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What post-op care?!?

10 days ago I had a discectomy with laminotomy and who knows what else (not fusion). l5-S1. Disc had very large bulge all the way around with a herniated section that had blown bits and pieces that doc said were calcified. He also said he could see all the way through my spine from back to my belly. Don't know what that means at all. He also said my vertebra are pretty much sitting on each other with very little disc left. I'm in hideous back pain. Leg and butt pain are gone but I am miserable. He said I shouldn't really be needing norco at this point but I can't imagine living with this level of pain. He has had no suggestions on what to do next ... PT? ... Steroids ... More surgery ... Exercise. I feel abandoned and don't know where to turn. Am I just being impatient? Likely to feel less pain as time passes?


  • Typically, they say that you can see improvement up to one year after surgery. I would think that he should have some suggestion beyond pain medications to relieve your pain, but you are only 10 days post op, and so that is very soon. I had a discectomy in February and really I stayed in a bit of pain for months after, but my motor deficits went away so I could walk again, it's really hard to tell at 10 days out what the outcome is going to be. At ten days out, I still had many of the same neuro symptoms (tingling, rubber band sensation around toes). Most of it has over time gone away.
  • Thanks for the encouraging words and the reminder that this isn't going to heal overnight. I slept well last night so, of course, the world looks a little brighter.
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  • I had a L4-5-S1 laminectomy/discectomy in February of this year that re-herniated at one level. I felt good for about a week maybe 12 weeks post-op then it was downhill again. Most of the leg pain had disappeared but the lumbar was still extremely painful (perhaps more than before). Talked to my neuro who said fusion was the next option so I did that in August, I'm 8 weeks post-op from that and just starting to feel a little better.
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    welcome to spine-health
    please click on link for helpful information!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

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