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Herniated disk L4/L5(lumbar Laminectomy)

KwcjohnsonKKwcjohnson Posts: 2
edited 10/28/2014 - 1:39 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am 31 years old and scheduled to have a lumbar laminectomy a week from today. This recent summer is started with severe back pain, which lasted until the first of September. My back pain stopped the day I had sciatica, worst pain in my life. They performed a MRI and are showing a herniated disk on L4/L5, the disk is compressing my nerve going to my right leg. The two doctors have both agreed that I need to have the surgery, due to the weakness in my leg. I scheduled the surgery last week, and now the past two days I have felt a little better. Should I still move forward with the surgery?


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    The decision to undergo surgery is usually what is called "elective" meaning that it isn't life threatening..........however, with nerve compression going on, prolonging the surgery can result in permanent damage........so while things may be improving at the moment, that doesn't mean that the nerve is not going to continue to flare up and be damaged as time passes. If you have two surgeons telling you that relieving the compression of the nerve is necessary, then I would listen to them.
    Of course, the ultimate decision is in your hands........
  • Thank you for your input. Having my original Nuro surgeon and the 2nd opinion say the same thing made me think it was important. They told me within 2-3 weeks to have surgery to try and recover most if not all of the strength back. Was just starting to feel a little better, so it crossed my mind. As much as I have read, once a disc is bulged or herniated it doesn't go back on its own.
  • I had similar symptoms including nerve damage to left foot and the muscle of my calf. I was considered a surgical candidate to try and let the nerve to calf recover although I was told damage to the foot was permanent. It took me 5 months from herniation to surgery which was a PLIF at l4l5 with instrumentation. The pain left immediately post-op and I am starting to regain use of the muscle to the calf earlier than my surgeon expected. I dithered over the summer about whether to have the surgery but am glad that I did.
  • I was told I had a 33 percent chance at a full recover and there was a high chance I wouldn't recover fully. It's a slow one.. But I. think the recovery will be good. I'm glad I had the surgery. Leaving that disc on my nerve wasn't a good thing to have. The surgeon's told me that some people walk away from surgery. Ultimately it's up to you. Peace.
  • Jeff49JJeff49 Posts: 22
    edited 10/30/2014 - 3:43 AM
    I got copy's of MRI and radiologist report and it reads:
    Mild disc bulges at t12/l1 and l2/l3
    At l3/l4disc there is diffuse disc bulge and moderate size right asymmetric posterior protruded disc herniation that causes severe central spinal canal stenosis, this is also accentuated by congenitally short pedicels. There is mild left neutral forming narrowing.
    L4/l5 there is diffuse disc bulge with small posterior annular tear and mild bilateral neural forming narrowing
    L5/s1 disc: mild diffuse disc bulge with small posterior annular tear.

    My family doc told me he says surgery

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    Spinal stenosis with neurogenic clauducation
    3 level retrolisthesis
    Bilateral Laminectomy/Discectomy surgery l3/l4 on 11-21-14 (failed)
    L3/l4 spinal Fusion 03-20-15
  • KWC-

    I think that based on the weakness in the leg, surgery may be warranted. You might try a more conservative treatment like epidural steroid injection, but it would mainly help withe the pain.

    Consider your age of 31, a mere kid. :) You should recover more quickly than someone in their 50's like me. Also, make sure you check out all the Pre and post-OP do's and dont's and what to have. All are available on this site. My biggest suggestion to you would be not to push your limits post-OP. Take the time to heal correctly. Don't overdo, or you might feel it the next day. Ask for PT/OT as soon as your surgeon says OK.

    Good Luck!!

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