Pain after Back Fusion

Pain after Back Fusion

Hi, it’s Dr. Centeno. And today we’re going to talk
about pain after back fusion or adjacent segment disease. The low back is kind of made up
of vertebra or backbones that stack on top of each other. There’s a disk in between. And they come together in
the back at the facet joint. And your spine is built to move. That’s what it does. So at the end of the day,
when we take fusion hardware, and we put it in there,
and we fuse the disk solid, that’s a problem, because it
means that part of the spine can no longer move. And the part that
still moves ends up overloading the joint
or the segment just above the fused part. And that’s a big problem. That’s called adjacent
segment disease. And what happens is,
as you can see here, is that you get bone
spurs at that level that press on nerves. And the facet joint
can get arthritis, which can also press on nerves. So at the end of the day,
fusion predictably breaks down the next unfused level. This is called adjacent
segment disease. And the solution is
certainly not more fusion. That’s really a dumb idea. So stay away from that. In my experience,
adjacent segment disease can be treated through advanced
interventional orthopedics, which involves the precise
placement of your body’s own stem cells and platelets
to help the ligaments, muscles, joints, and nerves above and
below the fusion hang in there. Again, more fusion just
causes more problems. So see for
more info on this concept. And thanks so much for watching.

18 comments on “Pain after Back Fusion

  1. Glenn Hampson Post author

    I have terrible neck and shoulder pain after lower spinal surgery three weeks later

  2. Mike Quinn Post author

    2008 Was FORCED to have fusion. L 3-4/ 4'-5. RUINED MY LIFE. 57 yr old male. Otherwise no problems. Can this be reversed?

  3. Mike Quinn Post author

    Thanks. I'm a CPT in corrective exercise. Got certified to help myself. Guess it's just my cross to bear. Fusion..huge mistake.

  4. Nyxi Pixi Post author

    And this is why I am too scared to do the surgery. I am 31, I have DDD, Siatica, Narrowing of the spinal coloum, 3 herniated disks and I live in pain all the time. So the surgery isn't worth it?

  5. Badr Boussoufa Post author

    Hello, Thank you Dr for the valuable info in this video . I had a back surgery five months ago for my herniated disc in l5S1 however still in pain in my back and leg so I had another MRI recently that shows herniation on the same disc of the first operation . Can you please advise me ? Can I email you my MRI report? I saw two doctors after the surgery with the new MRI . One said I need to do the fusion and second one said I need another surgery to clean the new herniation . Please I need your opinion Thanks a lot

  6. Peter Guske Post author

    It is correct that ASD occurs all too commonly after fusion surgery. Very important to get info on both sides of the spinal fusion debate. Especially BEFORE you have the surgery. This is called "shared decision making" and "informed consent", concepts that, in my experience, are rarely adhered to in a practical manner. After that, the choice is yours.
    Yes—there is also research reporting good/fair results with fusion surgery FOR CERTAIN very limited diagnosis. However, I must state this : Good controlled trails showing clear, consistently favorable results for instrumented spinal fusion for (as an example) a diagnosis of spinal stenosis, …where are these trials/research? I am not able to find this research. Anyone care to dispute me by shooting me a reference? I won’t hold my breath waiting 🙂

  7. Jimella Miles Post author

    I have had 5 back surgeries and I live in misery every day I'm not on any pain management I suffer daily to the point I'm exhausted and depressed most of the time. I however had an actual major spinal cord injury that made me paralyzed in my right leg mostly now that I am walking and moving again I have alot of nerve damage and pain and keeping my legs straight for too long is unbearable I need to bend them because my hamstrings are so tight. my advice is to really thoroughly research ur surgeons reputation first

  8. XxSn0zBeRrIeSxX Post author

    It's hopeless for people like me who can't work from pain, yet none of these doctors take Medicaid.

  9. Cindi Kachnic Post author

    My SI and pelvis were fused in April. It was suppose to help my back pain from my SI joint and allow me to get off opioids. Now I cannot walk without pain, debilitating pain that is forcing me into a wheelchair, more opioids than I took before and now I am told they need to do hip replacement surgery.

  10. B K Post author

    Had a rizotomy then L5-S1 fusion and now 2 corrective surgeries since fusion. I'm 42 and I'm a wreck. I can barely sleep, all day long I sit then I'm up then I'm sitting then I'm up, I pace around in circles. Tried working for a couple weeks it just made it even more unbearable. Exhausted and Depressed.

  11. Sissi32 Sissi Post author

    Bonjour doctor. Voilà 3 year ago i had back opération and my Life changed totaly.i spent nearly for year in my bed with terrible pain that everytime they took me to the clinic they told i had nothing because my prothèse of l4 l5 and s1 is perfect si you can t imagine at the end they said that all come from my head,i couldn t understand there diagnostique because my pain was there and reel couldn t even sit on chair or even go to toilet and showering just hell for year that cause big dépression.i went there to get well and end it like this. Freind of mine with my desperation bring home Chinese guy that put some niddels in my body.after that i Stuart to feel better day after day. Sincerly i don t konw if this has something to do with this or i i feel the pain is still there but i can live with it because is less then the horrible one. Result lost my job lost my life as woman. I can t do really à lot. Write you because i could you you knew about my case that something was anable for the others. Merci

  12. Sammy Tolomeo Post author

    Three weeks ago I had fusion L4-L5 at University of Miami Hospital. The back pain I had for 3 years is now gone after surgery and I'm having a fast recovery, but now after watching this video I'm concern, if the fusion is going to give me problems in the future. Then now my question is … What is the surgical alternative to fusion ?

  13. Jack Morrison Post author

    I had a fusion at level l4/l5 recently. This was due to spondylolisthesis. I was diagnosed years ago after an accident in the gym in which i fractured in the facet joint. After 3 to 4 years i decided to get the fusion done after exhausting all other options. I had a consultation with a well recommended sugeon as the slippage was only getting worse moving from a grade 1 to a grade 2. I was aware of adjacent segment disease beforehand, however i believed a fusion was the only option to stabalize my spine. I am interested to know whether the methods presented in this video would have been an alternative option as i cannot see how this would aid in stabilizing the spine?

  14. steve whitacre Post author

    Back fusion trashed my back. Biggest mistake getting back fused. Don't do it. Find another way. It will make you worse.


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