Spinal fusion questions

Has anyone out there had more then one spinal fusion? My husband is about to have a second fusion and I just want to know what to expect? Is it going to be more painful, less or about the same? Has anyone had a second fusion work when the first one failed? Any imput would help and any advice to help me help my husband would be appreciated.
Thank you

Yes,I actually have a 5-level spinal fusion (L1-S1) & my husband has a 2-level fusion(L4-S1). To be honest with you, you never know what to expect. Every surgery is different,every surgeon is different and of course the anatomy of each patient is not exactly the same. As you can probably figure out from my name, I am a nurse so I a patient as well as a clinician. How long has it been since your husbands 1st fusion?,what level was fused?,what are they attempting to fuse this time?, is he able to work or has he been disabled since this happened? To be perfectly honest, he may recover from this surgery & be the person he once was, without pain ect.. Or, he may recover from this surgery and there may not be a big change in his pain level, ect. but his back may be completely fused and stable. This is the case with my husband, he was doing great afyer 1st surgery & unfortunatelly slipped on ice in his employers parking lot and broke thr hardware from the original surgery and herniated the next level up (L4-5). Upon falling he also hit his head & wound up in the hospital on a ventilator for 3 days. After waiting almost 7 months for Work Comp to get their act together(which they still have not) we used our health insurance to get the 2nd surgery done. After that surgery, he wound up with a large hematoma and an infection in his back so he had to go in 8 days later for a third surgery. Unfornately, it has now been almost 1 1/2 years since that 2nd surgery and he is far from being pain free. He is back to work, but the pain he endures is heartbreaking for me to see. The fusion is completely solid & hardware is in place but yet everyday is painful. There is no rhyme or reason for it, it just is. The 2nd surgoen said that b/c work comp waited so long , so much scar tissue had formed around the broken hardware ect., that it was impossible to completely clean the area. He will probably be like this the rest of his life and he is only 44. We are going to look into a pain pump from him but he wants tohold off on that right now. Everyday is a struggle but you HAVE TO keep going. There is NO giving up.The story of my back issues is so long that I cannnot even get into that w/ u right now. Both of us have taken to the attitude, "it could be so much worse"! It doesnt help every minute of every day but it will get you out of the funk. I know it sounds corny but it helps.. Yes, ur situation is not a good one but you have to remember there are so many people out there who are worse off than us. After all of my major spine surgeries (nine total)it was hell. I was in a wheelchair and wearing a diaper for incontinence and I was 36 y.o. But as I recovered, I would remind myself that there children out there who will never walk, there are children out there who probably just got diagnosed w/ cancer that day and they and their families are going through much worse than me. There were spouses out there who just received calls that their husband/wife were just in an accident or had a heartattack and were gone. That's what gets me through the day. Could our lives be better and are we jealous of our friends & family that dont have to deal with this and frankly who don't understand what we go through. YES. But our lives cannot be defined through them. Either they are going to help us out & be there for us or they aren't. It is a shame b/c who would think that people w/ back problems go through so much emotional torture, but what it comes down to is..."you dont know until you have walked in my shoes." There is one thing that I can tell you is..there is no giving up and walking away. That is not an option. You need to try to look at things from a different perspective..instead of saying you are not doing a good job of holding it together, you need to remind yourself that you are a human being and that you ARE doing the BEST you can do at holding it together.. Give yourself some credit for what you are doing. People who are not in our situation will never understand what it is like. The thing that pisses me off the most is that the doctors dont even understand.. If they have had fusions done to their backs do you think they would be standing up for 10 hours a day doing surgery. HA. What you should think about is the fact that this surgery may well be the one that fixes your husband for good. Wouldn't that be a blessing? That is what you need to concentrate on, not the negative. All back surgeries are 50/50 but you may be in the 50% that has a positive turnout.. Get yours & your husband' s mindset to acccept that as your future. You might think that I am a kook & that I dont understand either but believe me... we have been through the whole thing,trying to find a doctor who would do the surgery, no income for years on end, no support system from our family, ect so we proably are in the same basket. There are days when we dont want to pull our head out from under the covers, but we do. we refuse to let this disability define us. This attitude didnt come over night either. Since we have been dealing with back surgeries & fusions since 1994(my first one), it has been learned over time. These last 3-5 years have been the most intense for us as far as how many surgeries we have had, missed time from life and work, loss of income ect. and like I said every day is NOT a bowl of cherries. but the point I am making is, you have to try to live each day to the best of your abilities and if you are overwhelmed on a particular day you have to know that it is ok to feel like that. It is acceptable to not be 100% everyday for every person in your life. You do the best that you can. You have to treat yourself to some "me time" everyday even if it is 10 minutes of peace and quiet. Go outside & just breathe the air & dont think about anything else,read a book for 10 minutes, take a bath. Something for you to keep your mind healthy. You will be of no help to you husband, kids or yourself if you cant function. If you get a minute , get back to me at [email protected] and let me know the answers to the questions that I asked. Also, what part of the country do you reside? Believ it or not we traveled from NJ to FLorida to have our last surgeries and w/out that surgeon we would have been finished. Stay as positive as you can and do not be hard on yourself. I will keep you and your family in my prayers that this all turns out well!!!