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Should I get surgery?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
I've had a recurrent disc herniation for over 15 years in L5-S1 that causes pain mostly in my left leg (not in the back area at all). I had a first discectomy 3 years ago with great success. I recently had a 2nd discectomy 3 months ago that started off well but caused severe pain for 3 months. The doctors couldn't figure out the problem, but then finally 2 weeks ago identified a reherniation that had gotten progressively worse. The doctor, who happens to be conservative and tried other treatments with me over the last 3 months including epidurals, NAIDs, PT, exercise, etc., recommended finally that I have another surgery.

However, coincidentally I have felt moderately better in the past 2 weeks. I had already scheduled a surgery for 1 month from now, but wondering if I should postpone due to feeling moderately better. If it were up to me today I would get the surgery because the pain is still there enough that I can't work full-time, but I'm wondering if the progress that happened rather quickly over the last 2 weeks is a sign of more progress to come?

The reason I ask the question is - I understand from most literature that if the pain doesn't subside after 6 weeks that surgery is a good option, but my question is - should my timeline for that 6 weeks start 3 months ago when the surgery happened or 2 weeks ago?

I appreciate any advice others can give.


  • Hi , I would say since your surgery is a month away you still have time to progress even more and then if you decide your doing better , you can always cancel the surgery. Just because you have a appointment doesn't mean you can't cancel. I would ask your surgeon whether the date is from the first surgery or the second herniation. I have no idea. Good Luck.
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