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Leg pain worse 7 months post op discectomy

cdoughtyccdoughty Posts: 4
This is my first time post on here. I've spent the day reading many, many posts. A lot have been similar, just not quite the same. It is a relief that I'm not alone with these complications. I would love to hear from anyone who has some advice/opinions.

I had my first discectomy (l5s1) in 2002. I was pretty good for 10 years. I injured it again in January 2012 and gradually the pain continued to get worse. In July 2012 I had another discectomy on the same disc. (I should add here that my surgeon told me on my first visit to him that a fusion would probably work best for me, but because of my age he didn't want to go that route. He did say the next time would require a fusion) For the first 2-3 weeks I had some relief except for the usual post op pain. During the 3rd week my leg pain came back and was worse than before surgery. I was sent to PT for about a month with no relief. (He was scared to do much bc of the leg pain.) I had another MRI at 2 months post op and my neuro dr sd everything looked fine, there was nothing he could do for me surgically, and released me to a pain management dr.

PM dr said at the 3 month mark, I should be healed and that was as good as it was going to get from that surgery. PM then tried nerve block injection with 0% relief and his opinion is a spinal stimulator or a spinal fusion. He wants me to see an ortho dr and get his opinion. I've had a hard time finding a dr to see me. They tell me I have to wait 1-2 years post op before they will see me. Meanwhile, PM dr just gives me pain meds. (They take the edge off but the pain never goes away. Stays between a 6-8 constantly) I did find an ortho who agreed to see me and I'm hoping to find some relief with him. I do have back pain (this was expected and that I can deal with) My issue is with the constant leg pain that starts in my back and goes all the way to my toes. My butt/hip, knee, and calf muscle is the worst. Like others have said it feels like burning/being stabbed with a knife. Soo aggravating!

All I want is to do normal things again! It's hard to make any plans bc I never know how I'm going to feel that day. I'm only 35 and this is not how I want to spend the rest of my life! I just keep reminding myself that lots of people have it a lot worse and I should be glad for how I am. Sometimes it's really hard because I feel like no one understands. It has to get better at some point, right?! I would love to know if anyone else has had these issues and found relief!!


  • Hi, sorry you have this issue.

    Why can't you go back to your neuro? Have you searched the site using search phrase 'how to find a good surgeon'? Good ideas there.

    Sounds like you need an EMG to define the nerve pain cause and quantify what's going on.

    Other diagnostic tests are neurography MRI and dynamic MRI. Use search function for more info.

    Also suggest you watch out for signs of foot drop. My story may shed some light.

    Take care.
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