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1cm disc protrusion and 1cm sequestered fragment?

NotGivingUpNNotGivingUp Posts: 33
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:02 AM in Lower Back Pain
Quick question for my fellow spineys. This injury occurred about 5 wks ago. The neuro and anesth both said I would need surgery for the type of herniation I have, but I bucked that and opted for conservative treatment. I do not even a little bit regret that choice, but I'm wondering if anyone else has had similar experience and could offer a story about how their journey has turned out.

Is 1cm for this kind of injury "large?" I just don't know how to gauge this information.

"MRI of the lumbar spine shows 1cm extruded disc fragment left adjacent to the canal posterior to L5 vertebral level. Fragment is from 1cm L4-L5 central disk herniation. Moderate central stenosis and left paracentral stenosis at the L5 level. Foraminal stenosis is moderate to severe and bilateral."

My pain is diminished. I ache sometimes, and I get calf spasms that suck pretty frequently. Then again, I'm not really pushing myself much other than to do some laundry, dishes, or take a shower. Duh.

From testimonials on this site or from your own experience, is this a situation which probably will lead to surgery?

Symptoms: Sciatic nerve tenderness, numbness from outside of knee across top of foot and into big toe, moderate foot drop. Since injury (5-6 wks ago), pain has diminished a lot, but numbness has neither worsened nor gotten better.


  • I would get a second opinion from another Orthosurgeon but you want to be sure that waiting so long for surgery doesn't cause any nerve damage with your numb leg and foot and a good question to ask the Surgeon. Some more things to ask the Surgeon here http://www.spine-health.com/blog/38-questions-ask-your-surgeon-having-back-surgery

    You have a fragment free floating and needs to be taken care of. Any stenosis that is moderate and severe you need to see the Ortho or Neurosurgeon for assessment and treatment plan. I hope you keep us posted how you're doing.

    Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
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