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Post Op Microdiscectomy

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:28 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Just walked in my door a few hours ago. Had a severe L5 S1 herniation that resulted in sciatica numbness in my toes,calf and buttox. The pain in my leg is gone but now have a little pain in my toes almost like my toes are being pricked by needles,and of course soreness where the incision was made. The doctor told me the pain in my toes should subside and I need to see him in a week. He was a Nero surgeon and hopefully all will be well in a weeks time. It has only been a few hours. Anyone else experience this surgery.



  • Don't be surprised if you have all kinds of sensations as you are recovering. The nerve has been compressed for a period of time. Now that you've had surgery, there is room for the nerve, and it is in the process of responding to the trauma it has just been through.

    Some people have even more pain post surgery than they do prior to the procedure. Others feel great from the beginning. Just hang in there, learn to be patient and follow your doctor's orders precisely. Take it easy even if you suddenly start feeling terrific. Your body needs time to heal, and it takes more time than any of us think it should.
  • I just had Microd on Feb. 9th. When I went in I actually felt pretty good. No leg pain, just a uncomfortable pressure in my back and buttucks. I had severe scaitica about 2 months before with the numb foot and all. I did all the conventional treatments and they did work, but because of pressure the scar tissue was placing on my nerve I had very low reflexs and my foot and leg were really weak and the neurosurgeon explained if I didn't get that pressure off the nerve I would have permanate nerve damage. Thats the only reason I had surgery. For the full two weeks after I cried every day, thinking I had made a really dumb move having the surgery. I had more pain in my calf, then in my ankle, and then I was still feeling the pressure. I was convinced I had reherniated, so I had my two week check up with the surgeon. I tell him all my worries and he assures me everything is fine and moving the nerve during surgery just aggrevates it and it will settle down soon. He also retested my strength in my foot and leg and both were almost normal. I have to tell you, it was like the placebo effect. As soon as I heard I was fine, I felt so much better and the pain I was feeling is almost all gone. I do take insaids(aleve or advil) to help with swelling and that does help me. My Dr. also prescribed steriods to help with the swelling. I just started taking them today. I do have to agree with others about being careful, when you suddenly feel better you just automatically do things you shouldn't. Like bend or lift.I've caught myself already. I hope your surgery is a success. Good luck. P.S. my doc. did say the nerves can take up to a year to heal depending on how long they were pressed. So it could be a few months or just a few weeks you'll have weird pains here and there.

    Back feeling better as well as buttock but numbness in calf and bottom of foot is kind of numb and if touched ever so lightly it feels like I'm pricking myself with needles,weird. There is no pain just discomfort because it feels like I'm walking on something very uncomfortable I'm hoping this foot thing gets better because I can deal with the calf numbness because really dont even know it's there unless I touch it. I know it's only 4 days post-op but I was hoping my foot problem would have improved by now considering the nerve was decompressed.
  • Keep us posted on your progess. I have same diagnosis as you. Hernation at L5S1. Have had severe sciatic pain for last three months. I can't sit down, so I lye down most of time, unless I am at work.

    I am scheduled to microdisectomy next Thursday.
  • Feeling a lot better back is feeling great can now sit and eat dinner without any pain and even drive pain free. Do have some issues though I still have numbness in calf and foot. Can deal with calf because it really doesn't bother me at all but my foot numbness is uncomfortable because it feels like there is something on the ball of my foot. So after walking for a while it tends to get annoying. I'm hoping with time my nerve damage will improve and get my feeling back in those extremities. So at the moment I am happy with my results and hopefully with time things will improve.
  • Slowly but surely.
    By chance, have you measured your calves?
    My right calf shrank quite a bit from the nerve being compressed.
    Took a good 6 months for numbness on the top of the foot to resolve.
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • I had the exact surgery you did. After the surgery my entire left side from my buttocks down was numb. After a few weeks a lot of the feeling, but not all, of it came back. I also had some weakness in my left ankle. I had my surgery Nov. 08 and was very worried about these issues.

    5 months later I only have a small amount of numbness on the outside of my left foot and I have been getting some strength back in my ankle. I don't really know what is the norm for this... However for me, slowly but surely the nerves that were damaged seem to be healing and things are pretty close to "normal."
  • Did you have much sciatica before/after surgery and if so, how long before it finally resolved? I'm 6 weeks post-op and I still have shooting pains down my leg like before surgery. My tingling and numbness has gotten better slowly.

  • I had my first microdicectomy on L5-S1 back in 2003 following 4 months of failed conservative treatment. Reinjured it in Nov 2004 along with L4-L5, drop foot and severe sciatic pain. Heavy steroids, Naprosyn and PT got me back to normal, aside from some minor residual nerve damage on the outer side of my left foot. Now, I did it again. I've been dealing with sciatic pain and numbness of my left foot and calf since Nov. No reflex in my left ankle, can't raise up on toes since Dec. I was hoping steroids, PT, and time would do the trick again, but I'm having another discectomy on L5-S1 a week from Monday. I'm really mad at myself and hope I didn't screw up my left foot and leg permanently by waiting so long. Dr. gave me the same "it could take up to a year for the nerve to come back," but they won't offer any more of a prognosis than that. I'm hoping I'm in good enough shape for my vacation planned in mid-June. Got the cruise/travel insurance just in case.
  • How did you reinjure your disc? I am trying to figure out how to avoid reherniating my disc.
  • Well while I have had some improvements there are also some issues. I still have numbness in my left leg on the outside starting from my knee down to the back of my ankle. The ball of my left foot is a littleless numb but still anoying. I saw my doctor last week and told him about my symtoms and he said to give it more time. This seems to be what most doctors tell everybody? He wouldn't give me another MRI because my symtoms dont call for one yet? So I guess when I can't walk any more it will then be time! Every once in a while I get a sharp pain for a second in my calf but this only happens maybe a few times a day. Oh and another sysmtom I forgot to mention is when begin to use the bathroom I get a little tingle in my leg no problem going but this is a new symptom. Doctor tells me that when you push it causes your spinal fluid to compress which could be bothering the nerve. Anyway at the moment the surgery has helped but is not what I expected.
  • I am 2 1/2 month out from my 2nd microdiscectomy. My previous symptoms have all but disappeared; however, I still have tingling feelings after sitting too long or at the end of the day.

    Yes, the 100% pain relief is not what I have as my surgeon mentioned. By the same token, I am very glad that I had the surgeries. I am improving slowly which makes me hopeful.

    If you are seeing/feeling improvement (while minimal), I would feel positive.

    Good luck!
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