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Newbie- had l5s1 microdiscetomy on Jan. 7, 2014

Hi. I'm a newbie to the site and a newbie to back problems. I had a L5S1 microdiscetomy on Jan. 7, 2014. I had no back problems and no specific injury, but in a matter of weeks, I went from what I thought was a pulled muscle in my left leg, to debilitating pain in my leg where I could not stand or walk, an MRI, and surgery the next day. Needless to say, this has been an emotional roller coaster for me.

Post op status: It has been almost 3 weeks since my surgery. The relief from the surgery was immediate. I was able to walk out of the hospital and sit upright in the car on the way home. A few days after the surgery, the numbness and pain in my leg returned. The nurse said that was normal, that I had a very large rupture and it will take a while for the area to heal and nerves to calm down. After a few days, the nurse prescribed another steroid pack to help with my leg pain. It helped. My leg is still sore and I still have the numbness in my foot, but it is less intense and tolerable now. Except for the incision site, my back did not hurt the first week or so. now my back hurts most of the time. I switched off the narcotic pain pills, so I am not sure if that contributed to the pain. Or if I have overdone it. also having a hard time sleeping.

I have been able to work from home a few hours of day, I've been to the store a few times, and drove around the block one time.

I'm curious to know how others are recovering physically and emotionally.


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    edited 01/26/2014 - 11:39 AM

    Please take the time to read this post and refer to it when you have questions

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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • I had the same surgery 01/03/14 like you I felt immediate relief in my leg/butt (right-side) however not 3 weeks out and the pain is still around some days better then worse. I have been told that the nerve takes a long time to heal, I am at wits end with this pain. I had to stop taking Oxys cause they had no effect on me, so I have a second MRI done to make sure the nerve is good tomorrow. I will update all on the outcome of the appointment so done with this pain.
  • agp1021 - I hope your MRI is favorable. sorry about your pain. How active are you? I'm bored to tears and can't sit still, but worried about injuring the area and overdoing it. I have read several posts about people overdoing it after a l5s1 micro and ending up having a fusion shortly after. That fear alone is hopefully enough to keep me in line. Have you been able to find a comfortable position to sit? Either my back or leg will be uncomfortable when I sit and I cannot sit for long. my back just has a dull ache. Bending and reaching cause me the most discomfort. sleeping is also very uncomfortable. I wonder if it is the mattress or me. I really want my life back to normal. Even if I could just do the dishes. I am taking tramadol during the day and oxy at night. Tramadol works better for me than the over the counter medicines, but not as good as oxy. I stopped the oxy because I want to be able to drive. I worry about taking the medicine. It helps reduce the pain and then I think I can do more than I really should. I actually went on my first solo trip today. To the grocery store. I had to have them take the bags to the car, but it was nice to feel a little self sufficient. I have my first follow up appointment on Thursday. I am really excited because I have a million questions.
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