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Tue, Jan 14 7:15am · Herniated discs at Levels L4/L5-S1 in Bones, Joints & Muscles

Good morning! I have severe spinal stenosis 3 severely herniated discs, nerve compression, and arthritis. I have also develop a mild foot drop as well as numbness in my left leg below my knee. (the numbness increases when I get into a pool, and none of my Dr.s can explain why that is). I have dealt with this condition for almost 28 years, (i am soon to be 49), my body has adjusted to some of the pain, and modified movement. I have consulted 5 different surgeons Orthopedic, and Neuro). These are only the surgeons that I have consulted in the past 2 years. They all agree that surgery is needed however, I cannot get 2 to agree on the method. procedures from lamenectomy, to a full fusion from L2-L5 S1. I had an MRI in 2017, and then another in 2019- the 2 indicated only mild changes. I have treated with pretty much all of the non surgical solutions to avoid surgery. I know that I am rambling, but please continue to read. I sent my MRI to a non-invasive surgery center- they did not even reply. I have been told that non-invasive for this extensive surgery is not an option at this time. Some of the surgeons that I have seen say that I should continue to wait until I start becoming incontinent, or until I become paralyzed from the waist down, as they have indicated this will be the ultimate outcome. I have read reviews on this surgery, and it seems that that majority of people do not have success with their surgery (there is a difference between what we consider success and what the surgeons consider success). I continue to be of the mindset that if I can manage my pain level and continue to move relatively well, I will continue to post pone this surgery until I start to experiencing the previously noted outcomes. The Dr. has indicated that the surgery would relieve leg pain but not the back pain, my leg is numb, but rarely causes pain as I can't feel it. I just don't know what to do, it is such a life altering decision, I am single and live alone, so the recovery/rehab is also of a serious concern. Currently I am able to perform some of my ADL's with assistance from various medical equipment (walker, shower chair) etc. My pain level is being controlled relatively well on pain meds. but at this point I am just at a loss, the surgeons don't want to do surgery, they say that I am too young, and that if I had surgery at my age, I would most likely require multiple surgeries to revise the fusion. My condition as been relatively stable, so I don't want to "rock the boat" because I think that if they get in there, they will have things that come up that they did not anticipate, and then I will become unstable. I am wondering what people with the similar issues would advise.