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    Laminotomy Decompression
    MaryGT posted:
    For over a year have been suffering from butt/upper leg pain on right side. Have tried RFA, epidural, and SI injection with no relief. Surgeon recommends level one laminotomy decompression.

    This pain has been affecting my personal and work life--need to do something. Has anyone had one of these procedures?
    bj1208 responded:
    hi and welcome to the support group -

    there are members here who have had this and they should respond to your post - I had a fusion surgery back in 08' on L5-S1 - removed disc and put hardware in.

    just wanted to ask a couple of questions -

    first - what type of surgeon are you seeing? is he/she a spine specialist - best ones are Orthopedic Spine Specialist or Neurosurgeon Spine Specialist

    second - what tests have you had? MRI, CT Scan etc., what did those show?

    third - what is your diagnosis? which disc(s) are the problem ones?

    forth - have you been to get another opinion? Surgery should always be the last resort - after all other treatments have failed.

    fifth - have you been to a Pain Management Clinic? what did they say?

    Sorry - it helps us to help you if we know a little more about your issues - when did this start? was it an injury from work?

    Please let us know - take care - Joy
    dianer01 responded:
    Hi Mary!

    I am not sure of the difference between a laminectomy and a laminotomy.

    I had a two level Laminectomy and Diskectomy in 2007, L2-L3, L3-L4. I was at a point where I could barely walk 3 or 4 steps at a time. I couldn't stand in one place and with IV morphine I could tolerate lying down in an adjustable hospital bed.

    I awoke from the surgery and wiggled my hands and feet, When I figured out everything worked, I cried because I wasn't in pain any longer. Pretty amazing. I returned to work in about two weeks in no pain and started physical therapy and a walking program.

    Unfortunately, 5 months later I ruptured 3 additional disks and then underwent a 3 level fusion. When my surgeon was looking at the films, he could only shake his head and say, "This just doesn't happen!"

    my experience.
    MaryGT replied to bj1208's response:
    Joy--answers to your questions.

    1. Surgeon is ortho spine specialist.

    2. MRI--shows tons of arthritis, bone spurs, bulging discs, facet nerve problems

    3. Diagnosis--foraminal stenosis. L4/5 main place where problems are.

    4. As mentioned before, have tried three different procedures. Will be getting a second opinion. Know that surgery is last resort, but I am at that point.\

    5. Yes. Have a pain management specialist--a physiologist. He says he's done all he can.
    bj1208 replied to MaryGT's response:
    HI Mary -

    thanks for the additional info -

    Yes I would get a 2nd opinion from another spine specialist - since you have one from an Ortho you may want to see a Neurosurgeon Spine Specialist - just to get a broader view/opinion.

    you have seen a physiologist for pain management and I truly trust a PHYSIATRIST Pain Management facility as they are more derived into the chronic pain issues - you should also get an opinion from them.

    There are other types of treatments that can be done and the PHYSIATRIST can go over those with you. here's link on PHYSIATRIST outlining what they do etc.

    I truly believe you will get a better view of treatments from a PHYSIATRIST.

    Here's an article on the surgery they want to do on you -

    Just remember - surgery may correct the problem(s) but there is no guarantee. And as far as reducing pain(s) is a 50/50% chance.

    as with my surgery (Fusion L5-S1) my spine specialist stated he could correct the disc problem but could not guarantee my pains would be reduced - he said he was hopeful....(click on my name or pic and read my story)

    please let us know what happens when you get your 2nd opinions.

    take care - Joy
    MaryGT replied to bj1208's response:
    Thanks for your reply Joy. My pain specialist is a physiatrist.


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