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microdiscectomy and physical job

catfishmanccatfishman Posts: 185
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:03 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Has anyone on here went onto a physical job after having a microdiscectomy? I am wondering because i am a material handler in a warehouse, i have to lift up to 70lbs, not all day long , but here and there. I really like my job, and the company I work for, have great benefits, it is close to home, and i finally have good seniority there.


  • Kwilson400KKwilson400 Posts: 42
    edited 07/15/2012 - 4:31 PM
    My husband had discectomy/lamenectomy in January
    June 2011 L5-S1 Lamenectomy/Discectomy
    Dec. 2011 Repeat L5-S1 Lamenectomy/Discectomy
    June 2012 New tear L5-S1 w/ Perm. Sciatic Nerve Damage
    Currently- restrictions (including no work duties) for a min. of 3 months to allow disc time to heal
  • I'm sure there are those that have but if they have they likely will not be still on this forum as they are healed. The question becomes if or not they will be back.

    Keep in mind that your back/disc is telling you that its not up to the task that you asked of it. There can be many different reasons for a failure.

    It would be a good idea to ask what YOUR Dr. thinks the answer may be.
  • Hi Catfishman
    How far along are you?
    I went back after 2 1/2 wks with modified duty. I am a physical therapist and have to be on my feet all day with some lifting but definitely not anywhere near 70 lbs. The doc would have liked me to be off 6 wks as I do have to occassionally assist in lifting patients. I went back promising to modify duties and my job worked with me to assure I did not have to do any straining.
    The annulus (outer part of disc) now in essence has a weak spot where the nucleus , or inner jelly of the disc can extrude out and cause a herniation and that weakness remains for some time, some say 3 or 4 months until it fills in with scar tissue. My opinion is if you are rehabing your core muscles very strictly and you are overall very fit and know how to use good body mechanics for lifting at all times, you should be able to but not at 6 wks. Drs say at 6 to 8 wks you can go back to everything but in my opinion that is not straight across the board. I've seen plenty of patients after this surgery reherniate that went back to soon and had barely developed any core strength or neglected to adhere to their precautions and body mechaics.
  • i have not had the surgery yet, but am considering it, i am 5'9" 170lbs, so not overweight. i do stretches every morning before i go to work for about an hour. right now i am on gabapentin, celebrex, and i take a hydrocodone in the morning, and at lunch time, it gets me by very well.the only bad thing i do is smoke ciggerattes.
  • basically, my primary doctor has said not to read on forums like this, my nurse practioner at my pain management office, who i have only seen the last 2 times i went in said this is a very minor surgery compared to others, and she also said that people that have alot of problems have multiple back problems in their spine, which i have a herniated disc l5,s1 and bulging disc l4,l5. i am just fed up with the sciatic nerve pain.
  • Hi again

    Yes i read these forums for weeks before my surgery. I had my severe sciatica on the left side on and off 7 yrs. I'm very athletic and never stopped working out even with pain but I did back off on things that make disc problems worse. You can't follow these forums to heart because people's outcomes is all across the board. You've got the poor outcomes and the great ones and mostly you hear the bad. I am painfree and at 5 wks 2 days post op. I have at times a little nerve type discomfort in my feet but my sciatic pain and nerve tension is gone so far. I had done 3 epidurals with good success but pain returned when I tried to do certain things like cycling and certain gym things. I decided on surgery bc my husband and I want to get pregnant again. If you are going to do the surgery it helps to go in with some level of core fitness, a very good reputable surgeon ( i did my research) and hopefully you've tried other avenues first, but some people never do and have 6 months of pain and do surgery. I am an eception to the rule that i dealth with bad pain 7 yrs. I'm just that kind of person that keeps going and dealt with it. Finally said I don't want this and I felt I had no other options left. If you can stop smoking, It will help your recovery and chance of complications. Microdiscectomy surgery is minimally invasive but is still a big surgery in the sense your disc takes weeks to heal and can reherniate if you do any of the wrong things. I've seen it in my patients and has been and is still a fear of my own. I have confidence in my outcome and it's up to me to transition to prior lifestyle gradually and with caution.
  • what is your age? Have you tried epidurals or physical therapy ?
  • i have had 4 epidurals in the past, they did not last long. i have been to a chiropractor also. i had physical therapy many years ago for general back pain, but i do stretches from pamplets that were given to me by a physio that did my nerve conduction test, and i get on my inversion table for about 10 minutes every morning, and roll around on my excercise ball a few minutes also. i find that being up moving around is way better than sitting, that is for sure.
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