Hello, I have just recently underwent my 3rd micro on my L5 S1 to repair reocurring herniations with no luck at all. The first surgery was May of this year followed by a repeat in June, and now the third here in September. Im still experiencing the severe pain in my leg and i have to say enough is enough. I have been dealing with this now for over 9 months and im on the verge of going crazy. Im only 30 years old and an active duty member with the Coast Guard, so a career is on the line here. What else could be done to combat this pain so i can get back to work? I was told a spinal fusion was not a good idea, is this true? I appreciate your time reading over this, and any answer would be very helpful.
I assume you have had recurring disc herniations at L5-S1 and have had three surgeries. Yet another herniation has occurred that is compressing the nerve root. The typical surgical planning that occurs after the third herniation is a TLIF fusion performed on this level but there are exceptions to the rule. This TLIF fusion prevents recurring herniations and further damage to the nerve root.
The TLIF ablates the disc space, and allows plenty of room to decompress the nerve root which is most likely scarred down after three surgeries. The fusion of L5-S1 will probably not be noticeable to you in function after healing as there is most likely no disc material left in the disc space and the motion of this space is currently negligible.