Microdiscectomy : Has anyone resolved a re-herniated disc without a second surgery?

When a disc reherniates after a microdiscectomy it seems like the standard options are either fusion, a revision microdiscectomy and less commonly, a disc replacement. 

I'm looking to find out if anyone has decided to forgo further surgery.  If so, what have you done to address your condition, and how successful have you been?

I think such examples (if they exist) could be interesting for a lot of people visiting these forums!



  • Have you had re-herniation Mark? Your surgery date is less than a month ago :-(

    I guess the majority of people that have second surgery need it because of pain, numbness or worse and don't have the luxury of the choice of the non surgical route.
  • @AJGormit I've got an MRI scheduled for Tuesday to see if I've re-herniated or not.  I'm currently suffering pain at a higer level than I did prior to surgery.  Hopefully it's just inflammation, but I'm worried that further surgeries may coming my way....
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  • smartens162smartens162 Manitoba, CanadaPosts: 361
    Sorry to hear that Mark!  I re-herniated nearly a year post-op at L5-S1.  Here in Canada, things move slowly.  I finally do have an appointment for a CONSULT - it will be just over a year since the re-herniation to finally hear what he has to say on the matter!  So while I did not 'forego' another surgery, I certainly have had time to consider what route I want to go when I finally get some options from the surgeon.  The pain was bad right at re-herniation, but within 3 months it was 'manageable' with prescriptions, physio and regular exercise (walking, pool).  But there has been a slow decline, with noticeable muscle weakness and numbness.  Part of me thinks that the nerves are dying a slow death and therefore it is not the discomfort at the top of my list anymore...trying to be optimistic, tho.  My desire is to have an artificial disc replacement, but that's a whole other story.  Some days I think maybe I could learn to live with this without ever having another surgical intervention, but those days are occurring less and less.  I am 46, and would like to be able to work and be able to enjoy gardening again, and eventually grandchildren in a few years.  My opinion is another discectomy will only delay another, more-invasive surgery (fusion or disc replacement), and a fusion is just too drastic a step for me right now.   We live in an instant-gratification world, and I can't believe how quickly the U.S. recommends surgery compared to Canada, yet so many are not willing to put up with the pain a second longer than they have to, and perhaps rushing into surgery when time may have been all that was needed for the problem to resolve itself.  All the best to you, I'm pulling for you, hoping it's just a flare that will pass and you'll be back on the road to recovery soon!  
  • @smartens162 Best of luck to you as well.  I had the MRI today and will get the doctors verdict tomorrow.  I sneaked a peek at the PRI pictures and I can definitely see a bulge at L5-S1 (in the same place as before), but that might be inflammation or scarring...
  • Hi Marksinpain

    I had L5S1 microdiscectomy and Laminotomy at the start of August this year.
    Week 4 after surgery the sciatic pain came back, along with tingling and weakness. Surgeon suspected inflammation and gave me an oral steroid pack. This yielded no results and an Mri with and without contrast showed reherniation. 
    I am now 3 weeks after the revision surgery, and the pain is back in my leg. Week 1 post op was awesome with zero pain, week 2 pain is back in my leg along with tingling and numbess. Surgeon game me steroids again, and this time it appears to be helping, makes me think inflammation is the culprit this time.

    Good Luck. 
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  • marksinpainmarksinpain Posts: 41
    edited 10/16/2016 - 11:15 AM
    @walton360 Good luck!  I hope you avoid any further surgery!  

    A new MRI on my back showed no reherniation and the doctor has put me on anti inflammatories for 10 days to see if that helps.  Fingers crossed!
  • AMWoodyAMWoody SurreyPosts: 107
    I too have all of my pain higher up than where the op was. I am 6 months post discectomy and all of my pain is higher up. This gives me hope.
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