Sorry that it has been awhile since I have posted. So this past fall, I had my revision surgery for flatback syndrome. The surgery was an A/P approach and I am now fused to pelvis. At this point, I am a little over 7 weeks post-op and doing quite well. That being said, I remain cautiously optimistic.

This was a very difficult decision for me to make. I had received multiple opinions from surgeons and even traveled out of town to do so. Although all of these surgeons agreed on the problem, their surgical approaches and solutions varied. I decided to use a surgeon in my area who had a great reputation and was covered by my insurance. He did not extend on my old Harrington Rod or remove it.

The main thing that made my decision easier is that I was able to speak with two of my surgeon's patients who had the revision surgery and had a similar history to me. These patients were both extremely positive about their post-op progress. I encourage anyone considering this surgery to get multiple opinions and see if you can speak to other patients. Back in the 80's when I had my first fusion, the spine center that I went to had a support group made up of former patients and this was very helpful.

I am now walking and climbing stairs. I still have the numbness in my right foot that I had before the surgery, but my understanding is that now there is a chance that this can get better. I have been told by my surgeon that it can take up to one year to get sensation back and there is no guarantee, but it should not get any worse. When I walk outdoors, I use a walking stick, as it helps with balance issues. Yesterday, I swam for the first time post-op and had no issues or pain as a result. I have sort of a generalized weakness which I am not surprised by considering my age and the amount of surgery that I had. I continue to work on getting my strength back.

I have very much appreciated this forum throughout the whole process. It was helpful to hear other people's stories and to know that I was not alone in this process. In that spirit, I will keep you all posted on my progress.

1985 - Spinal fusion, T4-L4 with Harrington Rod

2017 - L4-5, L5-S1 Anterior lumbar interbody fusion with femoral ring allograft
T12 to ilium posterior segmental instrumentation
L4-5, L5-S1 posterior fusion