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L5/S1 Herniated Disk Surgery

I want to try to keep this short and sweet. I am now 2 days post op and feeling great. It all started in November 2012. I developed a pain in my lower back that shot straight down my left buttock into my thigh to my calf and into my foot. Car rides were tough. I had to put my fist into my buttock to try to relieve some pain. And when I did get to my location, the first 100 feet I had to walk was miserable, limping until the pain became tolerable. Sitting through a whole movie was just about impossible. Sleeping throughout the whole night with out pain was non exist. Going to the bar I would have to stand by the bar stool and not sit because of the pain it would cause. I was freaking miserable and sick of taking pain medications, I had to do something about it.

After going to the orthopedic surgeon, he looked at my MRI and said its pretty bad and a micro disk is probably the only option I have. I am 28 years old, there is no way I should be having back surgery already. I was scared, looking for advice and direction I turned to the internet for reviews on peoples surgeries. Some good and some bad. Still confused I put off the surgery even longer, which was a mistake. And that's why I am writing today. After about 6 long months of pain and confusion I opted for the surgery.

Surgery Day! My nerves were a wreck. While in pre-op I had many of interviews from nurses, anathesiologists, and finally my doctor. I was so nervous that I nearly fainted. The doctors had to pump me with a liter of fluid and some medication to slow my pounding heart down. But my family came in to visit me and a calm came over me. Even sitting in the bed in pre-op I could not get comfortable because of the pain radiating down my leg, I was restless. The doctors came in and told me that it was time. I gave my wife a hug and kiss, and off I went. They wheeled me into the operating room, I was looking around and that is all I remember, I was out.

I went into the operating room at 1300 and woke up in post op at 1800. This is where once piece of advice I want to stress. I had waited so long to have the surgery done that I had so much scar tissue around my nerve that the surgery took two hours and not the half hour or so the doctor had thought it my take. If your doctor says it needs to be done DON'T WAIT!

After I was semi alert the nurse brought me up into my room where I would stay for the night, where my family was waiting for me. That's when it hit me, I am laying flat and I had absolutely no pain in my left leg anymore. That night I had ate dinner, and went for a walk. Yes I was a little stiff and soar but it felt great to just be able to walk down the hall way.

Day 1 post op. My doctors assistant came into talk to me. As long as I was going to the bathroom by myself, and physical therapy said I was good to go, I could go home. Physical therapy came in and made me walk up and down the hall way, and finally made me go up and down about four stairs. I was cleared to go home.

My first night home and the biggest lesson that I learned. Keep up with your medications. I felt so good that I didnt take my pain meds, and what a mistake that was. After I have caught back up with my medications I am feeling great. Today is now day 2, I am up, alert and sitting at the kitchen table enjoying zero leg pain as I sit here and type. The surgery was the best decision that I have made and do not regret it at all. I know that it is only day 2, and I have a long recovery ahead of me. But I am happy and relaxed. I will try to update my recovery as I go. As I turned to forums for advice I am happy to answer any questions people have for me or advice jeffmrazek@att.net.


  • I am scheduled for surgery soon for sure l5 s1 and possibly l3 l4 discectomy- ALIF I am just trying to see the healing process and somewhat of a general consensus of the way I may be feeling after surgery \. I have a home business and have to package vitamins and supplements for customers all packages are 6lbs or under though however i do have to stand and package in zip lock containers. Was just wondering if it is even possible or if i need to get some help with orders for the first couple of weeks.
  • My first day home was a little rough. I didnt take my medicine as prescribed to me. I pretty much spent all day in bed sleeping, asking myself what in the world did I do to myself. Today is my second day at home. I am currently at home by myself and feel great. I am up, walking around, heating up food for my self pretty much independent. The biggest thing I can say you will probably be able to do it by yourself. Just make sure everything is at a high level so that you can reach it without bending over. Although I am able to bend by knees and squat to the ground I am trying to avoid that at all costs. But I think you will be fine. Just take your pain meds as prescribed to you, dont be afraid to take them. They are there for a reason no sense of not taking them. But for help maybe for the first couple of days wont hurt. Im sure you will be fine. Good Luck!
  • I went in May 1st. Today marks 3 weeks post-op for me. I'm glad I'm out of week 1 and happy to be thru week 2. I am indeed feeling a lot better today. The path ahead is still long, but I can say that week by week I am getting better.

    I had a laminectomy on my L5-S1 to repair a 10mm herniation that was pinching my nerve to the point I lost use of parts of my right leg. I'm pain free now, walk 4-6 times a day and do basic PT (no core or back). My depressed mood has even improved.
    L5-S1 herniation (10mm), April 2013

    Lumbar Laminectomy May 1st 2013

    Lumbar Laminectomy April 18th 2016

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