T Nation

Back Surgery #2


Well folks, I did it again…this time it’s bad. My L5 keeps getting worse to the point I can hardly stand and walk straight. I’m in severe pain, and I’m going in for another round of MRI’s before surgery.

If you have disc problems…DON’T push it.

This time around I’m NOT squatting again. I’ve thrown them in once in a while, but this last time is sending me to the hospital.

Attached was the last MRI 12 years post surgery after I re-injured it playing Alumni Football.

How’s that for “Dangerously Hardcore”?

I’m not seeking sympathy, but I’d like to let the younger guys know that this is not anything to play around with.

When the back and spine go… you’re pretty much done.

I’ll let you all know how it turns out…Dr will determine the method… if it’s microdicectomy again or a complete fusion needed.

Somehow the last part of my post was erased. The Picture is from 2006 when I re-ruptured the disc, but got better over a few weeks rest.

Fuck dude. That looks way painful. Maybe if you had more protein and drank more milk…
I am just kidding, yes, the younglings should know the darkside. Espcially, when they try to keep up with ficticious numbers posted on a website. That’s road map to injury. Some dudes are really friggin’ strong, some are just liars.

That sucks.

Squats and Milk?

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:

Squats and Milk?[/quote]

…is not the answer to all things, but if it makes you happy yes, I’ve been doing both…

Maybe Extensions and Soy?

I herniated my disc (L5) in 1998, recovered and went back to squatting, but stopped because I kept aggravating my back. I do front squat sometimes and my back actually feels better. I think its because of the increase core strength. But for the most part I’ve switch to single leg exercises. And I stay far away from the leg press because that killed my back.

Sorry to hear about that. Sometime in the future check out Thib’s “Lumberjack Squat.” I’m a believer.

Hey Rockscar, did you get a microdiscectomy last time? I had a microdiscectomy a couple of years ago but they pretty much removed all the fluid from within the disc to prevent a secondary prolapse.

Is this the third time this disc has ruptured? Also how are your other lumber discs holding up?
Sorry about all the Qs, I wish you all the best.

That sucks dude.

Any idea what the recover time is going to be?

I’ve never hurt my back, but I have a tendency to get back muscle strains if I overdo certain exercises. As a consequence of this I don’t do full dead lifts (I’ll do rack pulls instead). I also don’t squat heavy. In fact the last couple of years I’ve incorporated doing low weight high rep squats with some success.

Currently I’m squatting 75lbs for as many reps as I can get in about a five minute span. I’ll vary timing and tempo but I’ll manage ~150 reps. For me this has minimized the strain and load on my back while maximizing my back and leg work out. When I’m done the sweat will be dripping off my elbows and my shirt and shorts will be soaked.

That might be more of an aerobic effect, but my legs are always tired (can barely walk for a time) and I can feel it in my back. Every time I try to squat heavy for fewer reps I end up straining a muscle and then I won’t be able to work out for a week or more, so I’ve learned to listen to my body even if what it’s telling me isn’t what I want to hear.

It’s the same with dead lifting for me too. Back in college I weighed 155lbs and I dead lifted 405lbs in some kind of power lifting meet (I was taking a weight lifting class and the coach had me enter the meet). My bench and squat weren’t anything to speak of but everyone was impressed with the dead lift.

Needless to say those days for me are long gone. I’ll pull 225lbs from just below knee high in the rack, but I do that sparingly these days. It’s stories like Rock’s that reinforce to me the need to do what is best for me and not worry about what other people are doing in the gym.

Dangerously hardcore? Try dangerously dumb. How many times have I suggested you get that damn thing fixed, rock? How many times have I said that after my second surgery, on that exact same spot, that I have been bulletproof? Do I do deads? Do I squat? Yes.

I’m really glad you’re finally bucking up and fixing the problem. Don’t think for a second that you can’t lift again. You’ll be squatting and deading in months. You’ll be pain free. And let me tell you how exquisitely beautiful this is! I cried, it was so sublime.

If you have any questions regarding post-surgery, re-hab or pre-hab, I will be most willing to share my experiences.

Go under the knife, and good luck. Damn this is good news!

[quote]gotaknife wrote:
Hey Rockscar, did you get a microdiscectomy last time? I had a microdiscectomy a couple of years ago but they pretty much removed all the fluid from within the disc to prevent a secondary prolapse.

Is this the third time this disc has ruptured? Also how are your other lumber discs holding up?
Sorry about all the Qs, I wish you all the best.[/quote]

My first procedure was one of the cutting edge procedures names a Himilaminectomy in 1993. Minimally invasive. Microdicectomy is newer. Fluid was not removed. This is the second rupture, but it gets worse with each event that stresses it. The other discs are fine, and you can see that in the MRI picture.

I’m not looking forward to it again, and I’m going to try and heal again before going under, but the surgeon is ready to go in. If I can’t stand up and walk straight in a week or two, it will be time.

Real sorry to hear that. Here’s hoping for the best of all possible outcomes.

Best of luck to you Rock; keep us informed.

Wishing you a speedy recovery and a quick return to squats and deads!

[quote]Rockscar wrote:
gotaknife wrote:
Hey Rockscar, did you get a microdiscectomy last time? I had a microdiscectomy a couple of years ago but they pretty much removed all the fluid from within the disc to prevent a secondary prolapse.

Is this the third time this disc has ruptured? Also how are your other lumber discs holding up?
Sorry about all the Qs, I wish you all the best.

My first procedure was one of the cutting edge procedures names a Himilaminectomy in 1993. Minimally invasive. Microdicectomy is newer. Fluid was not removed. This is the second rupture, but it gets worse with each event that stresses it. The other discs are fine, and you can see that in the MRI picture.

I’m not looking forward to it again, and I’m going to try and heal again before going under, but the surgeon is ready to go in. If I can’t stand up and walk straight in a week or two, it will be time.

[/quote]

Thanks for the reply and the best of luck.

[quote]kroby wrote:
Dangerously hardcore? Try dangerously dumb. How many times have I suggested you get that damn thing fixed, rock? How many times have I said that after my second surgery, on that exact same spot, that I have been bulletproof? Do I do deads? Do I squat? Yes.

I’m really glad you’re finally bucking up and fixing the problem. Don’t think for a second that you can’t lift again. You’ll be squatting and deading in months. You’ll be pain free. And let me tell you how exquisitely beautiful this is! I cried, it was so sublime.

If you have any questions regarding post-surgery, re-hab or pre-hab, I will be most willing to share my experiences.

Go under the knife, and good luck. Damn this is good news!
[/quote]

I like these words. I’ve been injured a bunch of times (shoulder and knee). Last year I really fucked my shoulder and was convinced I would never do heavy lifting again. We were discussing surgery, but thankfully it never came to that.

Anyways, I’m back up to semi respectable weights again and the future looks good. I just don’t push it like I used to.

Good luck Rockscar, you’ll be back.

Good luck man, and keep us posted. I don’t want to be sitting around here six months from now asking, what the fuck happened to that Rockscar guy?

Ruptured discs suck huge. Have you tried steroid injections? I have a bad rupture at L4-5 and after two injections I managed to avoid surgery. In an odd way, part of me wanted surgery. I’ve read good things about the microdiscectomy procedure and if they remove enough of the “jelly,” you’ll get some nice scar tissue which will, hopefully, prevent future ruptures.

I’m slowly getting back into squatting, and last night I did some Romanian DLs. It’s a catch-22 really, because doing these lifts does cause some discomfort, but I know I need to keep the back strong. Fortunately, I can tolerate the discomfort, and all my neuro functions check out.

Good luck with whatever decision you make. And consider this - we can actually look forward to turning 60, because at that age, the discs dry up and there’s less chance of rupture.

[quote]MikeTheBear wrote:
Ruptured discs suck huge. Have you tried steroid injections? I have a bad rupture at L4-5 and after two injections I managed to avoid surgery. In an odd way, part of me wanted surgery. I’ve read good things about the microdiscectomy procedure and if they remove enough of the “jelly,” you’ll get some nice scar tissue which will, hopefully, prevent future ruptures.

I’m slowly getting back into squatting, and last night I did some Romanian DLs. It’s a catch-22 really, because doing these lifts does cause some discomfort, but I know I need to keep the back strong. Fortunately, I can tolerate the discomfort, and all my neuro functions check out.

Good luck with whatever decision you make. And consider this - we can actually look forward to turning 60, because at that age, the discs dry up and there’s less chance of rupture.[/quote]

Surgery is the absolutely last thing you would want to try. I heard a surgeon speak on this earlier this year, and he almost sounded against it. It’s the highest risk thing you can do to fix your back. They have to move your freaking arteries out of the way, then they fuck around just millimeters from your spinal cord.

I would have to be seriously fucked to get surgery.