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L4/L5 Hemilaminectomy

Hi everyone! I'm on post-op day 4 of recovery from my L4/L5 Hemilaminectomy. So far so good I guess! On January 31st, 2017, I arrived for surgery at 8am. I signed in, they started me on LRS fluids and by 10am I was in surgery. The surgery went well and as soon as I could walk a bit and speak coherently, I was discharged and went home. That night wasn't that bad. I hadn't had a good nights sleep in about 2 months. My ruptured disc would have me in tears throughout the night, it was such a struggle to move. I tried a chiropractor, stretching, and a entire mess of pills just to get through the work day and the night. It wasn't working and everything was just getting worse. I've always had back problems, but nothing a chiropractor couldn't adjust and have me on my feet in a week or so. But I knew something was different. The pain level I was dealing with with way more intense. My husband had to put my socks and shoes on for me, pick me up when I couldn't stand or move. He had to help me in and out of the shower, the bed...it was getting to be way too much for me. I went to my doctor who took xrays, then sent me for an MRI. I was given a disc with my MRI on it and while I was waiting for my doctor to call, I got curious. I work at a veterinary specialty office, so they loaded my disc and looked at it. Now, I can't read an MRI, but anyone could see that my disc was crushing my nerves, causing the pain and numbness. So! Back to the present: my first night home was fine. I was sore but it wasn't bad. Day 1 post-op wasn't that great. I was very painful. I could sit and walk, but laying down was not happening. I didn't get much sleep, I was pretty frustrated, but I got a few hours of sleep in a recliner. Day 2 wasn't much better. I could sit and walk again, but my incision was hurting really bad, no sleep, nauseated from my Oxycodone Rx but I got to remove the bandage and see my incision (agh! Lol) . I was miserable all day. Day 3 was slightly better, but not much of an improvement at all...but I finally got to shower! (yaaaay) my incision hurt and if I moved wrong, it felt like my incision was pulling/tearing. I had my husband look at it repeatedly because I thought I may have torn it open. (Never did) and now I'm on day 4. Im doing alright so far. I got some sleep, I'm not so nauseated this morning. I've kept a journal through all this and its really helped. My back, nerve and leg pain/numbness is gone and I know there's  light at the end of the tunnel, it just seems pretty far away. However, I do not regret this surgery. It has alleviated all my pain issues and once my incision heals, I'll be good to go. I'm out of work for weeks and a one week check up on Feb 7th and a final check up on Feb 27th. I've made sure not to lift "anything heavier than a coffee cup". Make sure to walk a good bit. Don't just sit down all day. Keep your muscles healthy, drink lots of water and definitely stay on your medication schedule to keep the pain managed. Don't eat greasy, fried or super sweet foods. ( they made me nauseated) I hope this helps someone!


  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    hello atomcat !
    we love success stories and i'm sure yours will be helpful to many !

    i could be mistaken, but i think this is the first time i read such detail as to your iv solution.  :)
    lactated ringers solution if i thinking right?  

    it is very good to be detailed oriented when it comes to your health....and its good to have it to refer to as time goes on.
    i have notes of my medical history on reverse side of my medication list as i am terrible historian about my own self!
    the notes help jog my memory.

    it is very good to hear how well you are doing!  :)
    i sure hope your sleep continues to improve and become consistent.

    i wish you all the best!

    please click on link for helpful information!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • "My back, nerve and leg pain/numbness is gone "

    Congrats! It's great that you recognize that the discomfort you'r now experiencing is short term and that the big problem seems to be fixed! I'm about 2 weeks behind you. It's my second laminectomy and the improvements from the first, 9 years ago, are alive and well!

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