I decided to drive home from appointment with my surgeon (hour drive). Although I stopped halfway home for dinner and stretching, my pain level has increased. That's the longest I've driven since laminoforaminotomy/discectomy for agonizing extruded disc (greater than 1.5 CM-not mm) at popular L5-S1 pressing into nerve. When I saw my PT the next day, she said I overdid it and needed to listen to my body. I just started PT but was walking almost 1.5 miles a day. Not today.
My right buttock and thigh pain never disappeared after surgery, but has grown slightly less and changed position. I have a lot of new bone pain since surgery in the hip/iliac/sacral region. The surgeon says that I am improving but it will take time. First, of course he said I was doing great and had no restrictions, but then he said that I need to build myself up again slowly and not to twist or sit too long. If I haven't improved significantly 6 months post-op, then he wants another MRI. I still have numbness in toes, slight foot drop, weakness in leg strength, buttock/thigh/knee pain. I am not in the constant pain I was before surgery, but I still have hours of it on and off every day. The pain has come down a couple levels, but I am afraid of re-herniating or afraid of permanent nerve damage. I know I should expect occasional setbacks from reading other posts, but I don't even know if my surgery was successful.
I am praying that I can return to work mid-January even though I have a 45 minute drive. Does anyone else have experience with a large herniated disc and this type of surgery? I was told that most people (85%+) get real relief from thigh/leg pain after surgery but that hasn't been my experience. Would appreciate anyone else's experience with same problem.