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Immediate relief, but don't overdo it!

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:32 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I had a microdiscectomy of L3L4 after several bouts of sciatica and then severe front leg pain this winter. I had tried all sorts of therapies such as Chiropractic, Pilates, Yoga, stretching, massage, but they only bought me time to wait for a convenient surgery date.
The results were instant! Both of the above were relieved after the surgery and though there was some muscle pain and stiffness it was so much less than the previous pain that two days after surgery I needed no pain meds at all, even to sleep.
My instructions post-op were simple; Walk! Starting the day after surgery I walked around the house frequently and avoided sitting straight up for long - it was very uncomfortable anyway. A recliner worked best for me - chose something that goes back well and has good support for the low back, or add cushions to make it comfortable.
From there I walked a little bit each day and have gradually increased the distance. At frist just walking to the end of the block and back was plenty, but now, 2 weeks post-op I can easily walk 2 miles, and I take several shorted walks as well, My surgeon says to build up to 5 miles gradually. On occasion I will still have some muscle discomfort or random twinges, but minor and nothing lasts long enough to need even Advil.
He said that walking is the best therapy and will help the healing. With the results I have had, I have to agree.
Full range of sporting activities is 2-3 months away, but my herniation was severe and had ruptured.
So walk, take it gradually and listen to your body, if you feel a twinge, back off and don't be too proud to ask for help!


  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
    That's Great! I'm glad to hear how well you've done after surgery. It's great to hear success stories! I hope you continue to do well.

  • Sound like my experience with the same thing. 2 years later I blew out L5 :(
    10x the pain as before. Could not walk, sit or stand. Both legs, feet and butt where numb.
    After surgery MUCH better but not 100%. I MIGHT need a fusion in the future but we will see.

    DONT over do it like you said. Work on your core muscles (stomach) it's VERY important.
  • I just had a lami/discetomy yesterday, was worse then he thought when he went in but I am amazed at how I'm doing. I didn't take any pain meds until I'd been in the room for a couple of hours and then last night for the first time I started feeling the incision but it was still less pain than what I was feeling from the rupture. I walked the hospital floors last night and twice this morning and am just waiting on my discharge papers to go home. Other than some muscle soreness I have no pain, haven't even taken pain meds since 11 last night. If I'd seen more stories like this before I went in I would have been a lot less worried. Good luck to al and thanks for the advice.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,842
    once you have feel that you strength is coming back and you are feeling good and no longer need pain medications..... IS sometimes the toughest times to deal with. Anyone with spinal surgery will have ups and downs during the complete recovery process.
    Never been fooled into thinking that now that I am feeling good I am all set.
    Life after Spinal Surgery is not a once in a time exercise or following restrictions. Its a lifetime commitment to make sure that you continue to do all the right things to avoid any follow on surgery.
    It is so easy to lure yourself into feeling better and think that you can do anything. Those are the times when we tend to hurt our spines again.
    Avoid those pitfalls and enjoy your spine and life the way it should be done. In moderation and always using common sense
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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