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

laminectomy L4-L5 for extruded disc

edited 07/19/2015 - 10:16 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I have had pins and needles in my sleeping leg for 39 days. I got an MRI 6 days ago and was referred to a neurosurgeon "to discuss treatment options".
conversation with the surgeon was good but quickly went to surgery suggested 7 days later.
I was a bit shocked to say the least there is a mass 1.6 cm x transverse 2.7 cm that is most likely disc material but possibly a tumor and in his words "wow this is a good one".
Scheduled procedure is a Laminectomy L4-5 / resection of the mass with a few days in the hospital but estimated 3 months before I can go back to work doing physical maintenance work.
This hit me fast, I'm concerned knowing this is an invasive procedure and am curious if this sounds like it could be done with a less invasive procedure or of it sounds normal.
I am going to call my Dr tomorrow (it's Sunday now and my appointment was Friday) to see if I can get someone to give a second opinion on the MRI and I'm looking for some thoughts so I don't rush into a mistake.
It's obvious from the MRI that surgery is necessary, I'm comfortable with the Dr, I just feel like I need to be well informed to go through worth this.

Welcome to Spine-Health
Please click on link for helpful information!


  • I had this surgery in June - same vertebrae. Mine was an emergency because the herniated portion had compressed the nerve and suddenly paralyzed me. If it had been done earlier, that would have been great (I have a lot of nerve damage and am learning to walk on numb legs, lost bladder control, etc.).

    Actually though, I have no back pain and my restriction six weeks out is not to lift more than 20 pounds. I would definitely opt for the surgery again outside the emergency situation.
  • E.STEVEEE.STEVE Posts: 3
    edited 07/21/2015 - 9:14 AM
    Thanks for the information / encouragement. I hope your recovery goes well and that the feeling comes back.

    Did you have symptoms prior to when it slipped and became an emergency? I had to pressure my Dr's office to get an MRI and it was over a month after my leg had been asleep if I learned one thing is be persistent. I have fear that I am going to sneeze and end up in the "emergency" state but in my opinion is been an emergency from day 1.
  • rossierrossie Posts: 1
    edited 07/22/2015 - 10:37 PM

    I'm a 34 year old male having a similar surgery in a few weeks, except I'll be having laminectomy of two vertebrae, and my extrusion is 8mm x 11 mm , with another broad-based protrusion of 5mm at L4-L5. I was a little surprised at first that your surgeon was recommending surgery considering the extrusion's comparatively small size, but it sounds like it must be in a location that is causing more significant problems for you than mine are. If the surgeon is unclear on the nature of the mass from your MRI, I imagine that the surgery probably has exploratory value for you as well.

    In any case, if you feel rushed, there is no reason why you can't delay the surgery in order to gather more information and perhaps seek a second opinion. This is your body, and you have to deal with the recovery and any long-term consequences, so I would strongly recommend taking as much time to get comfortable as you need (and can stand) if this is not an emergency situation.

    Best of luck on your surgery and recovery!

    Welcome to Spine-Health
    Please click on link for helpful information!

    /s/ Rossie
  • I had my discectomy at L5-S1 on the left 10 days ago. I also happen to be a neurosurgical PA. My leg is still hurting from the nerve being messed with. I'm going to give it a few more days. If it continues as it is I am going to take another steroid pack. No incisional pain. From what I have bee told so many times, it's getting past the 6-week mark and continuing to walk that is key. Although at the moment I am frustrated and my family is tired of me having surgeries ( I had a 2-level fusion in my neck in February), I remain hopeful and positive. Medical people are not the most patient or best of patients and I'm use to being very active. I am on here because it is comforting t hear about the recovery of others and to ease so fear if I can. Keep posting. Stay brave!!
  • I was scheduled for a 3 hour procedure but I was done in an hour. I was also scheduled to stay in the hospital for a few days and I was home in about 6 hours after surgery.
    I did not feel rushed it was completely my call (with my wife helping).
    It was disc material, I was up and walking to the bathroom within an hour and a half doing a few stairs within a few hours and best thing I have some strength in my left leg and foot!
    My left leg is weaker than the right but it's too be expected after all had been asleep for 44 days and I am walking better than I have on along time.
    I'm optimistic as I seem allot better but I need to build back some strength.
    Just for the record I'm 41, 6' and 165 pounds in good shape when this happened and for the first time in a long time I feel as though I will be there again soon!

    Rossie, the mass measured in cm, not mm so it was large, good luck with the surgery and I hope you feel at least as good as I do post op.

    Jlex, not allot I can tell you with the experience you have and the resources you must have available except good luck and stay positive.

    I am still on allot of drugs but I will document all of this and post it up in a few days.
  • JlexJJlex Posts: 4
    edited 08/21/2015 - 10:20 PM
    Sorry to say that I have had the complication of a seroma. It is a fluid-filled pocket that forms with certain patients & can lead to draining, either in the OR or the office, depending on the severity. With me & my impatience, I was begging someone in our office to PLEASE DRAIN IT so my leg pain would leave. No one would & my boss, who performed the surgery , was out (bc of his own med issues). The thing was like the size of an egg, it wouldn't go away & was making me miserable despite all of my icing, & 2 attempt to pull fluid off of it. Searing hot-poker in the leg!! I was finally told to lay down & DO nothing for 2 weeks!! What mom can do that?! Anyway. I've turned (according to my 11--yr-old, an ape. I use my feet for everything I can't pick up from the floor). For me, I have really laid low, let things go, & I'm happy to say that doing absolutely nothing was key. I still hurt late in the evenings after going up & down the stairs, but just that 10 days made a huge difference. I've been avid at running, yoga, Pilates & General hyperactive housewife/mom stuff. Plus, I ran down a hill to get out of a very bad storm when 2 weeks after, while we were on vacation.

    SERIOUSLY: Give it a rest! I have been so depressed with my stifled activities & believing no one can do things properly in the house that I caused a complication. At 4 weeks Bert (the egg shaped fluid-accumulation in my tissue that would not leave) is finally, slowly, seeing its way out of my life. I thought I woud be different from my patients, I guess. And for the most part, that is true. Most people follow the rules, I guess. I just hope I can temper the urge to exercise! I'm gaining some weight bc the only thing I can really enjoy is flood food! Still ice-packing, laying a lot more low, & getting a lot better
Sign In or Register to comment.