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Post micro disectomy and decompression

Well I had my surgery on the 21st of July and now 2 weeks post op my back pain is much improved. I have been left with more left leg and foot weakness which is a little worrying but I hope this will improve as the nerve settles. Since surgery the sciatic nerve was quite irritated Nd I experienced some leg pain and nerve impingement symptoms. I'm sticking with the exercises provided and seem to be improving slowly. My worry is weakness and numbness. I know time will tell but anybody else experience this and will I regain total strength back? It's altered my gait and now my hips have started hurting. I've also noted my hamstrings are tight as hell. I'm walking 5 miles per day with no adversity. The rest of the time I lie down to reduce pressure. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Ta


  • Hi Lowden,

    I Had surgery on July 14th (microdiscectomy on l4 l5 extruded herniated disc) after close to 4 months of trying conservative therapy. My decision to have surgery was based on numbness and weakness in right foot and leg which didn't seem to be getting better. After my surgery I too had really tight hamstrings and more numbness and weakness in right leg and foot. doc said it is most likely from inflammation and edema and should get better over time. He is not guaranteeing that the nerve damage will heal 100% but I remain optimistic that I will get some improvements moving forward. It is going to take a long time to recover and patience is key. I am walking 3 times a day anywhere from2-4 miles and will be starting PT tomorrow 3x per week for 8 weeks. I am also going back to work full time tomorrow (yeah!). I have posted several messages and a thread that may be helpful and would be happy to share tips and track progress as we go through the rehab journey. Good luck and take it one day at a time.



  • Hey Tim, thanks for your reply. Today has been a good day and I feel that my leg is becoming part of my body again. I'll bear with it and keep up with my rehab. I'm an active guy so once I've got the all clear from the doc I'll be cycling, swimming and doing yoga. Next year I hope to return to running and some weight training. Once I've addressed my core issues.
  • I had a lumbar decompression L3-L4 on July 8 and the nerve pain 2 days later was horrendous. But that was due to the swelling and fluid buildup from the incision and all the work done at the site. My Dr. said it would subside after the body reabsorbs the fluid. He said when they do big jobs w/ fusions, screws at multi-levels etc that they will put in a drain to let the fluid bleed off, but a minimal-invasive job doesn't really require a drain. But I know what you mean about the hammies being tight. My calves were tight and I was walking like a monkey and very unstable for the first 10 days. I could see my lumbar area was swollen but when it went down, I could stand straight up and walk better. But rest and a good nights sleep for first 4 weeks is important. I was back at work in 8 days but that was pushing it. I was told no lifting >10lbs and no twisting for the first 4-6 weeks. No bicycling until I see the Dr. again on 9/3/14. It was weird- at 12 days, I would push on the right side of the incision and that would light up the nerves in my left butt & leg. So at that point I realized how pressure affects the nerves. I wasn't given ANY PT except walk up to a mile/day until I see the Dr. on 9/3 which will be almost 8 weeks post-op. I find that sitting too long makes me stiff and walking around the office building too much produces a little bit of pain. Trying to keep on an even keel!
    Life's short, play hard.
  • Oldhockeypuck81OOldhockeypuck81 Posts: 7
    edited 08/21/2014 - 2:35 PM
    Conditions seem to be improving for my stenosis decomp surgery. I only get a hint of left butt nerve pain when taking the first 20 or so steps out of bed. Walking is a breeze, but I've found that I don't have 100% of natural balance to subconsciously walk a straight line, i.e. I drift a little bit now and then when casually walking down the sidewalk. The pre surg pain seems to be almost resolved. Now I'm wondering how well my lifting strength and core strength will return. Bending to put on shoes etc. is easy and painless. I've found that standing still for more than 5 minutes starts to cause a pressure-like cramping in my lumbar muscles and then I have to sit down to rest. Hopefully this will improve. Glad I'm not a security guard!
    Life's short, play hard.
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