I had MRI done 4 months ago while in agonizing pain with total unability to move big toe on my right leg. I has to use walker/weelchair since I was not able to even bring the foot down and laying down was the only position I could be). Pain diminished (2 steroid courses later, PT, posture watching, limited sitting etc etc). I am still in pain (1-4), mostly in the back but sometimes in the leg. I am using vicodine may be 1-2 times a week and lidoderm patches (every other day or so). Some functions of big toe returned, some not, but I think I am still improving but VERY VERY slowly. My biggest problem is pain while sitting. I went to surgent (#3 since #1 and #2 did not wanted to operate on me and I saw them 10 days and 2 months after onset). He performed some tests and sent me for MRI and he thought that based on the tests my herniation is in a good shape. But new MRI showed only "minimal improvements" and the nerve still trapped. Why do I see such a tremendous improvement in symptoms but not on MRI? By they way the first two were neurosergents and the third one is ortopedic. I am going to see this person next Monday to discuss MRI results but wanted to see if anyone else had improvement in symptoms and not on MRI. I am still debating about surgery with myself.