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L4-L5 Herniated Disc, Soon To Get Foraminotomy. Same experience, anyone?

alpahlowaalpahlow Posts: 3
edited 11/27/2013 - 7:18 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I was rear ended in a car accident on 1/25/13 and herniated my L4-L5. I have had insane low back pain and radiating pain down my right leg all the way to my foot for 10 months at this point. I have had 10 months of trying physical therapy, chiropractic care two times a week (traction, electric stim, infrared laser, adjustments, etc), exercise, weight loss, massage therapy, yoga, stretching, and finally two epidurals that did not work at all. I'm desperate and tired of being in pain every day of my life. I'm only 21 years old. I feel like I'm missing out on my life. My neurosurgeon just recommended to me an L4-L5 foraminotomy and possible microdiscectomy. Has anyone here had this experience like me? Has anyone had this procedure and had success? I'm so afraid. I have no idea what to expect in the recovery of this surgery or if it will be successful for me. I can't sleep anymore just from the pain. I know this surgery needs to happen because I have no other options and I can't live like this anymore. Please somebody tell me there is hope.


  • PaulPPaul Posts: 730
    edited 11/28/2013 - 12:52 PM
    I'm sorry to read of your troubles. From what you described, it sure sounds like you have exhausted all of the conservative protocols. The surgeons do like to see that happen before they even think about operating.

    You need to start preparing your mind for the reality of a compromised lumbar disc. Once a disc is compromised, it will always be compromised. This means you need to be accepting of having more problems with it in the future if you subject it to stresses. If you want to minimize that possibility, then the cold hard truth is that you should minimize stresses on the spine.

    What do I mean by stresses? Things like weight lifting, running, jumping, lifting heavy things, twisting. I know you are young, and that is good for recovery, but it also means you have a long future to consider.

    I'm going to send you a link to some helpful info that will help you understand the anatomy of the spine, pathologies, and possible solutions. Look for it here in your pm inbox.
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
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