After a knee operation I had two years ago, I've had migrating pain or tingling or some numbness in my left foot and constant calf pain - soleus and gastronemius.
I had 4 emg's which contradicted each other, years of physical therapy and have gotten nowhere. I've been working with a physiatrist for longer than that as well plus seeing other physiatrists.
I've been working with two podiatrists.
No one has been able to positively pin down the pain as coming from my spine or coming from my leg and foot.
I've had epidurals at L4 and L5 which helped with some back pain, but no help for the foot.
I've had transforaminal cortisone and anesthetic shots at left L4 and left L5, one of the shots at L5 seemed to help with the foot pain briefly, the second time I tried L5 it made the foot feel a lot worse.
I saw 3 surgeons. The prominent neurosurgeon wanted to do a L4-5 hemilaminectomy plus an onlay fusion on L4-5
Prior to the issues with my foot, I'd been having nagging back pain for 4 years which PT did not resolve.
However during the last year the back pain has been less prominent.
The other surgeon which I chose to do an operation is going to do a hemilaminectomy plus foraminectomy, but no fusion because he says my L4-5 disc is just about gone and I'm naturally fusing anyway.
I'm scheduled for the operation in a few weeks. It is day surgery at the top orthopedic hospital in Boston.
I'm getting anxious and fearful of how my recovery will be since I live alone and can only corral minimal help from friends, mainly because they don't live close by.
I was told initially that I would not be able to sit for more than a half hour and it would take 6-8 weeks before I can sit long enough to work all day.
I do fear what it will be like after surgery. I have to care for myself as far as food preparation. I'm told I will have a visiting nurse for help with the bandages etc.