...we have the technology!
Had my consult with the neurosurgeon yesterday. He did a bit of poking and pushing on his own, and confirmed what I was pretty sure of - surgery is indicated. Both L1 - L2 and L4 - L5 are pretty well munged, and L2 -L3 is also degraded. (My numbering may be off a bit - it's the whole lumbar part of the spine.) I could get away with letting the L2 -L3 go, but on the other hand, we both agreed that going back in later was something neither of us wanted. So the entire lumbar section of my spine will be "decompressed". Basically, that means re-opening the foramen (the hole) that the nerves pass thru, to alleviate the pressure, and thus the pain and weakness. (I did a quick look on spine-health.com. which goes into some detail and apparently has videos. I only take umbrage at the comment "A condition that primarily afflicts elderly patients, spinal stenosis is caused by degenerative changes that result in enlargement of the facet joints." Elderly my tuchus!)
He expects the procedure to last about 2 1/2 hours. He's not sure if there's any interesting disk degeneration, but will tend to that if need be. He doesn't want to do a fusion at this point. Based on my recovery, I'll be in the hospital one to five days. My personal goal is one day only.I go in on the 16th of this month.
Prayer in any denomination is appreciated.