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2 weeks post laminectomy, I have a few questions

Hello, im 31 and have a terrible spine. Went through a year and half of terrible pain before i decided to get it checked out. Turns out I had borderline CES at L4-5 and the surgeon was surprised I wasnt paralyzed and got me into surgery very quickly. Also  have a minor herniation at l5-s1 but he said its not an issue yet.  ALso DDD, early arthritis, and he said I have an extremely narrow canal for my spinal cord top to bottom.
 I had l4-l5 Laminectomy/discectomy on march 2nd, and i had to go back into surgery march 5th because my surgeons assistant broke the drain off in my back when he tried to remove it. Im here to tell you that was the worst pain I ever felt in my life when he yanked on that thing 3 times. Almost barbaric! I begged him to stop.

I had a few general questions to ask others who have gone through this.
1. I have a lump at the top of my incision, it goes away if im layng down but always there if sitting or standing. Feels too hard to be fluid. ANyone ever get that?

2. How long is it normal to take pain meds afterwards? I was sent home with percoset and slow release oxy but I only used it for about a week. The doc seemed to think I would need it for a month. Is that normal to need only a weeks worth?

3. I get occasional zings of pain in the old affected areas on right hip/butt/foot but its mostly pain free. On the flip side I am getting the same pain on the opposite side(left) but I never had any pain there pre surgery.  its minimal but fairly constant. Wondering if this has occured for anyone else and if it goes away after awhile.

In the meantime I get my stitches out in 3 days. Spend most days on netflix and going for walks but I feel pretty good compared to what I thought it would be at less than 2 weeks.
I need to get back to work but its a demanding job so I have to be careful


  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 971


    I've had two lumbar fusion surgeries and on the first surgery I was off pain meds from the time I left the hospital and on the second surgery I was on time release Oxy for 4 horrible months due to nerve pain.   The fact that you are off the pain meds in less than 2 weeks is GOOD.  You are likely to experience various aches and pains as your nerves heal... it's perfectly normal.  In addition to the damage done during the time the nerves were crushed in your spine due to your DDD they also suffered some trauma during the surgery.  Nerves heal VERY slowly and are very unpredictable you will likely have lots of ups and downs with them for quite some time. You might even experience some significant flare up of your nerves at some point... it sometimes happens.   Walking is really GOOD for your recovery keep it up EVERY day as much as you can reasonably tolerate.  Overall you sound like you are doing really good... don't worry about the job thing for now... get your health back first... it's more important.

    Harry - 65 year old male...
    PLIF L4-L5-S1 due to disc degeneration... May 23, 2013
    PLIF L5-S1 due to failed fusion and broken screw... Jan 19, 2015
    Microdiscectomy, decompression L3-L4 due to herniated disc... Jan 19, 2015
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    hello the_goob!
    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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  • TY for the response Hvills. Sounds like I am ahead of the curve. Tomorrow I get the stitches out, hopefully that doesnt hurt too bad, ive never had stitches before. (not that I havent had wounds deserving of them:)
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