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Prolonged rest. Is it actually harmful?

I've posted on here a few times. I had herniation L5S1 2012 and microdiscectomy after conservative treatments failed (7 months). 3 and half weeks ago, bent down to pick something up and searing pain in right leg (same as last time). I've been to specialist and waiting for MRI. I keep reading that prolonged rest is not advised and have been advised to have relative rest. I'm on 75mg codeine every 4 hours and 150mg pregablin. The problem is that standing or walking or stiting in any capacity is absolute agony. I've tried to keep moving and force myself to walk for 5-10 mins per day. Every time I get home from my walk, I end up in tears, sweating, heaving and it takes me from 1-6 hours lying down for the pain to subside. I sat for 1 hour the other day and the pain was so horrendous, I thought I would pass out.

Should I be pushing through the pain and walking and sitting or is it better to rest? I'm so confused but want to do try anything to avoid surgery again (if possible). I also have physio 2x week and try to do leg stretches from my bed. Please can someone help?


  • To explain further, the pain is sharp, searing sciatica right into my foot. Pins and needles and numbness outside of foot and all but big toe. Very cold feet all the time. Pain started in my left leg and foot (to a much lesser degree) about a week ago. Can't stand in my tiptoes at all.
    I can't take antinflamatories due to past stomach ulcer and alethic to tramadol. What's the next strongest pain killers I could ask my doctor for as in too much pain to function.
  • In my opinion (not medical advice), it depends on the person and condition. Generally, if I remain active, I feel better. But sometimes there are days that I'm in too much pain to move, and the best thing for me is to lay in bed all day (as per Dr recommendation). If I were you, I'd contact the doctor managing your condition immediately and let him/her know what's going on. You should never ask for a (narcotic) painkiller, however, when you explain your situation, he/she may bump you up to something stronger and/or change your nerve medication. Good luck!
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,859
    What is prolonged rest?
    What is doing too much?

    Everyone is different so you could get a hundred different answers But would they apply to your situation?
    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
  • Lily2014LLily2014 Posts: 84
    edited 10/19/2015 - 12:23 AM
    Hi, thanks for your replies. I understand that every is different and this means different things for different people. I have been predominantly in bed for 3 and half weeks. What I'm trying to figure out is whether this is more harmful or whether I should still be walking and sitting even though this causes severe pain every day. I.e. which is potentially causing more damage? My doctor wants to see what the specialist says but waiting for my appointment.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,859
    can tell you if that is ok.

    Personally, I would be concerned. Anytime a person is basically bed-ridden, there are always possibilities of other type of problems being introduced, which have nothing to do with your original condition.

    I would not wait until you here what a specialist is going to say. Your current doctor should be more than capable of providing you with answers.
    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
  • Hi, thanks for all your comments. I've been to see the specialist and have herniated of L5S1 disc again which is causing pain so I have some answers to the cause and will be making a decision about whether to have another microdiscectomy again.
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