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Anterior and Posterior fusion

Started by Sheryljm on 02/21/2017 5:16pm

I am scheduled to have S1, L5 and L4 fused with graft from my hip. I have read it is not good to have multiple levels. Am I just over cautious and scared? My Dr. says these areas have no movement....what experiences hae you had?
I am terrified I will be worse. I am not in dying pain. I can live with this but cannot work in the yard as I love or I will not sleep for the leg jerking and throbbing. My left his hurts terribly when sitting or laying but get immediate relief when standing. I can walk about 2 miles with no problem. My leg burns to my toes when sitting. Is this your experience? L5 ruptured several years ago and has slipped forward over S1 and L4 is about 60% bad. oh, I have had the physical therapy multiple times, epidurals, no help.
Thank you!

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2 Responses


Hi, and thanks for posting your questions about your upcoming lumbar fusion. We think it's totally normal to feel concerned and scared as you approach spine surgery--it's a big deal that shouldn't be taken lightly!

We hear from a lot of people who feel like they can't talk to their spine surgeon about their concerns. That shouldn't be the case, and you should always feel like you can ask any question to your spine surgeon before you move forward with a procedure. The problem is, it's not always easy to know where to start or how to guide that conversation.

To that end, we found some articles that we think will help you get the answers you need before proceeding comfortably with your fusion:
( Second Opinion on Spine Surgery: Rude or Smart? )
( 6 Topics to Help You Talk with Your Spine Surgeon )
( Spine Surgery: Questions to Ask Your Doctor )

We believe if you have a frank conversation with your spine surgeon about your fears and get your questions on the table that you feel much better about how you move forward (and maybe that will be not having the surgery at all). It's your health, so you get to call the shots. We hope the articles provide some peace of mind, and we wish you the best of luck with whatever direction you choose.


Hi Sheryljm, I have had numerous spinal fusions. My latest was from T3 to S1 and fastened to my pelvis with titanium rods and pedicle screws. It is true you will have no movement. I feel stiff some of the time but am not in horrible pain all the time. I had the fusions for Scoliosis, not disc problems. Operations down to the sacral area are a bit of a risk . I did have horrible pain after the operation in my foot, especially my little toe. I thought they had broken my foot! The nerve at S1 had been partially cut. The pain did go away soon after the operation. I do require Lyrical for nerve pain but very little more than Tylenol and an occasional muscle relaxant.
I believe you will benefit from your surgery and feel better. I am very thin and do have pain from the rods and screws when I sit in wooden or hard chairs.
I hope my experiences help you understand a little better. Good luck!!