My surgery seems so small compared to what some of you guys have endured and I feel rather humbled asking you about it, but this site has been so invaluable to me, I could not think of anyone else I'd rather ask.
I'm 43 and underwent a L4/5 microdiscectomy 3 wks ago in the UK. I know we do things a little differently over here, but does this sound right to you?
Immediately after surgery I was admitted to a ward for recovery. I was told I could not sit up for 24hrs but not why. Whilst enduring horrific headaches, I snuck a peak of my notes as they had been left within reach (by mistake). Here I learned of a dural tear. I had been warned of the risk - but in a very off hand manner 15mins before the Op! I waited all afternoon and evening for my surgeon to see me so I could ask him, not just about the tear, but what kind of state my back was in, after all, he'd seen it up close and personal. I never did see my surgeon whilst recovering, just one of his team so he could sign my discharge paperwork 36hrs later. (Hospital care was poor and a whole 'nother story, I now have a life long fear of bedpans!!! - got home as soon as allowed)
3 weeks later I am still waiting to talk to someone about the actual surgery. (I have a follow up appt in March.) I am about to start PT but am experiencing huge pain episodes in what I thought was my good leg. I can walk (short distances ie to the kitchen) but cannot stand or sit upright for more than 4/5 mins before pain in lower calf puts me back on the floor. New pain has also appeared in both legs, where none had been before (pain, not legs that is!!!)
Are dural tears kept quiet in the USA or are you guys made more aware of them? Could the tear I sustained account for the amount of NEW pain I am in now experiencing in what was my good leg? - I had very little pain here pre-op.
Any advice would be wonderful - especially if you've gone through a L4/5 Microdiscectomy yourself. What would you ask the surgeon for peace of mind and assurance that all went well?
I always feel better after reading posts on this site. It's selfishly reassuring to know I am not the only one going through this and there are others out there going "pain-insane" aswell.
Kindest regards and pain free times to you all
Mandy aka stripeysocks