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Had two cervical fusions. Having severe pain in L5 disc. Suggest

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Practicing since : 2001
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I have had two cervical fusions and have had degenerative disc disease for over ten years (I am 65 y/o). I am having severe pain in the L5 disc and in the S1 and S2 areas. I have had care from a very reputable pain clinic for almost four years which includes pain patches and Vicodan and out patient injections. Any hope of there being a surgery that could relieve my problems?
In 2008 a MRI indicated I had a "probable radial annular fissure and assymetrical posterior disc protrusion with minimal narrowing." The doctors at that time including a neurologists said it was very unwise to have lumbar surgery. I think that has changed. I certainly hope so.
Posted Sun, 9 Jun 2013 in Women's Health
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 57 minutes later
Thanks for posting your query.
Your MRI findings in 2008 were suggestive of minor degenerative changes in the spine with no nerve root compression. At that time, going for a lumbar surgery was not advisable.
Now that you are having a persistent severe pain, it seems that the degree of degeneration has increased with severe nerve root compression. A repeat MRI scan will help in detecting the extent of nerve root compression you are having. The surgery may be considered for symptomatic relief. You can consult a spine surgeon for the same.
Hope this answers your query. I will be glad to answer the follow up queries that you have.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Rakhi Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Had two cervical fusions. Having severe pain in L5 disc. Suggest 35 minutes later
Are lumbar surgeries more accepted by neurosurgeons now? The one I saw in 2009 told me to run if someone suggested lumbar surgery! He was highly respected in a large medical vented in Houston. Surely things have progressed in that field.
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 11 minutes later
Thanks for writing again.
Yes. The lumbar surgeries are more acceptable now. But the decision to go for a surgery depends on the severity of the problem and the extent of response to the medical treatment.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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