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Getting ready for the fusion



  • Lisa,

    Good afternoon! :) I did tons of research on the upper lumbar, and most if not all of the sites said that short of trauma, the L2 is about the lowest level seen to be problematic. No real reasons were given as to why! Grr.. *My* guess? There isn't as much loading via movement at that level, where as L4 and below has more of a curve on most, and take more load/impact when sitting, bending etc. Again, just my guess. And with the statistics showing how few have surgical issues for L1/2/3 is around 10%!

    If I use my present surgeon for my back, I know he has you in a hard brace...for how long I don't know. I'm trying to hold off as long as I can, but my back is hurting more and more (constant now), but the issues down my legs are getting my conscious attention daily now. So far, my history is when a disk starts to go, it goes pretty fast.

    Hearty Congrats on your smoking (lack there of) status woman. That is a rough road. My NS didn't make me quit for my neck, but I guarantee he will make it a directive for my back. I'll send you positive energy that your non-smoking continues! Bravo!!!! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Lisa, I switched back to the fentanyl patch today, the little baby one (12 mcg/hr).

    I think L2 just isn't in the zone where it gets most of the standard degenerative issues due to the sacral curvature and the loading issues due to lifting and poor posture, but that's just an opinion. Seriously, you never see anybody on the boards with L2 issues except for trauma victims (as Brenda said).

    I wish I knew more about how the surgery would be. I have heard from several people who have had 360 degree fusions, but have no idea what the vertebrectomy will add to that. I have to imagine it will add some amount of pain and recovery- my spine is significantly out of alignment, so my muscles are going to have to adjust to some movement and reconstruction. I assume yours too?

    But 6-9 months, which my neuro said, is not outside the norm for a 360 degree fusion, so maybe not.

    I hope...

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  • Thank you Brenda for your good wishes regarding smoking. so far so good. My skin is looking so much better and it's so nice not to smell. Did you have a fusion in your neck too?

    Linda, Your recovery sounds great! I too am building up my surgery as mega! It's so nice to read that your doing well.I have hired someone for the first 2 weeks to help me with the cleaning and washing. Are you using a raised toilet? I am really nervous and looking forward to it to get out of this nasty pain!

    Hb, I have never heard of a 360 fusion I wonder if I'm having that too? How is the fentanyl patch working for you? Does it make you constipated?
  • Lisa,

    As you can see on my avatar, yes had ACDF (a little over a year apart) for C5/6 and C6/7 - sadly, more to come. :''(

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Yes, we have a raised toilet in the bathroom that I use. It was installed for my very elderly father-in-law when he lived with us and I always grumbled that it wasn't comfortable for me to use but now I'm thankful it is there. Adding a toilet riser will be one of the things you're very glad you did. I also have grab bars in that bathroom which are lifesavers for getting up from the toilet and assisting in the bath, so that's another thing I wouldn't be without.

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
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  • The 360 means that they fuse it from all sides- that's why they go in from the back and either the front or the side. In my research, vertebrectomy is always done with 360 fusion, but my research is limited to what I can find online.

  • I went to Emerg last night because my legs felt very weak all day. I felt like I could just fall over. They took me in right away and the staff were amazing. They did a bunch of tests and said they were not sure why, but at that point I was feeling better so I told them, I would follow up with my surgeon right away. I have my MRI booked in a few weeks and my pre-op is a week after that. It could be from the meds I'm on too. Life is so frustrating when your a "spiney"

    HB - There doing my surgery through my back so I gather it's not a 360 there not putting in a cage just rods and screws.

    Linda- I bought my raised toliet I just hope I don't have any date's that are coming back to my place ;) not a very sexy look!

    Brenda - It's been 5 days smoke free and I'm doing great so far. I actually quit for 7 years but when back to it about a year ago due to this accident and stress and my ex boyfriend smoked too. Now they are all gone :) I understand why we smoke and I would love one but I really want a good recovery even know the fusion might fail if I smoke or not.

    I hope everyone has a wonderful pain free weekend..

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