I had an L5-S1 microdiscectomy on 7/18/13 and was wondering what people's thoughts were on exercising, what type, when, etc. I've read a few articles suggesting that early exercise might help the recovery but I'm not clear as what constitutes early (and what might be too early). I'm not too happy so far as I still have considerable leg and for pain, tingling and numbness (and other weird sensations) which vary a lot in intensity and location. The soreness in my back at the incision site seems to be improving but I'm concerned with what is going on in my leg as it's actually worse than presurgery. I keep trying various things: ice, Tylenol, vicodin, robaxin, and gabapentin but nothing really seems to make a difference. I can't try ibuprofen, aleve, etc. because I had an episode of colitis (either diverticulitis or ischemic colitis) 36 hours after the surgery and was on a week of antibiotics and a clear liquid diet for that.
I am considering trying to exercise if it might help me and hope others can provide some guidance based on their experience. Is 2 weeks post op too early? Should I walk? Can I run? Can I do crunches, etc? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
Before you start any exercise program, you need to discuss it with your doctor first to get their approval.