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Post-Op Microdiscectomy

My mom had a microdiscectomy three days ago - L2-L3 for knee buckling, no pain, just can't support any weight and needs a walker to get around. There was no pain pre-op, and other than a little shock when she is getting up from a chair, she has no pain now.

She is extremely depressed as she isn't seeing any signs of rejuvenation yet. Having nothing to get relief from - no pain, no numbness or tingling - is frustrating. She wants to know something is happening.

Can anyone please advise? She feels completely hopeless.


  • Yeah tell your mom to be patient and thankful to god and saints in heaven for not experiencing the pain most of the posters on here deal with on a daily basis. This should make her happy. Or try and read to her some of the stories in here. She will appreciate her situation more.
    Tell her she needs time and when I say time I don't mean a week or two or four. She needs much more to go back being a nearly normal person. Take care.
  • Honestly, she thinks she'd rather have pain and be able to move around freely than have no use of her leg. I realize it sounds trite to those with pain, but being inactive is sinking her into a deep hole of depression.
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  • Tell your mom he needs to have a lot of patience. In her case without pain it will take a good while to see results. How long was she not able to use her leg properly because of weakness and instability?
  • This started February 23rd of this year. She had the surgery April 13th. So less than two months.

    She is completely despondent - refusing to eat, drink, take medication, etc. She has even written "good-bye" emails to a couple of people.

    A visiting nurse is scheduled to come in later today. Hopefully she will have some answers.

    Thank you for your response.
  • Oh dear people do have some extreme reactions when they have to deal with something like this. Im so sorry your mom is finding it so difficult to deal with this. Did you try to to talk her into joining the forum here and chat with people that went through the same thing? It does help a lot mentally to talk about your problems with people that actually understand what you are on about when you say you can't feel your leg or your leg hurts.
    You should contact your gp maybe he will prescribe her some anti anxiety and anti depressants for a few days.
    What does the neurosurgeon say? Did you get in touch since surgery to explain these symptoms?
    I personally still don't understand her symptoms? Can she not feel her leg? Or her leg just won't function properly when she wants to walk?
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  • She has been prescribed an anti-anxiety medication and also a mood stabilizer. As soon as she starts to see some results, I think the tide will shift. Everyone is aware, but apparently there is no miracle cure for depression or restoration of a pinched nerve - both take time.

    She has not had numbness or pain with this. The pinched nerve strictly impacted her motor function, so the knee collapses/buckles out from under her. It was an instantaneous thing, so the change of lifestyle was drastic.

    I suggested she get on the boards here, but she isn't terribly computer savvy and is also tired of discussing the issue. So I'm doing the legwork, pun intended, and reporting back to her with my findings.

    Thank you for your support.
  • DanielCDanielC Posts: 155
    edited 04/18/2015 - 7:28 AM
    Yes indeed it takes time for a pinched nerve to heal. I also am sure that like you said the tide will shift drastically as soon as she will see improvement.
    In the meantime try and be supportive of your mom and tell her someone on the other side of the world sends her many hugs and says hi to her :). Tell her she needs to be patient with these kind of things.
    Take care.
  • StephanieBlackmanSStephanieBlackman Posts: 12
    edited 04/20/2015 - 4:01 AM
    Thank you so much, Daniel! That made her smile.
  • I'm glad we've managed to put a smile on her face.
    Too bad she isn't too computer oriented so she would spend some time chatting here. It would do her good.
    How is she feeling?
  • Hi there,

    I don't know about the specifics of your mom's situation, but what helped me when I was depressed was trying as best as possible to have a normal life -- invite friends over and order in and watch a movie. I feel like my worst days were the ones where I just sat around and watched TV, in stark contrast to what I felt like I was able to do before my disc herniation.

    It sounds like she's unable to shake it, so she might want to speak with a professional. She's been through a lot-- lack of knowledge about what to do, fear for the future -- it's normal to be depressed, but it sounds like it's time to call in the experts. Her mental health is important, and just as real as the physical health she seeks.

    If you're in the US, make sure your mom has this number: 1 (800) 273-8255, National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

    Wishing you all the best.
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