pain returns after week 3 post microdisectomy. Will it subside?

Hello everyone. 

I had a microdisectomy on my l5/s1 three weeks ago, after 9 months of being unable to walk due to sciatic pain in my left leg, along the back of it. 
My surgery went well. 
I woke up with NO pain. NONE. 
I cried from relief, once the nausea from anesthesia wore off, which took almost a full day for me. 
On day three, I had some leg pain again. It subsided the next day. I've had very minor back pain near the surgery site, and some hip pain, and some minor pain on the outer left thigh. 
I started new physio exercises on Friday, and since then, the pain has been getting worse day by day. It hit the original pain spot today. I want to not panic, but it's very difficult. 
Is this from working the muscle in new ways since the surgery? I have been walking daily since day 2
Will it subside?
I don't get to see my surgeon for another 4 weeks, and with COVID, that might be cancelled too. 



  • Welcome Didda we’re glad you’re here!

    I have had the same thing happen a couple of times, surgeon explained it this way, before surgery the nerves were compressed, during surgery, the nerves were decompressed, moved and stretched which shocks them, when they start waking up they can be painful and can take time to calm back down, I wish I could tell you how long but I can't, for me it was around 2 weeks 1 time and almost 4 months the last time. If it were me I would contact the surgeons office and let them know.

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    Have you read the article Practical Advice for Recovering from Back Surgery on Spine-health? It offers a lot of practical tips around what to expect before, during, and after surgery. You may also want to check out the video How to Prep Your Home for Spine Surgery Recovery, which also has some great tips.

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  • Thanks so much.

    I'm hoping that is what is going on.

    I'm sending an email to my surgeon, since I'm out of minutes for the month, of course.

    I took it very easy yesterday and it doesn't hurt as much today. 

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  • I could deal with flares of pain, if I could know it's normal.

    Here's hoping I can do a consult by phone next month, or email! 

  • Nerve pain is usually the last thing to go, my surgeon says it's a good sign when they hurt because that means they are waking up, he also prescribed a prednisone pack to help get the inflammation down and that helped.

    Take care and keep us posted


  • That is very helpful information, thank you.

    I'm doing a bit better today!

    Thankfully walking is not causing any pain, that is what was impacting me the most pre surgery, being unable to move. 

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  • I am glad things have eased off a little, there will be up's and down's during recovery, you will learn what amount of activity makes things worse and be able to adjust from there.


  • Hi Didda,

    Was the pain radianting from the back to the leg?

    Only pain? no numbness, tingling, burning?

    Did it started immediately after the herniation or it gotten worse? did you take any medication for the pain?

    Be well

    Fast recovery buddy

  • Hi!

    The pain was only in my leg, in the exact same spot it hurt before, and then in the opposite leg at times, in the same spot.

    Only pain.

    I have had some tingling in the past week, and the pain has let up. 

    We are unsure when I did herniate, as the pain started one morning, and I had no falls or even strenuous days before.

    I was only able to take ketoralac for the pain, and it was pretty much useless.

    Since surgery, Tylenol has been able to knock it out.

    Things are much better today!

    Still some pain, but minor at worst. It's still there when I sit, but it's tolerable!

    I think the surgery was a success, and it's it's just inflammation around the incision site healing. 

    I almost completely have my life back. 

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