Originally Posted by tdouglas
Because it is so centered, would I be able to just let it heal on its own? Or can it move to paracentral left/right? And hearing that you haven't had to get the surgery is reassuring. Did your doctors recommend the surgery, and what did they say was the worst thing that could happen if you don't have the surgery?
I am sorry that I missed this until now. Could it heal on it's own? There are some studies that suggest that they could heal themselves if they are bulging and not torn or prolapsed. This can be achieved by physical therapy and injection type therapy. I personally think the injection therapy is something they are forcing down our throats because they can charge and be paid for an outpatient surgery! I have not had personal success with either, and I don't know a single person who has and I know A LOT of spine patients!
Can it move left or right? It can in essence, if it were to prolapse or for a lack of a better analogy, terminology, and visual reference, squirt out and move left or right. I would be referring to the nucleus here and it it what mine did only because it had no where else to go. It stays in the general area, and that area isn't large at all. It could be positioned more to one side or the other and still remain central. That was harder to explain than I thought lol
The doctors are on me to have the surgery, YES! I have not had it, and I will not have it until I 1. can't take it no more 2. can't walk at all 3. defecate on my shoes. Kinda graphic but that's how I feel. My mom had her's fused in 82 and I grew up watching that nightmare scenario unfold so for me it is an ultimate last option. I have had 2 neck surgeries now, those were necessary and unavoidable (VERY similar to your condition only in my neck). What I have been told about the back at those locations is that it could permanently affect bladder/bowel function, walking, and sexual function.
That all being said I agree with the other's it is a case by case scenario. True I am not a doctor, but I am very well versed with these things as is most other's here from having to deal with it first hand. I can also tell you that what I saw on your reports your surgeon seemed to see the same thing, it is severe central stenosis. What makes this a problem is your cord is being compromised and at a point where, not the pain, but the preservation of the cord is at risk. There is no more room for error. The type of surgery most often used for this is decompression or laminectomy. However if there is any sign of DDD then they will most likely want to fuse. All of that being said I would have a thorough discussion with the surgeon and ask EVERYTHING you want to ask and he/she should be able to answer them all immediately and appropriately. I always recommend a second opinion to a surgeon OUTSIDE of that hospital or medical firm completely independent of the first.
Not trying to scare you or be doom and gloom, just trying to put it into layman's terms. I will pray for you and I wish you the best. PLEASE get that second opinion soon!