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Pregnancy post L5 S1 discectomy

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:31 AM in Lower Back Pain

I'm new to this and never been on a forum before - so I don't know if I'm doing this right! I am 29 and had a full discectomy on my L5S1 exactly 2 yrs ago, and had the disc above that partly removed. I have 2 Wallis (Wallace?) ligaments in my back now. I recovered well, haven't had many problems since, and it was (hopefully!) a one off as it happened after an accident having never had back problems before. I'm wondering how this will affect me having a baby - will it reherniate what's left of 1 disc? Could it displace the Wallis Ligaments? Will it cause me a lot of pain? Does it affect childbirth? Does anybody know/have experience of this - if you could let me know I'd really appreciate it.



  • There have been a couple other younger women inquiring about the same thing recently. If you use the search feature, you should be able to bring up the posts on your topic.

    None of us are medical doctors so you're only getting advise from personal experience or anecdotally...so you'll want to ask your ob/gyn about this. But many women have babies after having had a variety of spinal surgeries.

    From what I have been able to find, there is no long-term data on the use of Wallace ligaments, so I couldn't say if these will make your situation more or less difficult. Sorry. From what I read, it doesn't seem that it would be any different than other types of hardware that are used in the spine. Perhaps you'll need to find a specific obstetrician that can provide guidance to you.

    If possible, try to keep your weight "normal" prior to getting pregnant, and then be diligent in your weight gain during pregnancy. Keep it on the low side, if possible. Be very aware of good body mechanics, etc. Hopefully you will be fine.

    Perhaps there are other posters on the board who have been through something similar and can weigh in here!!
  • Welcome to Spine-Health! I've wondered a lot about this. I've talked to several spineys, some who've had surgery and some that haven't. I've also talked to people on varying degrees of narcotic pain medicine. All have been able to successfully carry children. All required the care of an ortho specialist, possibly a specialized pain management doctor, and an extremely knowledgeable OB/GYN. Some even said they had less pain during pregnancy except when their bellies got heavy. Those that had morning sickness said that they had to be careful how they threw up since it puts so much pressure on your back. Since everyone's situation is unique, it's nearly impossible to know if having a baby will re-injure your back. I've heard from women that it was recommended that they have C-Sections to avoid the pressure of birth on their backs. All in all, everything I've heard has been very promising. But yes, there is a risk of hurting your back, but taking the proper precautions, like using one of those belly support braces and getting plenty of bed rest when you gain weight, eating as healthy as possible, and following all of your doctors instructions, can help to make pregnancy with a spinal problem as flawless as possible. Good luck!

    Much love and understanding,
  • No doubt about it, exercise is a big plus for both you and your baby (if complications don't limit your ability to exercise throughout your pregnancy). It can help you:

    * feel better. At a time when you wonder if this strange body can possibly be yours, exercise can increase your sense of control and boost your energy level. Not only does it make you feel better by releasing endorphins (naturally occurring chemicals in your brain), appropriate exercise can:
    o relieve backaches and improve your posture by strengthening and toning muscles in your back, butt, and thighs
    o reduce constipation by accelerating movement in your intestine
    o prevent wear and tear on your joints (which become loosened during pregnancy due to normal hormonal changes) by activating the lubricating fluid in your joints
    o help you sleep better by relieving the stress and anxiety that might make you restless at night
    * look better. Exercise increases the blood flow to your skin, giving you a healthy glow.
    * prepare you and your body for birth. Strong muscles and a fit heart can greatly ease labor and delivery. Gaining control over your breathing can help you manage pain. And in the event of a lengthy labor, increased endurance can be a real help.
    * regain your pre-pregnancy body more quickly. You'll gain less fat weight during your pregnancy if you continue to exercise (assuming you exercised before becoming pregnant). But don't expect or try to lose weight by exercising while you're pregnant. For most women, the goal is to maintain their fitness level throughout pregnancy.

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