Can anyone point me toward some research on outcomes for lumbar fusion surgery? I am new to these forums and have been frightened by some of the stories here of people who have had bad outcomes and ended up confined to bed, in terrible pain, etc.
My story: I'm 57 and I've had back pain for about a year. Most of the time it's not very bad, but it gets worse when standing/walking for an hour or so, and I get stabbing pain whenever my back is jolted (like even stepping down off a curb). The stabbing pain has limited my activities a lot - have had to miss family vacations, stop athletic activities, etc. MRI/CT shows herniation, degeneration, and lysthesis at L5/S1. Have had facet injections and SI injections (my doc was working on the hypothesis that it was arthritis in the facet joints causing the pain) with little success. Now the doc is thinking I might need fusion surgery. If it can rid me of those stabbing pains, great, but if there's a significant chance I'll end up much worse than I am now, maybe it's not worth the risk.
Thanks for any help!