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Sciatic pain after ALIF L5-S1

I am 38yrs old and had an alif l5-s1 surgery 8 days ago (independence alif system). I never had sciatica prior to surgery...just excruciating back pain. for the first week after surgery i felt great. I was asking two miles three days after surgery with no pain. I did go not surgery very healthy and was still active even though my back killed me. Two days ago my butt started hurting and i ha no clue why. Then my leg pain began... i couldn't stand still without pain. The pain is the worst when i try to stand up to urinate of all things. It feels like i am going to fall over. I have no pain when on my back or sitting in the recliner...and little if any while walking. I called the doc and they prescribed steroids. I see them again Friday but was curious if anyone had had a similar experience and how long should i expect this to last. I was hoping to go back to work and use a standing desk next week, but no way will i be able to do that if the leg pain continues. I am going to only walk a few blocks for a few days and see if that helps too. Thanks.


  • I'm surprised your surgeon would even let you go back to work that quickly after an ALIF. I know the independence system is supposed to be less invasive, but my surgeon wanted me off of work for a minimum of 6-8 weeks.

    Good chance the sciatic pain you are having is from all of the inflammation. Between the nerves being disturbed during surgery and all of the swelling, it can take awhile for things to calm down. I've found icing my back 2-3 times a day has helped a lot in reducing inflammation and my leg pain post-op.
    10/28/13 - ALIF, PSF, decompression at L4/L5 and L5/S1
  • Honestly, I felt awesome for the first 5 days. I was standing and working at my laptop for a couple hours straight with no pain. I hope it is just inflammation and it subsides soon...i can't stand the leg pain. I have been icing like crazy but maybe i will try to up the icing while laying down. Thanks.
  • I had alif/plif l4-l5-s1 fusion on sept 30 it's been a slow recovery for me as the day goes on I have lower back pain and I get fatigue.I know I have to be patient there's still swelling.Hang in there and ice as much as you can..
  • The steroids have calmed my inflammation and the sciatic pain while standing appears to be going away but i have been icing like crazy and staying horizontal as much as possible...
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