Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Planning for pregnancy post-microdiscectomy

nutmegxoxoxonnutmegxoxoxo Posts: 14
edited 04/25/2015 - 4:52 PM in Recovering from Surgery
Hi folks,

I'm a 31 y/o woman, and my husband and I were hoping to start a family at the end of last year. We put those plans on hold because of my horrible back pain, which radiated down my left leg. After two months of physical therapy and a month of chiropracty, an MRI revealed that I had a very large herniated disc at L4/L5, and I ultimately had a microdiscectomy two months ago (end of Feb).

I'm feeling pretty good although I do still feel pain down my leg and in my glute sporadically. I've been in physical therapy for about six weeks which has helped a lot, and I take an anti-inflammatory (celebrex). My physical therapist (who is obviously not an MD) said that he thought the pain down the leg was normal because I'm active again. I feel the pain down my leg and in my glute when I do certain exercises (e.g., planks), or when I've walked quite a distance, but I do also just feel it randomly at times. I feel like I'm on the upswing, though.

I'm currently planning to stop the celebrex when I run out of my Rx tomorrow, and trying to conceive. My orthopedic surgeon as well as an orthopedic surgeon that I consulted with before I had the surgery agree that it's safe for me to try to conceive. I have some other medical history (a blood clot 11 years ago) and a bleeding disorder that means my pregnancy will be high-risk. Because of that history, I've already had a fetal consult and met with a maternal fetal medicine specialist who also agrees that my back and my microdiscectomy recovery shouldn't be a barrier. I've been taking prenatal vitamins in preparation. My heart is really set on trying to conceive as soon as possible.

My concerns, though, are that if the pain comes back, I won't be able to take pain pills or anti-inflammatories because of the pregnancy. I'm also concerned because pregnancy puts so much stress on the body--I don't want to prematurely put myself at risk of having the back pain come roaring back or a reherniation. But, I am anxious to start a family, and I fear that it might be difficult for us to conceive because of other family history that I won't get into here. I'm starting to establish good routines (exercise, stretching) that I will plan to stay on board with as best I can when pregnant and when caring for a baby. Thankfully, I have a very supportive husband.

Anyone have experience or thoughts on the topic? I appreciate it.


  • Hi Nutmegxoxoxo,

    That's really cool that you want to have a bub, coz they are just the best thing in the whole world, and I have two best things in the whole wide world...but what you ask is too much of us normal plebs on this forum hon...please just listen to your medical team and go with their flow on this...they would be so far more qualified than us to answer such important questions, and they are really important and valid questions.

    I wish you the absolute best in your family endeavours....

    Kindest Regards Rich

    Dougie...that ok?
    C6/7 ACDF 18th April 2015 after 8 years of mucking around pretending it was something else...
  • Hi I too am hoping to get the all clear to start trying for a baby however at the moment I have been advised to wait. So I am waiting to see a specialist physio who will refer me to the surgeon. I am already on th e waiting list so hoping they speed up this process.

    I can't really answer your question but I can tell you my experiences with my back and pregnancy.my first is where all the problems started and I think this is what actually damaged my discs in the first place. I had bad sciatica and just an overall bad pregnancy with other non back relates problems.I wasn't very active and I lay a lot resting due to my other complications. I had a natural birth with an epidural which worked brilliantly however forceps was needed as my daughters heart rate dropped.After the birth I couldnt sit so i found it hard to hold my daughter. my pain by the time my daughter turned a year and half had eased enough for me to try for another.

    So my second pregnancy I was way more active and walked and moved about.I had pelvic pain early on in the pregnancy but overall this pain was not as bad as my first pregnancy. During labour when my baby's head engaged my toes started to tingle and I couldn't move with the pain (this wasn't labour pain tho). My disc was damaged a little more. I had an epidural which was hard to place it took them 5 attempts and then it failed and only worked on one side.again this was due to my damaged disc I think. This all sounds bad but truthfully it was all bareable. I had my second daughter naturally and after labour I didn't have much bother. Just the usual symptoms as I had before pregnancy of not being able to sit.

    It wasn't until my second daughter turned about 6 months until my back got very bad and has gotten worse. Sciatica has been a big problem and burning pain in hips and back. I only then got an MRI which showed every disc they scanned was bulging however l5s1 was very bad with severe disc degeneration. Also I had spondolysis. I can't tell you when my actual disc got damaged however the pain started in my first pregnancy.

    I still think it was worth it all. I listened to my body and did what I could.I didn't push it too much but I kept moving slowly regularly. I'm hoping they say that it is OK to have another baby however my gp did say I might need surgery.for now its a waiting game.

    I wish you all the luck in trying to conceive and hope you have a pain free pregnancy.
  • Hello, congrats to wanting to have one.
    I had a baby 5 years ago. After that I had issues with driving like a year after. Then after I delivered my 2nd and near the end, I noticed that some of my toes were numb. Few months after my 3rd then I started having nerve pain. When this baby was Less than a year, I had a full MRI saying I had herniated disc and EMG saying I had radiculopathy. I'm scared of what will happen this time since I didn't plan on having another one (4th baby). The doctor said that I probably had issues of herniation because of my pregnancies. I think maybe it's because of my work pulling patients in bed. I know I try to have good body mechanics but you never know.

    This is my experience with back issues and pregnancies.
  • thank you all for your thoughts and comments. wishing all the best to the future moms with back pain!
  • I ruptured a lumbar disc while pregnant a few years back. I was cleared to take vocodin and flexiril when it was at its worst. Did 6 weeks or so of PT and thee cortizone shots and have been good lumbar wise since.

    Fastforward to my most recent pregnancy (baby is 3 months old), old neck injury flared up and I had pain meds, prednisone and trigger shots and PT for my neck WHILE pregnant.

    The last few weeks of pregnancy my sciatica returned with a vengance. I had epidural injection without sedation and pain meds for my low back. I was off all meds before delivery and birthed a 9 pound baby boy naturally in a tub (midwife assisted waterbirth).

    After birth of my son I was cleared for an MRI of my neck and bone spurs and ruptured disc repaired almost 3 weeks ago during a 3.5 hour ACDF. I breastfed my baby right after the surgery. The "no meds during pregnancy or breastfeeding" is scientifically outdated information. Look up information under reputable surgery and breastfeeding forums.

    Pregnancy and breastfeeding are a joy. Back pain is horrible no matter what. We chose to go for it!!!

  • Hi I hope you are doing well since your operation.congrats on your new baby.

    Sorry to hear you have had all these problems it isn't nice. I hope you recover quickly.

    I have to admit I wasn't a fan of the pregnancy part but I absolutely love my children that's why I want another one.I breastfed with my second but the only way it was comfortable was lying down.

    Did you have neck problems during your first pregnancy? How is your lumbar problems now? Its really nice to hear your story as there isn't many online regarding this matter.
  • ReadyforchangeRReadyforchange Posts: 90
    edited 05/04/2015 - 3:45 PM
    My lumbar problem is just fine now. This last pregnancy was the only real neck problem pregnancy. So I have had some decent and some rough ones.

    I use my breast friend breast feeding support pillow that buckles around my waist. Im still brastfeeding actually while i type this! I had a one level ACDF 3 weeks ago.

    Starting on a magnesium suppliment has helped with pain overall the last few years.
  • Unfort my lumbar back problems have got worse to the point that I find it difficult with sitting however I can manage the pain using conservative methods mostly pt and ice packs and rest when needed.

    I haven't had my neck check but it has started to give me bother too. I get a burning horrible feeling quite often it gives me headaches. Sometimes i have sensations down my arm.I am going to mention this to the specialist when I finally get an appointment.

    My mother had a double fusion in her neck so I have some idea of what its like. I hope you are doing well.

    Its so hard to make the decision to try for a baby. I have had conflicting opinions some drs say it's fine and others have said no. I am yet to see a surgeon and this is the opinion I want the most to be honest. As I know what my problems are but I don't know what it means if I got pregnant.
  • LisajgxLLisajgx Posts: 9
    edited 07/28/2015 - 11:27 AM
    Hi any update nutmegxoxo I'm currently 14 weeks pregnant after lumber fusion at l4-s1 I had my metal work removed in feb this year. I think you've done exactly the right think contacting all the doctors first and getting a plan together a support network is really important.
    I've done the same thing although how my back will hold up is a bit of an unknown at the mo. I've started my own blog to document my pregnancy and how it affects my back. I
    Would love to hear how you get on and share your experiences too.
    Good luck
Sign In or Register to comment.