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Reherniation - Is it Possible to get Better Without a Second Surgery?

Hi guys,

I just had a laminectomy/discectomy at L4/L5 17 days ago and I'm really afraid I've reherniated. I felt fantastic immediately after the surgery, and then about 10 days later I did a bit of yard work (picking up dog poop with a poop scooper- no bending or twisting).

I went to lie down afterwards, and when I went to get back up after an hour or so, I started feeling sore in my back. It felt more muscular so I wasn't worried about it, but now it's been this way for almost a week. I'm getting spasms in my back, extreme stiffness in my SI area (couldn't bend over without hurting myself if I tried), and I'm feeling burning on the outside of my lower leg (that never fully went away after the surgery but it's somewhat worse now). 

I feel generally unstable. If I stand up and move a bit, I get a spasm. It's as though my back "panics" and wants to keem me from moving. 

I know nobody will be able to give me hints as to wether I've reherniated or not, but has anyone heard of anyone recovering from a reherniation without surgery?  Reading up around here freaks me out completely abiyt having a second surgery. I'm only 32 so I have a long way to go. I know I'm likely going to need more surgeries down the road, but I'd like to postpone as much as possible... 

Thanks
Nic


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134

Comments

  • AMWoodyAMWoody SurreyPosts: 107
    Nic I had all of the symptoms you have... You have to try to relax into thinking it is prob just muscle and nerve pain. I was great after surgery adn then got slowly worse. this seems to be how it is. I am at 4 months now and still have pain.
  • Jules1JJules1 Oklahoma City, OklahomaPosts: 75
    I'll be interested in how your experience progresses. I am 4 weeks post op Lumbar Microdisectomy and having a lot of Sciatic pain. I requested an MRI which happens later this week
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  • ShivayaSShivaya Quebec, CanadaPosts: 35

    AMWoody said:
    Nic I had all of the symptoms you have... You have to try to relax into thinking it is prob just muscle and nerve pain. I was great after surgery adn then got slowly worse. this seems to be how it is. I am at 4 months now and still have pain
    Like I said in the other post - I hope you're right! I'll keep you in the loop.

    Jules1 said:
    I'll be interested in how your experience progresses. I am 4 weeks post op Lumbar Microdisectomy and having a lot of Sciatic pain. I requested an MRI which happens later this week

    Were you feeling better after surgery and yhen the pain just came back randomly? I'd be interested in hearing more about how it went down for you...
  • AMWoodyAMWoody SurreyPosts: 107
    I have been so up and down since surgery... My pain has changed over the weeks and today I have started Naproxen again as my back feels so heavy.. My leg pain has only given me twinges but nothing like itwas. My buttock pain I can feel slightly bu again nothing compared to the agony I was in. My back hurts and my muscles are weak. I am just trying to work through this difficult patch I am having at present.
  • erinb40eerinb40 EnglandPosts: 20
    I had a microdiscectomy 2.5 weeks ago and have started with pain to the right of my incision and top of my buttock. I am also weaning off my medication because I was on Naproxen, morphine & Gabapentin (only on Gabapentin and 1/2 my morphine dose) . Up until now I haven't felt an pain since my surgery, I am petrified I have reherniated to the point of having the begin gas of panic attacks. Is it normal to start feeling pain? Is pain nerve related from the damage?  I know non of you can give medical opinion but what are your experiences? 
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  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 809
    edited 09/15/2016 - 12:59 AM

    Nicholas... Alison... Julie...

    It takes a LOT to reherniate... and considering you are only a few weeks out from surgery you are probably walking around on egg shells... and not doing anything that would stress your back in a way that would cause a reherniation.  Lifting 50 pound bags of concrete onto your shoulders all day might do it... but I doubt any of you are doing that.  The healing process from back surgery takes a lot longer than a few weeks and until you are healed you are going to experience lots of strange and difficult pains, twinges, stiffness, numbness, etc... in both your muscles and your spinal nerves.  Both your spinal nerves and muscles have been highly traumatized both before and during the surgery and they are now trying to find a new and correct normal... but the healing process for both is VERY slow... and the recovery road is littered with lots of unexplained new pains.   Be patient... take your nerve or pain meds if needed... and in time all the strange things will fade away.  Time truly does heal all... 

    Alison... the emotional ups and downs you describe during recovery is also common... you can finds lots of stories here noting it.  Just let the tears roll if needed... there is nothing wrong with that.  A lot of us have been there and done that also... there is no harm or shame in it.  Hang-in there... as long as you all are following your doctors orders... you all will reach the light at the end of the rainbow.  

  • Jules1JJules1 Oklahoma City, OklahomaPosts: 75
    Good news. MRI at 4 weeks post op showed NO reherneation. For me, the sciatic pain always seemed to be present, and increased as I reduced pain meds. A small amount of walking helped sometimes, but could also increase pain if too much. It's a relief to know  I haven't damaged. Thanks to this forum, I asked the Doc about Gabapentin, and started taking that today.
  • ShivayaSShivaya Quebec, CanadaPosts: 35
    edited 09/16/2016 - 12:05 PM
    Harry thanks so much for the kind post - it does help bring me back down to earth. I am 3 weeks post op right now and the morning back spasms are violent.  I took clonazepam yesterday - it seems to have helped. I took it again this morning and I'm waiting for it to kick in.

    Jules that's fantastic news!!! Good for you!!
  • i have delt with emotioal ups and downs as well with healing i think when i went on a family outing a month ago i overdid it on the being on my feet and just this week did the pain subside with short walks and relaxation going to pt orders by NS cause i was worried i did some damage on the rides i went on(rollercoaster/bumper cars) but were doing pt to see if it helps for me i have a low pain tolorence and being in pain frustates me but im coming to terms with the fact i may have to live with on/off back pain for the rest of my life
  • SpartySSparty ArizonaPosts: 159
    HeavenlyRae, you are doing the right things and its awesome the results are showing.  I hear PT is a key part.  You are also young which is a big plus.  You will bouce back and one day you won't remember you even had back surgery.  I had an emergency surgery in 2012.  I thought I was done for but today it really doesn't cross my mind and its only 4 years ago.
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