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Returning Pain Long After Surgery

jh236jjh236 Posts: 27
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:02 AM in Lower Back Pain
Hello All,

Hope everyone on the boards is well or getting better; it's been a while since I've posted.

Approx 15 months ago, I had L3-L4,L4-L5 fusion surgery, PLIF, primarily for pain/numbness issues on the left side. After recovery, it's been great for a long time.

The past few weeks, similar symptoms have been coming up on the right side, not as debilitating as last time but concerning, particularly today when I've been feeling numbness in bottom of my right foot.

I have been doing a lot of yard work the past couple weeks but I just wanted to post this to all on the board to see if anyone has had similar experiences with the issues moving to the other side after surgery. I would have expected the fusion to "secure" both sides.

Thanks All.


  • You know the area that you had repaired gets the biggest beating in the lumbar. Yard work is quite a strain on the area. I would get it re-evaluated. Perhaps you have just aggravated it. Whatever it is, be prepared for a tongue lashing from the doctor. Best wishes.
  • I am in the exact same boat. I am roughly 20 months out of L3-S1 TLIF. I had leg pain and back pain. I recovered very quickly and was feeling great. For the first time in over 10 years I felt really good. I was doing things I hadn't done in years. I was happy again and enjoying life. About 3 months ago, I started experiencing back pain again along with leg numbness and tingling. A couple weeks ago, developed severe spasms and pain and ended up with another MRI.

    I have herniated at L2-L3, have retrolithiasis and severe spinal canal and foraminal stenosis.

    Had 2 levels of ESIs last week, but my symptoms continue to progress. We are trying to avoid fusing rest of the way up to L1.

    I think the hardest thing to deal with is I was finally living pain free after years of suffering and now this has returned. I guess because the recovery and results after the fusion were so great, I will do whatever it takes to get that back again. I miss feeling good and being active!

    Good luck. I didn't think symptoms would return at fused levels, but scar tissue, stenosis, adjacent level disease, etc can all cause problems.
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