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

spinal leak

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:19 AM in Chronic Pain

Decompressive lumbar laminectomy with bilateral foraminotomies at l3 through s1 left-sided diskectomy l4-l5 with intraoperative nerve monitoring.First day after surgery nurse got me up to walk and my left leg was not working right.Doctor said it was pinched nerve.Was discharged after five days without any further explanation
One week later I was back in the hospital with a spinal leak and severe pain in my left leg.Doctor operated again to stop the leak.Left leg still not working and again told it was a pinched nerve and discharged me to go home.
A week later same thing,severe leg pain and another spinal leak.Operated on and leg still not working right.Doctor said it is swelling in the nerve and would take a long time to heal.
I decided to get another opinion,after several attempts I am not having any luck finding another doctor to take me as a patient.When they see my latest mri indacating a spinal leak they tell me they can't help me.
Has anyone else had this problem, or am I not going about this the wright way. Still in pain and not walking. Need help.


  • sorry for your pain, i had a disc leaking when i had aproceedure done on my neck,know how i knew? the stuff they were injecting into my disc was cold,and as i was awake during the procedure,i felt it come out,i told the doc about it,and he cut the procedure a little short,kinda funny feelin i tell ya!
    I hope yu find a doc to take ya in! luck to ya
    welcome to the forum!
    William Garza
    Spine-Health Mod

    Welcome to Spine-Health

  • after my fusion in may, the dr told me he accidently hit the spine chord and caused a leak of fluid. he patched it up with a glue and said if i had problems i would have to go back to hospital to have more surgery. thank god i have not had a problem,. do you also have headaches/ he told me this was the most common problem
    I have 4 fusions from L5-3, the latest last May '12 where they fixed my disc that broke.They went through my side this time. I take 40 mg of oxycontin 4x a day and 4 fenatyl lollipops 300 micro gms 4x a day.
  • sorry to say but ive had a headache ongoing for a decade,it never goes,some low,some hard,but always there,other factors add to it, meds lack of sleep,my doc touched on the spinal cord in a nother procedure,wooo,fuuunnnnnkkkeee feeling.
    William Garza
    Spine-Health Mod

    Welcome to Spine-Health

  • I had very bad headaches when I stood up,they went away when I would lay down.I don't think I have a leak anymore.I would like to find out if the leak is what caused my leg to be partialy paralyzed. I guess if they cut the dura it is possible. But the Doctor won't tell you if he did.Thanks for your reply.
  • YES!

    Possibly find a hospital that has a consortium of surgeons who can all sit down and discuss your case.

    Gary said:
    Has anyone else had this problem
  • While having a facet injection, I suffered a dural puncture not long ago. Oh, I had a terrible headache as soon as I moved off the table, and told the nurse. Like her, I just thought it was the way my head was positioned on the table for this, the longest time ever spent yet for a facet injection. After we got home, I could not put my head even up against the pillow, the pain was excruciating. I had never heard of this before, and assumed it would eventually go away.

    By the next day (Wed.) it was worse, so I called and the nurse told me to drink caffeinated liquids I did and that didn't help, it just continued to worsen. And when I "tried" to get up and move, it was much worse. I wanted somebody to shoot me, I hurt all over anyway and then had my darn head to contend with also. But, I have to say, they did get me on Friday for a blood patch, another procedure new to me. But,I was just so happy to get in so I didn't spend the entire weekend in such pain.

    According to my PM Dr., who did the procedure, the leakage causes a decrease in CSF pressure and volume, and that leads to like a traction on these pain-sensitive structures when in an upright position. So, that is why I wanted to lay down, not sit up.

    So, they collected blood from my both my arms, said they couldn't get enough from one, and they injected it back into the epidural space around the site of the spinal tap and my understanding is then that the epidural bleeding should start to clot over the dural, preventing CSF leakage into the epidural space. I thought he said he put it the same place I had the L4-5, I had the injections in the L3-4, L4-5 and L5-S1, plus Epidurals.........same places. I didn't care, I just wanted to get better, so I went straight home to bed!

    I later read and think he said that post dural punction headaches (PDPH) occur in about 10% to 40% of patients who have a lumbar puncture and that its symptoms can be severe and incapacitating. And it is possible that in a PDPH, a patient may be completely incapacitated and confined to bed. I can see where that could easily happen to someone should they not be taken care of properly.

    And so, as my Dr. told me, I learned the epidural blood patch is the treatment of choice for postdural puncture headache. This was and is all new to me!

    I am so sorry you are having problems, Gary. I don't know if that would be related to the problems you are having with your legs, but I've had so many injections to no avail, only to leave me with more and "other" problems I never had before, so nothing would surprise me. I have not much feeling anymore amd a few other problems I think are as a result of injections, but I cannot prove it.

    I do hope you find some answers.

    Ranchhand, I still have headaches now and then also, just since that incidence........but nothing like before my hemorrhagic stroke in 2001, I had terrible headaches before that, and then was put on BP med, never had been on meds before, never had high BP before, but they had not idea why I stroked out....only came up "Silent Hypertension", as a diagnosis.......

    ..........but never came up with a true medical diagnosis as to why I would hemorrhage at age 53, except strokes are in my family, but I would have never imagined that I would be working one Friday, out that night with some band member friends of ours, after a gig, at a casino, go back to the hotel and have a stroke! Then walk around for 5 days before a MRI detected a small right thalamic hemorrage......... Wow, you never know, guys, take care,

  • What is it with docs and puncturing the spinal sack??!!?? I have had 6 punctures over the past 7 years. Caused by injections, surgery, even spinal taps.

    The last puncture was this past christmas from a "simple" spinal tap. I begged and pleaded with my doc about going ahead and doing a block on me immediately after the tap. He said NO. I knew I was in for it when I got the famous headache,dizziness and shakes. There is nothing like a spinal headache and I feel for ya on that. I had to be firm with this new Doc and finally got my way after 2 weeks of misery.

    He put me in the hospial and did the patch. I was there for more than 6 hours. He finally agreed I was a rare case and didn't want to chance me opening back up. Everytime I have to get injections I stay for at least 4-8 hours afterwards.

    A little advice...be persistant with your doc. I had to be. I hope you get a patch and it works for you. God Bless!!
  • HI everybody, my wife went in for a Laminectomy 4 years ago and ended up with a leak. She came home after about one day in the hospital. While home she had nausea and a severe headache. Every time she got up it got worse. She called the Dr. and went back to the hospital. They did a bloodpatch but it didnt work. The Dr. put her back in surgery to patch things up. He sent her home after a couple days and she had the leak again. I couldnt lift her so we called an ambulance. He operated on my wife again to patch her up. The leak happened 3 times. The last patch job, when she came out of sugery, the Dr. kept her in the hospital for 10 days. My wife had to lay upside down on a slight angle for about a week. THis drove her nuts, but finally she stopped leaking. I hear about leaks more and more so I dont think it is as rare as Drs. tell you it is........hoot
  • That sucks.

    I went in for my Discectomy/Laminectomy/F****tomy??? and 5 days later I was in the hospital. I couldn't sit up or stand up for more than 5 minutes. It kept getting worse, on the 5th day I got in the shower and my head felt like it was being squeezed and exploding at the same time. The ride to the ER was pure HELL, I was about to throw myself out of the car. It was the first time my wife has ever seen me cry. My wife dropped me at the doors and I thought I couldn't make the walk to triage. Luckily there was a guy there that got me a wheel chair. I couldn't talk, whenever I opened my mouth I screamed. When I finally laid down on a bed the pain eased but was still intense, no amount of dilaudid and morphine was helping. They admitted me. I was there for 3 days before the doc that worked there told me I was fine and was going to send me home. My wife called my NS and gave it to him good. He came up, went over my symptoms, checked my incision and said even though there is visual sign of leakage, he suspects there is leaking on the inside, he inverted my bed, told me to stay there for 3 days like that, only getting up to hit the head. Lo and behold 3 days later it went away. Thank Frickin' God! He said it was probably a slow leak and when I stood up or sat up all the fluid in my skull drained down (didn't even know that is possible), leaving my head empty (HA!).

    He talked about the possibility of opening me back up and doing a bloodpatch. I was absolutely against that. Thank God it didn't have to come to that.

    Had I went home when the other idiot doc was going to kick me out I would have killed myself. There is noway anyone can live with pain like that.

    I feel for you, I really do.
This discussion has been closed.
Sign In or Register to comment.