ years
- 2002: L5-S1 fusion w/ hardware

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