Incision / back pain after l4 l5 micro

Been 48 hours since my microdiscectomy / hemilaminectomy. Sciatic completely gone. However, I have pretty intense lower back and incision pain. Only was prescribed 12 percocet and those run out this morning.

Is intense lower back pain common after this? I have a pretty high pain tolerance and havent read about too many people complaining about this. Any insight would be great as my surgeons office is closed.



  • Back and incision pain are common after surgery. There should be an after hours number you can call for your surgeon, it is usually staffed by a nurse or PA, try calling to see if they will call you in a refill.

    Take care and keep us posted


  • The surgery does not remove back pain, it decompresses the nerve to relieve you from sciatica. Nevertheless, incision pain is a thing and it will heal. Do your part by mitigating the chances of scar tissue building and in soon enough time you won't be talking about this and glad you didn't use narcotics to see you through it

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  • A good point that probably deserves its own thread, but scar tissue is a bane of many people’s existence... how exactly do you minimize its development Androo?

    Very glad your procedure relieved your sciatica, just di as directed and the incision pain will improve dramatically by 2-3 weeks.  

  • I am 7 weeks post op from the same thing,and still take Tylenol for back pain. I also have numbness and weakness in one leg. I was sent home with pain meds for four days and had to call my GP for a few more days. By day eight I was just taking Tylenol and using ice. Not to say I didn't have pain...just not as much! I can basically function for about four hours before I have to lay down and ice. I can walk 30 minutes twice a day, I do stretches twice a day, and can now sit about 30 min.max. I have started back to doing a bit of tai chi. I can’t sit in the car for more than five min.though.I think everyone’s recovery is so different. I am taking a special program on pain that basically gets you to focus on activity. It helps.

  • I second Joel1Q's question. I would love to know too. How do you minimize scar tissue after surgery?

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  • I did a little reading - for internal scar tissue (not skin scars) massage can be very helpful.  Doing things like heating pads saunas beforehand can help, best to do by 2 yrs.  but not before 1 yr (?) in cases of having a surgical procedure to remove internal scar tissue (if possible) it may resolve on its own or with massage help. 

  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 4,165

    Below is an article on scar tissue and pain after surgery.

    scar tissue and nerve pain after surgery 


  • Hey NellieButton, you are so right that everyone's recovery is different. I'm sorry you're having trouble with pain, hate to hear it. Tomorrow is four weeks post-op for me, excited to get to my 6 week follow up so I can start PT. I know some have started already but my doctor almost never responds to inquiries, so I've been sticking to very light hamstring stretches till I see him in two weeks. 

    I also don't like sitting down. Finally feeling a little more normal doing it - went out to dinner last night and only had to get up twice. But I'm purposely avoiding it. Walking 3-5 miles daily still, and that feels the absolute best out of all the things I do. Even did a 6 mile "hike" on Saturday (only 1000 feet of gain, well maintained trail with no tripping or slipping hazards). Been using a standing desk because I hate siting down so much. Getting really bad heel pain from the amount I've been on my feet, even though I was a very active person before surgery. Guess it is always an adjustment when you mess with your biomechanics. 

    Lower back pain is still there, especially when waking up in the morning. Feels different than the back pain I had before. Maybe scar tissue pain? But I'm hoping the frequent exercise is combating that.

    Anyway, I hope Tai Chi is providing some relief for you. Keep on keepin' on!!

  • Nice to find this forum. One week post op L4L5 S1 right side Discectomy. Nerve pain was completely gone after surgery. Been feeling pretty good until last night. Nerve pain/tingling lower leg/foot. Taking Tylenol and Aleve. Wondering if I should call or if it’s normal process? Kind of frustrating to say the least. 

    Background. I had the same surgery 9 yrs ago on the left side that took 8 months to finally heal. Permanent damage on the left 

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