This is just a preliminary question, but I've finally reached a point (after about 5 years of skating by without surgery) where I'm seriously considering a major back surgery. The problem I have is related to severe scoliosis and severe stenosis in all of my lumbar vertebrae.
This has been coming on for at least six years. I've tried yoga, pilates, trx, gyrotonics, massage therapy, plain old stretching, various herbal remedies, NSAIDS, epidurals, and lying on the couch. I feel like the non-surgical things I've been doing for all these years have helped the situation, but no matter what I've tried, the pain has finally reached a very serious level.
I've now been to see five different back/neurosurgeons in four different states and the diagnosis is pretty much the same:
I need, according to the surgeons AND my various non-surgical handlers, a full fusion of all of my lumbar vertebrae from L1/L2 to L4/L5.
So my question has to do with people who have experienced something similar and are still skiing and/or doing similar outdoor activities....
How has it worked for you? Has the recovery been good? Can you hike/bike/ski and so on relatively pain-free? If you ski now, do you feel your ski performance is "essentially: similar to what you were pre-surgery? If you do other outdoor activities, how does your comfort and performance compare to what you were pre-surgery?
I'm really pretty terrified to submit to this kind of major surgery. I think I've tried nearly every non-surgical option that's available to me but I've finally reached the point where every day is a struggle to stand up, sit up, or ski without doubling over in pain and having to lie on the floor/snow/liftline to try to let the pain subside.
I'm looking for people who have been in a similar situation and chosen surgery. Did it work for you? Would you do it again? Do you feel your performance level is somewhat comparable to where you were pre-surgery? All of this is really important to me.
Thanks in advance to any of you who have been in a similar situation. I'm really looking for related experiences here.
Edited by Bob Peters - 6/24/16 at 8:42pm