View Full Version : Where are you fused to?

07-11-2012, 12:03 AM
I'm probably gonna be fused from t4-t12/l1/l2 but most likely t4-l1

How flexible would I be? I notice I do most of my bending at the top to my lumbar(around l1)

Will I be able to-
move my hips(like a belly dancer)
Swim the butterfly
Swim the breast stroke

I know this sound insane but is there ANY way that I can be fused to t12 without being sideways or slanted (like this / )

Where were u fused from and how flexible are you?

07-11-2012, 06:24 AM
I know this sound insane but is there ANY way that I can be fused to t12 without being sideways or slanted (like this / )


Only a surgeon knows what the lowest instrumented vertebra should be for you. They determine this using various means including bending radiographs and other knowledge about what happens if they go too low or stay too high on particular classes of curves with particular modifiers. I try to read these papers but they are very dense. I do know they can avoid known problems like high left shoulder and adding on of the curve by picking the right top and bottom vertebra.

The goal is to fuse as few vertebra as possible in order to achieve a stable curve for life. Going to the wrong vertebra can necessitate a second operation so they try to systematize the knowledge in hand to avoid that. Our surgeon told my daughter he intends one-stop shopping for surgery for her back. He says he does not anticipate she will need more surgery because her fusion ended at L1. In fact both my daughters have stable spines and they have been fused over four years ago in one case and almost three years ago in the other. They are balanced which, as far as I understand this, is what will get them through the rest of their life. Of course they will probably have similar pain to most adults eventually. For example, I don't have scoliosis but have had two herniated discs, the first when I was only about 30 years old. The statistic I saw was that about 85% of normal adults will be driven to a doctor for back pain as some point in their life. They won't have any pain in the fused area but maybe in the lumbar like normal people.

Your surgeon will select the correct vertebra and not fuse any more than he has to in order to help you stay balanced and much straighter. You may even be corrected to where you don't have scoliosis any more (curve < 10* ) like my one daughter. She basically has a straight spine again.

Good luck.


07-11-2012, 10:48 AM
I am fused T2-L4
To be honest it wasn't discussed before surgery what my fusion would be, I'm guessing he would have said he wouldn't have known until he was in there. I didn't even know whether he would be doing anterior as well as posterior-thankfully he didn't.
My thoracic curve was 72 degrees with a 30 degree lumber curve which I was told was compensatory. I used to get immense pain there on waking which disappeared straight after surgery.

I'm 20mths post op now and my flexibility has improved a lot although there are days when I wish I could bend normally. I know people say you don't use your thoracic part to bend but I do feel stiff there, it's especially the leaning over. Although this cold be because I'm in a lot of pain there still.