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Feedback on XLIF/ALIF procedures

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I am new to the group but have been reading the messages and

wonderful information available through this group. What a wonderful

place to learn so much. Thank you!

My story is similar to all of yours:

I will soon be scheduling scoliosis revision surgery with Dr Kumar

(Denver, CO) during the first half of 2009. Thanks to K. for

her help in finding Kumar. I originally had scoliosis sugery when I

was in 8th grade (1979) with Dr Lowe (Denver, CO). I have one

Harrington rod and am currently fused from T10-L3. I had a body cast

for about 9 months. I was doing great until 1991 when I was pregnant

with my first and started having some lower back issues and numbness

in one of my legs. I dealt with that for a long time and gradually

had more issues that I worked through with chiropracters, PT, pain

drs, local ortho docs in Colo Spgs, etc. I always brought up my

scoliosis and wondered if my issues were related to that, but

everyone always told me that they weren't. After nothing was working

and I just knew in my mind that there had to be more to this, I

started researching on my own and finally made appts. to see several

specialists in the Denver area. That's when I found this group.

At 42 yrs old, I found that I have flatback and have had this for a

couple of years at least. I always wondered why I bent forward so

much. I tried to fix my posture and did my best by bending my

knees/hips, but couldn't do enough. It's just great to have answers

so that I know it's not all in my head. When I have surgery, Dr Kumar

will remove my old hardware, do an osteotomy, do a laminectomy at

L2/L3 and fuse me, with new hardware, from T4 to L5.

Here's where I really need your feedback. Dr Kumar will be doing a

XLIF or ALIF at L4/L5. He gave me the option of having him do this

through my side (XLIF) or having a vascular surgeon do this through

another incision in my abdomen area (ALIF). There's also a TLIF

method (from the back) that can be used. The first surgeon suggested

this, but Kumar did not feel that this would be the route to take.

Also, I have the option of doing this the same day or a couple of

weeks later. Since I live in Monument, CO and the surgery will be in

Denver, CO, I think that I'd prefer to have this done on the same day

as the other surgery. I also work in a very small office where I'm

the only admin. person with many soccer coaches, so I will be anxious

to go back to work where I know they really need me.

A little more about me. I have a husband that works in Denver and two

very active high schoolers - a freshman and a junior. At least the

junior can drive and the freshman started driver's training over

Christmas break. I am used to being on the go, so being stuck in the

house will make me crazy. I know, I need to be patient with the long

healing process. I'm hoping that having the surgery at a younger age

will help with the healing. I currently try to do low impact aerobics

and strength training classes 2-3 times a week, even though I suffer

afterwards. I'm hoping that this will also help in the long run.

Thank you to so many of you that provide feedback & encouragement and

share your stories. You truly are a blessing for those of us that are

new to this.


Monument, CO

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