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4 mo post-op L5-S1 laminectomy for foraminal stenosis

AleighAAleigh Posts: 2
edited 10/28/2012 - 10:20 AM in New Member Introductions
Hi, I am new to your forums. I had decompression surgery on July 4th, 2012 for foraminal stenosis at L5-S1. I am still in discomfort across my sacrum. I had physic twice a week until the beginning of Oct when my physio benefits ran out. The discomfort that I was and am experiencing has put me into a depression/anxiety state. I need to know if there is some kind of time period that one can expect to be in pain or is this just the way it is. I did have numbness down the left side of my leg and into my foot (which the surgery took care of) but, I did not have back pain before the surgery and now I do. I am not sure which forum I should be looking at. If you can direct me somewhere where I can read if others have experienced this I would appreciate it. My name is Aleigh by the way and I live in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


  • DaveFusionDDaveFusion Posts: 476
    edited 10/28/2012 - 3:27 PM
    You must be pleased that the nerve compression/damage (numbness) has recovered.
    But getting new back pain would be disappointing.
    A couple of things I learned in my journey that may be of interest.
    1) Do you use hot packs? My PT prescribes them 4 times a day (I use 4 packs each time). I find it helps to relax the spasmed muscles.
    2) Additionally, scar tissue which forms and reduces the flexibility of the nerve can cause pain. Swimming can help stretch and soften this tissue my consultant has told me. I did follow this and felt better for doing it. Had to wear goggles and snorkel to prevent twisting whilst breathing.

    Not a doctor so i can't tell you the source of your pain. That is a discussion that you should have with your doctor. At 4 months if all was well, i would think that you would probably not have much pain and you'd be improving. Everyone is different. It's important tell all symptoms even if they don't appear to be relevant to your operation. A new MRI would not be unreasonable at this point, to find out if there is a structural problem still. Listen to your body, make it clear to doctor that all is not well, don't let the doctor "blow you off" as has happened to me, keep cool but assertive that there is still a problem that you need his expertise to diagnose. I had to get 2nd opinion and found further problem. Hope you don't have to go this way. Lots of advice on topic of interacting with doctors here too.
    Hope this helps and lets us know how you go. The back surgery forum has heaps of stories.
  • Thank you for your advice. Yes, I do use a moist heating pad and do stretches and strength training (Physio's advice). I started to do some aquacizes once a week. I am afraid that my surgery did not work although my neurosurgeon told me that they removed approximately an equivalent to grain and a half of rice size of bone and that the nerve looked OK. So what is with the pain and stiffness? Anyway, thank you for your time and advice. I really appreciated it. It feels good that there are others out there who know what back pain really is. If you have never had it, you cannot relate to it. I kind of get the suck it up and deal with it attitude from some people.
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