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Microdiscectomy - is it worth it?

Hi there,

I have had a herniated L5-S1 disc pressing on my sciatic nerve for almost 2 years now. I have tried conservative methods, and they do work ... to a certain extent. However, I am seeing lots of sports people (Andy Murray, Tiger Woods, John Terry etc.) undergoing microdiscectomy procedures and playing competitive sports again. Also, I am worried of permanent nerve damage if I keep my sciatic nerve impinged for much longer.

The sciatica pain can be kept away with some stretches/exercises, but I still have localized pain in my lower back. This is manageable, and if it does flair up, the use of NSAIDs alleviate the pain. However, I would give anything to get back to 100%.

Also, worth mentioning that I believe the disc herniated due to trauma in a car accident, so not sure if it's related to posture/core strength.

With this information, is it worth me going under the knife for a microdiscectomy?

I have wrote a few topics in this forum but nobody ever replies. Please can somebody help me as I'm at my wits end.

Thanks,
Scott
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Comments

  • I had a Discectomy at L5-S1 on October 30th. For me personal I do not regret my decision of doing the surgery. My recovery has been long and hard. I ha 've also had a few bumps in the road. I am only 20 so I did the surgery to feel like a normal 20 year old again. If you feel like surgery is your best chance at getting your life back then you should. Do what you feel is right so you can be 100% again. I pray that you will feel better very soon!!!
    L5-S1 Emergency PLIF Revision May 26th 2015
    L5-S1 PLIF May 22nd 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Feb 27th 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Oct 30th 2014.
    Ashley
  • Can I ask what kind of discectomy you had? How was your recovery? Do you now feel 100%?
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  • I had a left sided discectomy. My disc hernation was centrally herniated. I have nerve pain in both my legs but left leg was worse. So after talking to my neurosurgeon he felt that a left sided discectomy would be the best option. My recovery has been slow. I walk everyday some days more than others. I let pain be my guide that is the best advice I received while I was in the hospital. I am sadly not 100% yet. I believe I rehernaited my disc. I would be shocked if I did not. Before surgery I could not control my bladder. Ever since surgery I have had no problems!! I do not regret doing this surgery at all!!
    L5-S1 Emergency PLIF Revision May 26th 2015
    L5-S1 PLIF May 22nd 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Feb 27th 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Oct 30th 2014.
    Ashley
  • Thank you for sharing. I suppose I am not bad enough where I can't control my bladder, so I am not sure surgery is required. Most days I don't feel much pain, it's just I can't play sports and if I knew surgery would fix this then I'd do it in a heartbeat, but I'm scared I may make the problem worse, when deep down I know I could get by a relatively pain-free life if I just keep doing what I'm doing, albeit be an impaired life
  • Have you gotten a 2nd opinion? I . Went to see both a neurosurgeon who did my surgery and a Orthopaedic spine surgeon. Do what you think is best for you. Did you schedule surgery?
    L5-S1 Emergency PLIF Revision May 26th 2015
    L5-S1 PLIF May 22nd 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Feb 27th 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Oct 30th 2014.
    Ashley
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  • scottyboy8sscottyboy8 Posts: 15
    edited 01/25/2015 - 9:15 PM
    I haven't scheduled surgery yet. If I do, it will be with a neurosurgeon based on the opinions I have read on here.
  • I am so thankful that I chose to go with a neurosurgeon. Have you seen a surgeon yet? I pray that you are doing well!!!
    L5-S1 Emergency PLIF Revision May 26th 2015
    L5-S1 PLIF May 22nd 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Feb 27th 2015.
    L5-S1 Discectomy Oct 30th 2014.
    Ashley
  • I'd ask a specialist if leaving the nerve compressed is going to cause permanent damage or not. I had surgery to avoid permanent damage but don't know yet if I left it too long. Time will tell.

    I don't regret any of my surgeries but the recovery has definitely been harder than I thought it would be.

    Veronica
    Microdiscectomy L5S1 January 2014
    Microdiscectomy L5S1 March 2014
    Fusion L5S1 11th August 2014
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