View Full Version : Anybody on here had back surgery?

12-29-2006, 07:20 PM
I was diagnosed with a herniated disc L5/S1 at the beginning of October. Been to chiropractor, now with a PT, no improvement. I've got sciatic pain down my leg. I'm starting to think that surgery may be necessary, wondering if anybody here has had back surgery and how long it took before you were back to skiing/boarding?

east tx skier
12-29-2006, 07:31 PM
Just to give the post a bump, I witnessed it as a hospital intern once. At the time, I recall thinking I would want it to be a procedure of last resort. But I have know knowledge of the recovery time or how it improves your QofL.

12-29-2006, 07:37 PM
I have the same thing only mines L4 and I also had pain down my leg and in my ankle.I wanted to avoid surgery so I did the Vax-D treatment in Chicago it was excatly a year ago this month I did it.After Vax-D there is a 3-4 month of threapy stretching and stuff.It did not totally cure me but I would say i'm 80% back to normal.Maybe they have something closer to you.
I never stoped skiing.


12-29-2006, 07:37 PM
Not that this really falls under the surgery you are talking about but the father in law has had two back surgeries (disc fusions) over the past three years and the only thing I can tell you from experience from watching him get around after and to this day is do the dam physical therapy! It's just sad to watch someone walk sideways because they are too lazy or stubborn (insert father in law jokes here) to follow doctors orders. On the other hand the wife had two fatty deposits removed from her spine area (one of which was resting on her siatiac (sp.) nerve area) last week and she is still having a hard time moving around. Recovery time in my opinion by no means medical is that the recovery time is reflective of your ability to follow doctors orders regarding PT and post op surgery.

12-29-2006, 07:46 PM
Yeah, I had multiply doctors with mutiply opinions.Non could give me a 100% cure all of the Doc's did say with back surgury 1/3 of people get worse,1/3 stay the same,1/3 get better....pretty bad odd's.Thats when I started looking around and found a chiropractor whent to him for 3 weeks got worst then had MRI,X-rays later that week I saw a infomerchal on tv and thought I'd give Vax-d a try.

12-29-2006, 08:16 PM
I have had 2 herniated disks in the same area for the last 13 years and have learned to live with it. Doing the right exceriszes works for me.

On the other hand I also herniated 2 disks in my neck that required surgery. I had the surgery in mid Oct and was back sking the next spring.

12-29-2006, 08:46 PM
An extremly close friend of mine had back surgery about 18 months ago. He has been a hardcore slalom skier for over 30 years. He skis 12 months a year and lives in Viriginia (that is no typo). He had a crushed vertabrae and tried PT. It didn't get better so they did surgey. He is skiing again. However, no where near the level he was. It has been very frustrating for him.

If your interested in talking to him let me know and I can put you in touch with him via email. PM me.

12-29-2006, 09:22 PM
I blew out C-6 in my neck - impressive pain at shoulder blade and down the arm. I was absolutely gung ho for surgery, but by the time I could get the time to see a neurosurgeon, it was all better.

Surgery for a herniated disc is generally the very last resort.

12-29-2006, 09:54 PM
I think mine have gone from being called herniated to degenretive. (sp)
L4, L5 has been going on since about 1954. Also some cervical as well.
Lower back problems in my case are caused by short hamstrings/heel cords. Working with a GOOD PT has kept me out of surgery Several close neurosurgeon and orthopod friends advised me to avoid that back surgery at all cost. The cervical problem got pretty hairy and I barely avoided the knife. However did end up with some residual numbness in a thumb. I agree wit Mac surgery is a last resort. The electric stim units are a great help and can be bought over the counter. Likewise the back rest with massage features work great for me i.e. I can stop the spasms before they get ahead and those muscles tighten up.
In the mean time I will keep you in my prayers.

12-29-2006, 10:35 PM
After living with a herniated disc at L5/S1 for 20 years I had surgery 20 months ago because I basically couldn't walk for 4 months. I avoided it at all costs but didn't have a choice. When you cannot live with the pain or are incapacitated, then you will know when you need the surgery, it will be that obvious.

As far as recovery, I think it is rare to be 100% again. I've spoken to many who have had it and most have residual problems, myself included. I am not back to the point where I was, say 5 years ago when I had no problems except for an occasional episode. But, I am much better than the 4 months preceding the surgery. I have occasional pain and lingering numbness in my right foot, but the follow up MRI showed nothing abnormal, so I take Aleve and try to keep my back strong. I took 4 months off from any physical activity other than walking and 1 year off from skiing.

My surgeon is very conservative and will only do the procedure as a last result, but I had already reached the point where it was obvious I had no other choice. Good luck.