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Numbness after discectomy



  • Debbied67DDebbied67 Posts: 99
    edited 09/15/2014 - 5:12 AM
    Duplicate posts are not permitted on Spine Health. Please read the forum rules.
  • My L4-L5 decompression and micro- discectomy was on March 11th . Just three days ago, but I am scared of the numbness and my foot wanting to roll on me constantly. I pick my foot up and it wants to turn inward and feels very awkward when I try to hold it correctly. I have not had a great nights sleep yet ! But I know it's still short after surgery. Any help is appreciated. My Dr. Says its normal this soon after surgery for my symptoms.
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  • MorryM1986MMorryM1986 Posts: 1
    edited 07/11/2015 - 12:23 PM
    My husband underwent surgery 9 days ago - 04.19 - today he started feeling numbness.

    He got a herniated disc working in installing air conditioners about 12 years ago, and there was always minor lower back pain. then in Jan 2015 it got really bad, his left leg was numb all the time, he couldnt walk, lie down, anything. We had the pain med shots inserted in his back. Every day for five days. Helped only for those 24 hours. Then started on Oxy's, Percocets, Lyrica etc. The opiates helped a lot. He was able to function like a normal person except that combined with his anxiety meds, he was a little out of it (he calls them 'flashes'). So he hasnt worked for three months now. Medical insurance in our country wont cover your time out of work if its under three months, anyway.

    He tried going to a healing lady, she tried some stuff, no idea what, but she said if that doesnt work, she cant help him further, and he should do surgery. This was a lady who came highly recommended by a friend who's knee got blown up when he was in the army and he's gone through multiple surgeries world wide and is now walking, and he said that this healing lady helped him with the pain. Well, it didnt help my hubsand. we heard about Reiki and reflexology being a better option than surgery and narcotics, but my husband isn't wholly convinced by the heeby-jeeby stuff, and I am somewhere in between. We never tried either

    The microdiscectomy went well, 2:40 hours (Dr said it would take 45m) on Sunday at 2PM and the healing in the hospital was kind of hard on him so he asked to be released early. They generally leave you in the hospital for 3 days following a MD around here, bu he got let out Monday at 3PM. For the first 3-4 days after surgery, he lay in bed. Our 7-yr old spring mattress was the worse for wear, and luckily our neighbor was throwing out his 3-yr old spring mattress so now we have a king size mattress in the middle of our living room that the kids love jumping on (it doesnt fit our bed frame).

    Anyway, yesterday, he told me about a shooting pain down his left leg for the first time. Today, 9 days after surgery, he said there's numbness. Judging by all the comments here, we'll chalk it up to the nerve pain and damage from surgery that everyone says takes so long to heal. He also had numbness down his arms the day after surgery, but the doctors said that was from the gen anesth.

    Post op wasnt easy. He hurt a lot every time he changed positions (standing to sitting, lying down to sitting, sit to stand), he said that walking was less straining and painful than sitting/standing. By Thursday though (4 days in), he was feeling much better and able to stand, walk around, etc, and help a little with the kids. The surgeon recommended bedrest/minimal effort for first two weeks, and then more effort while cautious for the second two weeks. he said he could go back to his desk job after a month post-op. We go in this Sunday to get the staples taken out.

    I came to this forum to get answers about the numbness, bc I freaked out when he told me about it this morning. I'm happy to see that it's not a freak occurrence. I like being able to read other people's stories in detail to get a better understanding of waht he's going through and waht to expect. As you can imagine, no, relate, this whole situation is taxing what with two young kids at home and living off of one paycheck for 3+ months.
    Gd bless anyone in pain with full recovery,

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  • snitsrssnitsr Posts: 1
    edited 07/11/2015 - 12:23 PM
    I had surgery on May 13, 2015 for a herniated disk. It has been 8 weeks and I am still experiencing pain in my right lower leg and numbing and tingling, burning sensation in my foot. I keep asking if this is normal and Dr. said yes, it could even take up to a year to get better results; which to me is not acceptable, but I have no choice in the matter. I have a hard time walking for any distance and tire very easily. I have been on oxycodone 5 mg. which I try to take at a minimum switching between extra strength tylenol or ibuprofen. If I am pushing a shopping cart, it's a tad easier to walk. Some days are better then others. On some days I feel I'm getting much better, then a couple of days later I'm in more pain again. I have talked to other people who also have had various back surgeries and they all say the same , it can take a year or more after those nerves get disturbed. I almost wonder if I would have been better off to have forgone the surgery and let healing on its own.
    But reading some of these comments, I guess I'm not alone and I could be worse off. Thanks for letting me blow off steam. I'll try to keep a positive attitude.

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  • Hi Radiogirl, 
    My experience was the same from usual pain to unbearable excruciating pain.  Was admitted through the ER and was screaming so loudly that a nurse nicknamed me "helter".  No one can know that pain unless they have experienced it...was supposed to get surgery two days later and neurosurgeon discharged me after we found out that the disc got worse per the MRI.  He didn't believe I could be in that much pain....ten days later another surgeon was kind enough to help me out with a discectomy....couldn't believe that the broken disc was massive at 3.5 cm X 1.6 cm X 1.0 cm.  I could have told him that with all the pain that seemed as if my leg was being ripped from my body.  I am 20 months out from the surgery and I am still not having full use of my foot.  You were so blessed to have a kind and responsible neurosurgeon to help you out.  I am still in total disbelief that the doctor abandoned me when I thought I would die from the pain.
    How are you doing now?
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  • How do you feel now?

  • LizLiz Posts: 9,518

    This is an old discussion created by a member no longer on the forum so I am closing it.

    You can search for articles on this subject or I suggest you create a new discussion

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    Welcome to Spine-Health

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
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