Percutaneous Disc Removal and EMG/NCS Study

It feels good to share some of my worries.  The procedures are fascinating, as if happening to someone else!   

Here are the procedures I'll soon be having:
~A Percutaneous Disc Removal (minimally invasive technique).  Hopefully he won't have to remove too much.  From an MRI the doctor found a disc piece about the size of a marble pressing against a nerve.

~An  EMG/NCS nerve conduction test on my thighs.
~Possible MRI on my thighs.

The New York Hospital for Special Surgery is working on setting up a way to do these procedures on the same day.  It takes about 6 hours for me to drive to New York City so this would be a tremendous help.

Even though the procedures will be at the New York Hospital for Special Surgery (they handle sports injuries and use up to date techniques); I'm still a little nervous. 

A few years ago I had back pain and tried epidural injections.  It only helped a little but when I began taking Cymbalta the pain was completely gone.   

This time besides the excruciating pain I have a weakness in my legs. 
After an epidural injection there was a tremendous relief. I no longer need Oxycontin to control the pain. 

Because of the weakness in my legs I'm using a walker to prevent hurting myself in a fall.  
My legs only give out on me occasionally but it's enough to be a risk. I don't want to break a bone, especially a hip.  The fall could also cause more injury to my back.

I'm not supposed to drive, which is a terrible limit on my freedom. I live out in the country, no buses or local trains.  I can hire a cab but that's expensive. Otherwise I have to ask my wife to take me places. 

I hope this per-cutaneous disc removal will bring back the strength in my legs and prevent the pain from returning. 

Here are two videos that explain the details.  
Don't watch them if you're squeamish.

All this is only an inconvenience when compared with someone who has a serious problem like cancer or a stroke. I just thank God it's nothing really bad.



  1. Interesting videos, John. Hopefully all your tests and procedures go well. Both my good friend and my brother-in-law have had some form of back surgery recently... and in each case, they were very pleased with the outcome.

    1. I'm encouraged to hear this Rian. Some people recommend not to have back surgery. That it will make things worse. But can't stay the way that I am now without giving it a try.
      Thank you. I hope I won't have to wait too long to fit into the doctor's schedule. It will good not to worry..

  2. I wishing you all the very best John and I hope that everything settles down nicely afterwards too. It's not nice being in pain as it takes a great deal of energy out of you and can make you feel very depressed on the best of days. I'll have to use my other browser to take a look at the videos as I find things like this very interesting.

    1. Thank you for your kind wishes.
      I hope your health is improving and you're not in pain.
      Take care!

  3. Well, this sounds like you are in very good hands to me! Hey! Guess what, when I was watching the Mets/Braves game this weekend, you know how they show different ads on the wall behind the batter? Well, it showed the New York Hospital for Special Surgery and I said, HEY, that's where JOHN is! (And my husband thought I had lost my mind until I explained you were one of my blogging friends!) Take care!

  4. That's really something isn't it! Synchronicity in action!
    This reminds me of Carl Jung's belief that these coincidences are actually somehow related. The simultaneous occurrence of events that appear significantly related but have no discernible causal connection. "Synchronicity is an ever present reality for those who have eyes to see." Carl Jung
    I have to go tell my wife. She'll get a kick out of it.
    ~ John M


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