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Leg pain still here after microdiscetomy!

Hi all,

I underwent mincrodiscetomy surgery on Wednesday where I had my L5 disc removed. I was placed on bed rest for 2 days due to a dual year which caused me to have a spinal fluid leak. I have since then returned home & have been walking around when I can & resting also! I have noticed that I have all of a sudden been getting my sharp sciatic nerve pains down my leg again, although it is nowhere near as bad as it was, I am just wondering if this was normal & if anybody else had experienced this? I did notice after my surgery it seemed to of gone but I'm not sure if that was just because I was on bed rest so wasn't moving around so I am quite worried now that it didn't work!

Any help would be appreciated


  • Hannah,

    I had surgery (all the stuff in my signature) done on June 29. It wasn't until several weeks later that the impinged nerve "woke up". And it wasn't very happy when it woke up, either. I've been having pretty yucky nerve pain in my left leg ever since. In my case, the doc says he expects it'll be pretty painful for about three months. He's given me a three month supply of Neurontin, which has done a decent job of dulling the stabbing pain in my leg.

    Your best bet is to talk to your doc and make sure that the pain you're experiencing is appropriate for your particular condition. In spite of the fact that it's normal for some people's recoveries, it could also be abnormal for yours, indicating something that needs to be taken care of.

    Short answer: it could be normal, but it might not be. Get to your doc. :)

    Best Wishes,
    L3-4 - L5-S1 Lumbar fusion (3 levels)
    L3, 4, 5 Laminectomies
    L3 - S1 bilateral partial facet resections with grade 1 osteotomies
    L2 left hemilaminectomy
    L2-L3 left foraminotomy
    L3 -S1 posterior instrumentation (looks really cool in the avatar xray)
  • Thank you I will speak to my doctor when I have my follow up app :) I'm just worrying I think as I do with everything but I'm just praying & hoping I haven't gone through surgery & all the recovery of the spinal fluid leak for nothing! Only being 23, I really just want to recover & be well again :( that is really all I seem to have though the usual stabbing sharp pain when I move or sit up! When I'm actually stood on it I'm perfectly fine where as this time last week I couldn't do that without sitting down after about 30 seconds!

    Hope yours is sorted soon too & you're pain free!

    Thanks :)
  • I'm on day 2 after the microdiscectomy surgery. I still get nerve pain shooting down my leg. Doctors prescribed gabapentin and told me that the inflammation is going to be really bad the next 2 days due to nerve decompression. Hang in there! Hope to hear an update soon.
    Microdiscectomy and laminectomy L4/5 August 12, 2015
  • rocker2000rrocker2000 Posts: 15
    edited 08/15/2015 - 12:26 PM
    obviously check with your dr, but still early days

    the analogy is if you drop a brick (herniated disc) on your foot (spinal nerve), you can take the brick away, but the foot will still be sore

    in the case of spinal nerves however they are far more sensitive, more easily annoyed and take lot longer to recover

    1994 - herniated disc l4/l5 l5/s1 - sciatica - l4/l5 discectomy
    2011 - l4/l5/ l5/s1 herniated disc/scar tissue - sciatica - discectomy
    now - recurrent disc protrusion l5/s1, lots of back pain, considering fusion/adr

  • Yeah I was the same. Had my MD 3 months ago now.

    My leg pain came back a day or two after surgery and was pretty bad for a few weeks. Then at week 6 I did my first physio class and the day after my leg pain flared up again for a couple weeks. It's all part of the recovery journey.

    I'm now 3 months out from surgery and my leg is feeling pretty good in general. Getting the occasional leg pain and still can't straighten it completely with the leg raise test, but it's getting better week by week. I'm back to running and lifting (carefully :D).

    It's a long road for some, just stay positive if you can.
  • Thanks for all your replies :) today is the first day I haven't really had any leg pain & I've been pain killer free all day! All I have is an achey feeling in my lower back but apart from that I'm fine :) I was at a wedding all day yesterday mostly sat down apart from the obvious having to move to go outside or to the bar but i was expecting to wake up in agony! But I feel like it's really helped me. Fingers crossed I stay this way!'

    Hope you're all recovering well :)
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,849
    Spinal surgery takes time to recover.
    You will be going through many different phases of recovery. You will more than likely experience a number of ups and downs.

    This is all relatively normal.

    But during anytime, you have a new problem that lasts more than a couple of days, it never hurts to call your doctor, if for anything , peace of mind.

    The total recovery period can be anywhere from 3 months to 18 months. There is no golden rule. So much depends on how long you were

    • Dealing with the problem before surgery
      What was the type of surgery and how long was it.
      Your pre/during and post physical therapy time
      How much you adhere to all the limitations and restrictions
      That you do NOT overdo it
      And probably some more
    Time heals so much... Give it time, Dont reush anything
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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