Medical Questions > Conditions and Diseases > Back Pain Forum

Numbness After Microdiscectomy (Page 1)

Must Read
What structures make up the spine? We review basic spine anatomy here...before identifying potential causes of back pain....
Click here to learn about the most common causes of back pain, and things that increase your risk of backache. We cover lower back pain and upper back pain....
Back pain symptoms may seem obvious. But do you know when symptoms of back pain are more serious or when to see a doctor? Learn what action to take & when...
Hello,

i am hoping to get some advice here, after having a herniated disc for almost 2 years that caused me lots of leg pain, I had microdiscetomy on monday 3/6/05 on l5 s1. Since my surgery I have had numbness in my butt, between my leg and all the way down to my toes. I have called my doctor to let him know what is going on and he did not seem to very worried. I am wondering if anybody has had the same results after surgery and if so how long did it take to go away? I am soooo worried that my leg and butt will always be numb now.

Thanks for any advice,

christine
Did you find this post helpful?
First Helper sqteaches
|

replied March 17th, 2006
...but Numbness Why?
Hi christine

we tell all our patients that the numbness persists after surgery for about 6 weeks or so. But any unusual numbness lasting for more than 3 months needs evaluation. You may need to go in for an mri test along with gadolinium injections to rule out perineuritis or recurrent or residual disc fragments pressing on your nerves. May be you can see someone else, if you dont mind.

Regards

dr arun naik md
neurosurgeon
|
Did you find this post helpful?

User Profile
replied April 29th, 2011
ive had the numbness for 4 months....could this be from the dural tear during surgery?
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 13th, 2009
Same problem, a little worse
Hi there, I just had the same surgery on February 5th. I had been suffering with a herniated disc for over 19 months and finallyy got in to have the surgery. I went in for what was supposed to be a day surgery and ended up have 3 surgeries in one day, spending 3 days in intensive care and finally sent home Feb 13. After the first surgery I was in extreme pain and could not feel anything from the shoulders down, so they took me into surgery again, after that surgery I was still in severe pain and could not feel anything again. After a few hours I did regain feeling in my arms and hands but still feel completely numb from the middle of my back to my toes. I am unable to walk other than a few steps bearing the weight on my arms, but they sent me home because my MRI shhowed nothing and they did not know what was wrong with me. They said the sensation should come back and the pain should go away with time.
I am very frustrated and upset, I walked into the hospital with pain that was being maintained by pain meds and came out in a wheel chair unable to walk and 50% more pain!!
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied March 8th, 2009
i lost all feeling from the waist down due to a slipped disc. i underwent a urgent disectomy and was left with severe nerve damage. I lost the feeling in the back of my left leg and foot and half my bum and bits. Its just coming up till a year ago that i had the suregy and i still have back ache, have just regained the feeling in the back of my leg> slowly my toes are coming back but i still have days where i cannot feel my bottom or my bits. Apparently my nerves are damaged so this may continue for the reat of my days. Also when the surgeon did my op he cut my spinal cord which again means nverve damage. Due to the extent of my slipped disc and the damage it made to my nerves the docs said i was lucky to walk after and i should have been totally incontinent. So i think its just your nerves that are playing silly buggers with your body, they can take years to repair and L4 and L5 are the worst ones to repair.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied March 11th, 2009
I also had the same type of surgery, but at L4-L5 ((lumbar laminotomy, micro-discketomy)((Nov 06)), I also have numbness in my left leg after the sugery that goes all the way to my toes. My feet and toes also are cramping and at times it's very painful, not to mention walking. If I'm on my feet for an extended period of time, my feet get really bad. This is going on 3 years after surgery. Now they are telling me that I need a fusion at L5-S1 and another decompression as well to clean out any spurs and built up scar tissue. So hopefully in your case it well get better over time. But don't hesitate to get a second opinion, and maybe another MRI with&without contrast.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 16th, 2011
Numbness
I also had discectomy L3 L4 L5 numbness in left leg 5 months pre surgery numbness persist still 1 month post surgery. My surgeon tells me the damage may be done and will have to live with it. Thinking of second oppinion.

Chris
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 26th, 2009
me too...
Almost 2 weeks post op...lumbar microdiscectomy, I had bad Sciatia down the left side...had an MRI then opted for surgery... Surgeon said I had completely ruptured L5 S1 and a normal enough herniation of L4 L5... What was meant to be a small scar of about an inch is now a 3" Scar but healing well. Anyway have taken it very handy but still numbness and really really cold numb feet... Only pain is when I sit down, then my left leg completely cramps up... I have contacted my Surgeon, and he says it's normal and will heel in time...
What can I do but only wait and see and continue with my daily boring routine of lying on my back and watching TV...
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied January 29th, 2012
I hear you! I'm 3-1/2 weeks post op, bored out of my mind, and still have the numbness down my left leg and into my foot. It's worse than before the surgery. I'm going to my doctor tomorrow to talk about this because doing "foot pumps" to guard against scar tissue or whatever is causing this, isn't helping. And how many of those can a person do anyway?? Just thought I'd commiserate. If you like, I can tell you what my doctor says. Let me know.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied January 29th, 2012
I hear you! I'm 3-1/2 weeks post op, bored out of my mind, and still have the numbness down my left leg and into my foot. It's worse than before the surgery. I'm going to my doctor tomorrow to talk about this because doing "foot pumps" to guard against scar tissue or whatever is causing this, isn't helping. And how many of those can a person do anyway?? Just thought I'd commiserate. If you like, I can tell you what my doctor says. Let me know.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 4th, 2009
discectomy
i also had this op on aug 28th...have numbness in my hiney and privates as well down both sides of my upper legs and my heal on my right foot is still completely numb..also, i cannot poop because of the nerve damage and have to literally turn it all to liquid to come out ...sure all will be better over time, just how much time? getting very tired of this already...God is the hearler so pray for yourselfs everytime you think about it and remember by Jesus' stripes we are healed!!
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied January 27th, 2010
I just had the lumbar microdiscectomy at L5-S1 last week. My left leg, buttocks and foot is numb and tingly and hurts so bad. When I walk, it looks like I have a fake leg because the leg is so numb and heavy, I cannot walk correctly. My doctor said this is normal and SHOULD go away. I hope and pray that this doesnt change my life for the worse.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied January 27th, 2010
Extremely eHealthy
cateyezz
i know its not easy. you'd like to hop off the table and get going with your life. surgery doesnt usually work out that way. its very early in the game and your body has literally been attacked. nerves and tissue have to calm down. for some individuals a year is needed. is any of this pain new or is it the same old stuff.
several people here have had microdiscectomies at the level you have and will probably check in and leave advice....take deep breaths, relax, and follow your drs orders....pete
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 1st, 2010
Youll be ok!
I had my op in Nov 09, (L4,L5,S1 Microdiscectomy ) yes its normal after the area has been operated on the pain can increase, my Surgeon said that even new pain can come up. Reason is that the area is swollen internally after surgery and the inflammation and scar tissue can put more pressure on a nerve until swelling goes down and things heal. My pain went away last month and I'm looking forward to my nerve healing soon so that i can feel my toes and leg again, i want to stand on my toes! Make sure you do the rehab! Hydrotherapy etc...You'll be fine!
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 8th, 2010
hi deedee6, i had a discectomy L5 S1 on january 22, 2010 and i am having alot of pain still. it is now feb 8 and i had my 1st post-op doctor visit today. he sounded very pesimistic when i told him that i was still in pain. he told me that 90% of patients feel better within the first 2 weeks. he said that sometimes some people take longer though. im very scared that i might not get better. i am 28 years oldd and love to exercise run etc... i am hopefull there is someone else out there with a simelar story that gets better? can this go away over a few more weeks or months?
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 9th, 2010
thanks for the reply fran. i am doing some walking and i start physical therapy tomorrow. i had a micro discectomy and the doctor did use an endoscope. no muscles were cut. the majority of my pain is in the nerve, especially the left calf and foot.

i try not to sit to long and i follow all of the doctors orders. i hope that you are right and maybe it will get better in the weeks to come. i see the doctor again in 6weeks
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 9th, 2010
Experienced User
On an unrelated part of the body having to do with nerves;

I had an entire nerve Bundle removed years ago. (girl stuff from a bad c-section) and I thought my private parts and tummy were never going to stop feeling like they were numbed by a dentist. It took a few years to get smaller, then many years later it is nothing I even think about. So, time does help for them to heal sometimes they need time and exercise. It all depends on what /where and who you are. What has been done. But, nerves really do calm down if not being aggravated.
Wishing you all a calm nerve future:-)
bamm
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 9th, 2010
Experienced User
I would like to thank each of you for this information about what happens after spinal surgery. These are the exact things I need to know at just the right time. I am getting ready to discuss having spinal surgery again. It is often not told to the patient what all we have to go through. It has let me have more information to discuss with my doctor. I really need to talk about the pain from pooping bit. I am very slight of frame and can NOT NOT NOT afford to loose any weight. So, just knowing that that may be a problem has impowered me. Thank you. Each of you. I am going to start a new post about needing to know what the doctor does not tell you to expect after spinal surgery.
I think I will title it 'Everything I NEED to know before I have spine surgery"{. I look forward to seeing what I can learn:-) Thanks again for the power and knowledge.
I hope all of you heal well and I wish you the very best;
bamm
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied March 12th, 2010
After just having L3-L4 microdiscectomy surgery through a 5" incision, 4 days ago and have numbness from buttocks including one half of my genitals to toes on the right side of my body. My board certified neurosurgeon informs me that only 1% of his patients have this severe kind of numbness as I have. Prior to surgery I only had 20% of the numbness I have now. I would appreciate any info on anyones recovery time from these similar symptoms

Jay
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied March 13th, 2010
Littleonefb Thanks? My surgeon did tell me he always takes a small amount of bone out when he goes into extrude the disc. He said I had a very large piece that had traveled up my spine. The most frightning thing is that I can only feel half of my rectum and genitals. His comment as it related to the 1% was the kind of severe numbness i have. Still cannot walk without a walker and my leg is like having a club attatched to my body. I have previously had a laminectorm L-4,L-L-5 S-1 about 18 years ago, first major problem with this level. He said that my back would handle at least one if not two micros before any fusion would be considered.

Thanks for your responce
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied March 22nd, 2010
Hi

I had my second microdiscectomy in Sept 2007, I was left with numbness to my butt, leg and foot. It has never come back, and I was told that after about 1 year it never would. I struggled to walk - my leg was a dead weight and I found it difficult to cope, however I had masses of physio and have only just stopped doing exercises every day! I swim and do pilates. My walking is now normal and has been for the past year (although sometimes it takes a lot of concentration!) I still topple over occasionally! and I still wake with cramps at night sometimes. But there is hope - I walk my dog as far as I want ! and I have got a new job where nobody knows what has happened! Life has gone back to normal - it takes ages but you can get there! Just keep going.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied June 26th, 2010
Support and Encouragement
I had my surgery in April. I tried cutting the narcotics as they are making me viciously sick, but are the only thing that helps with the severity of my pain. I wonder if anyone else has had to rely on pain meds 2.5 months after surgery? I'm also dealing with a lot of leg, lower and upper back pain & numbness as well as facial numbness. I had the herniated disc for roughly 3 years. I was adamant about trying other methods before having surgery. I wonder if I was too optimistic in hoping that my recovery would be much faster than what I'm currently going through. My neurosurgeon has been phenomenal! However, I am embarrassed by the numerous times that I've called after hours because of my complications. I know that he can only do so much and I don't want to bother him. I'm just looking for others who may have been in the same situation and support.

Regards,
Melanie A
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied June 28th, 2010
Had anterior and posterior 3 level lumbar fusion with 8 screws and 2 rods. Surgery was March 2010. Most of my major pain is beginning to lower however, I have experienced new conditions that I never experienced. Numb left leg and very painful left testical. My left leg becomes very painful when I walk and I need a walker or cane. The funny thing is prior to surgery all my leg pain was my right leg now that's gone. In addition, my left hip is in costant pain. My own research led me to realize I'm not alone. People who have lumbar fusion in three areas have side affects. When they do anterior entry they move a bunch of nerves that cause my issues as far as posterior entry it's probably the same. My doctor was honest, sometimes the nerves being moved fall asleep and only time will tell. My major pain is almost gone but I still suffer from the residual affects of spinal surgery. I'm trying to be patient and knew this was a long jurney prior to the surgery. I hope I've help some of you, listen to your doctor and give it time at least 12 to 18 months.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied June 28th, 2010
Had anterior and posterior 3 level lumbar fusion with 8 screws and 2 rods. Surgery was March 2010. Most of my major pain is beginning to lower however, I have experienced new conditions that I never experienced. Numb left leg and very painful left testical. My left leg becomes very painful when I walk and I need a walker or cane. The funny thing is prior to surgery all my leg pain was my right leg now that's gone. In addition, my left hip is in costant pain. My own research led me to realize I'm not alone. People who have lumbar fusion in three areas have side affects. When they do anterior entry they move a bunch of nerves that cause my issues as far as posterior entry it's probably the same. My doctor was honest, sometimes the nerves being moved fall asleep and only time will tell. My major pain is almost gone but I still suffer from the residual affects of spinal surgery. I'm trying to be patient and knew this was a long jurney prior to the surgery. I hope I've help some of you, listen to your doctor and give it time at least 12 to 18 months.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 9th, 2012
its been 2 years from time of operation , had 6 rods 28 screws , at times i feel good , then bang guess who is back l5s1,and why .i waited 6 yrs for this and doc says m red flaged for l5s1 when he went in on l3l4 ,why didnt he do it then. i just love when a knife starts to stabb you when your doing some thing so easy to do, what next
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 9th, 2012
its been 2 years from time of operation , had 6 rods 28 screws , at times i feel good , then bang guess who is back l5s1,and why .i waited 6 yrs for this and doc says m red flaged for l5s1 when he went in on l3l4 ,why didnt he do it then. i just love when a knife starts to stabb you when your doing some thing so easy to do, what next
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 9th, 2012
its been 2 years from time of operation , had 6 rods 28 screws , at times i feel good , then bang guess who is back l5s1,and why .i waited 6 yrs for this and doc says m red flaged for l5s1 when he went in on l3l4 ,why didnt he do it then. i just love when a knife starts to stabb you when your doing some thing so easy to do, what next
|
Did you find this post helpful?