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L4 L5 dissectomy and numbness

hey there. 12 days post op. Incision site feels great. Most lower back pain all but disappeared. Some sore ness. The thing that really bothers me is the numb buttock, calf, ankle right side outside edge of foot and last three toes. Some numbness as well across the top of my foot as well. Deep pain in the calf and hamstring as well. I'm aware that it takes time to heal and all is pointing in the right direction with small hardly noticeable improvements. My question is really location of the numbness. What I have read is the areas that are numb aren't in any way related to the l4 l5 level and more related to the S1 area which is confusing to me. I'm sure there is a reasonable explanation. Any thoughts?  Also as with everyone else out there. How long does it take??!!!!!


  • I wouldn't worry about the S1 nerve comment. It sounds like incomplete or erroneous information. Check with your doctor.
    I just had the operation you're describing minus the numbness in upper part of leg - but there is some weakness there. I'd say the calf and hamstring were really tight for the first week and got better. The numbness went down the first two weeks and now continues to decrease very slowly with some times feeling more tingling than others. I'm 8 weeks out. I've read it can take 12-18 months to know your full range of recover from nerve damage - so it takes patience.
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,270
    hello dbcustom !
    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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  • helconhhelcon Nova Scotia Posts: 5
    Just wanted to see how you are making out? I have a major fragmented herniation at l4-l5 the fragments are pressing on my S1 nerve root which causes all the numbness you are speaking of. My butt, thigh, calf and foot have been numb for 6 months and I'm waiting for surgery. I'm supposed to go in 3 weeks. 
  • Now about a month and a few days out. Steri strips  have completely fallen off and the scar looks good( or so I'm told). Numbness seems to be decreasing ever so slightly. Still no back pain which is nice. Leg is still very weak but walking is better with not so much of a limp as before. Still i worry that the strength in the right leg is gone. Tiptoes on the right leg forget about it. I can however push a gas pedal so I'm hopeful that it's just a matter of time since it's the same motion? Also my right calf has a tendency to swell up a bit after being on my feet for a bit. This also concerns me. 
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