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L5/S1 Sciatic pain advice

Anex80AAnex80 Posts: 1
So I've been following this forum for a while and have finally decided to post my experience thus far. I've been experiencing leg pain for 3 months now with no signs of relief. I've seen two chiropractors, been on 3 rounds of prednisone, tried countless stretches, excercises, and yoga, all with no help. I had an MRI in December which showed a bulging disc at L5/S1. Since then I've seen a specialist who recommended surgery, however we decided to try a spinal injection first. I had that 4 days ago and if anything my symptoms have gotten worse!

Is this normal? Is there any way to beat this without surgery or should I just break down and do it? The surgeon is recommending a lumbar hemilamenectomy with microdisectomy. Has anyone received this with good results? I'm so tired of dealing with this pain but I don't want to do something that will make it worse. I'm worried my life will never be the same.


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
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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
  • Hi. I've been prescribed lyrica for the nerve pain. It took 4 days to get into my system and give me a full night's sleep. I was only getting 2 - 2.5hrs of sleep a night. Now it's doubled that and making me feel human again. Hope this helps.
  • PlumbTuckeredOutPlumbTuckeredOut Philadelphia, PAPosts: 325
    Anex80 said:
    So , however we decided to try a spinal injection first. I had that 4 days ago and if anything my symptoms have gotten worse!

    Is this normal? Is there any way to beat this without surgery or should I just break down and do it? .
    When I had my first injection, that one was cervical, I was told not to be surprised if the pain initially got worse. So I wasn't surprised (I wasn't expecting "that much worse!") but overall it didn't help. A few years ago I had an injection to my knee and that was magical so I was hopeful though.

    But like you, I am trying to avoid surgery, what would be my third, all in the area of L5S1. The first surgery was great back in 1998 but the pain returned, the disks chose to move where ever they damn well please and I'm playing "avoid the scalpel". I have found pain relief with meds but I would also like "everything fixed". There are days when my legs work in ways I did not expect them to! Other days when my arms hurt so badly from referred pain that I'd like to cut them off. But no one has come to me yet and said, "This is inevitable" or you "must".
    I'm going to continue trying to alleviate symptoms until I feel that I just cannot tolerate anymore. But that is me and we all have a different level of tolerance for pain, frustration, patience, inconvenience.....

    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by...... (Robert Frost)
    I still don't know if I should have taken the one that said, "Caution! Dead End" (Me)
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