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L5-S1 MicroD: Still Having Inflammation Problems

mrredmmrred Posts: 12
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am seven weeks to the day post op from a L5-S1 microd. At week four my post op leg pain subsided considerably and and week five it subsided some more (I even posted my improvement here!). Now, at week 7, I have what I think are inflammation problems. I started PT this week and my therapist thinks not only is there inflammation around the L5-S1 disc but there is also inflammation around the L3 disc (which is my only healthy disc!) because I have a burning sensation in my lower thigh and around my knee cap.

My question is: is it normal to have problems with inflammation this late after surgery? The burning and tightness in my leg gets worse as the day goes on and by the evening it is pretty unbearable.

I'm trying my hardest to be patient to let my body heal itself but this is really testing me!


  • I had a microD at L3/L4 and you are doing much better than I ever did at 7 weeks post op. Give yourself some time to heal. 7 weeks is not a very long time post op. Good luck.
  • Of course every case is different, but I will tell you what happened to me after my L5-S1 md.

    The pain was pretty bad. Basically I could only lay in bed. Did that for 3 weeks and had enough of it.
    Called my docs and asked to get seen again.

    A week later, they injected an ESI into the area they had worked in. No change until day 3. The pain started going away. By day 7 it was all gone.

    They said I had a ton of inflammation, swelling, and edema in there.

    My L4-L5 was a different story. After that one, I was up and around with no probs within about 10 days.
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • Thanks to both of you. I see my doc again in six weeks but I might try to get in sooner. It's a challenge to extend and bend my knee. In the meantime, what's the best way for me to deal with the inflammation--ice packs, heat, staying in bed, etc?
  • I find that ice works best for me, but everyone has their own favorite between heat and ice.

    Years ago, managing back pain was done by tons of bedrest, until it was determined that it was counter productive in healing the back. Moderation then became the key to managing flare ups of pain. Most spine patients do not want to get out of bed after surgery, but that is one of the three top things required now post op ... to get up and walk. It doesn't have to be a lot, but inactivity and lying in bed all day is harder on the back.

    If you are experiencing that much discomfort, then if there's the option to get in and see your doc sooner, that might be a smart thing to do.

    Hope you feel better soon.

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