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  • DCC236
    Member
    Post count: 1

    hello,

    My name is Dan im 28 yrs old and im and electrician. I’ve been out of work for just about 1 year now, i had a MRI done and was told i have Severe Degenerative Disc Disease at L5-S1 and Mild DDD at L4-L5. I have pain everyday, whether standing/sitting/walking. I can still get around so to speak but i have alot more pain if im standing for more the 30 minutes or walking. Laying down does decrease the pain. I do get pain that radiates around my hips and into my legs (above the knee). Ive tried PT with little to no relief, I had an ESI done which made my pain 10x worse. I’ve been on many medications for pain, none if which touch the pain, instead make me loopy. Is there anything else that i can do?, anything would be much appreciated. Thanks for your time.

    Donald Corenman, MD, DC
    Moderator
    Post count: 8379

    If you have disabling lower back pain for over one year, have had failed treatment including physical therapy and an epidural, you might be a candidate for surgery. Your understanding is that you have a severely degenerative disc at L5-S1 and a mild degenerative disc at L4-5. By the sounds of it, you are the typical patient that possibly could be cured or at least partially relieved of your pain by a fusion.

    The tricky part is the L4-5 disc. More likely than not, the L5-S1 disc will be the most significant pain generator. The question is what the contribution of the L4-5 disc is. The next step is a test called a discogram (please see website for more information). This will indicate if you are a candidate for surgery.

    If the L4-5 disc is significantly painful, you would be a candidate for a two level fusion (TLIF) of L4-S1. However, if the disc is minimally painful or pain that is not typical, you might leave that level alone. The problem is that we spine surgeons don’t know the future of that disc. (I’m currently doing a study on that issue but the data won’t be available or processed for another 5 years). Leaving it alone might still cause pain at that level in the future but it may never cause any further pain. Some of the decisions lie in the appearance of the L5-S1 disc on X-ray and MRI.

    You need a consult with a good spine surgeon on this subject. Read the website under lumbar degenerative disc disease, discograms, TLIF fusion and recovery information under lumbar fusion to educate yourself.

    Dr. Corenman

    PLEASE REMEMBER, THIS FORUM IS MEANT TO PROVIDE GENERAL INFORMATION ON SPINE ANATOMY, CONDITIONS AND TREATMENTS. TO GET AN ACCURATE DIAGNOSIS, YOU MUST VISIT A QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL IN PERSON.
     
    Donald Corenman, MD, DC is a highly-regarded spine surgeon, considered an expert in the area of neck and back pain. Trained as both a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic, Dr. Corenman earned academic appointments as Clinical Assistant Professor and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and his research on spine surgery and rehabilitation has resulted in the publication of multiple peer-reviewed articles and two books.
    vicky
    Member
    Post count: 1

    from last weak my brother facing lot of problem in left leg , mri done and showing problem in L5-S1 dr. advice to go for surgery but i m fearing from surgery should i go for surgery and also tell me about any problem post operation ,
    plz help me dr.

    Donald Corenman, MD, DC
    Moderator
    Post count: 8379

    You need to explain the history, symptoms, images, any tests, prior consultations and prior treatments along with the results. I am just publishing on this website next week a step by step description thread of how to produce a good history over the internet. You will need to delineate what the problems and tests have revealed.

    Dr. Corenman

    PLEASE REMEMBER, THIS FORUM IS MEANT TO PROVIDE GENERAL INFORMATION ON SPINE ANATOMY, CONDITIONS AND TREATMENTS. TO GET AN ACCURATE DIAGNOSIS, YOU MUST VISIT A QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL IN PERSON.
     
    Donald Corenman, MD, DC is a highly-regarded spine surgeon, considered an expert in the area of neck and back pain. Trained as both a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic, Dr. Corenman earned academic appointments as Clinical Assistant Professor and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and his research on spine surgery and rehabilitation has resulted in the publication of multiple peer-reviewed articles and two books.
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