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2 Weeks Post-Op L5-S1 360 Fusion - Scoliosis since childhood New Member

Hi everyone: 

I’m 33 year old female I have a significant double curve Scoliosis 58’ degrees bottom curve and a 44’ top curve. My Scoliosis was diagnosed in my childhood. For years I’ve have chronic neck, back and left hip pain. The past year I’ve had chronic left leg pain with numbness and tingling 24/7 down my leg, foot and toes. Tried PT, brace, shots and chiropractor treatments with no relief. I was advised to take care of the leg pain and continue to monitor my scoliosis which will most likely need a correction surgery at some time down the road. 

I’m 2 weeks post-op from a anterior and posterior spinal fusion at L5-S1, for my left leg pain. This is my first surgery and the pain was extremely intense and very hard. I was in the hospital 5 days and now am feeling a lot better both mentally and physically. 

My left leg though has been having a heavy/weighted feeling and I’m wondering if anyone has had the same symptoms after surgery also my right foot feels numb as well. Also walking around has still been hard I’ve been having to use a walker and a cane. Recovery has been hard and I’m wondering how else was recovery for somebody else with the same surgery. Just walking around a bit from my room to the bathroom makes me tired and prior to surgery I was in good health. I also didn’t tolerate the pain medication well when I got home it made me sick to my stomach and very dizzy. My Dr said to take 1/2 instead norco and a muscle relaxer as needed with zofran also I have lidocaine patches that have helped with the pain around my incision area (stomach and back). Also daily care like showering I have to use a chair and have been feeling exhausted even after 


Any advice would be greatly appreciated. 

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Comments

  • Hi channel

    Welcome to Spine-health

    I had L4-S1 TLIF and what you are experiencing post-op is about what I experienced.

    Surgery has a major affect on nerves and this can take time to resolve.

    I had numbness in different areas to you and some of it has subsided and some hasn't as yet.  I am approx. 15 weeks post op.

    The exhaustion feeling is something to become friends with for a while.  Major surgery, needs major healing and your body is preserving its energy for just that!  My surgeon told me to listen to my body and that is what he meant.  Don't fight it, just be kind to yourself and rest, while others take the strain.

    Be careful during showers because this is where I came close to fainting on a number of occasions.  Do not lock the door and tell somebody you are showering if you don't want them in the room with you.

    My motto:- 'Walk, rest and play'.  If that walk is just to the bathroom for now, praise yourself and increase that when you can.  Little and often at the moment will really help stop the stiffness setting in.

    I have added two links below to help new members with information and these also contain the forum rules.  There is lots of material to research that will give you the power of knowledge.

    Welcome to Spine Health


    AJ 
    AJGormit
    Spine-Health Moderator
    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015
    L4-S1 TLIF with decompression June 2017
  • Thank you AJ! This is my first surgery ever and it’s definitely taken a toll on me. Did you experience ‘heavyness’ In either of your legs? I’m due back to work when I reach 6-8 weeks and I’m pretty nervous I have a long commute and no option to work at home it is a desk job but it’s hard to see how I’ll function when I get so tired doing daily activities now. 

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  • Hi cchanel:

    Two weeks out is such a hard time, perhaps the hardest! I had scoliosis also from childhood, did nothing about it and recently (July) had a full fusion from T3-Sacrum and then pelvic fixation. My curves were the opposite of yours! my Thoracic was 55 and lumbar 45. At two weels out I was having a horrible time. I had numbness everywhere including the legs and feet. You have only been home for one week, right? I was using the walker probably just that first week. I was very weak too. My nerves or muscles would hurt, get numb and then itch! But I don't recall thinking they were 'heavy'. Can you message a PA or someone? I'm more confused about the fact that your scoliosis is that severe and they chose to only fuse the bottom....why and how will that help? I guess because you're so young, they don't think it will get worse? I've been reading tons on scoliosis of this magnitude and it all seems to imply that curves that large will only get worse as you age. I waited until I was 54, but sort of wish I'd done it in my 40's. They say to wait until the pain is bad, but it sounds like yours already was. Goodness, best of luck you you and hopefully this will work for a good long while! Things will improve in the third week for sure. Take care,

    Noreen

  • Hi cchanel:


    I had L5-S1 fusion along with laminectomy on L3 and L4 due to spinal stenosis.  I went in with numbness in my right foot. I came out of surgery feeling worse than when I went in.  Numbness still there on right but even more numb on left.  I have feeling but it is greatly muffled.  From what I have read, this is not uncommon after surgery.  My understanding is that due to the surgery the area gets greatly inflamed.  Due to that inflamation the nerves are irritated.  

    Interestingly, my doc told me NOT to take any anti-inflamation meds.  He, and some other health professionals I have spoken to, have told me that the anti-inflamatories slow the healing process.  

    Hope this helps.


    Jeff

  • Hi cchanel:


    I had L5-S1 fusion along with laminectomy on L3 and L4 due to spinal stenosis.  I went in with numbness in my right foot. I came out of surgery feeling worse than when I went in.  Numbness still there on right but even more numb on left.  I have feeling but it is greatly muffled.  From what I have read, this is not uncommon after surgery.  My understanding is that due to the surgery the area gets greatly inflamed.  Due to that inflamation the nerves are irritated.  

    Interestingly, my doc told me NOT to take any anti-inflamation meds.  He, and some other health professionals I have spoken to, have told me that the anti-inflamatories slow the healing process.  

    Hope this helps.


    Jeff

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  • Thanks everyone I followed up with the Dr and said everything is normal and I'm doing very well.  The pain has gotten a lot better from being at the hospital. I haven't tolerated a lot of my medication well so I feel sick to my stomach a lot they prescribed zofran which has helped but I'm so tired of feeling sick to my stomach. Also the Dr decided it was best to take care of my left leg pain and monitor my scoliosis there is a high chance it'll grow but they said since I can tolerate the back pain they said I could have severe nerve damage to my leg that would become unbearable as time goes on so surgery had to be done now. Has anyone still been in pain and gone back to work? How do you manage getting back to work and a routine?

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