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Still having Pain after Microdisectomy

BrentB66BBrentB66 Posts: 11
Hi everyone.
I had a L4/L5 microdisectomy 6 weeks ago after dealing with sciatica for about 9 months. I'm still not feeling any better as I have trouble walking and standing up. I can't walk more than 50 feet and can't stand up for more than 3 minutes or so. Saw my Spine Surgeon the other day, who is still baffled why I am not better, and he has me starting Physical Therapy. Just curious if anyone else has gone through a long and painful rehab after surgery. I'm starting to think that I will never get better.


  • Welcome to spine health! Sorry that you are not feeling any better after your discectomy. Everyone heals at a different rate. Depending how long your nerve was impinged before surgery can also affect the healing process. It does take time.

    That being said, if you really don`t see any improvement, keep telling your surgeon. After I had my microdiscectomy and laminectomy, I did not feel any better at all, and actually started to feel worse. At my 6 week check, my surgeon said that all went well and he released me. Luckily I had another surgeon who took me seriously and after I stated how I was feeling, I had a new MRI at 2 months post op. My disc was toatally collapsed. I am now scheduled for an ADR in February.

    Many other people though, may not feel well at 6 weeks and then start to slowly feel better with time and physio.

    All the best to you!

    >:D< Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • Indeed if you do not feel any better at 6weeks post ops, call him and ask him at what point will he send you for an MRI (with and without contrast). Typically, they will wait to week 10-12 (3 month mark).

    Microdiscectomies have a higher likelihood to fail within 3 months and unfortunately, e mcro part of the surgery leaves the surgeon with an obstructed view so they can "miss" a piece if it out of view.

    I don't recommend you implying the missed part to the surgeon.

    I told my doctor I was looking forward to starting PT but at my 10 week appt, I told him I would not be happy if we waited on the MRI and later I found out something was wrong.

    He agreed. Mainly b/c my herniation was so bad that he kept telling ke the MD would be gratifying and I told him the results were anything but. I had re-herniated (or a piece was left). I had revision MD a few Months later.
  • I forgot to mention also that since I started having sciatica symptoms and favoring one side, a have some severe misalignment problems. It almost looks like scoliosis. The physical therapists seem baffled by this and don't know what to do. They taped my back and butt up today so that I'd be able to stand up and walk a little straighter. Has anyone else had this scoliosis like problem after severe sciatica or surgery ?
  • does your PT think that you should get another MRI before he continues treating you?

    Seems like you are favoring a side b/c you are hurting. PT is supposed to help body mechanics so you learn how "not" to favor one side BUT if you are hurting, it might be doing more harm than good.

    Do you have another appointment with your doctor? I would recommend calling him and/or getting another appointment. They treat you for 3 months post op so you should be able to get 1 more in at the 10 week mark. At that one, see if you can get him to prescribe an MRI just to be sure. Be honest about your pain and problems with him.
  • Thanks for your advice, DNice.
    I have an appointment with my surgeon on Jan 23, 11 weeks post surgery. I'm currently 8 weeks post surgery and 4 weeks into my phyiscal therapy and I'm still hurting alot. I still can't walk more than 100 feet or stand for more than 2 minutes. The physical therapists say it just takes time. Hope they're right !
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