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New Pains 2 months after L3/L4 TLIF

I had incredible pain and my back was bad enough that my surgeon bypassed physical therapy before surgery.  My L3/L4 TLIF was June 20.  The relief was so great I described my pain after surgery as a 2.  I got up and walked twice the day of surgery and once I even walked the whole floor at the hospital.  I was going so great.  This last Friday, I went in for my 2-month x-rays to make sure everything was ok.  The surgeon was extremely happy.  I told him my pain had been increasing and he said it was normal for the 2-month time frame.  The day after, I could hardly get out of bed.  Since then, I have been in agony.  All of my pain was always at the belt line and down the left side.  Now is it at the belt line and down the right side - with good x-rays.  I have a good friend that is a chiro - he doesn't twist.  He just examined me and said that everything was in line and there was no reason that I should be hurting.  What hurts is getting out of or moving in bed, sitting down or getting out of a chair.
The only thing I can think of it that until last week I was very active and last week while still being active I was not able because of scheduling to set aside time every day to walk.  Has anyone else faced this at around the 2 month time?


  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,241
    hello erieha!
    welcome to spine-health
    please click on link for helpful information!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • erlehaeerleha ColoradoPosts: 3
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  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 995
    edited 08/27/2016 - 11:16 PM


    After my fusion surgeries it took me many months to overcome the issues of pain during transition from standing to sitting or getting in or out of bed.  There is lots of trauma and muscle loss to overcome that takes a long time to heal as well as nerve healing.  The best thing you can do is get back to your daily walking routine... this is a very key element of fusion recovery.  This will help keep your muscles and tissues moving to get good blood flow, rebuild strength, and avoid stiffness.  Walk... walk... walk..  your body will thank you.

    Harry - 65 year old male...
    PLIF L4-L5-S1 due to disc degeneration... May 23, 2013
    PLIF L5-S1 due to failed fusion and broken screw... Jan 19, 2015
    Microdiscectomy, decompression L3-L4 due to herniated disc... Jan 19, 2015
  • erlehaeerleha ColoradoPosts: 3
    Thank you so much!
  • Erleha  It was inspiring to read the first part of your message as I am on a waiting list for double level TLIF L4-S1.

    I have had two other surgeries before, discectomy on first surgery then revised discectomy,discectomy on second level and wallis inswing implant.  The pain levels after second one were horrendous but eased after a few weeks.  I then had bouts of extreme pain at times, which either happened when I overdid it or if I did more sitting.  I still have problems with sitting any length of time and keeping my fingers crossed this will eventually improved after initial post op re-hab.

    I hope things improve for you quickly and carry on in the same direction as they were straight after surgery.

    We have to use a park and ride system to the hospital which involves a bus. I suffered for days after my last appointment because I had to use a sideways seat ... worse than a roller coaster ride!!!



    L5/S1 herniation Apr 2013
    nerve root injections Oct 2013
    L5/S1 discectomy Jan 2014
    L5/S1 nerve roo &, facet joint injections & edpidural Jan 2015
    L5/S1 revised discectomy, L4/L5 discectomy & Wallis Inswing Stabilisation L4/L5 May 1st 2015
    L4-S1 TLIF with decompression June 2017
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  • AMWoodyAMWoody SurreyPosts: 107
    I totally understand what you are going through. If i dare to relax in the evening and lie down I find it so very hard to get up and I seem stuck in dreadful positions when i do stand. I can walk it off but it is bad. Also when i get into bed, god forbid i need to get up for anything.... Agony. My PT says it is weak muscles . I walk and have started swimming but long for the day my muscles can hold me up again. I sit in a garden chair of an evening because sofas kill me..... I am 4 months post discectomy !!
  • AMWoodyAMWoody SurreyPosts: 107
    The worst part as you say is moving in bed !!!
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