Thursday, September 16, 2010

Appointment with Dr. Zigler from Texas Back Institute!

Hello everybody! I met with Dr. Zigler yesterday. Just to let you know how fast we got working on something, I had an Epidural Steroid Injection today!

But first things first, the Texas Back Institute is absolutely beautiful. Very modern, clean, professional, and FAST. I was attended rather quickly, my insurance was taken care of, and I had a couple of x-rays all in a matter of minutes. After that Dr. Zigler arrived with a huge smile in his face... he's a VERY NICE GUY. Very understanding of your situation and he likes to know about you as well. So anyways, we started talking and I went ahead and told him that what I've been trying to do to cure myself, and he completely understood where I'm coming from. He said he doesn't want to do surgery just yet because he's still testing new discs. But he basically told me that my disc is dead and it'll probably never recover. He said 'we have to take it out and put in a new one' (that's how the ADR conversation started). I got a lot of info out of him regarding ADR's:

-He Said The Freedom Lumbar Disc is NO GOOD. He says that he's had almost every patient come back with problems. Without even asking him, he also told me that it's way too stiff.. there is no axial compression at all!

-He said ProDisc has given him excellent results... no problems at all.

-I told him that I want a disc with Axial Compression and so I mentioned the M6. He said he hasn't worked on it yet, and that just because it was approved in Europe doesn't mean it's been tested. It only means it's manufactured to high standards. But regardless he said he has a lot of doctor friends in Europe working with it and that he is going to do his homework and see if he recommends the disc or not.. at the same time he would recommend a surgeon.

-He said he's worked on 6 different discs and only the prodisc has proven effective so far. He has not worked with the M6 yet.

But before anything, he said that we can probably wait a little while.. to see more results from clinical trials. So he told me to get Epidural Steroid Injections today, which I did and was absolutely painless.. they put me to sleep and now I only have generalized pain which is normal and should fade in 2 days. I'm meeting him next week to see results on the ESI and with this take the appropriate course of action (go to surgery or not). So basically, if ESI's can calm down my symptoms, then I can wait patiently for the next generation of discs after prodisc. If not, then I'm getting a prodisc or i'm going to europe (depending on what he hears from his peers on the m6). I told him i'd rather get the m6 because i'm so young and i don't want adjacent discs failing.. he agreed.

I also asked him about permanent nerve damage if I waited too long. He said the bulge is too small to be causing any damage, so I shouldn't worry about that.

Anyways, great doctor and I hope to get a clear picture of my next step by next week!

Cheers everybody!


  1. Why wouldn't you start with a Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery? Just get rid of the bulge and your sciatica will hopefully go away as wall as back pain. If anything goes wrong then you can always go to the next phase and replace the disk.

    Good Luck,

  2. I would do everything in you can conservatively first. I would not remove the disc. The disc will return to normal or close to normal naturally. Look into the McKenzie Technique and retrain you back with correct posture and lifting technigues. The discs take time to heal give it time.

  3. Thank you for your comments!

    I have tried many conservative treatments already:
    -Spinal Decompression DRX9000
    -Plain old lying in bed for 3 months
    -Heating pads
    -Cold pads

    The disc isn't improving and it'll get worse with age. I want my quality of life back, I don't want to be waiting for something that most doctors have told me will not heal.

    If I do schedule surgery (big IF), I will try another round of spinal decompression before that.

    Thank you for your concerns everybody!