Double Discography with possible double fusion to follow

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Not posted in a while but been battling on trying to get my pain under control and my back 'fixed'. Brief history:- 2 spinal surgeries, one in 2007 (Microdictomy) and one in 2012 (Microdictomy and Laminrctomy due to CQ). After the last surgery my back has never recovered. I'm currently on BuTrans 15mg, Diazepam 10mg, Amitriptyline 100mg, Carbarzipan 60g, Anti-sickness pills, ibuprofen 1600mg and paracetamol 2000mgs daily.

Latest MRI two weeks ago showed that discs at L5/S1, L5/lL4 and L3/L2 are totally gone. Had a diagnosis of Lumbar Spinal Stenosis, Spondylithesis and DDD.

Pain has been horrendous even on all those meds. Still have no reflex in right ankle and numbness in right foot and calf.

Spoke to my Orthopaedic Surgeon last week and he's sending me for a double Discogram with the plan to follow this with a double fusion at L5/S1 and L5/L4 if the results are positive.

Has anyone had this procedure? What can I expect? I know it's going to be painful, but how painful? Does anyone have a double fusion at these levels with my conditions? Has anyone returned to normal daily activities? I was a PE teacher and played a 'LOT' of sport, hence the wrecked back.

Your thoughts would be most welcome.



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7 Replies

  • Posted

    Hello Scott I have spinal steosis and MRI shows four places where the spinal cord is pinched. Today I had my third set of injections at a pain clinic. My friend had injections for a similar complaint around the lower spine with the same clinic. The doctor told me that I may not require surgery if I respond well to a series of injections. The doses are small as large doses my have adverse effects. The injections are a nerve block and could make the pain manageable. I know your problem is not the same but managing pain is something you may welcome.

    At present I can't walk far or stand still but I go to aquafit class five days a week, becoming a couch potato is not an option for me. Good luck in fighting the pain.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply. I've been down the spinal injection route and unfortunately they made me worse. The build up of pressure when the injection went in meant the Dr had to stop 7 times before in all went in. It was hell. I was sick while he was doing it so he has not recommended I go down this route again. I am under pain management specialists but so far they have not been able to get my pain under control, that's since last February.

      I have a funny feeling the discogram will do the same, pressure wise.

      All the best to you and I hope you get some comfort soon. Backs are not a nice place to have injuries or issues.



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  • Posted

    Hello Scott

    My doctor at the pain clinic uses small doses of 0.25% naropin. It may go under different names (I'm in Ontario) from country to country. He injects in 12 places during a treatment, it pains for a bit then it's gone the next day. Not sure what caused my spinal stenosis, probably a combination of skiing, curling, gardening, plumbing, climbing, rugby, walking, yoga, shovelling snow and minor accidents. You must miss the PE &  sports. I wish you well in finding relief from severe pain. 


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    • Posted

      Thank you. Hopefully an envelope will be through my door when I get home with an appointment for the double discogram.

      Your activities sound like mine, Volleyball, Football, golf, gymnastics, trampolining, skiing, hillwalking, Mountain biking etc etc. Not a sedentary life I've led. Volleyball for 21 years is possibly the culprit.

      Good luck to you as well.

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  • Posted

    Had my double Discogram today. Well......not something I want to go through again. Needle hitting my spine and nerves was extremely painful. Both discs gave off painful responses so looks like I'll be going for a double fusion.

    Now lying in bed and left leg still agony. Hopefully the pain results in something positive.

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    • Posted

      Due to Discogram being positive and all conservative pain methods not working, I am finally off a week on Wednesday for a Anterior double lumbar fusion. Not looking forward to the going in through the front but needs must. I'll report back once op is completed.
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