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numbness in thigh

salty444ssalty444 Posts: 149
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:43 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
What would be causing numbness in my left thigh from knee up to hip on the outer portion?

I had this before surgery and Surgeon said it was unrelated to l5/s1. He said he will keep an eye on it but honestly it seems to be worsening.

Could this be coming from another disc?


  • Hi Salty,

    IMO, it could be related to both pre/post surgical inflammation - pre surgery it could be the muscles/nerves reacting to the inflammatory proteins a herniated disc leaks, post surgery it could be the inflammation caused by all the manhandling during surgery. I

    f you have ever watched any type of orthopedic procedure on TV, it's like a Mack truck is being run over the patient. Jot down how it goes from day to day w/ the numbness, does it get better; if so what were you doing or not doing - same thing if it worsens during the course of the day. Bring this w/ you to your followup appointment so that the doc can see the progression or regression of symptoms - this can help he/she figure out what the problem is and address it.

    If the numbness suddenly worsens or cause weakness that affect your ability to walk without falling, or if issues w/ bowel/bladder incontinence/continence start (loss of control or retention of urine - constipation at this point is almost inevitable due to the narcotic pain meds) get to the nearest ER as this is a red flag that immediate attention is required. It's hard to be a patient patient, but, take it slow and try to rest for the oh-so-slow healing of spinal surgery you'll be facing for some time going foward.

    Hope this helps,
  • Thank you again pfd
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  • One thing you may want to look at a dermatome chart. It's interesting to show what vertabrae area hits what sensory area of the leg/arm/etc.

  • salty,

    I am 5 weeks post op l5-s1 surgery. Decompression and interbody fusion with rods/screws. That particular nerve was mangled and is still causing pain in left leg. I won't go into my surgery details or pre surgery specifics.

    But, that said I awoke with the same numbness in the same area. Not quite up to hip though, and a little around the right knee area. I think it to be the nerve now doing it's thing after being freed up. Not 100% sure on that. Hope it diminishes as the nerve heals. The problem on updating is this nerve may take a long time to heal if ever (hope not).

    So, I think in "my opinion only" it could be related to the surgery. Like quoted above may be other reasons. But, I had no numbness there prior to surgery.

    Good Luck,

  • Hi Ken,

    Had my fusion @ same area as you, before surgery I had the whole bag of spine 'fun' - electric jolts down the whole leg, aches, pain, numbness, drop foot - can't tell you how many times I almost fell with the bum leg/foot. I'm about 10 months out and am happy to say drop foot has resolved, no more aches/pains, still have a bit of numbness at top of foot and little toe, but it continues to improve. In addition to the walking, I did calf raises off a step (hold onto banister), walked around barefoot as much as I could so the foot could freely flex, warm water soaks followed by massage and tried picking up pencils, washcloth, small rubber ball with my toes. Basically, I exercised the foot to get blood flowing to get the nerve 'wake up'. I also continue to take a calcium supplement (has D3 & other goodies for bone growth) as well as B complex since some think it helps w/ nerve healing. It's said nerves heal at the rate of approx. 1 mm/day, I finally started to feel a significant improvement in nerve symptoms about 4 months out and am very hopeful the numbness will resolve sometime down the road.

    Hope this helps,
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  • I woke up from surgery with the same numbness and my neurosurgeon wasn't very concerned and said to give it time. Since it didn't interfere with any function of my leg, I went along with the NS and just monitored it as the days, weeks, months and years went by. After about 2 years I regained the majority of feeling in that area. As it healed it would itch or hurt, but not so bad that it overshadowed anything. It was more of just "something curious" for me. It has been nearly 4 years now and there's still a tad bit of difference in the sensory perception in that area, but I don't notice it unless I purposely touch the area to check.

  • 3 weeks post surgery-numbness in left thigh
  • Not gounto lie. ..I feel so good it's as if I never had. Surgery. My left thigh is numb as heck
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