I am deciding whether or not it's worth going through with a Microdiscectomy surgery, and was hoping to hear some of your thoughts.
I'm a 26 year old male, fell on some icy pavement about a year ago and have had sciatica-like pain while sitting ever since, primarily in my buttock. Most of the time the pain is not terrible, but some days it really affects my quality of life. I've done several months of PT for this, but overall, I still find that the pain comes back, especially when driving / commuting, sitting down for long meals at restaurants, etc. Recently two really bad flare-ups over the course of a few weeks, and have been working from home since. I got an epidural steroid injection which has brought me back to almost the level of pain I was at before these flare-ups.
My MRI shows an 8mm disc herniation at L5/S1 that is compressing the right descending nerve root. I spoke with two spine surgeons, both of whom offered to do the surgery if I wish. I ended up scheduling a date two weeks from now with the second surgeon, who said that he has done thousands of these and has seen good results. He also mentioned that long-term, I will have the same result with or without surgery, but that it could take many months or years with the non-surgical approach.
Overall, I would say may pain is manageable, but it has definitely caused me a lot of stress and frustration over the last year. In addition, I fear that by not doing the surgery, I'm risking having more and more of these flare-ups over the course of my life, and I don't want to go through that pain again.
I know many people on here have had much worse symptoms before going through with the surgery, but I'm not sure I want to wait until that point. What do you guys think? Am I rushing into this surgery, or is it a reasonable solution given the length of time I've dealt with this problem? Has anyone been in a similar situation?