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Unsuccessful surgery

gdgrovesggdgroves Posts: 1
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:44 AM in Spinal Stenosis
I thought I would give this forum a try. I had surgery for spinal stenosis. The lamina was remove between three discs. The incision was virtually painless but the spasms and pain in my legs were almost unbearable for a day or so after the surgery.

I did receive some temporary relief, but now the leg pain is nearly as bad as before. The nuerosurgeon advised me there was nothing else he could do for me. So I am tolerating matters with about 15mg of Vicodin and 20mg of Valium per day.

Ironically, the longer I stay in bed, the worse the pain gets. After I take the meds and am up for a while, I am in pretty good shape. However, I cannot sit in a recliner for any lenght of time. I am a bank consultant, after retirement, and cannot stand to sit in an office chair long. I bring a drafting board along and work standing.

I do not have any back pain whatsoever. It is entirely in my legs, not always in the same area.

Does anyone have some advice on this situation? Possible and electrical pain stimulator might be of help.


  • MetalneckMetalneck Island of Misfit toysPosts: 1,364
    First of all welcome to our Forums,

    One possible idea is to ask your current doc about a complete regimen of after care. That might include Physical Therapy, T.E.N.S., water therapy, etc.

    Next possible idea is a referral to a pain Management specialist.

    Another idea to consider would be a consult with an orthopedic surgeon. It is my belief that we have ortho problems causing neuro problems - orthopedic specialist in my experience tend to be more agressive in treatment.

    Lastly - IM any of our mods as they have more back surgery experience than I do, and will let you know if anything of the things I have mentioned are less then appropriate ideas.

    Good luck, be the squeeky wheel with your provider and continue to ask for ideas and experiences from others on the forum. They Will chime in as needed, requested, or inspired.



    A Nurosuregeon provided me a failed 3 level ACDF surgery - an orthopedic surgeon was needed to clean up the resulting mess.
    Spine-health Moderator
    Welcome to Spine-Health  Please read the linked guidelines!!

  • Have you had any post op imaging studies done that show whether or not the surgery successfully dealt with the stenosis? Have you asked for a second opinion from another doc? Don't limit yourself to finding an ortho or a neuro or a fellowship trained yadda yadda yadda. If you want to get another opinion have someone refer you to a reputable spine doc and don't sweat the title.

    When your doc said "there's nothing else he could do", did he explain why and what his reasoning is?

    Before you go chasing a stimulator for pain control, it might be more prudent to chase down a definitive diagnosis. If there's still a mechanical issue that is behind your pain, a stimulator won't do you much good and will serve to complicate things beyond belief.

    How long ago was your surgery done? It does take the body quite a while to heal completely after any spine surgery and if you had a couple levels done, it could take a while to really feel better.

    Welcome to Spine Health.

  • X( HI,

    I also after 2 operations have the leg isssue and back pain. I had a job that required sitting for long periods of time. I finally had to let my mdeical leave run out and give up my job. I cannot sit for any long period of time or stand,laying down helps at first and then the pain gets worse. I wish I had an answer for it, I like yourself am on pain meds every four hours, ths pain seems relentless.I dont know what to do next. Keep good thoughts and never give in too much the pain will rob you of the joy for life if you let it.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,843

    For a Spine-Health Site introduction, Click on :

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    lease feel free to contact me at rdilauro@gmail.com or send me a message
    Failed or unsuccessful surgeries is something that can be very subjective. I know of scores of situations in which the patient went for the surgery, their doctors told them from the beginning, that it 'should' correct the problem, but for many people that is difficult to tell.

    Then how about those who have multiple spinal surgeries. I am at number 7, but I don't consider any of the previous ones a failure, even though some were done on the same disc levels.

    There is so much involved after surgery, that is really in the hands of the patient. Many doctors will say they have the easier job, but its the patients who have to work and work during their recovery period and do all the things required to minimize the discomfort and manage their conditions.
    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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